Let me start by saying I’m not a cleanse guy. Not at all. I’m a bacon sandwich and cigarette after the gym type of guy. Eight pints of beer on a Tuesday, spends Wednesday wondering why he feels so bad type of a guy. Slouched at the back of a bus still listening to 2005 grime tunes guy.
So when I was told I’d be writing a review about a cleanse I laughed. They laughed. Everyone I told laughed, and then I laughed some more. That is, until I picked up my package and realised that I was actually doing it. Tomorrow. Thankfully I was picking it up from a pub, so I could sneak in a couple of beers before the main event. If it was going to clean my insides, it could clean these out too.
Fast forward to the next morning and I wake up purposefully early. I am going to get this good. I’m gonna have my morning fix, go to the gym, smash out a day’s work, walk the dogs, maybe even wash the dogs, clean out the attic. I don’t know. But I feel like I am gonna really grab this day by the balls. Yeah, this cleanse is going to be the dawning of the age of Aquarius, but far less cosmic and more inside my gut. The following are the diary entries I made throughout the day, practically unedited.
8:30 – They day begins like it never has before. No cup of tea, no coffee. Instead; a charcoal lemonade. Water, lemon, agave syrup and activated charcoal. It’s cold, refreshing. Not as tangy as you’re imagining. More like lemony water – but it feels good. I am doing good. I am good.
10:00 – I am bad. I knew this was a bad idea. Now I have ‘Greenhouse 3’, five hundred millilitres of kale, spinach, celery, romaine, cucumber, ginger, lemon and water. This is exactly what a cleanse is, and this is why people who do them are mad. This is watery cucumber swill. I imagine I am using more calories to stop myself throwing this down the sink than I’m actually consuming. But onwards I go. This is my life now. I will be clean.
11:45 – The hunger is hitting me. And something else. There’s a stirring in my guts that don’t sound right. But oh joy. I have a ‘Skinny Veg Broth’ to satiate me. A wave of depression hits as I empty this clear brown liquid into the sauce pan. The smell is faintly of vegetables, but mostly of sadness. This is not going to make me feel better. This is going to make me feel worse.
The taste? Well, they suggest cracking some black pepper over it, so the taste is of black pepper. That’s ok, I like black pepper. But black pepper isn’t food, and my body is starting to realise that I am doing something weird with it. With each sip this gut groan is getting more and more pronounced.
Then the toilet sessions began. No one told me about this. Everyone has laughed at me since, and me at myself, asking me what on earth I expected. The answer: I am not sure. I figured I would just be full of nutrients and feel like my Kundalini lines were finally aligned. But at midday the word cleanse started to make sense. I was evacuating all the civilians inside of me. Come on guys, get out, get out, we have some serious cleanup to do. We’re shutting down the park for the day, there’s an emergency. Out the escape chute, double quick.
Double bloody quick.
13:30 – Hungry. Thinking about chicken wings. Franks RedHot. Chocolate. Bacon. Plain, plain bread. Chicken wings. God, I want chicken wings. I always want chicken wings, but I think I have never craved for them so feverishly in the past. I am seeing platters of southern fried, Korean fried, barbecued, peri peri, boiled, backwards, upside-down, inside-out, dancing around my mind. Take me sweetly into your heavenly underworld Hades, let me bathe in the grease of a million dead chickens and dissolve quite completely into the Lethe.
Except, no. Now it’s time for the Tomato Basil Cashew soup. At this point I’ll take it. And actually this soup looks good. It’s thick, I can see there’s food in it.
Here I take a turn.
Delicious food. This is damn tasty tomato soup. For the first time today – because I’ve been starved – I feel some goodness inside of me. Nourishment. I would eat this soup on any other day and be happy. Oooo yes. But then it’s gone and I’m hungry. I think I should stop saying I’m hungry because obviously I am. You can take that as read.
16:30 – I am going to give up. This is stupid. I am going to just pretend I did it, lie to everyone and no one will ever know. I’m over it.
