It Ain't Easy Being Juicy
Today is the third day of my juice fast and the first day I don't want to kill myself. About a month ago I wrote about the documentary Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, a film that terrorized me as much as it motivated me.
This is becoming huge. The documentary's Facebook page has 39,832 "Likes" as of this afternoon, and there are forums, chat rooms, websites, and meet-up groups dedicated to the juicing fast phenomenon. This is because people, for once, see there is a healthful way to lose an immense amount of weight in a short period of time.
The problem is that it isn't as easy it looks. In the film, two extremely overweight guys (100 to 200 pounds overweight) go on a juice fast. The fast helps them shed all those extra and unwanted pounds and also greatly improves their health. Showing Joe Cross and Phil Staples going from taking daily medication to being active, healthy individuals, the film gives us a glimpse into the reality of juice fasting.
I say glimpse, because in reality, that is what it amounts to. We see them juice. We see them losing (and losing and losing) weight. We see them become increasingly healthier the longer they fast. They visit the doctor for checkups, and their numbers just keep getting better the longer they juice. What we don't see is the agony that is possible, especially during the first week.
The film does briefly mention that going on a juice fast isn't easy and that you might feel funny during the first few days, but depending on your level of obesity or disease, it can be much more drastic. If you are seriously interested in doing this, you need to do a lot of research. If you have any serious health conditions, you might want to consult a doctor. But definitely talk to other people who are juicing or have juiced; they will be your biggest source of knowledge and motivation.
The Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead Facebook page is a fabulous resource if you're interested in juice fasting. It has become an online community where people share recipes and experiences, plus answer questions for people just starting out.
I began this past Monday. I felt as if I were carrying a bowling ball inside my skull and as if my head were slightly but constantly being squeezed in a vise. I also felt as if I were about to pass out at any moment and I couldn't think. My brain was not functioning at its normal speed. Writing an article took me three to four times longer than normal.
The fact that I have diabetes is also a factor. Although lowering my blood sugar levels is a goal, it is also dangerous for it to drop too low. I used to monitor my blood sugar twice a day; I now monitor it about five to six times a day. You know, just to make sure I don't die.
Does the juice fast work? Is it a healthy way to lose one to two pounds per day? Yes. But it is hard. You will feel like crap for about a week and you may want to kill someone. Vomiting has been known to happen. And a lot of the juice recipes taste like crud.
I am still advocating the juice fast. Not only does it cleanse your body of toxins (which most of us have in large quantities), but it may help reduce or even completely eliminate health issues such as high blood pressure, asthma, and diabetes II. I'm counting on it.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Miami dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.