Review: Biotta Wellness Week

Hi everyone!

I hope you had a great holiday season. Despite the fact that I am a nutrition consultant and my diet is globally balanced, I am no exception: I have been over-indulging in treats. As a result, I ended up feeling of heavy and congested. For the past three or four years, I have been doing what is commonly called a detox week a year, usually in spring. If you follow my Facebook page or my Instagram, you know that I injured my right wrist at the beginning of the year. I was forced to immobility for ten days, and unable to cook. So I took advantage of this period of forced tranquility to test and review Biotta Wellness Week pack. This is a one-week juicing programme, including a transition day at the beginning and at the end of the plan with some easy to digest solid foods, and five full days of fasting, during which only juices, herbal tea, water and flaxseed are consumed.

Before I tell you about my experience, I think it is essential to clarify some aspects regarding this type of diets.

Why doing a juice fasting?

Fasting exists in all cultures. It is credited with various benefits. First, it allows the body to rest. Digesting solid foods requires a huge amount of energy. This is why many people feel heavy and sleepy after a hearty meal. Bringing the digestive system to rest helps draining toxins out: this allows the organs to get completely emptied, gas and other causes of digestive discomfort disappears. Finally, fasting is renown for improving mental clarity: the energy usually put into digestion can be kept for reflection, and getting rid of toxins that clog the body can also help clearing the mind.

Fruit and vegetable juices have the advantage of containing vitamins, minerals and soluble fiber the body can assimilate easily. Thus, a juice cleanse helps put the digestive system at rest, while continuing to provide the body with valuable nutrients.

Why a duration of one week?

Fasting causes a series of processes in the body that allows it to adapt to food deprivation. These metabolic changes appear in 3 phases:

  1. Protein phase – Days 1 to 3. During this phase, glucose – necessary for brain activity – is synthesized from the amino acids of muscle proteins. In other words, the body digests its own muscles to continue functioning optimally.
  2. Ketone phase – Days 4 to 40. In order to save body protein, the body uses energy stored in the form of fat to function. Fat is either used as such, burned as a fuel, or turned into ketones to provide energy to the brain, which is unable to produce energy directly from fat. This phase is characterized by the decrease / disappearance of hunger feeling, but cravings can subsist.
  3. Terminal phase – Day 41 onward. The body tap into its proteins to produce energy. Gradually, the noble structures of the body are altered, resulting in death if food deprivation persists.

Perform a fast of one week makes it possible to reach the ketonic phase. The beginning of this phase corresponds to the triggering of an alert: food deprivation causes an adaptive stress which pushes the organism to mobilize its energy reserves – in other words, the fatty tissues – and to launch self-detoxification mechanisms. These are usually passive because of our western lifestyle, characterized by inactivity and a very rich diet.

Now these two points have been clarified, it’s time to share my experience with you!

Biotta Wellness Week pack is sold as a box that is easy to transport thanks to its integrated handle. It contains :

  • 1 bag of Biotta organic herbal tea with fennel, linden, rose hip, chamomile, peppermint, lemongrass, lemongrass and marigold.
  • 1 bag of organic flax seeds
  • 2 x 500 ml Biotta Prune
  • 2 x 500 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • 2 x 500 ml Biotta Tomato
  • 2 x 500 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden
  • 3 x 500 ml Biotta Wellness
  • 1 program guide

Day 1

This day starts with taking my measurements and weight. Indeed, my weight fluctuates very easily, and I’m afraid of losing weight, especially muscular mass. So I want to check if Biotta Wellness Week plan will affect my fat mass / muscular mass percentage. I am currently in a phase that reflects my equilibrium: I have the weight I always come back when I am having an overall healthy diet, eating the treats I want without overdoing it, and doing about two hours of average intensity physical activity per day. As I wanted to avoid a loss of muscular mass, I took 4.5 grams of spirulina powder daily during the cleanse, which corresponds to 3 grams of pure protein.

