Monday, January 12, 2015

10 Day Green Smoothie Cleanse


After careful consideration and a lot of research, I made a decision after the holidays to embark on a cleanse/detox. I will start by saying that I have never done anything like this before, mostly because I don't believe in fad diets, or any diet for that matter, and also because I'm not sure, with all my health issues, how good it would be for my body.


However, I had been having some new digestive issues and some of my other autoimmune symptoms were acting up sporadically here and there. I also really overdid it and made some consistently bad food choices over the holidays and I was trying to get my food cravings under control. The digestive issues were not anything severe that impaired my daily living, but I am slightly paranoid about my family history of ovarian cancer and I am at the age my mom was when she was diagnosed. The most overlooked and under recognized symptoms of ovarian cancer are the digestive issues I was having such as bloating, gas, and constipation. Since I have never had any issues with these symptoms before and was suspicious about my diet being the culprit, I figured I could eliminate the ovarian cancer concern, and therefore another doctor trip, if I tried something like a detox or cleanse.


I did a lot of online research and decided to do the 10 Day Green Smoothie Cleanse by J.J. Smith. I thought this plan would be best because Ms. Smith is a nutritionist and I already have a lot of green smoothie experience. I also felt that it was a safe approach because it incorporated all the essential nutrients and foods groups (vegetable, fruit, protein, and carbohydrates) that I thought were important. I also liked that the plan included healthy snacks in between the green smoothie meals. I bought the Kindle version, which got amazing reviews on Amazon, and you can find the book HERE. In my opinion, its worth every penny!


I started the 10 days on January 1st; not because it was a new year but because it would be easier to keep track of what day I was on when I was making the recipes. I also knew that in terms of my work and medical appointment schedules, my load was lighter for that period of time.


I am not going to go into every single detail of the plan because I feel that its not fair to the author to put all that information here and therefore risk affecting book sales. But the basic outline of the program is that for 10 days, you drink a green smoothie for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Each day she gives you a different recipe and you can either make your whole batch for the day or divide it in two like I did. If you have a regular blender, you will need to divide it in two as it will not all fit. I was in the market for a new, really good blender anyways after seeing a nutritionist.I found a Blendtec on Amazon at a steep discount and it was also worth every single penny. This thing is amazing! Anyways, you DO NOT need a fancy blender for this plan or to make green smoothies at all.


Each recipe is specifically formulated to maximize results. This was designed as a weight loss program and even though that was not my primary objective, I was curious to see how the results would be. The book claims that if you adhere to the exact program, you will lose between 10-15 pounds.


In between your meals, you can have snacks and she actually encourages this in order to maximize your metabolism. The snacks are limited to hard boiled eggs (I don't do eggs at all!), small amounts of unsalted nuts and nut butters, apples, and raw vegetables. That's pretty much it. Only water to drink except for the recommended detox tea which you can find in any grocery store. There is an option to add a plant based protein powder which I did. I use Vega protein powder. The plan also encourages the use of a supplement to help you go to the bathroom if you are having trouble, but I never needed to use it.


Overall, I was compliant with the program. When I started with detox symptoms, I did add more protein powder than suggested and I was OK with that as I felt my body needed it. I also stopped the detox tea after the first few days as I realized it was causing a severe migraine, separate from the detox headaches I was getting. I felt that it really wasn't worth it. If I ever do the program again, I would search for a different detox tea. I also had a few extra bananas during the 10 days as there were a few times my blood sugar dropped more than I was comfortable with and I felt like I was already getting enough apples in my diet at that point.


So for me, it was a good program. It was also incredibly difficult, especially days 2-6. I had joined the Facebook page with the same title for some support and I saw that detox issues were not unusual. I had a mild-moderate headache days 2-5, stomach pains days 2-6 (to the point where I took Prilosec every day, which helped), and severe muscle pains around days 3-4. I would read on Facebook that by day 6, everyone would start feeling fantastic but for me, that really didn't come until day 9, although days 7 and 8 were much better and day 10 was the best day for me. You're probably wondering why I even stuck with it when I was having all these issues. Well since I had been consuming so much junk, especially dairy, gluten, sugar, etc., I knew that this was part of the process. Also even though I initially felt lousy, I saw those original digestive issues begin to ease up and that motivated me to keep going.


During the 10 days, I also knew that I didn't have a lot of social obligations and that made it easier to resist temptations. My husband was incredibly supportive of the plan. I told him I wasn't cooking for the 10 days and he made a huge effort to not bring temptations around me. I did end up cooking on two nights for him because honestly, I missed doing that for him and I missed the aroma of food. Not too much aroma from frozen fruit and vegetables! I also backed off my exercise regime a little in order to give my body the rest that it needed during the process.


