... and just no time to think!
Since posting my pictures on pinterest.com, I have been FLOODED (yay!) with questions, comments and concerns about my experience with juice fasting.
I would like to answer some of the most frequent ones, and hopefully this will get a few more people headed in a healthy direction!
1. You aren't a physician, so why are you giving dietary advice? I absolutely recommend speaking with your doctor before changing your diet, especially if you have underlying health issues (diabetes, hypoglycemia, etc.). I am only giving information that has worked for me, and I actually DID have mysterious health issues that MANY doctors could not figure out. I felt I needed to take my health into my own hands and solve what was wrong. I truly believe I would not have it figured out had I not discovered juicing.
2. So, you just drink juice for breakfast, lunch and dinner? Yes, yes and yes. I cannot stress enough how motivating it is to watch the documentary "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead". They explain the juice cleanse FAR better than I will ever be able to! I watched it on Netflix (you can usually sign up for a one month free trial, then cancel if you don't want that kind of service), or you can find it on eBay for about $15, OR you can support the Reboot team and buy it directly from the website!
3. I'm on day 1, 2, 3, 4, 5... and I want to quit. How did you stay motivated? Wow! There are SO many factors to this one. First and foremost, I was MISERABLE with myself. My low self-esteem was affecting my marriage and friendships. I didn't even want anybody taking pictures of me. I knew I had to do something drastic to get a change in my life.
I also had some stomach problems that nobody could figure out. Once I watched the film, a light went off in my head and I decided to try and heal my body with fruits and veggies!
Once the decisioin was made that this was the right choice for me, I had small motivators. The minute I began the cleanse, I sold all of my jeans on eBay (I have a thing for denim, so even though the sizes were large, they were expensive), so I either had to succeed or I would have NO PANTS!
I am a stay-at-home mom, and dinner was tough to get through. I would make a tasty meal for my family, then go upstairs, light some candles, and read books. I also went to bed early for the first few weeks. Being around food eventually gets better, I promise! :-)
Taking progress pictures helped as well, no matter how discouraging they may seem at the time. I would also track my weight on the calendar, and every ten days that went by I would treat myself with a little gift of something I'd had my eye on as a reward.
4. Can I just use a blender or food processor? If you are trying to emulate this cleanse, a juicer is the only thing that will work. Juicing allows your body to use the energy that would otherwise go towards digestion and give you tons of vitality to do other things!
5. Why not just eat the vegetables? You could, but your jaw would be exhausted because of the large amounts of produce you are ingesting, and you would probably give up quicker! Also see #4.
6. I work during the day. How do I cope with group lunch outings and easy office snacks? Obviously, I can't say 100% how to deal with this issue. I thought staying at home was tough because the kitchen was right there, taunting me, but working would be a challenge as well. I think at the end of a long day, putting on lounge wear and eating comfort food would be almost impossible to resist! Juicing can be very isolating, especially when you realize you should probably just skip lunch and drink juice, or take a walk alone until the cravings subside. It is all about willpower! One positive is that many of your co-workers will be inspired and excited that you are taking such "crazy" steps to make yourself healthy!
7. What about protein? Protein is important for our muscles, immune and blood cells. Many vegetables contain some of the essential amino acids, or building blocks of protein – for example beet greens, broccoli, avocado, kale, just to name a few. So you won’t be missing out completely on this important macronutrient. Also, it is highly unlikely that you could develop a nutrient deficiency in 60 days.
8. I can't afford a juicer, or buying massive amounts of produce, soooo...? Try Craigslist for a gently used juicer! My Jack Lalanne was found on sale at Big Lots for $70, so keep checking your local Sunday paper! Also, try adding up the cost of your meals for just ONE week. The produce came to about ten bucks per day for me (a bit more if you buy organic). I spent WAY more on processed food than I ever did on fruits and veggies!
9. Did you exercise during the cleanse? Yes.... EVENTUALLY. Since the first week was the hardest, I just wanted to stay in bed. After my body got used to the HEALTHY food being pumped into it, I started out with short walks. After a bit, I was able to walk-jog-walk. By the end of the fast, I was jogging the entire route (which got longer and longer!). My advice is to go with what your body can do. I wasn't exactly obese when I started this journey, but when I first began walking my heart would beat out of my chest and I fell short of breath.... from walking! You really just need to listen to your body and stop when it becomes too much. I think ANY exercise is great exercise!
10. How did you navigate social functions? What about naysayers? If your family is anything like mine (in-laws included!), food is the staple to any get-together. My friends are also big on tasty food and wine. As I mentioned before, this cleanse can feel VERY isolating. At first you will get comments similar to "Aren't you just starving yourself?", or "I don't really go for the fad diets, since you'll gain the weight back", and "Don't you need meat to survive?". After you tell them that you are "eating" a normal amount of calories, it isn't a fad OR a diet because it is literally just produce, and you DON'T need meat to survive (you're just a temporary vegetarian, unless you decide to become one!), that is when the motivational compliments begin to pop up! I had many friends and relatives say they WISH they had my willpower, or how great my skin looked! Trust me, you can't cave on your cleanse just because your mom makes you feel guilty for refusing her slow-cooker cheesy potato soup. :-)
11. I feel sick, how can I keep going when I feel so awful? Trust me, the icky feeling does not last! The first week (or two) is the hardest. I personally had headaches, nausea, sore throat (from drinking so many liquids) and I was SUPER cranky. Your poor body is literally withdrawing from salt, sugar and fat, and it is NOT FUN. Don't be tempted to pop aspirin or drink coffee, you CAN get through it and you will wake up one morning and feel amazing! About a week prior to your fast, begin to cut out processed foods and start eating more fruits and veggies, the symptoms will be less severe if your body gets used to the healthy intake!
12. How much juice should I drink per day? What if I get tired of just drinking juice? The Reboot website suggests drinking about 4-5, 16 ounce juices and add approximately 16-24 ounces of additional fluids. Besides drinking LOTS of water, you can also drink herbal tea, lemon water and plain coconut water.
Phew! That's all I can do for now, but maybe I'll post a "FAQs Round Two" sometime. :-)