To me, detoxes are like artsy guys with tattoos—I’m drawn to them, but ultimately don’t really trust them. I’ve tried my fair share of detoxes throughout the years and have certainly had good experiences with some, but as someone who loves food more than most things in her life, most of them have been extremely limiting and hard to get through, even if I’m able to reap some of the promised positive effects. In fact, I’ve never done a detox more than once, which I feel like is a reflection of how they've gone (but maybe also just a reflection of experience-seeking Sagittarius moon). If I’m really trying to reset or detox my body, I’ve learned that I’d rather not stick to an extremely-limiting set of foods for a week, and instead just try to cut back on certain food groups that I know cause bloating and/or inflammation (i.e. sugar, alcohol, gluten…unfortunately all things I love dearly).
But when an email from a food delivery service called Provenance Meals landed in my inbox, I was intrigued. First of all, the food photography was just really enticing—the brightly-lit, colorful photographs showcased meals that looked like things I would actually want to eat, from salads to soups to grain bowls. Secondly, the plant-based program promised yummy-looking shakes for breakfast and actual meals for lunch and dinner that would be delivered straight to my door (other detoxes I’ve done have replaced either lunch or dinner with a soup or juice of some sort, or required that I actually cook, which is honestly less likely than finding an artsy tattooed guy with a heart of gold). With an impending beach vacation in my calendar where I knew I’d want to be looking my best, I picked a week and decided to go for it.
What Is Provenance Meals?
First things first—I wanted to learn more about Provenance Meals and its founder, Caroll Lee. Lee is an avid cook herself, mother of two and board-certified health counselor who believes that a healthy diet is only a part of the puzzle when it comes to true health and happiness— loving relationships, enjoyable physical activity, meaningful work and spiritual connectedness are just as important. I appreciated her holistic approach to health and how it takes the pressure off of eating “perfectly” or else going into a guilt/shame spiral (been there).
Why Detox at All?
Lee explains that our bodies detox naturally every day. But living in the modern world can mean our bodies are overloaded with toxins and might need a little help. The most visible effect from detoxing might be losing weight, but Lee believes that it’s more about helping your body press the reset button. “The Provenance Detox is a week of clean eating that boosts your body’s natural detoxification processes and reset your body’s digestive system,” she explains. “When you eat organic, unprocessed foods that are nutrient-dense, combined with targeted supplements, you can kickstart weight loss, improve your gut health, and boost your natural beauty from the inside out.”
Why is the Provenance Detox So Special?
Like I mentioned, I’ve tried a lot of detoxes, so I was curious what made the Provenance Meals detox different from the rest. “The Provenance Detox is different from many other trendy cleanses because it’s based on the science of functional medicine,” Lee explains. “We start by eliminating potentially inflammatory triggers and adding in specific nutrients and targeted supplements to help reduce your overall toxic load so that your body can begin to do its own healing.” This sounded similar to the Sakara Level II detox I did last year—both detoxes eliminate food groups that are known to cause inflammation and both are focused on resetting your gut microbiome. The biggest difference I immediately noticed is that the Provenance Detox features different dinners each night, while the Sakara Detox opts for the same medicinal broth.
What’s in the Provenance Detox?
Provenance offers a 5-day or 7-day detox; I opted for the 7-day and vowed to myself that I would do my very best to continue my healthy-eating through the weekend (when my Seamless delivery and margarita consumption usually tends to spike). “While all of our meals are organic and 100% free of gluten, dairy, and refined sugars, the Detox meals are all plant-based and remove additional ingredients that are common allergens and potentially toxic trigges,” Lee says. “While you can pick and choose meals on our regular program, the Provenance Detox includes meals selected by our team of wellness experts so that the entire process is simplified.
According to the below, this is what I would be consuming over the next seven days:
- 7 Superfood Protein Shakes for breakfast
- 14 Provenance Plant-Based Meals for lunch and dinner
- 7 bottles of ultra-hydrating Pomegranate Lime Chia Fresca
- 14 sachets of soothing Herbal Detox Tea Tonic, with lemongrass, echinacea, licorice, dandelion root, peppermint, tulsi, and ginger
- Provenance Flourish Probiotics (one month supply)
- Metagenics Clear Change® Daily Essentials supplements for advanced detoxification support (7 day supply)
All of this would be delivered to my doorstep over the course of the week, split into two shipments. I was able to select the exact date and time frame the food would be delivered, which I found to be extremely helpful so I could plan to be home when it was delivered. I was ready. I was excited. I cancelled all my dinner plans that week, which was more satisfying than I could have ever realized. Now all I had to do was wait for my first delivery.
My Honest Review
Each day started off with an indulgent-tasting shake. The cleanse rotates between three different flavors, but they all taste pretty similar—luckily, they were all delicious. The maca shake was my favorite—like a chocolate smoothie, except full of mood-boosting, digestion-helping antioxidants. Lunch was usually a salad or soup—I loved the chilled gazpacho I had on day three—followed by the detox tea and Chia Fresca drink, which was refreshing and filling. Dinner was where I was truly blown away and pleasantly surprised. The first night I had a quinoa burger with jicama “fries” that came with a creamy aioli sauce. I devoured this, and not once did I think, this tastes like detox food. In fact, I was shocked at not only how full I felt afterwards, but how delicious every bite was. The dinners actually ended up being the highlight of the detox. I came home each night looking forward to a hearty, delicious meal that I could warm up in the oven. They were meals that I would’ve ordered for myself if I was at a healthy restaurant with zero temptation (read: pasta). I also loved the little personal touches throughout the cleanse. Each day, I received an email from the Provenance team with a little note of encouragement, a breakdown of exactly what I would eat that day, and tips for staying on track. This was so helpful in keeping me feeling engaged and motivated, and I liked knowing that the Provenance team was just an email away and ready to answer any or all questions I had. The Chia Fresca drink got tiring after day three—I would have liked an alternative drink to switch off between, like the morning smoothies—but I was so impressed by the wide variety of meals inspired by different country’s cuisines that I consumed for lunch and dinner.
Honestly, this cleanse was so filling that at times I wouldn’t even be able to finish the entire lunch, or stay full until way past dinner time. This is the exact opposite of how I usually feel on a cleanse, and I was curious about whether or not I was really detoxing if I wasn’t feeling some sort of deprivation. Lee says that’s not the case at all. “Our meals are filling and satiating because we use the right combination of ingredients that your body needs,” she says. “Our breakfast shake is high in protein and contains powerful superfoods, adaptogens, and probiotics that set you up right from the beginning of your day. Our meals contain delicious healthy fats, like avocados, olive oil, and nuts. Our chia seed-based afternoon snack has protein, fiber, and keeps you better hydrated than water. And all the vegetables are delivering those nutrients your body needs and craves. Everything promotes a healthy gut microbiome and keeps your body regular and happy—no deprivation required.”
By the end of the 7th day (I admit, I cheated a few times because #life, but stayed on track for 85% of the detox), I felt like I had a newfound appreciation for just how delicious a healthy meal can be.
“While we’re not trying to be a quick fix, we do find that our clients typically lose anywhere from 3 to 8 pounds on the Provenance Detox,” says Lee. “Everyone is different and there are a lot of factors that go into weight loss, but the program is designed to kickstart weight loss by resetting the systems that might make you hold onto extra pounds.” I don’t think I lost any noticeable weight (I chose not to weigh myself before and after, knowing so much of it can be water weight and not wanting this to be my goal) or notice a flatter stomach like I’ve seen with other cleanses, but I also never felt the extreme deprivation and obsessive thoughts either (it’s amazing how your brain will fixate on a Snickers bar when you’re told you can’t have one). Overall, weight loss wasn’t my goal—a healthier mindset was, and this cleanse certainly put me in a good headspace. I felt more energized, and moreover, I felt extremely proud of myself for nourishing my body with healthy, plant-based food for a full week, instead of my regular diet of Seamless deliveries. I also didn’t immediately binge after finishing the cleanse, which I’ve done for previous detoxes. It was so refreshing and encouraging to associate a detox with healthy, delicious food instead of hunger pangs. “Food can be very powerful in healing both your body and your spirit, and to help your body let go of any stored emotions you may be hanging onto,” Lee explains. “I like to think of the Provenance Detox as a week of self-care that can affect our weight, but also our mindset of what it means to love ourselves.” Detoxing might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of self-care (I’ll go for a massage or indulgent healing bath, thanks), but my experience with Provenance certainly proves it’s possible. I would 100% try Provenance again—I'm curious about their non-detox food delivery options, which contain protein—and coming from my Sagittarius moon, that's saying a lot.
The author received this detox in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are her own.