The only negatives that I could find with the program were that they added stevia to the recipes. Anyone who makes green smoothies knows that the fruit gives you the great taste and sweetness, and you don't need stevia. There was maybe one recipe that benefited from it as the fruit used was not as sweet. The stevia is optional so if you do follow this plan, check the taste of your smoothie before adding the stevia. Also, the amounts of fruit used was actually much more than I was used to. Although I read comments on Facebook from diabetics who seemed to do OK with it, I wondered for someone like me, who has PCOS, if that much fruit hinders the weight loss amount.


In the book, there is also a chapter about what to do after the 10 days is over. I am two days out now and gradually, I am reintroducing more foods back into my diet. This phase is very important to me because I want to try and identify which foods may be giving me issues. My plan is to still keep gluten, most dairy, soy, corn, GMO-laden foods, most processed foods, artificial sweeteners, alcohol and a few other things out of my diet for now. I am still having at least one green smoothie a day for a meal and will probably continue that indefinitely as it is such a great way to flood my body with nutrients.


So, here's the benefits that I got from doing this program for 10 days and then continuing a clean diet afterwards:

1. I am sleeping SO much better, its not even funny. Best sleep I have had without sleep medication/supplements in years.

2. Since day 10, my energy level has skyrocketed. Its almost scary for me because I am so not used to it. It has only been a few days so I don't know if it is a fluke or not, but time will tell.

3. I got sick out of the blue around day 8 with a cold, including a low grade fever, that has been going around. I stuck with the plan, even though I desperately wanted chicken soup, and less than 24 hours later, my symptoms were gone. It was freaky. I have never bounced back that fast, even pre-Sjögren's.

4. My sinus and allergy issues have improved some.

5. At this point all my digestive issues are almost completely gone.

6. Food cravings have diminished dramatically.

7. For a variety of reasons, I was having some anxiety issues and right now, the anxiety is significantly better. My mood also seems more even.

8. I have a little improvement in my joint pain. I cannot directly relate this to the cleanse at this time like I can with the other improvements, but its worth noting.

9. Candida issues have improved.

10. I lost 8 lbs. Many people on the Facebook page would be disappointed with that. For me, that is a very reasonable and safe weight loss amount for 10 days. It's a journey, not a race!


If you decide to try this cleanse, please feel free to contact me or ask any questions in the comment section below. And check with your doctor. I did not, but you know what they say: do as I say, not as I do!

Good luck!


87 comments:

  1. Hi Christine,

    I just came across your page. I started the cleanse Monday June 8, 2015. Today is day 4.

    I am not feeling good today at all. I feel nauseous, get a little cramps here and there plus this morning I woke up with painful eyes and sore throat; symptoms common to me getting a cold/flu. It is now 1:50PM as I type this and the pain in my eyes have passed as well as the sore throat.

    I am not taking any supplements but I do drink herbal caffeine free tea once per day. I added stevia to my smoothie on day 1 and found a bit sweet so I haven't used it again except with my tea. I feel very sluggish today but I am not giving up. I do feel lighter though; like I can float away. I started day 1 at 189LBS and I'm looking forward to day 10 for another weigh in.

    I hope this feeling doesn't last too long.

    Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Hi V.S. it encourages me that you were so determined in this process. How was your day 10 weigh in? What other benefits did you notice as a result of this cleanse?

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    2. Sorry in my delay with my response. I hope you made it through the cleanse OK. I did have those same symptoms you mentioned while detoxing.

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    3. Hi Christine.

      Did you do the modified cleanse? I want to do that so my husband can have something to eat at night when he is not working, but I am not sure what is allowed on that. I have the book but all it says is baked or grilled chicken or fish and salads. I was not sure what kind of seasonings and/or dressings were allowed.

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  2. Hi Christine,

    Thanks for sharing your review about the cleanse. I begin tomorrow and am excited about this journey. I am a little nervous, but have alot of positive thoughts. Can't wait to experience all the benefits this cleanse can offer.

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  3. I am currently on the cleanse and find it easy to do. I am doing the modified cleanse. I am on day 8, and have lost 4 pounds to date. I find the smoothie pretty good (some are not too tasty). The snacks keep you full. The only thing I do not like is on the Facebook page, some of the advice goes against common sense.

    So if you are going to do the cleanse, which I recommend....go in it using YOUR common sense, and don't listen to what other people tell you what you can and can not eat.

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    1. I completely agree with this!

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    2. I want to start, I need ask question is the smoothie all three meals?

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    3. I want to start, I need ask question is the smoothie all three meals?

