I have always wanted to try a juice-fast, but haven’t for various reasons. So when I had to have my wisdom teeth removed only 10 days before I was headed for my travels–talk about life giving you lemons–I decided to take my lemons and make juice. This is a summary of my experience.
BEFORE THE FAST
Health Concerns: I am fairly healthy, but I have had constant trouble with inflammatory conditions. Much of which were abated after I went gluten-free in 2011, but I have had two inflammatory conditions that continued to affect me.
Addictions or vices: As a nutritionist these are hard to admit. Caffeine, sugar, chocolate and ice cream 🙁
Typical diet: About 90% raw food diet. Maybe two or three servings of animal protein a week. Depending on the week, one cheat day with sugary treats, chocolate and ice cream and usually all in one sitting… don’t judge me.
Weight: Not 100% sure, I failed to weigh myself because weight loss wasn’t the goal, but I’m usually pretty bang on about my estimated weight when I look in the mirror (I have weighed myself A LOT in my past obviously) and if I had to guess I would say I was probably around 116-118lbs.
Medications: I was on no prescription medication prior to the juice fast. However, due to my wisdom teeth surgery I had to take antibiotics, ibuprofen and extra strength tylenol.
Supplements: I continued use of my probiotics through out the fast.
Not much happened today, I pretty much slept for the majority of it.
This was another uneventful day…you don’t work up much of an appetite just laying in bed and watching movies. I think traveling to the freezer to get an ice pack for my face was about the extend of my physical activity that day.
Here’s where I started to feel hungry and where cravings began to reveal themselves–predominantly the craving for a crunchy texture. There were random moments when I would impulsively reach for food with little thought, simply habitual, I almost had to remind myself that I was fasting. I’ve heard many times in the past that the third day is usually the hardest day to get through, but if I had to rate it’s difficulty from 1-10, I would say it was about a 6. I was quite pleased that I made it through this day with little trouble.
I came to realize that it had been 3 days since I experienced any inflammatory symptoms, but couldn’t definitively say if the juice fast contributed to that in anyway, because after all I was taking post surgery anti-inflammatories.
4 days without my morning dose of caffeine and I didn’t miss it at all, nor did I experience any difficulty starting my day without it. I had an abundance of energy on day 4, and an even greater abundance of food cravings…life sure has a cheeky little way of packaging experiences. I craved all sorts of things this day, random flashes where I could phantom smell, and even taste an array of aromas, textures, flavours of foods– Warm, buttery, salty popcorn was the strongest craving that day. I considered eating, but instead I continually reminded myself that it was probably withdrawal and if I just powered through it, then it wouldn’t be long before the cravings would subside. For me day 4 was the suckiest.
Day 5 was a breeze, until I took a nap late in the afternoon, woke-up, got my period and decided that meant I deserved ice cream and chocolate. FAIL! I must say I quickly grew to be grateful for this defeat, because this is when learned that one of these two foods or maybe even both were the source of my inflammatory conditions. 10 minutes hadn’t even passed before I started having trouble. I am certain this wasn’t psychosomatic because at this point I was more likely to be looking for reasons to keep eating my ice cream than looking for reasons to have to put it down.
Brushed myself off and continued the fast. Exercise isn’t really recommended when cleansing, but I had been so sedentary that week my body just needed a run. I had the best workout of my life that day. I felt strong, energetic and healthy. I drank 4 quarts of juice that day. I needed larger quantities to feel full, but was completely satiated by the juice alone. I loved this day.
I was no longer taking the ibuprofen or extra strength tylenol. The only medication I was taking at this stage was the antibiotic.
Another awesome day, felt great and no cravings. I did experience some symptoms of detox that day (use your imagination) but nothing crazy.
Still no sign of inflammation problems, which up until my fast, had been perpetual.
Felt so good that I wondered why I didn’t jump on the juice-fast bandwagon long ago.
Wished I had weighed myself at the start, because I definitely lost some weight and was disappointed I wouldn’t have accurate numbers for my blog.
Loved juicing so much at this point that I was trying to sort out a way to pick it up again–and maybe for much longer– once I travelled to Australia and settled in. This was also my last night with my friends before my trip. We got together that night and my juice-fast experience came to a close as I sipped on a glass of wine.
I have been in Australia for four days, have been eating solid foods and picking up fresh, raw juice whenever I pass a juice bar. I bought a Breville juicer today, it’s not as fancy as my Greenstar cold-press juicer back home, but for only $90 I was pleased with how it worked. I think it will be a while yet before I attempt to go strictly on juice alone. I’d like to feel more settled in my new environment before I take on a challenge of that caliber, but it’s certainly on the list. For now, I am just juicing A LOT and I still feel pretty damn good.
Cheers from Oz,