Starting statistics

  D1
Weight (kg) 53.4
Fat mass (%) 25.6
Water (%) 54
Muscular mass (%) 37.6
Measurements (cm) 85-64-93.5

Breakfast

  • Biotta organic herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prune 
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 1 orange
  • 1 buckwheat pancake with, pine nuts, squash seeds, olive oil and zatar

Lunch

  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • Vegetable and spirulina broth, celery, leek, onion, garlic
  • 50 gr wheat noodles (raw weighed)

Dinner

  • 100 ml prune juice
  • 2 steamed carrots
  • 2 boiled potatoes, crushed with olive oil and fresh tarragon

Observations

  • Biotta Prune juice tastes very good and has a pleasant, syrupy texture
  • The herbal tea has a nice taste, I have no problem sipping it throughout the day
  • I had a lot of energy throughout the day
  • I felt very, very hungry at dinner time: my man’s tuna pasta made me drool, although I hate canned tuna and I rarely fancy eating pasta.
  • I really want to eat  something fat: fries, pizza, hamburger, anything could do the trick!
  • I never thought steamed carrots and boiled potatoes could have such a good taste!
  • The guide recommends eating the potatoes with skimmed quark, but I did not do it as I do not eat dairy.
  • I feel bloated and have a lot of gas in the evening from 7pm until bedtime 😦 Could it be due to prune juice? I am indeed sensitive to sorbitol, a fermentable carbohydrate  found in prunes in a significant amount…
_AAD8204
Breakfast D1
_AAD8207_2
Lunch D1

Day 2 Brunch (yes, my breakfast and lunch were so close together that I can call it a brunch)

  • Biotta organic herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 100 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • 200 ml Biotta Wellness

Afternoon tea

  • 200 ml Biotta Wellness

Dinner

  • 100 ml juice Vita 7 (I was wrong, I should have had the juice of prunes)
  • 100 ml Biotta Wellness
  • 200 ml Biotta Tomato with a touch of coconut milk, olive oil, cayenne pepper and lots of fresh basil
  • 2 cc graines de lin

Observations

  • I had very good night’s sleep, I feel rested on woke up and with a strong appetite.
  • I dreaded the taste of the juice Biotta Vita 7 because of its strong banana smell, but I find it very good. It reminds me of a multivitamin juice that I used to drink for breakfast when I was a kid.
  • I am still very hungry after brunch, bouhouhou !!! But my pizza craving is over 😉
  • Went through a moment of sadness when realizing I could only get 200 ml of tomato juice in the evening. When I only have a soup for dinner, I usually eat a half-liter bowl… I have a good appetite, I eat big portions most of the time.
  • I’m tired of drinking! I want to chew, eat something solid, and feel like I’m having a real meal. So, I allowed myself to customize the tomato juice: I warmed it up and added a little coconut milk, olive oil, cayenne pepper and fresh basil leaves, in order to to have the impression of eating a real soup. Well, I must admit that the texture was not quite there- too liquid, since it’s a juice and not a smoothie – but I found it less sad to “eat” my juice with a spoon rather than drink it out of a glass. I also put the flax seeds in the soup as croutons, instead of swallowing them without chewing as indicated in the guide… I also enjoyed chewing the basil leaves. It is not very respectful of the program, but I prefer to make small breaches to the programme than giving up start eating after two days.
  • I am very hungry at bedtime, I go to sleep early because I’m tired of hearing my stomach rumbling.

_AAD8286_IG
D2 dinner: Tomato juice disguised as a soup.

Day 3

Breakfast

  • Biotta herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • 2 tsp flax seeds

Morning tea

  • 100 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden

Lunch

  • 100 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • 200 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden

Afternoon tea

  • 100 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden

Dinner

  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • 100 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden
  • 2 cc flax seeds
  • 200 ml Biotta Tomato