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    4. Yes. However, they have a modified cleanse that involves two smoothies for breakfast and lunch, the snacks mentioned above and a dinner of lean protein and veggies (she outlines what proteins are acceptable).

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  4. I am on the cleanse and this is day 5 for me, I am down 10 pounds and apart from feeling a bit fatigued I do feel good. I agree with listening to your body as I add a bit more protein in my shakes as well. I have a job that requires me to walk so I average about 26,000 steps a day at work which could be some of the reasons I feel so tired! I highly recommend this cleanse to anyone looking to kick start their fitness journey. It's a difficult one to stick to but well worth it

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    1. I added a vegan, plant-based protein powder to my shakes as well.

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  5. I completed the 10 day cleanse last year and lost 12 pounds. I started to develop a yeast infection on day 8. When I saw my doctor he asked if I had changed my eating habits. I told him about the cleanse and he suggested this was the culprit due to high amounts of fruits, which still is a form of sugar. He suggested that I stay with the cleanse, but cut the fruit in half. I stayed with it for about 2 more weeks with no problems. I am planning to start again next week.

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    1. Great suggestion about the fruit. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. i am on day 12 and did lose eight pounds and now have gained 4 pounds back so it was suggested to me to cut the fruit in half so i will see it that works and love your blog any advice would be helpful since losing weight is more critical now with the arthritis in my ankle where the surgery was and its like a stone ps i have pcos to

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    1. I have PCOS as well. The absolute best thing you can do for PCOS related weight issues is move your body, eliminate processed foods, especially those with added sugar, and reduce carbs.

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  7. I am on day 5 and I have lost 12.5 lbs. On day 4 I didn't have the urge to eat at all. I have to make myself eat. Day 2 I woke up with a massive headache. It went away that evening. I think ill Be find. When you know why you are doing this you can stick with it. I'm doing this to kick start a healthy life style. Stick with it Ladies you can do it!

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    1. Hello did you do the salt water flush ?

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  8. I have a question im doing the cleanse but my smoothie only came up to 33 oz the book says 60 oz a days worth

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    1. I believe the 60 oz is split up over the course of the day?

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  9. My quesTion as well! I added more water but not as tasty. Just started. Can't do without Stevia.

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  10. I am doing the FC and on day 9, although I'm done 10 lbs. on days 5-7 I felt like crap. Dizzy, off, sick throughout the day. I want to do this again but I believe I will do the modified cleanse. I think my body requires more protein than what a boiled egg or spinach can do. Do you have any suggestions?

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    1. I think those symptoms are part of detoxing AND could indicate that you need more protein. I added a full scoop of a plant based vanilla protein powder to my smoothies and that helped a lot.

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  11. I am thinking of doing this , but there is NO way I can totally cut out coffee.. I drink about 5 cups a day and decided to try to cut to 2 and then maybe one.. Hope this does not throw everything off. comments?

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    1. I don't drink coffee so I cannot comment on this. Maybe someone else can?

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    2. Terry were you able to complete the cleanse? Did you end up drinking any coffee?

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    3. I have been drinking coffee. I will have my one to go mug in the AM, then switch to decaf keurig at work and I can't tell the difference in terms of that need for caffeine. I don't really believe that those small things will throw off you're "cleanse." Although, I am not really doing it so much for the cleanse as much as just giving my body a break from the crap I've been doing to it.

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  12. Were you able to keep the weight off? Usually the weight comes back on plus more pretty quickly after a cleanse

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  13. I am starting this cleanse and i find doing enemas has greatly helped the detoxing efforts and helps me get over the sick symptoms that come from riding your body of all the toxins, so i suggest doing enemas , it only cost 15 bucks to buy a kit and you can reuse it , its great :) i will do it every other day untill my cleanse is over:) watch these vids https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZEqQlOYXSo
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gkYf4pduy4Q

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  14. Do you recommend an exercise program to do during this cleanse?

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    1. I would never recommend any particular exercise program because everybody is so different. But, I don't see why you couldn't exercise while doing the cleanse.

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  15. Have you kept the weight off? What was your recommended diet afterwards?

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    1. Once I went back to eating regular food, I gained some weight back. It has been a year since I did the cleanse and while I still use green smoothies as part of my diet from time to time, I would not go back on this cleanse long-term.

      My diet now is based on eating for health, not to lose weight, although that is the result of eating well. I avoid gluten and dairy as much as possible and very rarely consume high sugar foods. Lots of fruit and veggies!

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  16. I've been reading a lot about this cleans and I think I want to give it at shot! My only question before I buy the book is, about how much will it cost me to get all of the ingredients for 10 days?

