Tester 1: Marny, 24
For three days I consumed only this lemonade concoction made up of water, lemon, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper. When mixed correctly, it tastes like a sweet iced tea, so drinking it was easy. At the end of each day, I had to drink either a laxative tea or do a salt-water flush to clear out my digestive system. The most difficult part of the cleanse was mentally getting used to not eating or focusing on not eating. I was never hungry, but I definitely missed my mid-day break of picking up lunch.
My normal fitness routine is an hour (half elliptical and half treadmill) of cardio 3-5 times a week. While on the cleanse, I took the recommendation not to try to work out, as you aren't expected to have enough energy. I felt pretty weak the entire time I was on liquids only, and felt cold while sitting in my office all day, despite the thermostat staying at the usual temperature.
Morning: Woke up a little hungry. To soften the blow of this cleanse, I only had soup and water yesterday. The juice isn't bad! It's definitely better cold than at room temperature.
Noon: I'm not hungry at all, but I missed my coffee this morning. I'm a little tired. I've consumed three of the recommended 8-12 daily servings so far, and have taken many trips to the bathroom to pee as a result.
3 p.m.: Still not hungry, but losing concentration at work, most likely due to missing my usual walk outside at the lunch hour to clear my head.
"Dinner": A little hungry, but I've now had six of my recommended servings. It's difficult to keep up the intake of so many fluids. On top of the lemonade, you are supposed to drink water as well. I also just drank the saltwater flush, which is where you chug 16 oz. of a salt-water solution to induce a bowel movement. Unfortunately, I did not have any results in the bathroom, and only experienced a really disgusting minute or two of choking down saltwater.
Before bed: Very tired. Not hungry, as I finished my last two servings of the drink. The walk up my apartment stairs (5 flights) was definitely more difficult than usual.
Morning: Woke up very hungry and very tired. I immediately start drinking some lemonade and water. I do notice that I feel thinner. Walking to work (10 minutes on flat land) is more strenuous than usual, and I've broken a sweat by the time I make it to the office. I stop at the gym on the way to weigh myself and I've already lost 2 pounds and an inch around my waist and hips. I think it's probably just water weight.
Noon: Not hungry or thirsty, and have been drinking lemonade and water constantly. I'm very tiredprobably caffeine withdrawal. Despite multiple layers of clothing, I'm also very cold in my office, which is again at it's usual temperature.
3 p.m.: Very tired and the computer light at the office is hard on my eyes, but mentally I feel fine. Still chilly. Not hungry, but I am missing food. I just enjoy eating!
"Dinner": After finishing my 10th and 11th serving of the lemonade I try the laxative tea (Organic Smooth Move).
Before bed: Again, very tired, and a little hungry. I fall asleep hours before my usual midnight bedtime.
Morning: Woke up very hungry and very tired again. Immediately have some lemonade and water. (The laxative tea worked.) I stop off at the gym to weigh and measure myselfI've lost another pound and an inch in my waist and hips. I feel really tired walking to work again, and once in the office I am freezing. I can definitely see a difference in my stomach though.
Noon: I've taken to just constantly drinking the lemonade (and water intermittently) to prevent myself from feeling hungry. Of course there is a pizza party in the office, but I'm strong and hold out. I don't want the past two days to go to waste!
3 p.m.: The computer screen is still bothering my eyes, but overall I feel fine. I think I'm starting to adjust to the number of calories I'm taking in. Mentally, I feel like I can focus at work fine, and my stomach has felt totally normal the whole time while drinking the lemonade.
"Dinner": Very hungry...or maybe I just miss food. I drink an extra serving of the lemonade before I take the laxative tea. Overall I feel fine, but am having real cravings for all my favorite dishes.
Before bed: I go to bed super early because I'm exhausted.
BREAKING THE CLEANSE
Morning: Woke up very hungry and very tired. I stop off at the gym on my way to work and see that I've lost 5 lbs total, and 2 inches total in each in my waist and hips! Though my stomach feels fine, I am very nervous to try anything heavier than water and coffee with milk for breakfast (per the instructions onlinethey say solid food would really upset your stomach). In retrospect, coffee probably wasn't a good idea, but I really missed it during the cleanse. Luckily, my stomach didn't react negatively.
Noon: Lunch is chicken noodle soup minus the chicken, so essentially broth and mushy noodles. They go down fine, but the amount of salt is more noticeable than usual. I am super thirsty the rest of the day.
3 p.m.: I'm leaving work early to head to my parent's house. I feel good after having some real calories in my system, and my stomach is feeling settled. I have more water on the train, but I'm feeling really hungry, though still nervous about eating because I don't want my stomach to freak out.
"Dinner": Very hungry by the time I arrive at my parents. I drink lots of water before dinner, but eat a dry salad and a roll which pass right through me.
Before bed: My stomach has a little cramping from the salad, which was harder to digest than I expected, but overall I feel fine.
I lost five pounds and 2 inches around my waist, plus two inches around my hips. For a short-term weight-loss, I would rate this cleanse a 3.5 out of 5. I don't think I could do it for the recommended 10 days though!
Next: See how Lisa, 35, fared on her lemonade cleanse.