It’s difficult not to take notice of the juice cleanse craze that has taken over major cities in the past few years. From avid health nuts to your average Joe looking for a little pick-me-up, juice cleansing has intrigued even the most skeptical among us. Of course, completing a juice cleanse is no small feat, and the task should not be taken lightly. If you’ve been considering a 3 day juice cleanse to reboot your system and rid your body of toxins that are weighing you down, there are a few things you should know to help you get through it. Yes, there will be highs, and there may be lows, but with this handy guide, you’ll be well on your way to accomplishing your juice cleanse like a pro! Let’s start with the basics about what to expect day-by-day.
The First Day of Your 3 Day Juice Cleanse
Everyone’s experience with a juice cleanse is different, and detox symptoms can vary based on how toxic our bodies are to begin with and how quickly our bodies release these toxins. Generally, the first day of a juice cleanse is relatively easy, at least for the first few hours. You’ll start your morning with one cold pressed juice, alongside eight ounces of water with lemon. If you’re used to a hearty breakfast, you may feel a bit sluggish, but this feeling should subside after your first juice. Those who are avid caffeine drinkers usually experience the worst symptoms, including headaches, sluggishness and irritability, as the body is not used to functioning without that daily dose of caffeine. We usually recommend cleansers wean off of caffeine in the days leading up to a cleanse, to make their experience easier.
Many cleansers report missing the act of chewing, and the routine of a meal, especially on the first day of a cleanse, since the body is not yet in cleansing mode and the digestive system is still humming along. Our bodies are hardwired in their routines, so if you are accustomed to three meals a day, your body will notice if you skip one. Be gentle with yourself, but if you have the nagging urge to chew something simply because you’re used to three meals, remind yourself of your goals and why you decided to cleanse in the first place.
While we do recommend staying active during a cleanse, you may notice your energy levels drop, particularly in the evening of the first day. At this point, you have gone through the entire day consuming less calories than your body is accustomed to. If you usually hit the gym after work in the evenings, opt for a light walk instead, or try a gentle hatha yoga class. Stretching and moving your muscles can help your body detox, but be careful not to overdo it. When on a low-calorie diet, your body can enter a hypoglycemic mode if you overexert yourself.
Many of us enjoy snacking late at night. If you usually reach for chips or candy at night, have a glass of lemon water and your last juice handy. A hot cup of tea can also help ease your digestive system and any hunger pangs you may experience.
What To Expect on Day 2 of a 3 Day Juice Cleanse
After making it through the first day of your cleanse, you should feel accomplished, proud, and maybe a bit lighter. However, be prepared, because day two can sometimes be the most difficult day for cleansers.
While you can expect to wake up feeling lighter, and most likely not craving a meal since your digestive system is no longer working hard to breakdown meals from the previous day, caffeine withdrawals may cause intense headaches and sluggishness on day two. If your body was particularly in need of a detox before your cleanse, you may experience excessive sweating, tiredness, irritability or anxiousness. It’s important to understand these potential detox side effects before starting your cleanse, so you can be better prepared to handle them when they arise.
If you do experience some uncomfortable symptoms, be sure to drink plenty of water to help flush toxins faster. Day two is a great time to treat yourself to a meditation class or sauna session. If you become extremely hungry during the day and have already consumed your scheduled juice and plenty of water, you can have a handful of raw almonds to help settle your stomach.
Keep in mind that, because there is no fiber or protein in your body to increase absorption, you may need to make more frequent trips to the bathroom during your cleanse. Don’t be alarmed. This is normal and healthy during your cleanse.
Day two is a great day to head to bed early and get plenty of rest. Your body is working hard to cleanse itself at this point, and you’ll need extra sleep to recuperate.
The Final Stretch of Your 3 Day Juice Cleanse
Welcome to the final day of your cleanse! Day 3 is usually the easiest, and most enjoyable day of a cold pressed juice cleanse. Cleansers usually report feeling weightless, energized, and full of life. Your digestive system is fully rested and you will no longer experience intense hunger pangs or negative symptoms you may have battled with in the previous days.
The last day of a cleanse is a great day for a massage, meditation session, or other activity that will help connect you with your body. Be mindful of your energy levels though, because you may still experience ebbs and flows on your final day. Continue to combat this with plenty of water, as you can still become dehydrated even during a cleanse.
You may be dreaming of all the foods you’ll eat once your cleanse is over, but remind yourself that, as important as following a cleanse protocol is, it is even more important to come off of a cleanse properly. The third day of a juice cleanse is a great day to head to the grocery store to stock up on healthy, raw, whole foods that you’ll eat to break your cleanse. Make a light vegetable soup and stock your fridge with plenty of fruits and veggies for the days following your cleanse. If you revert to eating unhealthy, fatty foods immediately after your cleanse, you could face a serious stomach ache and uncomfortable digestive issues.
The third day is an important day to ditch the “all or nothing” mindset. If you’ve slipped up in the previous days, don’t throw in the towel before your juice cleanse is complete. Make sure to finish all of your juices each day, and be gentle with yourself, no matter how you may feel about the way you handled your cleanse. The important thing to remember is that you are taking a huge step to take control of your health, and every little bit counts.
More Tips to Help You Through Your Cleanse
This guide is a great start to prepping your body and mind for a juice cleanse. Below are some extra tips to get you through your cleanse successfully:
Stock up on herbal tea - Particularly for caffeine drinkers, herbal, caffeine-free tea is an excellent way to add flavor to your diet during a cleanse. Six to eight juices per day can sometimes feel monotonous, but adding interesting tea flavors can help entertain your taste buds and keep cravings at bay. Hot liquids also help to ease cravings and hunger pangs, so make sure to keep tea bags close at hand.
Listen to your body - If you feel very ill, weak, and shaky, as if you may pass out, don’t force yourself to continue your cleanse. You can add a light vegetable salad or raw piece of fruit to your diet to help ease serious side effects. If you do happen to need a pick-me-up in the form of solid food, don’t throw in the towel altogether. Continue with your next juice as scheduled and don’t beat yourself up over it.
Plan wisely - Make sure to look at a calendar and plan your cleanse on a convenient three-day period. Usually, cleansers schedule their cleanses over a long weekend, so they can stay home and rest without the stress of work overwhelming them. Definitely do not plan a cleanse over a holiday, or when you know you’ll have friends or family visiting. It can sometimes be difficult to be extremely social during a cleanse if you generally like to go out to eat and drink with friends and family. Try to remove temptations like this from your life for a brief cleanse.
Break a sweat - While we do recommend taking it easy during a cleanse, breaking a sweat can really help speed things up in terms of detoxification. Take a hot bath or visit a sauna to aid your body in releasing toxins through the skin via sweat. Do not, however, attempt an intense cycling or weight lifting class, even if this is in your normal routine, as your body is not equipped to handle that type of exertion while it’s busy detoxing.
A 3 day juice cleanse is a wonderful, beneficial undertaking that is accessible to practically everyone. If you’ve been considering a juice cleanse but aren’t sure what to expect, this guide will keep you on track with exactly what to expect each day. And remember to enjoy your cleanse experience! Once it’s complete, you’ll feel lighter, healthier and more enlightened than ever.