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    1. Since this post was written so long ago, I don't remember. But, I do remember that it didn't cost me anymore than buying regular groceries.

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    2. I got mine at Costco and Kroger, and spent about $70 for all 10 days.

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    3. Me, too. I bought a Costco and Winn Dixie.

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    4. I spent $35 for days 1-5 so far, but I think I will have leftover that will carry into to days 6-10

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  17. Does anyone have a response on the coffee- I am a MAJOR coffee drinker, and it feels very much like a deprivation now..
    Also I am on Day 2 and have a SEVERE headache. Will this thing go away? I hope it is good/fine to have this pain.

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    1. Headaches are a withdrawal symptom and yes, it will go away.

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    2. Yes it goes away! I think it was worth it to cut out coffee (several cups a day). It was hard but now I have natural energy!

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    3. I am on day 4. Haven't had any problems. I just feel hungry and I want more than the allowed handfuls of snacks. I drink a glass of water and Yogi ginger detox tea throughout the day. So far everything is going well.

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    4. Did anone do the salt water flush or the Mag07?

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    5. salt flush no. Mag07 yes. It seems to be keeping me regular

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  18. I am on day 3 and I am feeling EXTREMELY exhausted. I've lost 6lbs so far and I enjoy the smoothies. Does anyone else feel exhausted and tired?

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    1. I am currently on day 3 and yes i feel pretty tired today.

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    2. I am currently on day 3 and I am pretty tired today.

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    3. I am currently on day 3 and yes i feel pretty tired today.

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  19. I'm on day 2 and I have a severe headache. I am borderline diabetic but the more I drink the smoothies the more my head hurts. Please help!!!

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    1. Hi mts1014 - your headaches are because you are also going through a sugar and carb detox. most people don;t realize the true amount of sugar they can eat on a regular basis. your headaches should balance out after your body gets used to regular amounts of sugar.

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  20. Hi Christine! Thanks so much for this post. I will begin the 10-day cleanse February 1 and I am very appreciative for your non-biased post. I did a paleo detox and am familiar with fatigue due to sugar being cut out of my diet and not eating carbs. Believe me - I am reading to get my digestive tract back on track! Lol

    thanks again.

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  21. It's day three. I haven't lost any weight. I'm also feeling tired and sluggish. Is that normal?

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  22. How much weight do you typically gain back after the cleanse when you start eating (healthy)foods?

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    1. I don't know about other people,but I gained back all of it until I did something else to lose it.

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  23. Ending day one and reading this! I love the Day one taste. I had a huge melt down this morning as I was craving my coffee....no symptoms yet, but I'm sure they will come.

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  24. Hi Christine.
    Thanks for sharing. I am on day 6 and I started having severe lower back pain yesterday..I feel like I have to pass gas and cannot. Do you have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
    Connie

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    1. I did not experience that, but I think that the detox tea the book suggests is supposed to help with gas.

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  25. I'm starting the detox Monday and wondered if it's OK to use frozen vegetables. I have spinach and kale in my freezer and don't want to spend the extra casg

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  26. This blog is truly a life saver for me. I am currently on day 4 and having severe upper stomach pain, which starting last night. I now see that this is a normal process to detoxing and plan to stay with it. My cravings have drastically reduced and my water intake has increased. Thanks for sharing.

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  27. I was so happy to come across this blog this morning. I am on day 7 and I have felt exahusted and hungry since day 3. It has been almost a hourly struggle to not quit the past two days. I felt like I was doing something wrong based on the book and FB Page, but it is good to hear that others have struggled through the entire process and felt better at the end. Thanks for the encouragement... much needed today!

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  28. I was so happy to come across this blog this morning. I am on day 7 and I have felt exahusted and hungry since day 3. It has been almost a hourly struggle to not quit the past two days. I felt like I was doing something wrong based on the book and FB Page, but it is good to hear that others have struggled through the entire process and felt better at the end. Thanks for the encouragement... much needed today!

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  29. I was so happy to come across this blog this morning. I am on day 7 and I have felt exahusted and hungry since day 3. It has been almost a hourly struggle to not quit the past two days. I felt like I was doing something wrong based on the book and FB Page, but it is good to hear that others have struggled through the entire process and felt better at the end. Thanks for the encouragement... much needed today!

