Long term readers will know that I’ve been interested in juice cleansing since 2014, when I first did 4 days of a juice-only detox. After that I went a bit mad for it: bought a juicer, ditched the juicer (too much faff) and did juice cleanses once or twice a year to clean out the pipes.
I know that juicing is not really a detox, because your body already does that for itself pretty well. It’s more of a rest for your digestive system by taking things back to basics and giving it time off anything less than nutritious. It’s like pressing the reset button.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been trying out the latest arrival in World of Juice – the Nutriseed 5:2 club. It’s similar to the juice cleanses I’ve done before, but with a new 5:2 twist.
You’ve probably heard of the original 5:2 diet: a type of intermittent fasting, involving two very low calorie days folded into five days of normal eating. I always thought it sounded very interesting, but I could never work out how to do the 500 calorie days. They sounded like a tremendous amount of faffing around with boiled eggs.
Can you tell I’m not a fan of faff?
Plus I don’t do diets anyway since they are a bit rubbish and don’t work. I like to be healthy, not stressing out about calorie counts.
Essentially what Nutriseed have done with their 5:2 club is to assign the two low cal days as juice days. Your week then consists of two non-consecutive juicing days, and the other 5 are business as usual.
So there’s no boiled egg faffery involved, and most of the week you just eat whatever you would normally eat. Simply store the juices in your freezer until you need them, then put 5 in the fridge the night before you want to use them.
There’s a choice of 9 different fruit and vegetable juices, and from that you select 5 per day. Most of them contain apple so they tend to be fairly sweet. The bottles contain 250ml, and each is around 100 calories. I know that they don’t look as if they’d be enough to fill you up, but they really do. Plus it’s quite nice not to have to think about what to cook – just reach into the fridge every couple of hours and take out a bottle.
I did two and a half weeks on the Nutriseed 5:2 plan, varying the juice days around whatever other commitments I had. You can pretty much live your life as normal when you’re juicing, but it’s not enough for major exercise so obviously I couldn’t do it on days when I have my weightlifting club etc.
However, there was still sabotage to contend with. One juicing day, my son returned from college and uttered the fatal words “Hey mum, do you want these chips?”.
Leftover chips! I know! Who knew that such a thing existed? I thought it was a myth, like leftover wine.
Yeah, I totally had those chips. They were the best chips.
Please note that chips are not an essential part of the plan, and neither is a dalek to guard your juices, but they both help.
Then on week two, it got worse. It was my birthday, so that was heralded by a huge, delicious birthday cake and takeaways two days running.
I mean, it’s not all bad. There was veg in the pizza and fruit on the cake.
I scheduled my next juicing day for the day after my birthday in the hope that it would even everything out. Also I made sure that there was no leftover pizza to complicate things. I’m nothing if not dedicated.
Nutriseed 5:2 Club – does it work?
As it turned out, despite it all – the chips, the cake, the lovely, lovely pizza – I did end up losing 4lbs across the couple of weeks I was on the plan. This is pretty miraculous to me, because I’m 52 and putting on weight is only marginally easier than breathing. Seriously. If I pass a closed bakery and inhale too deep I’ll put on 3lb. And losing it, well, it feels virtually impossible. I’ve spent all year trying to lose the 4lbs I put on last Christmas. Finally got there, and this was the only thing that worked.
I think a big part of how this approach works is that not only do you have the low calorie juicing days, your appetite is very much dampened the day after the fast too.
To help with this, part of the package that comes with the Nutriseed 5:2 is a pack of Total Superfoods. It’s a powdered blend of protein and superfoods including Pea Protein, Flaxseed, Chia Seeds, Spirulina, Goji Berry Powder, and Spinach Powder. I make smoothies of this to have for breakfast the day after a juice day. It’s like healthy rocket fuel.
As I write this I’m a week on since my last juicing day. The cupboard is full of Christmas goodies and the Quality Street tin has been replenished more than once. None of the weight I lost during my Nutriseed 5:2 trial has come back – in fact I’ve lost a little more without doing anything other than having a Total Superfoods smoothie for breakfast most days.
So yes, I think I can safely say that this plan works. It’s very, very easy to follow since the juices are already prepared for you. It IS a bit weird to go a whole day with no food, only juice, but the more you do it the easier it gets. I always have a great night’s sleep after a juicing day and feel really refreshed the day after.
I am a bit cautious about recommending a dieting plan. As I think you will know from reading this blog, I am very much into being strong and healthy and looking after yourself rather than being any particular dress size. That said, I do want to stay at a healthy BMI, and it becomes harder and harder to do that with every passing year. So if you, like me, are looking to get to a healthier place, this is one way to do it. It really works and fits in well with a normal life, even on birthdays.
You can find out more about the 5:2 club from the Nutriseed website here. The Nutriseed 5:2 club works as a subscription (which you can cancel at any time), with a choice of 1, 2 or 4 week dispatch. Plans start from £29.99 per week – find out more here. Use my code NEWB10 to get 10% off.
*Products provided in exchange for review. Contains affiliate links.