As part of The Conscious Cleanse, a 14-day program that teaches you how to detoxify your body by eating clean, healthy foods, there are two weekends for purification. Many people often think as purifying with just straight liquids (e.g., the torturous Master Cleanse with just lemon water and cayenne). Thankfully, The Conscious Cleanse purification allows an array of juices and tea, and some food options so you’re not starving.

According to Jules Pelaez, cofounder of the cleanse, intermittent fasting like the purification has been shown to reduce aging and kick-start weight loss, two BIG pluses. More benefits include:

  1. Gives your digestive system a break
  2. Cleanses your body’s cells
  3. Helps clean out old fecal matter in your colon
  4. Reduces bloating and gas
  5. Improves your skin complexion
  6. Helps reset your metabolism for stubborn weight loss.

What’s nice about The Conscious Cleanse purification is that participants have options. You can follow a more strict meal plan with unlimited cold-pressed juices or smoothies, lemon water, tea, broth and a light mid-day salad—and lots of relaxing and rest—OR you can add in more solid foods, mainly fruits and veggies. As I’m a very active person on weekends and am always out and about running errands and such, I chose the latter plan.

The end goal of the purification weekends is to love and nourish your body, and to try and slow down. It’s something that is really hard for many of us to do. I’m very guilty. But I made sure to follow the group Facebook page during our first purification weekend for inspiration and to see how people were doing. Some were going the more relaxing route while others, like me, were still sticking to the cleanse’s food principles but allowing ourselves a bit more to maintain energy during activities.

I’m now a few days into Week 2 and, for the most part, am sticking to the plan and feeling good. I confess that when I crave sugar, I put some almond butter and honey on a raw cracker—it’s my version of a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. At least I’m going the “healthier” sugar route! And I also made some of the yummy Joy Balls to snack on when hunger pangs kick in between meals.

Check out the recipe. I confess that one of the reasons I was excited to make these is that I could add honey or maple syrup to satisfy my sugar craving! They’re also delicious, and my husband loves them, too.