Appliance of science: three top medi-wellness programmes

Words by
Sphere Life

24th January 2019

With medi-wellness treatment on the rise, we try out some of the best scientific-backed programmes that promise to boost your health and wellbeing



Starting a 24-hour cleanse does not seem like such a smart idea when on a cold Monday morning, I find myself staring down into a cup of lukewarm gloop. Grainy and viscous, the concoction of powdered live enzymes and lukewarm water is the first stage of Pure Earth’s enzyme cleanse. Reminding myself of the supposed benefits, which range from improved gut-health and better digestion to increased mental clarity, I take a tentative sip of the liquid.

It is thick, cloying and unpalatable, and despite the clear instructions to drink it quickly before it thickens, I cannot swallow the solution fast enough so it rapidly turns into a dense paste which I then have to spoon into my mouth. Not the serene start that I had imagined.

Designed to detox, reset your metabolism and improve your gut-health, Pure Earth’s 24-hour enzyme cleanse – which is supported by a tasty post-cleanse broth, gut-smoothing kefir waters and zingy hot shots – combines a range of powdered, liquid and tablet enzyme supplements that work to expel harmful toxins while getting your body back to peak condition.

Taken intensively throughout a 12-hour period, the live enzymes must be treated with care, so everything that passes your lips has to come in under a cool 40 degrees. And, as the strict programme dictates that alternate glasses of enzyme solution and lukewarm water must be consumed every half an hour, both the cleanse and measuring the temperature of the liquid are incredibly time consuming.

Each half an hour window flies past far too soon, as throughout it takes me too long to get the gloopy solution down. A liquid enzyme solution is introduced three hours in - it's medicinal-tasting, but goes down more easily. An hour after that, a belly massage is incorporated – my stomach is hard in places and tender, apparently a sign that the enzymes have started to work their magic. Three hours later a hot bath is prescribed, a small mercy in this miserable cleanse, which is starting to make me feel ill – supposedly another sign that the toxins are starting to shift.

I persevere until two hours from completion as the powdered enzyme solution make me sick. Thankfully, I consumed enough live enzymes for the cleanse to be effective and what I can only describe as something akin to birthing my intestines ensued.

After that, I really did start to reap the benefits. I slept well, my skin was visibly brighter and clearer and I went about my day with renewed energy. Although I didn’t get on particularly well with the cleanse itself, I would recommend it as a good way to break bad eating habits and start a healthier regime.

Once cleansed, I also took Symprove’s 12-week probiotic programme to deliver good, active bacteria to my gut to ensure longer-term digestive benefits. 




Tasked with the – admittedly rather agreeable – challenge of finding a new, scientifically advanced wellness treatment for the luxury set, I was initially somewhat stumped. While there are any number of high-end massages or facials claiming to beautify, detox or turn back time entirely, few have their grandiose promises backed up by solid medical fact. But then, a brainwave – and a jaunt to Knightsbridge.

I arrive at Harrods, where its ultra-swish Wellness Clinic is located on the fifth floor. As the name suggests, the institution is at the cutting edge of science-based treatments, ranging from futuristic cryotherapy chambers to personalised skincare regimes based on your own DNA. 

Today though, I’m here for a body remodelling session with a spin on the collagen bed, which comes courtesy of the New York Dermatology Group (NYDG). Treating the body from head to toe, the aim is to stimulate the performance of aging cells by beaming red light on to the skin to rejuvenate it - similar to how plants use chlorophyll to convert sunlight into plant tissue. Supposedly, certain light wavelengths in the red-infrared spectrum can be harnessed to kick-start biostimulation and collagen production. Benefits are said to include improvements in skin hydration, pigmentation and elasticity, along with enhancing nutrient flow, helping muscle pain and soothing skin conditions like eczema or acne, among others. On paper, the treatment certainly sounds intriguing, if a little bonkers.

Once bundled in a fluffy robe in the elegant minimalist treatment room, I get a rst look at what I’ve signed up for. Covered in light-emitting diodes (LEDs) that glow a sci-fi red, the full-length contraption does rather resemble something from 2001: A Space Odyssey, although the experience isn’t too dissimilar to that of a sunbed. After stripping down and applying a few squirts of serum to my skin, I am told to lie on my back for the first portion of the treatment. A smaller LED panel is positioned over my face. Once the collagen bed is activated, plastic goggles protect my gaze from the bright glare - although, unlike a sunbed, there is no danger of damage to skin or eyes without the presence of UV rays.

After 20 minutes, the bed beeps and I turn on to my front for another 25 minutes. Lying on a hard, heated plastic surface with only muzak for distraction means the experience isn’t exactly relaxing – I like a gently scented rotisserie chicken – although it’s not unpleasant.

Once done, I enjoy trying out the selection of premium skincare products – think Colbert and Natura Bissé – which leaves me feeling suitably pampered as I descend through Harrods’ floors. Although I hadn’t felt any immediate difference before leaving, my dinner companion later remarked that the skin on my face appeared plump and dewy – and so it did, noticeably fuller and fresher. Social courtesy inhibited me from de-robing in the restaurant to inspect the rest there and then, but I was thrilled with the difference, even though the effects only lasted a day or so.

During the session, my therapist told me that typical collagen bed programmes range from six -12 sessions, followed by twice-yearly top-ups thereafter to maximise results. So, if you’re willing to splash the cash, the NYDG collagen bed is the perfect pick-me-up . 

£350 for 45 minutes,



I head to Notting Hill for the latest forward thinkers in fitness - Bodyism. This 360° approach to health and wellness surpasses squats and lunges and focuses on four pillars of health: sleep, nutrition, mindset and movement. Using the analogy of a table, if one of the legs isn't working efficiently the table becomes unstable; if two of the legs stop functioning, the table can collapse. According to Bodyism, it's the same for your body, so its team of trainers with specialised skills gets to work to ensure my pillars are working as optimally as possible.

My initial season was with a Functional Movement Specialist to identify areas that I needed to focus upon and set a benchmark for fitness. I puffed my way through some mini band walks for glute activation and tried some banded scapula retractions to increase control and stability in the shoulders. Alongside this, I am encouraged to think positively - a more optimistic attitude results in more positive effects on the body. I am also told how to develop a routine to get a good, deep sleep, with regular sleeping and waking times even at weekends. When it comes to nutrition, I am urged to eat foods that are close to their natural state, as they contain more health-boosting vitamins and minerals and fewer toxins.

I also attent a Fascial Stretch Therapy session - a one-of-a-kind, restorative assisted stretching technique that targets the muscles and the fascia (the connective tissue that surrounds the muscles, bones and joints). My body is twisted and pulled in all directions, but I feel less creaky immediately afterwards.

Further sessions include Functional Range Conditioning (FRC), which increase the ability to control a joint through its full range of motion. FRC helps you build control and strength in new ranges of motion so you can squat with more depth, keep proper form and stay injury-free.

Memberships start from £1,500 per year for a class membership and £2,750 for PT memberships,