Last week a friend asked if I was interested in joining her on a 5-day juice fast she was starting, and I just said yes. Why not? It was a beautiful sunny afternoon, and we’d been sitting by the pool reminiscing about our recent Bali weekend, sipping mojitos and nibbling nibbles. Not something I do regularly, unfortunately, because it really is a lovely way to pass an afternoon, but it made me realise that quite a few things have been creeping back into my diet which I’m not altogether happy with. A juice fast sounded like a great way to re-establish the clean eating habits which I know my body loves. I started the fast that night. No time like the present as they say!
So not a lot of thought went into the decision to start, but what did go into it was a whole lot of curiosity about what it would feel like, and whether or not I could actually sustain it for 5 days. Or even 2 days come to think of it.
Having heard enough people say that juice fasting can just be a sugar fest, I decided to stick almost entirely with vegetable juice. I used the occasional half an apple here and there, loads of lemons, and initially probably a bit too much beetroot, but otherwise just vegetables. I’m not a sweet tooth, so I didn’t find that part difficult.
So I started, and what become apparent to me by the second afternoon, was that my brain stopped functioning properly. The morning was fine, I even managed a short run, but by 2pm I was in a huge haze, and no amount of hydration and nutrients had any impact. Day 3 afternoon was even worse, and I contemplated aborting the mission completely. Parenting was a bit tricky, but I staggered through to an early bedtime, and woke up feeling amazingly perky. This time the good feeling stayed with me all day, and again on day 5. I was drinking about 1.5 to 2 litres of juice each day, and didn’t feel hungry at all, which I found really surprising. I assumed that without solid food, I would be famished, and I just wasn’t.
There is so much information out there, for and against different types of juicing regimes. For example with green juicing, there are pros and cons with how much you should actually do it, which greens are good to juice, and which you shouldn’t have too much of raw (juiced) etc. It is difficult to know what’s good for your body, and what’s not. From a personal perspective, I’m a believer in balance, and juice fasting fits this perfectly. It felt like a spring clean for me. Not something I’d do all the time, but a great thing to do every so often if I’m feeling a bit sluggish, or as though I need to clean up my eating. I’m slowly spring cleaning the house at the moment, and at the same time, my insides got a bit of a spring clean too. Does it have a detoxifying effect on your body? I think it does. I felt great mentally after the third day, my skin feels very soft, and my body feels really good. I enjoyed trying something new, and I think my body responded well after the initial detox phase. We threw in a couple of infra-red saunas along the way to augment the detoxifying effects of the fast, and came out feeling fantastic. My only question is, what’s next?
Linked with Essentially Jess for IBOT