I Did a Soup Cleanse in the Name of Gwyneth Paltrow
What do Gwyneth Paltrow and I have in common?
Not much, except for the fact that we are both blonde, with health habits our friends consider overboard, and an affinity for LA’s hottest new cleanse, called “Soupure.”
Basically, juice cleanses are very much yesterday. They’re just too sugary. Even though the sugar is coming from produce, it still spikes your blood sugar and messes with your insulin levels.
This problem can be exacerbated if you already have sensitive blood sugar. I certainly do, and that probably explains why I fainted when I tried the Master Cleanse last year.
The difference between juice cleansing and soup cleansing is that soups are an actual food, with the fiber still intact. This helps to slow down the breakdown of the sugars to your blood stream, lessening the spike to your glycemic index and providing more stable fuel for your blood sugar levels.
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Soupure, a soup company in L.A. with glowing reviews from the likes of Gwyneth and Lea Michele, sent me the “Healthy Foundation Reset,” a program meant for detoxing around the holidays. I was provided with an array of thick smoothies, bone broths, and vegetable soups, and given the option to include one meal of veggies and a small portion of protein in the midday. Because I wasn’t trying to lose weight during the cleanse, I also added a recommended amount of nuts at breakfast and made my midday meals hearty.
The first day was pretty easy! I started off with a drink that tasted more like a milk shake than a “cleanse” and I wanted more as soon as it was over.
Called “Super Hero,” it was a mix of nuts and seeds and dates, and although it was delicious, I was seriously missing my usually protein and fat rich breakfast of eggs and avocados a few hours later, and wondering how Gwyneth possibly has the energy to exercise for two hours after drinking a concoction of nuts and dates.
Feeling a bit shaky, I drank one of the bone broths provided as a snack. I love bone broth, and immediately felt revived.
I ate lunch with my family, and stuck to my allotted vegetable and protein. This part was easy for me — I love healthy eating and I’m one of those incredibly annoying people that will get IRL cravings for salad when I am drunk, and will usually turn down pizza in favor of this.
But by the time for my next soup (this time a yummy blend of zucchini and basil) I was pretty done. One of my favorite things about being home with my family is cooking meals with them, and not being able to eat what I helped cook for dinner was a little bit of a let down. Still, I managed, and after my last soup of the day I went to bed feeling good and totally satiated from the healthy fats and proteins I had eaten that day.
My second and third days went great, physically. But the mental stress for me of having a lot of time on my hands and not being able to prepare and eat meals with my family was really difficult. I found myself really miserable every time I watched my family sit down to eat without me. In our house, we really love food, and bond over sitting down to a meal we have created together.
By the fourth day, I’m totally miserable. All I want is one of the omelettes my dad is making every morning, and I’m practically salivating over the salad my mom serves at dinner. I feel left out. Because I live a pretty busy life in New York and rarely get to see my family, I begin to really rethink the wisdom of doing a cleanse during my only time with them.
So, I’m that girl once again. The cleanse quitter! But I decided that ultimately, time with my family and the nourishing food they make (we are all obnoxiously healthy eaters) was exactly the detox I needed from my hectic New York life. My family and friends and I shared the rest of the soups, but eating them with the people I loved made them taste even better.
While the soups were delicious and did a much better job at keeping me energetic and satiated than any juice cleanse I had tried in the past, I don’t think cleansing is for me. But if you hate preparing food, want an easy way to eat healthy and detox without thinking or obsessing over meal prep, I totally recommend the Healthy Foundation Reset.
If you’re like me and binge watch Master Chef on Netflix, while you’re making pesto from scratch? Probably better to just aim for eating a clean whole foods diet, and upping your veggie intake whenever you want to balance back after overindulgence.