Jillian’s Joulebody Detox
In the spirit of starting 2012 off right, Curve's associate editor takes on a detox challenge.
This is Jillian and she loves cookies.
Photo: Dee Cameron
I do not diet. I do not count calories. I do not feel guilty when I eat bread and then pasta, washed down with red wine and followed by tiramisu and an espresso at 10pm. I haven’t weighed myself since I was about 8 years old, after they made me do it at summer camp and I saw the way the girls would, even then, beat themselves up over the number. My mother was naturally skinny so I didn’t grow up thinking or hearing about fat and calories. I grew up in a very healthy household and was taught to eat what I want when I want it. Luckily I usually want the healthy stuff but I do have a weakness for pastries and cakes.
I’ve never done a detox and I usually scoff when my friends do them. I am vehemently against everything dieting because I hate to see the way women beat themselves up for eating food. Don’t make this feminist get on her soapbox and rant against the advertising and beauty industries. It isn’t pretty.
If I had to put myself on a team I would be an advocate for healthy lifestyle changes in lieu of dieting. But the thing I want most for women is that they love their bodies and their looks. I am always inspired by the fat-positive queer women in our community who rock their bodies and feel great about themselves regardless of which number they hit on the scale.
A (skinny!) woman I know did the pineapple detox last year. Do you know it? You eat only pineapple for days…weeks? Forever. It is supposed to cleanse your system, though she did it for weight loss before her beach vacation in Italy. After a few days her mouth was raw and blistering from the exposure to the acid. However she was very pleased about her "new" bikini body. I wanted to give her a hug and a quinoa salad.
The image of my friend's blistered mouth was very clear in my mind when I heard about Joulebody. My knee-jerk response was “not interested.” But then they explained that Joulebody is a detox where you can eat as you go. The entire cleanse is formulated for busy people who want to do a detox in the most healthy way possible. Even the packaging is green. There are brownies for dessert.
I like brownies. I told them to sign me up. This is day one of my three-day detox.
It’s time for the first juice. It is huge and green. They say you’re supposed to prepare your body the night before a detox by feeding yourself healthy foods. Last night I bought brown rice and thought I’d be having that with green tea and vegetables, but I went to trivia night with my friends and had three beers and nachos. The beer was Blue Moon though, which comes with an orange. It’s, like, healthy. Anyway, onto the juice. It’s delicious. The green color intimidated me at first but I was surprised to find it has a light, earthy taste. After I drank it I felt very healthy and not at all hungover.
I am so excited about eating it’s ridiculous. Time for the Detox Edamame Hummus. It has little carrots and radishes cut up in it and everything. When I opened the container my first thought was, I’m going to need more than this. However it was really good and refreshing. I like my hummus with a lot of lemon so I added some. Like any good lesbian, I love hummus. After a few minutes I ran out of carrots so I just ate it with a spoon, like ice cream. I ate it while drinking green tea, which is not allowed because green tea has caffeine. But my caffeine headache is too much and I have a 2pm deadline so I have to cheat just a little bit.
From 3pm to 5pm I was at a casting in midtown for a Tiny Fey movie. This isn’t a normal thing for me; a friend invited me along to audition for a part. I was looking forward to being around actors because they seem like detox people. All I want to do today is talk about my detox and talk about how much I want a pizza. The actors did not want to talk about food.
So I had two juices at the casting, one at 3pm and one at 5pm. The first one was like drinking a refreshing salad, and the second one was citrus with cayenne. I liked that one. Had a kick to it.
At 7pm I am starving again. I cheated earlier during my Trader’s Joe organic apple run and ate a Lara Bar with cherries and nuts. Obviously I have a problem following rules and governing my own impulses. Joulebody has given me spaghetti squash with pesto for dinner, which I'm trying to convince myself is pasta. It's pretty good but I am also having a salad with spinach, beets and grapefruit. No dressing. Joulebody says you can eat as many fruits and veggies as you want so this is not cheating. The brownie for dessert is awesome. It's soft and tastes like a brownie stuffed with grass. I am not complaining. As a former vegan I am used to food that tastes like it has been stuffed with grasses and foliage.
Overall, I feel good. I have energy and my mind feels sharp, but I also have a caffeine headache and an insane hunger. Also all I want to talk about it food. I am fantasizing about food. Right now I want ravioli with tomato sauce. Yummm...
Up working late. Still thinking about pasta. And a huge glass of red wine. And smelly cheese. I could take a bath in gorgonzola right now.
I woke up feeling good and not hungry. I drank the recommended lukewarm water with lemon while I read the paper. Usually I would be doing this with coffee or tea. Reading the paper with hot water with lemon made me feel like I was home sick with the flu.
