Monday, August 8, 2011

Detoxificaton: Juice Fasting and Perhaps Fasting For The Mind?

One week ago, I sat in our hustling, bustling undercroft after Mass with my friend, Kimberly, as she excitedly shared her discovery of juicing, and in particular, juice fasting. She had watched the documentary, Fat, Sick, And Nearly Dead; and was convicted. She found a juicer on Amazon reasonably priced, and ordered one.

She and her family live in a rural area, around farmers. So she already has a lovely garden bursting with fresh produce. (And yes, I'm envious!) But as she shared with me her story of experiencing what could be the beginning of rheumatoid arthritis, I realized she may have been on to something. Kimberly is younger than me but has undergone surgeries and various health issues during the past year. This is a busy mother with six children who homeschools. As you can imagine, she doesn't have time for such things! After doing a ten-day juice fast, Kimberly says she feels amazing and the aches around her joints have decreased considerably. She has lost 16 lbs. and feels that her health has significantly improved.

However, after talking with her, I was also convicted and because we're also Netflix customers and this documentary was in the "instant view" section, we were able to stream it to our TV and watch it. My husband and I were amazed by the story of Joe Cross, an Australian, and his journey toward health. Along the way, he traveled to the United States and started to talk to people about what they ate. When you hear one person say they'll eat whatever they want, it sounds normal. But when you hear one person after another talk about the junk food they eat, you get a clearer picture of how far we've fallen from enjoying the wonderful bounty of delicious food God has created for us.

I remembered that years ago, my grandmother (RIP, Grandma C), had given me a juicer. I didn't know what to do with it and couldn't imagine using it. But I thanked her for the very nice gift and put it away in one of my cabinets. This juicer has moved with me over the past 15 years, give or take a few. Seriously. I never thought to give it away and now am so glad I didn't. After watching the documentary, I found it and took a closer look. Sure enough, it's a centrifugal juicer and could do the job of juicing vegetables and fruits. Thanks, Grandma!

At the moment, I'm drinking a delicious fruit juice breakfast drink of strawberries, blueberries, grapes, and a banana. I juiced the first three and then placed the fresh juice in a blender with some ice and the banana. I add pineapple when I have it. (And I do have one in the fridge, I just haven't peeled it, yet.)

In one word: heavenly!

I've been doing an intermittent juice fast for six days. I juice for breakfast and lunch or breakfast and dinner, and then eat a healthy meal for my third meal. (2/3rds of the meal is vegetables and 1/3 meat.) I'm now going to enter a full fast (all three meals will be juiced vegetables and fruits) for 10 days to give my system a "re-boot" and detoxify it. I've already weaned myself off sugar, caffeine, and wheat products. So it's going to be interesting to see the effects of the full fast.

I've already seen results. I've lost six pounds, and gained more energy. I'm starting to sleep better, too. I used to have puffiness around my lower legs and ankles and I'm amazed to see that I no longer have that. And yesterday during the Latin Mass (where there is plenty of kneeling), I noticed my knees weren't aching as much. Very interesting!

I also got the book, Total Juicing: Over 125 Healthful and Delicious Ways to Use Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Juices and Pulp by Elaine LaLanne, widow of Jack LaLanne. I'm finding some recipes I can't wait to try. I think it's really interesting, mixing different vegetable and fruit juices together to make something delicious. (Note: some of these drinks can taste intense, though! Especially anything using kale.)

As I experience a fast, I'm thinking it may be good to fast from the gloom and doom news, too. Instead, I'll be listening to good music and praying more than I have been. I've been wanting to do this fast but was looking at it from a "lack" perspective, such as "I won't be eating food" and then I focused on all the ramifications of that. Now I'm looking at it with an abundance perspective, such as "I have more time to pray, to enjoy other things, to get things done." With the "fasting" of my mind from the negativity of the news, I think I'll also reap some benefits.

Who knows? Maybe it will jump-start some blogging topics! :-)

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