One of the VF writers, Sandra Aziz, had told us she was doing the Arbonne cleanse and agreed to write about the whole thing! And nope… not sponsored. Literally ZERO connection with the company. Just a funny, relatable, and informative read by your new VF homegirl! She left no stone unturned. Read Sandra’s hilarious Part 1 HERE.
So it’s been a month since I set out on this journey to find myself, to find the meaning of life and my purpose on this planet. JK! All I did was do a detox challenge but seriously on some days, it felt that way!
Let’s recap PART ONE: we explored the pros and cons of the Arbonne challenge, researched if the product was safe and what the cleanse entailed and set out on an adventure to discover if it would make me look like Eva Mendes.
How I started on the right footing?
Well, when my package arrived, I inventoried everything so I knew how exactly what I was working with: protein powders ✓, fiber ✓, digestive enzymes ✓, 7 day detox cleanse ✓, tea ✓ and fizzy stick ✓ . Then I made a daily schedule that I knew I was realistic. Ex: use this many scoops of this product at this hour of everyday. Next…I made a grocery list! Every cleanse has it’s own restrictions — and I seriously felt like I had to cut EVERYTHING out (dairy, soy, gluten, anything non-organic, air…), so my first list literally read “organic lettuce”. YAWN!
If you are like me and have a hard time staying motivated and basically foam at the mouth every time someone invites you out to dinner, you need motivation check points! I mentioned in part 1 that my friend was doing the cleanse with me. While that’s true, I needed more. So I suckered 10 people at my job to take part in a weight loss challenge. We all put in $10 and whoever lost the most weight got all the money. BAM!
How I SURVIVED?!
Did you all know that Trader Joe’s has a plethora of foods that are gluten-free, soy-free, and organic. This was a complete shock to me since I have always hit the frozen food isle, the alcohol isle then the cash register. THANK YOU grocery gods because my grocery list went from “organic lettuce” to an extensive list where I was cooking something I actually liked every evening! So I had a protein shake for breakfast, a seriously big fat lunch, and a small snack and protein shake for dinner; all with tea and water in between meals.
Here’s the kicker…brace yourselves… I was NEVER ever ever hungry. I seriously had to FORCE myself to eat something for dinner or have a protein shake after work. HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE? The shakes were my favorite part of the whole thing. I mean, have you all tried regular protein powder? Don’t they make you want to VOM? These actually taste really frickin’ good! The vanilla was way too sweet so honestly I never used it (if someone in the Bay Area wants the full bag, hit me up and it’s yours!). But I drowned myself in the chocolate protein powder because… well a girl just loves her some chocolate. And all I needed to do was add water! That’s it! And it seriously tasted great!
The 7 day cleanse… this falls on the third well of the 4 week challenge. You mix the contents of the packet into water and drink it all day and it’s supposed to cleanse your system. And by cleansing your system, did they mean straight up laxatives in that packet? Because that’s really what it felt like!! And honestly when mixed with water, it tasted like warm soy sauce. So gross! I did it and finished it and hated myself for it all at the same time.
AUTHOR UPDATE**** Since doing the cleanse, I learned that the 7 day cleanse contains products listed under Proposition 65–which in California is a list of products that have been found to dangerous if consumed or inhaled at certain levels. The products they are referring to in the 7 day cleanse are carrots, rhubarb and other root vegetables that possibly “naturally” have absorbed lead which “naturally” occurs in the soil. Um, correct me if I’m wrong, but if there’s lead in the soil, isn’t it contaminated?! My friend who looked into it found that the warning seems to only appear if you are purchasing in California where it’s required that products be labeled if there’s a contaminant in it.
The tea: BLEH! I could not tolerate the taste! Which is saying a lot because I am not a coffee drinker because I love tea so much! The trick? Add the flavored fizzy sticks to the tea! That way your tea either tastes like pomegranate or orange!!
How I felt during the challenge?
Remember how in part 1 I discussed how this was my biggest concern? Constantly feeling so bleh and like a blob? The result is most likely due to my significant decrease in the number of meals I was eating a day and because I was no longer having Indian food for breakfast, lunch and dinner… BUT I felt GREAT! I felt light and FRESH and honestly so full of ENERGY! It was amazing. HOWEVER, because I was never ever hungry and was always either drinking a protein shake or tea, I barely drank water. So I felt extremely dehydrated! I seriously didn’t even notice it until I started getting light headed!! NOT GOOD! So I cut out the tea component of the cleanse for the last couple of weeks and just focused on drinking water!!
How I felt AFTER the challenge?
Honestly, I felt awesome! I lost 18 pounds! Seriously, no lie. I was so full of energy and like I could fit into my cute clothes again! BUT once I tried to eat gluten… holy gas. I had stripped my body completely of a product for a full month and has become intolerant to it. They tried to explain it as me finally learning that I was intolerant, but that was CRAP! I had caused the intolerance all on my own and now, I have to take digestive enzymes every time I eat a heavier meal to help.
So here’s what I suggest:
I wholeheartedly believe that our bodies need to be cleansed every once in a while. We need to rid it of toxins and junk that accumulates over time. But we have to be smart about it. Cleanses that promote just drinking juice for 7 days are NOT healthy. You are depriving your body of nutrients that it needs to stay functional. Cleanses that encourage you to cut out food groups are NOT healthy. Our bodies need all food groups in moderation for fuel and energy expenditure. Surely these are all great ways to lose weight quickly, however unless you maintain the lifestyle, you will very quickly re-gain the weight you lost and I’m sure that is not what we want! Arbonne certainly gave me a jump start in feeling better and learning that I am totally capable of being healthier and losing weight! I mean I LOST 18 POUNDS! But I now know that I need to be smarter about how I choose to lose weight. Lawd knows that I ain’t looking to not have pasta and pizza for the rest of my life! That would be no way to live! The best part: I won the weight loss challenge at work and this girl is $100 richer. BOOYAH!
My after pic: