Here’s the thing about me: when left to my own devices, I’m not a healthy eater. What can I say? I love myself a corn dog. Here’s another thing about me: I’m mildly (ok…moderately) obsessed with Dr. Drew and take everything he says as gospel. For those of you who have never heard Dr. Drew go off on toxins, it goes a lot like this: “WHAT EVEN IS A TOXIN?!?! SOMEBODY SHOW ME THE MOLECULAR STRUCTURE OF A TOXIN!!” Combine my minimal interest in healthy eating with my Dr. Drew-based belief that toxins aren’t even really a thing, and I’m an unlikely detox candidate. That being said, even I have my breaking point. And it turns out that breaking point comes from attempting to eat 3 lbs of Costco doughnut holes. You can imagine how well that ended for me. I needed a nutritional reset. STAT. A quick Google for vegan detoxes brought me to the Kaeng Raeng website.
What is it
In their own words, “Kaeng Raeng is an all natural detox meal replacement designed to help you lose weight, remove toxins, bolster your immune system, and improve digestive health.” All this in handly little packets of powder that you mix with 24 -32 ounces of water/juice/milk and drink 3 times a day. You’re also encouraged to eat all the fresh fruits and veggies you want (side note – I love the implication that this will keep you full and satisfied). They have a 3 day package and a 6 day package and come in Beginner, Veteran, and Master levels. A quiz on the web site recommended a 3 day Beginner package for me, so that’s what I decided to go with. The ingredient list looked great – really just fruit, probiotics, and fiber – nothing I was worried about passing along to my darling breastfeeding babe*. Each pouch has just over 200 calories and a whole slew of vitamins and minerals (full nutritional info available here). I didn’t want a particularly low calorie detox, so I figured that I’d mix in 3-4 cups of juice and some fruit and have plenty of calories to get me through the day. This all sounded so good in theory.
So how was it?
You know that time you read about all the benefits of drinking a gallon of water a day, so you went and bought that Nalgene/Sigg/Lifefactory/Kleen Kanteen/whatever the trendy water bottle of the day was and got all excited about how awesomely hydrated you were going to be. And then you peed 5 times before lunch and were all “Forget this!”. Kaeng Raeng is a lot like that. Only you’re hungry, too. Awesome. I don’t know who all these people online are that claim to get so filled up by shakes and juices, but I can only assume their hunger has them delusional. I wasn’t passing out hungry or anything, but, make no mistake, I was hungry. As for taste, I mixed my shakes up with a variety of juices/milks/water/fruits, and all of them just tasted ok. Not bad. Not awesome. Just meh. Meh is fine…for the first day. By mid Day 2, I was really having to force the shakes down in between proclamations that this was the worst idea I’d had in recent memory. By evening Day 2, I knew I wouldn’t be able to bring myself to drink any more of it. I just couldn’t. I’d bring the glass to my lips, smell it, and slowly lower it back down. This left me with the prospect of one more day of just nibbling on fresh fruits and veggies. For a variety of reasons, I didn’t like the thought of this. I swallowed my pride, the wasted money of unconsumed shakes,….and a toaster waffle. There you have it, I’m a big, fat detox quitter. No regrets.
Oh right, this is a running blog
You’re totally able to exercise while on this detox, but take it easy if you have to. If all you do is mix the packets with water and you don’t eat any extras, that puts you at just over 600 calories per day. That’s not going to get you through much of a workout. Use your judgement, and listen to your body.
The bottom line
Personally, I’m not sold on this whole detox/cleanse thing, so I have a hard time recommending this. As the always-awesome Fooducate blog said recently “With respect to detoxification – guess what? That’s what your liver is for.” With that in mind, if you’ve already decided you want to do a detox, check Kaeng Raeng out. I really do like the ingredients and all the vitamins, protein, and fiber. I’m definitely not an expert on such things, but it feels like a healthier option to me than something like the lemonade cleanse.
*Disclaimer – Kaeng Raeng specifically says not to use their product as a detox if you’re pregnant or nursing due to low caloric intake. They do say pregnant and nursing moms can drink it as part of a regular diet though. I felt ok doing the detox because my baby isn’t exactly a baby anymore, so she’s not surviving just off of breastmilk, and I’m not even sure I’m still producing any milk. So even though I’m breastfeeding, maintaining a fatty milk supply simply isn’t a concern these days. Do your own research, talk to your doctor, and make your own call. Don’t just trust the word of Crazy Blogger Lady With No Medical Training.