Sunday, January 1, 2012

Juice Fasting

It's the new year, let me introduce you to my recent life change - juice fasting. This documentary, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead so motivated me, I decided this was the right plan for me and the reset button I wanted to activate. I have learned much from it, but mostly that if you tend to have stomach acid, you may be quite queasy the first day unless you take Zantac or periodic Tums or Maalox. If you can't do just juices, consider doing a salad as a meal during the day at eat the fruits/veggies instead of juicing them.

The benefits of this are enormous. Do not be surprised to find that your skin the first day feels flushed and warm. Getting actual supernutrients from what you digest instead of spending all your bodies energies digesting processed crap, you get immediate benefits of blood flow and even arousal. Yeah, seriously. Your intestines too will clean out completely as if you had a freaking coffee enema. It's pretty impressive how clean you feel inside and out. Something happens as you clean and peel and juice fruits and vegetables of lots of colors and tastes. You start to look at food as nourishment and not entertainment. Your body actually begins to crave more of the good stuff and less of the greasy stuff that makes you feel groggy. These juices keep your energy levels up, but they also make you feel so peppy because you are not spending tons of energy trying to break down and digest junk food. Your sleep is better and easier. You have a better tolerance for exercise. Your skin becomes glowing. You find yourself wanting to exercise your body more because you know you are running on super fuels.

Some people do the juice fasting diet for a few days, others for weeks. My goal was to do 3 days, then if I make that, go for a week total. If I made that, go for 10 days. If I made that, go for the 2-week point. Now the the holidays are over and I have this down to a rhythm, I expect to be on the juice fast faithfully. To get to my goal weight, I would probably need to do it for a month, but of course life gets in the way, a birthday, an invite to supper, a gathering with friends, but you just get right back into it. The main thing is just to retrain yourself to feel the benefits of good nutrients and to be conscious when you eat.

We all have goals for 2012, mine is to fuel my body more efficiently and to move it as often as possible since my work life and writing life are both very sedentary. Good luck with your goals. Perhaps we can check in with each other and be supportive.


  1. I have done the Master Cleanse... but that just kind of stunk.... and I hated it...

    Maybe Juicing would be better...


  2. You know, I think that I will join you on this...I've got high blood pressure, arthritis and would like to lose some weight to keep my doctors from yelling at me.


    I see they have the video on hulu. I have watched it a bunch of times and it got me totally stoked about sort of restarting my attention to feeding myself nutritionally. My life is so busy, it made me slow down and consider my nourishment of my body, but also my soul because I got to spend time with fresh produce and really get excited about it.

  4. i have planned on starting for a few months and finally started today we will see how it goes

  5. Hey Doug--don't be surprised if you feel a little queasy about 8-12 hours into it, but have some tea with ginger powder or drink some water to help dilute the stomach acids. You do get past it. Don't forget to add a dash or two of salt to the veggie juices so you have salt in your body and also because it can be kind of blah without it.

  6. Starting mine on Monday. Plan on a 15 day juice/raw vegetable fast. I made a beet/carrot/apple/spinach/ginger juice today just to see how I could take it (I hate most vegetables, especially beets and carrots). It actually wasn't bad at all.
    I actually have been having a 'premonition' lately about having a heart attack. I get regular check ups, have no symptoms but 'something' is telling me to do this when I read this blog entry and watched the movie. Weird.

  7. Mr. Macabre-if you know your numbers, you're okay, but you do want to do something that shocks your tastes buds and consciousness into a new way of being. I suggest you see that video and you also check out "Eating" which tells how our diet can literally reverse disease processes. Don't be surprised if you feel a bit nauseous about 8-12 hours into it. I found putting some ginger in the drinks helped a lot. Ginger is the single best nausea medicine I know of.

  8. Glad to hear that you have decided to take responsibility for improving your health. While juice fasting is one way to go about it -- and can be a huge jump-start for those who have been making poor choices -- it does have many issues that made me decide 20 years ago to stop juice fasting after quite a big of experience with it, including many shorter fasts and one 4 month juice fast.

    First, I realized that nature was perfect, and that I could never improve on it. And I realized that juices don't occur in nature, but rather, we take perfect produce and make juice, in the process, throwing away the fiber. But since science suggests that we've only identified roughly 10% of the nutrients in our plant foods, it seems entirely possible --even likely -- that some of the unidentified beneficial nutrients are in the stuff we are throwing away.

    Second, I realized that the law of efficiency (every species is always attempting to get the most benefit for the least amount of effort) applies here, and always predicts that when we give the body a crutch, it becomes dependent on the crutch.