Observations

  • I slept very well (more than 10 hours…)
  • I was very hungry when I woke up, argh! I hope hunger will go away after 3 days, as I read in several articles about fasting.
  • I did not pass stool for 2 days, which feels very strange because I normally go do twice a day…
  • My urine is very light and clear
  • I have good energy levels despite the hunger, I can focus on my tasks very well.
  • I am starting to get tired of the herbal tea taste. I usually drink very strong  and aromatic, spicy teas. The herbal tea from the Wellness Week pack seems bland in comparison.
  • 5 pm: total depression! I’m extremely hungry, I feel hypoglycemic, irritable… I’m shaking… I feel I’m tapping into my reserves, and God knows I have little ones – I’m petite! I take a shot of Biotta Jardin Potager, hoping it will calm my hunger down…
  • First impression of the juice Biotta Garden Vegetable: it is not my cup of tea !!! It has a strong earthy smell because of the raw beet it contains, and I must admit that it is not among my favorite vegetables, although I force myself to eat it regularly because it has extraordinary liver support properties.
  • I warmed up the juice Biotta Jardin Potager with the idea of ​​”disguising” it as a soup for lunch, but it gave it a sweet flavor that is not to my liking at all. I ended up infusing fresh tarragon into the juice Biotta Garden Vegetable. It hid the earthy taste and smell, so I was able to keep drinking it without finding it too hard.
  • My stomach has rumbled to death all day long o_O’
  • My urine is purple because of drinking beet juice. If this happens to you too, no reason to worry, it’s perfectly normal.
  • I warmed up the tomato juice after infusing it with shallots, which I then removed, and added a lot of paprika. The “soup” tasted much better this way than yesterday.

Day 4

Breakfast

  • Biotta herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • 2 tsp flax seeds

Lunch

  • 100 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • 200 ml Biotta Wellness

Afternoon tea

  • 200 ml Biotta Wellness

Dinner

  • 100 ml Vita 7
  • 100 ml Biotta Wellness
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 200 ml Biotta Tomato

Observations

  • I’m less hungry than yesterday. I felt a little bit around 4pm, but nothing unbearable
  • Hunger has almost completely disappeared in the evening, yay! I could see my man eat a pizza without wanting to get a slice. I even warmed up my tomato juice while having a garlic bread right in front on my face, and still be ok with it.
  • First poop of the week. It is very small, dark and compact
  • Stomach rumbling stopped: my stomach understood that I will not feed it, poor thing! The need to chew something at all cost has disappeared Like yesterday, I warmed up the tomato juice with shallots, which I later removed, and added lots of paprika
  • I start to have the bad breath characteristic of ketosis state : it is fruity, sweet, and evokes the smell of a plum tree on a hot summer day, when the fallen fruits begin fermenting.

Day 5

Breakfast

  • Biotta herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • 2 tsp flax seeds

Lunch

  • 100 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • 200 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden

Dinner

  • 100 ml Vita 7
  • 100 ml Biotta Vegetable Garden
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 200 ml Biotta Tomato

Observations

  • I slept very well. The feeling of hunger is diminished, it becomes stronger at night around 8-9pm, but nothing comparable with day 3, thankfully!
  • My bad breath persists and I feel overall dehydrated, which may seem strange at first sight as I am drinking all day long, but that’s part of ketosis symptoms. Nothing abnormal, therefore!
  • 2nd poop of the week: small, dark and compact, like yesterday
  • Purple urine because of the beet juice
  • It’s crazy how much time I have! The fact of doing no shopping, cooking, washing dishes and spending 2 hours a day eating allows me to go through a huge amount of work. It’s as if my days have been extended by 4 hours. It’s very nice not to have to worry about what I’m going to eat, and I can almost (I said almost) come to understand  people who tell me that eating is a waste of time… I believe that all the upheavals that happen in my body because of fasting are changing my personality 😛 – people who know me are aware that this kind of thinking does not look like me at all! Even though I feel good, I’m happy that I only have one day left without solid food.

Day 6

Breakfast

  • Biotta organic herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prunes
  • 2 tsp flax seeds

Lunch

  • 100 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • 200 ml Biotta Wellness

Afternoon tea

  • 200 ml Biotta Wellness

Dinner

  • 100 ml Vita 7
  • 100 ml Biotta Wellness
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 200 ml Biotta Tomato

Observations

  • I did not sleep well, I woke up in the middle of the night with a strong urge to urinate, all for 3 drops… Given the time it happened, this is probably due to the fact my liver is working hard to detoxify my body. It took me a while to go back to sleep because of hunger.
  • My belly is extra flat: I have a belly of Hollywood star. No surprise: my stomach is completely empty!
  • My ribs are more prominent than usual I’m always hungry…
  • Bad breath persists