17:30 – I didn’t give up. I had a cigarette. I will drink this juice. I will try it. But then I am having a lump of cheddar. I don’t care any more.
17:43 – This is great. This juice is really great. Is this what Stockholm syndrome feels like? Beetroot, apple, lemon & ginger. Tastes like invigoration and earth. Like there’s summer rain inside my bog body. I could drink this forever.
17:45 – I finished the bottle, and now I am empty again.
I won’t be documenting it in detail, but suffice to say that between all of these entries there are progressively more fervent toilet visits.
21:00 – My final soup. Minted pea. I hate minted pea soup. Back when I worked in the kitchens I would wallow in a weird despair whenever we would have pea soup on the menu. It’s the wetness of nursing homes and the texture of stewed nail clippings combined with 70s wallpaper. It’s sad food. Dying, loveless food.
It’s palatable. Perhaps if it wasn’t me eating it, it might be considered good. I just can’t shake the associations. There’s nothing to criticise, it’s thick, there’s food in it. Nutrition. Got a bottle left then bed.
22:00 – I am waiting for sleep to come. The evening feels lonely and lost. I was just on the phone to my girlfriend. She loves this type of thing. Aside from laughing at me she told me she was proud. Should she be proud? I just spent a day eating soup – but, hey, I’ll take it. Love me, baby.
22:30 – Nut milk. Nut. Milk. Normally extremely comical, I can’t even muster a laugh. This is vanilla leche. I spoke to the editor. He was laughing. He told me that this milk sounds gross – I told him that it actually sounds good. That I thought Press London might actually give me a little treat to finish my day of torture. “Yeah, right” he says.
22:45 – This is ambrosia. Beautiful, sweet joy in a bottle. I can taste each ingredient – the rice, the almond – the sweetness of medjool dates. The vanilla bean – nature’s pure, unadulterated delight. Whoever says vanilla is boring is boring themselves and has serious issues with self image. I want this forever. Maybe replace my blood with it (?) For the first time today I am tasting sugariness and boy does it feel good. Thank you Press, thank you. I appreciate it. You didn’t have to do this for me. You felt my pain and knew just what I needed.
23:20 – I am going to bed. This day has been rubbish, but right now I feel good. I am tired. I didn’t do anything that I wanted to. Spent most of the day being a prima donna about having to eat soup instead.
There are wars going on, man…
The Next Day…
This morning I woke up at 5:30. I normally wake up early, but not this early. And even then I am tired and sluggish. Here, now, on this Friday morning I am alert. There’s sunlight peaking over the house behind, starting to pour through the blinds. Getting out of bed I don’t feel hungry, I feel energised, refreshed.
I couldn’t believe it. Honestly I couldn’t. I thought this was a crock. Another way for people to kid themselves they’re a good person. But no. Something is different. I don’t want sausages. I don’t want garbage. I have a slice of seeded bread with natural peanut butter. A couple of boiled eggs and head out to the gym.
Two hours later and I’m not tired. I am hungry, yes, goddamn I am gonna have some meat now, but there’s a faint glow there, under the surface. It’s hard to describe, but I feel more alert and, well, pleasant. I feel good. Yesterday was bad. Very bad. But this seems like it might be worth it. My body seems to be operating differently.
Would I recommend this to you, brother? Would I tell you to buy these soups, sister? Well, maybe. Yeah. It’s expensive (this cleanse kit is £56 for the day), but then again, that’s a round of shots at a bar in town isn’t it? And this will do much, much more for you than those will.
Don’t expect, like I did, that this will make you feel great on the day. It won’t. It will likely make you feel rubbish. But here I sit, two days later, another gym session down, and I still feel some residual effects. A general good feeling about my body and, perhaps most importantly, I don’t have the desire to cram it full of fast food, fags and beers. At least right now (it’s Saturday afternoon), ask how I feel later.
NowUnknown are extremely thankful to Press London who have also given us an exclusive Press London discount code for you to use on any of their one day cleanses. Simply click the link below and enter the Press London discount code at the checkout!