Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I'm Doing A Juice Fast...

For years I’ve wanted a juicer, but something else - usually some other kitchen appliance - would always take priority. First it was a Vitamix, and then it was a really good food processor, then a dehydrator, and then it was no money, or vacation, or the holidays and it never seemed to be the right time. Add to that I didn’t know what kind of juicer to get, I didn’t really know anything about them, and on top of it I wasn’t certain how much use I’d get out of one. Sure I was intrigued by making fresh juices at home. I know a lot of people who do it regularly and swear by it. Sure I love fresh juices when I go to Raw restaurant or juice bars but those things didn’t necessarily mean I would get a lot of use out of my own personal juicer. At least that’s what I thought. Then there were the complaints. This model has wet pulp, this model doesn’t juice this or that fruit or vegetable very well, this model is difficult to clean, this model is loud and so on. It seemed like every model out there including the best of the best had some flaw that continuously mentioned.

And so, time and time again I was dissuaded  form purchasing a juicer, and each time this would happen I would sigh in defeat and dreams of a juicer would filter to the back of my mind. Where of course they would remain until some provocation would cause them to resurface. The latest provocation just so happened to come about because of my obsession with watching health and agriculture documentaries on Netflix. One night I was bored, and having seen almost all of these documentaries already I came across one I hadn’t yet seen, and until that point had, had zero interest in watching. The film in question was “Fat Sick and Nearly Dead” and the reason I had zero interest in watching it was because I didn’t think watching an overweight guy juice for weight loss would be very interesting or inspiring. However, that night I was bored, and with nothing else to watch I skeptically clicked the play button. As it turns out this film is about more then just juicing for weight loss, and much to my surprise I found it pretty inspiring. Though I’m not 400 pounds and suffering from all sorts of medical conditions that require me to be on various medications I have since last year been feeling a bit ‘off my game’ on and off. I’ve mentioned this before, it all started with my holiday in Europe last June, and once we got back I think we were pretty well off the healthy-food wagon. We tried to get back on and then bam I was on holiday again visiting my family in Vancouver. Since I was never vegan when I lived in Vancouver I obviously needed to try all the delicious vegan eats around town. Then of course vegan mofo hit and you know how that went. Then there were the holidays. So there were a lot of indulgence last year, and though we never ate particularly bad - and most of the time we ate really well - I still didn’t feel entirely right.

By the end of December I was back on track and January has been a wonderful month of healthy eating, yet still I wasn’t quite feeling like I knew I should. I felt better for sure, physically and mentally, but there were other minor things going on that I didn’t understand.. Itchy ears, itchy skin, sore gums, canker sores, a few pimples, gas/bloating and a bacterial infection inside my navel that wouldn’t go away. All of these things I’d either never or rarely experienced, which was enough to cause me to wonder. Though these things weren’t necessarily all happening at once, they kept happening and it seemed that every remedy I tried only succeeded in treating the symptoms but not the underlying cause. After I watched the film, and then did some of my own reading about the benefits of juice fasting I started to think that this was something I needed to do too. A simple reboot for my system, to get me back on track for real.  In addition to clearing up the problems I’ve already mentioned I also looked forward to experiencing the renewed energy, and sharper mental clarity I kept reading about.

Of course all the original reasons for my not yet owning a juicer still applied, and since the holidays were rather expensive for us this year, money was the main deterrent. Lucky for me January is the month where everyone and their mother decides to start eating healthy and live right. Which means in the month of January what goes on sale? Well juicers, blender’s and other such products. It also happened that I had a very nice gift card given to me by my husband for my birthday last year that I still hadn’t put towards anything. All the dominos it seemed were falling into place, and so how could I deny myself a juicer now? It was kismet. I believe in fate, and I believe that certain things won’t come to you or make themselves available to you until you’re truly ready. After years of wanting a juicer I was really, and truly ready for one, and so I bought one.

I ended up getting a Breville, considering my limited funds it was a good model that I could afford and I knew that if juicing didn’t work out for me I wouldn’t feel too bad about buying it as opposed to having spent $500 or so on the really ‘top of the line’ kind. Besides since I’m a juicing novice I thought this would be a smooth and easy way to become acquainted.. After all they’re highly rated juicers with few complains, and most people who’ve reviewed them online only have good things to say. When you see a ton of five star reviews it may not be a sure thing, but it’s probably a good bet.

My juicer arrived via UPS last Thursday, I knew it would, and I also knew that it was not a good idea to go into any kind of juice fast with a poor diet. So last Monday I started what I’m calling my pre-juice-fast prep. Which basically means I ate lighter meals, and more liquid meals then I normally do. A lot of low-calorie foods, and a lot of smoothie. Since the juicer came Thursday I started Friday off with a breakfast of 32oz of juice to see what that would feel like. A kind of trial if you will. I was amazed at how good the juice was and that It kept me feeling so full for so long. I felt so good after that juice that I decided to have a smoothie for lunch before work rather then a meal of solid food and then for dinner I ate some home-made pizza that was leftover from Thursday night’s meal. Saturday I did the same. Juice breakfast, smoothie lunch, a few chocolate almond cookies - home-made and practically raw. - No really the recipe was from the cook book Practically Raw by Amber Shea Crawley, fantastic recipe by the way! - and then an Arugula salad with tomatoes, onion and tahini lime dressing. Sunday I wasn’t feel that hungry or that well upon waking thanks to some rather bad cramps so I skipped breakfast but made a huge smoothie - pouring it into two travel mugs - to take to work with me for meals. I drank both at work, had a few more chocolate almond cookies, a kombucha and a raw chocolate power bar, then came home to a light dinner of roasted squash and some more of my Black Quinoa Arugula Bowl  from last week.

Thanks to the beforehand prep I was already feeling pretty good. Some of the problems mentioned earlier had already begun sorting themselves out. Namely the bacterial infection, the sore gums, the canker sores, the itchy ears, and the itchy skin. So I was feeling very excited and very pumped to get onto the juice fast pronto. I literally could not wait for Monday to come. Unfortunately because this post is getting a little long as it is you will have to wait to hear all about Monday, Day 1 of my Juice Fast tomorrow, so stay tuned!

PS: There will be pictures, I promise! And I’ll keep you updated about each day of the juice fast. What I’m drinking, how I’m feeling etc... 

1 comment:

  1. Congrat's on your juicer purchase!! Can't wait to see the juices you come up with!! S.T.