Jouleraw Juice day two. It’s a large juice. I was skeptical about the seperation but I gave it a shake and sipped it down. It tasted very fresh. There isn't an ingredients list on the bottle which annoys me because I want to be able to make it at home after I finish my detox.
My morning at work was really busy so I didn’t even notice I was hungry until I noticed it was lunch time. I've totally got this detox thing down. Lunch is a Japanses Cleanse Salad with yam, spinach, adzuki, lentil and kale. The salad tasted very healthy and I googled yams because I thought they were in the nightshade family, which is forbidden on the detox because nightshade plants cause swelling in the body (tomatoes, potatoes, etc). Turns out Japanese yams are actually not in the nightshade family. Yum.
A second grassy juice. As I'm still busy working I haven't thoght too much about food. I am, however, craving yoga in a weird way.
Starving. There’s a happy hour at an adorable wine bar two blocks away from my apartment and my friends have gone there to have a cheese plate and drink red wine. I desperately want to join but instead go home feeling dejected. Instead of drinking wine and hanging out I clean my apartment while drinking my citrus juice. Even though I'm slotted in to eat at 7pm, I make a huge salad with arugula, beets, grapefruit and avocado with a dressing of mustard seed and balsamic vinegar. This salad isn’t a huge departure from the salads of my normal life, though in normal life I would’ve added grilled chicken, feta, cherry tomatoes (nightshade alert!), and pine nuts.
While eating my salad I remember I’m supposed to go on a dinner date tomorrow. It's a first date with this very cute girl I met outside a restaurant in Greenwich Village. I call her and let her know I am detoxing so I can only hang out if we drink hot water with lemon or eat spinach out of the bag together. She suggests a tea at Caravan of Dreams, a joint in my neighborhood that serves up vegan cuisine. Half of the menu is raw. Cute girl gets brownie points for being awesome.
It's a beets, brown rice and kale salad for dinner. Delicious. It almost feels like a real meal. My caffeine headache is back. I’ve been drinking a lot of water. I'm feeling unfocused, irritated and irrationally hungry. All I want to do is sleep and wake up to food. I could murder a burrito right now. A huge burrito, like the ones they sell from the trucks in California, the ones that are as big as your forearm. The first thing I'm making when I'm back from my detox is a breakfast burrito.
By now I am used to the lemon with hot water in the morning, followed by a green juice. The detox schedule makes me feel like i'm on medication. The only time when I've had such a strict schedule has been when I'm recovering from surgery or following a strict program of antibiotics. Though the Joulebody food is delicious and certainly very convenient, I miss throwing a lunch together made of what was left from a dinner party the night before, or meeting my friends for lunch or dinner, which I do throughout the week. I am feeling limited, which is not a feeling I am at all comfortable with.
Time for the lunch salad, which is a quinoa vegetable tabouli. I love quinoa. It is the perfect grain. This serving is actually quite larger than the other salads I've been eating the last couple days. The salad is nutty and hearty. I ate an huge grapefruit for dessert and felt like I'd actually eaten lunch.
I spent the entire afternoon in two meetings, one after the other, so I brought my juices to both meetings. I actually felt very happy to be drinking my juices instead of eating the usual assortment of goods at the snack table, which ranged from sad-looking little sandwiches on white bread to cookies. I've noticed that while I don't look skinnier, I do feel like my body is lighter. I asked my roommate this morning if my body looked less swollen because I'd been staying away from nightshade plants and salt. She said she thought my waist looked more defined. I think women have about fifty different things they can say to each other that imply thinness. Someone come up with a list.
I've been waiting for this soup for days. It's a simple butternut squash soup and it comes in an adorable, squat little mason jar. The directions say it can be eaten heated or cold. I chose to have it cold and chopped up some cilantro on the top to make it fancy. It is smooth and delicious but left me hungry so I got ready for my date while eating arugula out of the bag.
During my date I was occasionally distracted by the plates of food going by and drank an entire pot of tea. My first dates usually center around drinks or dinner or both so this was strange because it was neither. After I got used to the fact we would not, in fact, be splitting a bottle of wine I relaxed into drinking tea and listening to her talk about her job, her family and her recent decision to begin playing the cymbals. This date felt very wholesome, which can pretty much sum up my last three days.
I am so happy I had the opportunity to do this detox, and that I did one so healthy, meticulously planned and deliciously made. I would recommend Joulebody to anyone considering a detox, as it is a way to cleanse safely. Though I did say that I felt like I was on medication due to the strict schedule, the scheduling is perfect for busy people on the go.
If you try it let me know how you go. We can celebrate afterwards with a breakfast burrito.