    Every other species gets everything it needs by simply consuming the diet that its body was designed for, and we are no different.

    If we are not getting all of the nutrients from the food we eat, than there are only two possibilities that come to mind:

    1) the diet is insufficient. Given that a several year old study showed that the average american gets only 4% of calories from fresh produce and 96% from animal products and processed foods, this is clearly true for most people.

    2) the body is incapable of getting what it needs from the foods we are consuming. The inability to digest, absorb, or assimilate properly means that no matter how well we eat, we will still have deficiencies.

    Drinking juices, with their massive nutrient content, can certainly provide those missing nutrients to the body, but it does so by treating the symptom, not addressing the cause of the problem. And ignoring the cause of the problem means the problem is not likely to be resolved long-term.

    Additionally, because the body needs to work to out-process anything we consume, the extreme concentration of nutrients in juices (would anyone ever eat the same number of carrots that they consume in a large glass of carrot juice?) means that the body is forced to work hard to eliminate all the excess.

    And as it turns out, much of this hard work is likely in vain as the majority of the nutrients in juices have been destroyed by the process of juicing. There is little data here, but in the one study I was able to find, in a commercial tomato pressing operation -- where tens of pounds of tomatoes are pressed at one time in a process that, unlike typical juicers, does not introduce oxygen -- 40% of the vitamin c was lost in minutes.

    In order to achieve an amazing level of health and vitality -- something I unconditionally offer my clients -- we need to understand several major paradigm shifts, including this one: (continued below)

  9. all symptoms are evidence that the body is cleansing or healing, or a signal that the body is in distress.

    Nausea tells us that there is a problem, and often happens as the body is attempting to out-process toxic substances. When we feel nauseous, we lose our appetite, and Not eating at this point is important for the body to be able to finish cleansing itself.

    Using ginger to suppress the nausea may not be a good idea as we then prevent the body from completing the important process which it has already initiated.

    And as if virtually always the case, the cure itself is toxic to us. Just all drugs and medicinal herbs work by predicting a specific body reaction (which creates symptomatic relief) to that substance's toxicity, ginger too is toxic to the body and is only capable of treating/suppressing symptoms, not addressing in any way the underlying cause of the problem.

    Today, I rarely use juices at all, and never to "cleanse" my body. Cleansing the body is a critical activity if we desire to feel and function our best.

    But cleansing and healing are always activities of the organism itself. The best we can ever do is to get as completely out of the way as possible. And though it is poorly understood and seems very radical to most people, I have allowed my body to cleanse and heal itself as completely as possible using the same process as virtually every other animal species on the planet: true fasting, where we rest as completely as possible and drink only pure water. There are a series of beneficial physiological changes that the body undergoes, but only in the absence of all nutrients and calories.

    The reason we carry more fat than we need to survive (roughly 2.5% of the body's fat is considered "essential fat,")is so that we can survive during those inevitable natural cycles where food doesn't exist -- or is very hard to come by. In nature, animals are periodically faced with droughts, fires, floods, and other extreme conditions that eliminate most or all of their food. The ability to live until food is available again is the reason for storing fat. And because we store most of the (significant) load of toxins in our long-term fat stores, it is only when we break down this fat while we are at rest that the body is able to actually eliminate it from the body.
    (continued below)

  10. Because processing calories and nutrients through the body uses more energy than anything else we do, if we are consuming anything that contains these things, most of our energy is Not available for cleansing and healing.

    And until we get the body truly clean, it is almost impossible to get properly hydrated; I know, because in my practice, I have measured (using sophisticated bio-impedance analysis) the hydration level of more than 1500 people over the last 5 years. More than 99.8% have been severely dehydrated, and it turns out that people drinking lots of juices are only nominally better hydrated than the average person, if at all.

    Once the body is truly cleansed via fasting, our hydration level soars, and this impacts how we feel and function in every way, including allowing the body to reverse most of what we call age-related damage.

    I haven't been sick a day in 25 years and my body now works better at nearly 51 than it did at 18. Anyone can experience the same thing, but will be unlikely to get there by juice fasting.

    Water-only fasting is a serious process and should be undertaken with experienced supervision if for more than a 5 or 6 days. The average person has between 6 and 8 weeks of reserves though, and if fasting properly, amazing things shift every time. After juice fasting for 4 months, I did a one week waterfast and was blown away by how much more powerful that one week was. Now I have fasted many times for 2 or 3 weeks, and have taken more than 2000 other people through fasts averaging 24 days or so, seeing miracles on a regular basis.

    If you want to really take your health to an amazing level, sell your juicer and find a water-fasting center that you resonate with. All the best!