Day 7

Breakfast

  • Biotta herbal tea
  • 100 ml Biotta Prune
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 1 buckwheat pancake with tahini, olive oil and zatar

Morning tea

  • 1 stewed apple with cinnamon

Lunch

  • 100 ml Biotta Vita 7
  • Beef broth with 1 poached egg

Afternoon tea

  • 1 stewed apple with cinnamon

Dinner

  • 2 steamed carrots
  • 2 boiled potatoes, crushed with olive oil

Observations

  • I woke up super happy at the thought of being able to eat.
  • Despite my enthusiasm at the idea of eating, I struggled eating my breakfast, although it was much lighter than what I usually eat.
  • The program recommended eating Swedish bread with skimmed quark, but I substituted it with buckwheat pancakes, tahini and zatar, because I do not eat dairy and did not think about buying Swedish bread.
  • The broth with the egg did not go down well, I was sick of diarrhea one hour after eating them 😥
  • Dinner was too rich: a single carrot and a single potato would have been enough. I ate the double just before I am a gourmet.

Final statistics

I took my weight and measurements on the last day of the plan and two days after starting to eat normally, to see if any weight loss would not be simply due to the fact that my digestive tract was completely empty right after have completed the Biotta Wellness Week. I took my measurements a third time, two weeks after the end of the programme to see if it had any impact on my figure in the medium term.

  D1 D7 D9 D22
Weight (kg) 53.4 51.6 52.6 53
Fat mass (%) 25.6 26.1 24.3 24
Water (%) 54 53.8 55.2 55.6
Muscular mass (%) 37.6 37.4 38.8 38.9
Measurements (cm) 85-64-93.5 83-62-92 84-63-93.5 84-63.5-93.5

As you can see, the values ​​have not drastically changed: my weight has dropped a bit, but will probably come back to my normal values in a few days. As for the percentages of fat mass, muscle mass and water, I consider that they have remained stable because my scale is not very accurate. On the measurements side: I lost a few centimeters, but nothing extraordinary, and I quickly returned to my initial values.

Remarks and recommendations

Contrary to what I heard: no, the feeling of hunger does not disappear after 3 days! It fades out and becomes more bearable, but it is always present, with some peaks of activity where it becomes more intense.

This diet is very effective in learning to distinguish true hunger from the habit of eating or food compulsion. It also makes it possible to realize how much food needs are smaller  than one could think, and that we snacks such as chocolate, dried fruits or nuts are not necessary: most of the time, one eats them without feel real hunger, just because they are available.

I think this programme could be great for people who tend to pile up kilos easily and struggle to lose weight, because undertaking 5 full days of fasting allows the body to enter the ketosis phase and start burning the fat mass reserves. It could thus help to potentiate the effectiveness of a low carbohydrate diet.

It is essential to plan this programme on a quiet week, with few activities and social interactions. I doubt that I would have managed to carry out my usual routine consisting of a string of appointments, plus 1h30 of dance and 1 hour of brisk walking daily, all that on an empty stomach. I gave up on seeing my friends on the weekend because it would have been too difficult for me to see them eat and drink what they wanted while affing to stick to my herbal tea.

If you are interested in Ayurveda or Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), be aware that this treatment is particularly suitable for people who need to soothe their Pitta, which is the energy of fire. For Vata / wood people, it is best to avoid going out, taking long trips and being exposed to the wind during the fast, to avoid amplifying their natural tendency to weight loss and agitation. To avoid using too much of their reserves, I recommend taking spirulina for the duration of the programm. In contrast, people with dominant Kapha (water and earth principle) can maximize the effects of fasting by going out and having a moderate physical activity every day.

What is your opinion about this type of diets? Have you ever done it yourself? Let me know in the comments!

Take care and talk to you soon,

Eleonora

References

yoga-ayurveda-nalanda.com

youtube.com

jeune-therapeutique.fr

principes-de-sante.com

amelioretasante.com

amelioretasante.com

dietetiquetuina.fr

biotta.ch

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s