Muddy Herts gets raw and juicy….
About the same time Muddy Herts was starting up, all the way back in November, Hitchin-based Amy Huggins was launching Health and Happiness Nutrition. Using her own experience and her practitioner degree in Nutritional Healing, Amy puts together completely individual, bespoke raw juice cleanses – as well as delicious soups and smoothies.
I went to talk to Amy because, well, having pointedly ignored ‘dry January’ and ‘forgotten’ to give anything up for Lent, I was feeling a bit rubbish – and a bit squidgier than I’d like to as well. We met for our initial consulation (my suggestion) at the fab Hermitage Road coffee shop, which was almost certainly a mistake. Don’t get me wrong, it’s lovely there – one of my favourite places in Hitchin – but there was something rather awkward about me brushing croissant crumbs off my chops while trying at the same time to persuade Amy that my diet wasn’t too bad at all.
Turns out, I had to confess. My diet has been fairly rubbish recently – too many meetings over coffee and treats, too many glasses of wine in that the-kids-are-finally-in-bed wind down, you know the sort of thing. It’s easily done – even Amy describes her life pre-juicing as being a steak-loving, caffeine-and-Haribo-fuelled party girl – but not always easily corrected.
I’m not about to give up lots of things I enjoy forever – I mean, really – but I was ready to focus for a bit on what was going in actually doing me good, rather than just keeping me going. But with diets and detox I’m just hopeless (who isn’t?) at following all those rules and staying on the wagon and so on. No willpower at all. Good thing is, Amy does it for you. And she bases it on your needs, your preferences, your tastes. It’s completely bespoke.
I opted for the 3-day cleanse – there are 5 and 7-day ones, too, but I thought I’d better ease myself in gently. After 5 days or so of preparing by slowly eliminating various naughties from my diet (oh, the headache on the day I stopped drinking coffee….), I was ready to get going.
Amy makes all the juice, smoothies and soups herself. They’re all raw and all organic, and – this is the best bit – she delivers everything you need for the day first thing in the morning. You get your own little Thermos with 5 Kilner jars inside. You even get the straws to drink them with. How much easier could it get?
The berries and banana smoothie I started with was amazing. I actually found myself (oh, the shame) sticking my finger into the jar to get the last bits out. If I could have got my tongue in there, I would have.
I’d been worrying that I’d feel hungry, or tired, or fed up with everything being liquid – having nothing to get my teeth into – but I honestly didn’t. I had a smoothie for breakfast which kept me going all morning (which is more than a bowl of Cheerios does) and then juice and soup at various points throughout the day. And water. Lots of water.
Am I happier? Healthier? Yes, for sure. I can definitely feel (and see) a difference. I really enjoyed the juices and smoothies (especially the smoothies) and I do feel a lot better for it. It’s also got me out of a lot of bad habits – sort of ‘rebooted’ what little willpower I do have – and made me remember how much I like certain good-for-me foods. Yes, I’m sure I’ll have the odd glass of wine or the occasional Americano again. But not so much and not so often – and I’ll be making sure there’s lots of the good stuff going in, too.