Kassie and I recently watched a documentary called “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead” via Netflix streaming.
Although the show becomes a bit of a sales pitch for Breville juicers at the end, we really enjoyed it. Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead is the story of Joe, an overweight Australian businessman/inverstor with an annoying skin disease who decides to ditch fried pies and beer for raw fruit and vegetable juices for 90 days. He decides to turn his 90 juice fast into a roadtrip across America so that he can face his food addiction in the land of unhealthy food. Along the way, he interviews people about their relationship with food. Fascinating stuff. Joe also meets an obese truck driver with the same rare skin condition that he is fighting. The last portion of the documentary is about this man’s own juice fast and amazing improved health.
So, we decided to give juicing a go ourselves. I’m doing 30 days while Kassie is just mixing juice into her regular eating habits. On Sunday, August 21, I weighed 185. That’s a BMI of 28.1, technically overweight and 15 pounds from obesity. Monday (Aug 22) was my first day. After a week and a half, I now weigh 168 (BMI 25.5). For my height, 168 is still overweight, but I’m just four pounds away from the highest end of “normal weight.” You can look this stuff up online if you’d like to calculate your own BMI. I’d like to get close to 150, which is right in the middle of the normal weight range for me, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
I love food and have never (aside from short-term, spiritual fasts) had any kind of restrictive diet. I try to eat responsibly (ie, grilled chicken instead of fried (sometimes), margarine instead of butter, drink tons of water, very rarely drink pop/soda), but I also eat all the time. On an average day, I will eat between 3,000 and 4,000 calories. So, doing this juice thing didn’t sound fun. Now that I’m about 1/3 of the way finished, I wanted to share a bit about my experience.
— For the first few days, I was really hungry. It was very difficult to sleep with a growing stomach. If you juice, prepare yourself for that.
— Each day I drink a big glass of raw juice (prefer fruits, but working some vegetables in there) at each meal time and once in the middle of the afternoon. I also eat an organic, whole-grain protein/fiber bar at lunch. For some breakfasts, I eat a banana with my juice. I’ve had a lettuce salad for lunch with cranberries, green peppers, and sunflower seeds on top. I used vinegar and water in place of dressing. For other lunches and suppers, I’ve eaten sliced cucumber, soaked in vinegar and water. Sprinkling crushed sea salt on green pepper slices is a nice snack, too. I drink lots of water.
— One of the great benefits, aside from looser-fitting pants, is more energy in the afternoon. I would always get drowsy around 3 PM, but now I don’t have that problem.
— Last weekend, I took a break. We had friends visiting, so my meals were: Friday supper- grilled catfish, green beans, rice and beans; Sat breakfast- french toast (w/ margarine & fat-free syrup); Sat lunch- chicken quesadilla, chips & salsa, rice and beans; juice for summer on Saturday; Sun breakfast- juice & protein bar; Sun lunch- fried catfish leftovers & juice; Sun supper- juice again.
— On Monday we sold our SUV for more $ than we expected, so we celebrated and I ate 4 chicken strips from Culvers. On Tuesday night, I took my daughter on a date and had a 12 piece, fries, and a lemonade at Chick-fil-a and chocolate frozen yogurt a few hours later. Other than that, I’ve stuck with juicing. This weekend, we’re heading out of town so I will be off the wagon again- but still careful.
So, I’m a big fan. You don’t have to go crazy with jucing to ge the benefits. There are tons of vitamins that I just wasn’t getting in my normal diet. If you feel lethargic, like I did, or want to drop a few pounds, like I needed to, I’d recommend giving juicing a shot. I think it will be a semi-regular part of my life from now on.