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  30. Hi there, day 2, feeling OK. Kinda think a cold is coming on but it seems several of you have felt like this.....maybe it will go away soon.
    I have no problems with the shakes, I think I am going to do a little less fruit, and some more greens. I do not use the stivia, I do have two cups of detox tea and lots of water. But having a problem "getting rid of" things. I am trying the magnesium but how long does it take to work???? I work out every day and am a little soar today, I heard that by the last few days one might feel very tired. I did add in the protein. How many vegys am I allowed to have as a snack. This is a little fuzzy. I have like 10 carrot chips, cucumbers and several stalks of celery with a tablespoon of all natural PB for mid afternoon snack. Dinner I do the shake and vegys again with maybe an egg. I need to chew something. Is this too many "snacks"? Thanks for the help!

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  31. I'm on day 3 and I feel like I've been hit my a truck. I'm sooooooo tired and sleepy, my body is achy, headache, nauseous. I'm doing the modified and I still feel like crap. I'm praying this gets better. All I'm craving is chewing.

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    1. I'm on Day 2 and feel the exact same way in addition to a sore throat. I'm forcing myself to drink my smoothie. Hope we both feel better :(

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    2. I'm on Day 2 and am definitely feeling it. I'm exhausted, VERY nauseous, sore throat, headache, body ache. Overall feel like crap:( I'm forcing myself to drink my morning smoothie. Need some encouragement..

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  32. I'm on day 7 of my shakes. I've been doing the program with a co-worker. We've both reacted to it differently so I really think everybody is different. She's been hungry a lot and I have not. I normally drink one to two sodas per day and since I started, I haven't even really missed them. On Day 4, I felt exhausted, but I knew it was coming because I had read in the book it was to be expected. I haven't had the body aches, or the hunger pains or headaches. I guess I was very lucky since I've been reading a bunch of other people have. I know I can finish this cleanse with no problem. I drink all the water it ask for and for snacks I've been eating cucumber, nuts, carrots, celery sticks, egg whites and some days I'll eat 10 green grapes or an apple. I'm down 8.3 pounds at the beginning of Day 7. I haven't redone my measurements yet to determine how many inches. Good Luck to everybody doing this program. You can do this.

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  33. On day 3 and going through the cold like symptoms. Has anyone tried the cayenne pepper and apple cider vinegar and do you get the jittery feeling? I tried it at night and I didn't rest very well.

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  34. I have read some really good things on here that have answered questions that I have like the coming headaches and the cold-like symptoms. I have issues drinking the smoothies, like two at breakfast and one at lunch. If I can get two smoothies down at breakfast, can I sip on the lunch one throughout the day and still get the same benefits? Thanks in advance.

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  35. I am doing the modified cleanse but my stomach is so bloated. Did an enema and it helped some but this is so severe I may have to give my body a rest and start over again next week.

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  36. Will the cleanse still work if you go off track for a few days or should I just start over?

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  37. Hi just a question If your allergic to apples is that going to stop me from doing the cleanse or do you just take out that fruit and add another one or do I just leave the apple out and drink it as is. Thanks

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    1. I don't know for sure, but I think it's worth a try to just substitute another fruit.

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  38. i am on day 7 but along the way i used salt on the carrots, tomatoes and cucumber, will the salt affect my results?

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    1. Salt causes water retention, so it may affect the scale.

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  39. I have bought this book and am ready to get started. Will the chances of weight loss be better if I do not add protein or is it about the same. I wine completely out during the clense

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  40. Hi, I am considering starting this cleanse but I work out a lot and want to know if this will hinder my workouts.

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  41. Hi Christine, I really wish I would have found your blog earlier. This blog really encouraged me! I tried the cleanse on October 3rd, and I only made it through day 6, due to some of the same side effects you described. I was very proud of myself, because I have continued to watch what I eat, and I plan to begin again with the group on October 24th. Next time I will press through the side effects, and make it to day 10! My overall health has been better in that short amount of time, I will post when I finish day 10 next month. Thanks again!

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    1. You're welcome. I hope it all worked out the next time around!

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  42. Hi!! I am not sure my post went through. But I am on Day 4& Inhave lost 10 lbs. But since Day 1 I have been sick. I am having light headless.. feeling as if I am about to pass out.. aches in one of my legs. Feel spaced out& it has triggered my anxiety attacks. I do take meds for anxiety Do you think this plays a role? Are tell me what you think? I am so afraid to drink another smoothie now because this happened when I tried to do the cleanse the first go around then Ivstopped due to feeling like I was about to fall out. Any suggestion??

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    1. I would probably check in with your doctor.

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  43. I am on Day 2 and like others, I'm feeling exhausted. I'm also feeling a bit irritable. I'm not doing the salt flush or Mag07 because I don't have problems in that area plus I'm worried the magnesium level in Mag07 might be too much for my sensitive stomach. I'm going to see how far I can go with this. Glad to find this blog and read others' experiences.

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