The words ‘juice cleanse’ usually tie themselves to ideas of kale smoothies and Lululemon yoga pants. But when looking at reality rather than stereotypes, the facts of the fad gain more depth. And while there has been some controversy surrounding this particular type of cleanse, Northwestern sophomore Kasey Brown knows first hand that, when done correctly, a juice cleanse can actually be beneficial. Recently, BlackBoard sat down with Brown to speak about her very first juice cleanse. Here’s what she had to say.
What cleanse did you do and could you describe it?
So, I was doing a three-day juice cleanse! Now, in the juicing community there are all types of three-day juice cleanses, but the specific one I did was called ‘The Classic Cleanse” from Peeled Juice Bar. Peeled is located in downtown Evanston, but on April 15th there will be a new location opening up in SPAC! That’s right y’all! But anyway, this cleanse aims at literally cleaning your body. You drink five vegetable based juices throughout the day, and a cashew milk at the end of the night. Drinking only juices for three days was one of the hardest things I have ever done—but my body was definitely cleaned out by the end. I was rejuvenated, my melanin was glowing, and on the fourth day I woke up with so much energy.
Why did you decide to do a juice cleanse? Is it your first one?
Believe it or not, deciding to do this cleanse was not easy. Over spring break my older brother, my cousin, and I watched this documentary called “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead”. Essentially, it was about this middle-aged Australian man who, as the title suggests, was fat, sick, and nearly dead. He believed his only option to survive was to change his eating habits, and after lots of research he decided juicing was the way to go. This documentary follows him traveling across America while juicing for a total of sixty days! The progress he made shocked me, and the more I learned about the side effects of processed food, I knew I had to change my ways. So I found a Groupon for the cleanse and forced myself to buy it! Two days after my 20th birthday, I was on the cleanse! Happy birthday to me. This was my first cleanse, but it will not be my last. I have already committed to doing a 10-day cleanse when I go home this summer!
Has health always been important to you?
My interest in health started early in my high school career. Don’t get me wrong, I was not some super healthy person that only ate lettuce, but I did take some precautions when it came to my health and what I put in my body. I stopped eating food from our school cafeteria. Thanks mom for all the packed lunches. And I worked out every evening with my golf or basketball team. This is how much I was into health. For Christmas one year my mom bought me this huge juicer, a surplus of workout equipment, workout gear, and tons of vegetables. Yes she wrapped the vegetables and put them under the tree… That was all I wanted! Being healthy was life! But when I came to college, things started to change. I ate chicken sandwiches everyday and hardly worked out. Forget the freshmen 15, yah girl almost hit the freshmen 20. I knew what I was doing was bad for my health, but there were, and still are, a lot of temptations here on campus. As a sophomore, I have been way more disciplined when it comes to what I put in my body and dedicating time to my workout schedule, especially winter and so far this spring quarter. Salads everyday, and after the cleanse I dropped five pounds!
Did you do the cleanse alone or did you have friends doing the cleanse with you?
I was very tempted to start the cleanse, because I believed the quicker I started the cleanse, the quicker I could be done. After watching [“Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead”] my older brother and I decided we were going to do the cleanse together, but you know boys… So to answer your question, I did my three-days alone, but my brother just recently started his cleanse! I hesitate to tell you that I did my cleanse alone because it did not feel like that at all! All of my friends and family were supporting me the entire 3-days. My mom is currently training and eating healthy, so her support and input was everything! On the other hand, I know my friends were tired of me being around them so they could eat without feeling guilty, but I truly do appreciate them all! When I wanted to quit they wouldn’t let me, and when they wanted to eat a burger in front of me, I wouldn’t let them.
If you are looking to just shed some pounds, do not do this. This cleanse is not a quick fix, it is a lifestyle change.
What’s daily life like on a juice cleanse? What did you changed and what was the same?
Hmm…well imagine feeling hungry, and every time you’re hungry you are given a bag of broccoli. That is daily life on the cleanse. Five juices may not seem like a lot, but trust me it is—especially when you have to drink one every 2 hours. I can say there was never one time I was hungry throughout those 72 hours. I had hella cravings, but was never hungry, and that surprised me! Since I have been off the cleanse, my eating habits have changed dramatically. I basically have been eating only veggies, fruits, sweet potatoes, water, and grilled chicken here and there. I have been feeling great!
Would you recommend juice cleanses to anyone else? Why?
I believe everyone should do a cleanse sometime in their life, but it is hard. If you are looking to just shed some pounds, do not do this. This cleanse is not a quick fix, it is a lifestyle change. So for those ready to change their eating habits, clean their body of toxins, and reboot their health (while shedding some pounds of water weight), this cleanse is for you! Growing up, I was taught to never give up, and I think my personal drive and strong will played a huge part in doing and completing this cleanse. I knew my eating habits were putting me on the path to becoming ‘fat, sick, and nearly dead’, and that was my motivation to make this lifestyle change. If you’re ready to make that change, do the cleanse. [I’m] totally feeling like a salesman right now. But as Black people we have to start making those changes to increase our health! I know Black don’t crack on the outside, but we have to make sure it ain’t falling apart on the inside too!
How can people contact you?
If anyone has any more questions about the cleanse, please feel free to reach out to me. Or if you are looking for someone to do a cleanse with, let yah girl know! I also documented some of my journey on SnapChat (@kasethease) and Instagram for anyone interested! Health is wealth y’all!