I have today returned to fasting: this time in the form of a green juice fast. Such a fast seems to combine answers to many of the problems I was worried about in the previous two parts of this 2013 raw food trial.
With green juice fasting it is easy to get enough protein, at least if you use additional superfood and wholefood supplements like I do. It is also safer for carbohydrate-sensitive people, which I suspect I am. I include very little fruit in my juices, and mainly green vegetables, as well as often lemons.
In addition, I have been hoping for quick weight loss and it seems like juice fasting will be the way, since I won't get nearly enough calories every day to keep my weight up. In that sense this is the first real fast that I am doing, since I am restricting the calories, where as during my previous juice fasts I wasn't restricting them.
I am also quitting caffeine again and this should hopefully be an easy way to do it. I have a job interview on Tuesday so am not sure how I will get through that without eating but let's see. I may take a couple of pieces of fruit with me, together with a protein source, just to keep my energies up. The idea of carrying green juice with me doesn't appeal because there seems to be the danger that it will spill everywhere.
Sunday, 9th June 2013
Starting Weight: 60kg
Woke up at about 10am and started the fast after breakfast. Almost everything I ate today was organic.
Breakfast (11am, approx.):
Smoothie: 2 apples (for sweetness), baby leaf spinach (for chlorophyll), frozen raspberries (for taste), chia seeds (for protein), bee pollen (for protein), flax seeds (for omega 3s), spirulina (for protein), ginseng powder (for adrenal glands), liquorice root powder (for adrenal glands), burdock root powder (for iron), fo-ti powder (he shou wu; for longevity), 1/2 teasp MSM (to help clear hangover), water.
I had had 3.5 beers last night as I met some friends in the pub. I felt dehydrated and hangover this morning.
I went to my usual 20-minute run in the park and did the usual back, core-muscle and arm exercises at home, together with some stretching. I also drank lots of water (tap water). I felt much better after the run and water - a good hangover cure. (Although I have been warned before that running when hangover may strain your heart so decide for yourself.) Then I had the smoothie (above) and a bath.
At this point it occurred to me that a green juice fast would be a good idea.
So later in the afternoon I had:
3pm: Green Juice (400ml):
Two types of organic, strong-looking lettuces, ginger, lemon, hemp leaf, cucumber, chicory greens.
Before the juice I felt very hungry, as I had been cycling around the local veg merchants, going to the organic shop, a corner shop and the Sunday market, looking for veggies. I tried to find curly kale but couldn't find it anywhere, and was told it is not the season for kale.
Quite soon after drinking the green juice, however, I felt full again and not hungry anymore. The hunger doesn't go away immediately after drinking but takes perhaps 15-30 mins.
In addition: I had a few goji berries as a snack (they tasted a lot better than usual!) and I am also still giving up caffeine. So yesterday I had two ceylon-liquorice teas (black tea, loose-leaf), and now I just had a cups of the same but a much weaker brew, with only a few sprigs of dried tea leaf in the cup, perhaps 1/8 teasp (but they expand in the cup).
Soon afterwards I had a longish nap.
7pm: Green Juice (350ml):
Gem lettuce (organic), celery, mint (lots - too much), lemon, orange, lime, and added: 1 tbsp flax seed oil and 1 tbsp hemp oil.
8pm: another weak ceylon-liquorice tea and a few goji berries.
Today in addition I have taken one adrenal glandular and one thyroid glandular supplement (non-organic, unfortunately).
10pm: Green juice: cucumber, celery, round courgette (zucchini), lemon, orange, apple, ginger. Additional ingredients blended in: flax seeds (for omega 3s), mixed spouts (for protein; adzuki, chick pea, red and green lentil sprouts), bee pollen (for protein).
I didn't feel hungry today after drinking the juices but would say that it has been a little difficult to concentrate. Generally felt very well though. Detoxing the dairy I ate yesterday, mucus moving. But a very easy day. It seems to be true what Dr. Joel Fuhrman says that micronutrients make up for the need for calories!
I started feeling very hungry just before bed, but just went to sleep on an empty belly anyway.
This is the juicer I have. It is a slow juicer, expensive, but I love it! For the first few years I was using the cheapest centrifugal juicer I could find but then decided to invest in this one because it is much more effective in extracting juice, very quiet, and it doesn't mix oxygen into the juice so the juice ends up nicer and more nutritious. It slowly presses the juice and pushes it through a metal mesh. By using a different part you can make nut butter as well. You can see it in action on You Tube by watching one of the reviews.
Total calories eaten: 824 kcal (out of recommended 2091 kcal)
Fat: 273 kcal - 33% - good
Protein: 105 kcal - 13% - good
Carbohydrate: 446 kcal - 54% - good
...although a bit less fat and a bit more protein would not be a bad thing... Also, all my carbohydrate sources were very good, 'complex', and healthy ones.
According to the nutritional analysis, I get enough omega 3s, too few calories of each of the macronutrient group, and too little salt (sodium), B12 vitamin, selenium, iron, D-vitamin, niacin (B3), and zinc. (Please note however that the Chinese herbs are not inluded in this calculation, and bee pollen and chia seeds are only included in the calorie calculation. Goji berries, mint, supplements and MSM are also not included because the system I am using to calculate these didn't recognise them.)
I am not worried about too little calories as that is the whole point of the green juice fast. Also, I got iron from the burdock root powder which was not included in the calculation and the following day I took my selenium, zinc and B-vitamin complex supplements.
Too little salt could be a problem, especially with adrenal fatigue, and too little D-vitamin could be a problem as well. I am also a little annoyed that some of the supposedly good protein sources, like chia seeds, have more fat than protein in them. Bee pollen has more carbohydrate than protein. I guess they are good additions to the diet but not good enough as primary protein sources. Spirulina seems to be the best protein source.
(I used www.myfittnespal.com to calculate the protein, fat and carb percentages of superfoods. For example, 1 tbsp of chia seeds weighs 7g and has 1.2g protein, 2.2g fat and 3g carbohydrate.)
Monday, 10th June 2013
Woke up at 10.30am, weight: 59kg.
Last night I couldn't sleep for a while, my feet felt very restless. I had to finally go and shower my feet under cold water and that helped and I fell asleep.
[I later noticed that I tend to get restless feet as a symptom of dehydration, as well as obviously if my feet are too hot.]
I went for a run without eating any breakfast, the usual 20mins around the park, and afterwards did the exercises and stretches as yesterday. I was expecting running to feel easy but it didn't. In fact it felt unusually hard. Seemed like it was easy to get oxygen in my lungs, no problem with that, but the muscles of my legs didn't feel very strong at all. I hope this is a temporary adjustment period of the body to the green juice fast and not a return to protein deficiency.
Juice fast makes your metabolism slower but I already have a very slow metabolism - too slow - because of sluggish thyroid and adrenals. Nevertheless I think the green juice fast will be good because it will help lose weight, clean and repair my body, and detoxify.
[More about the slow metabolism, adrenal fatigue, and sluggish thyroid diagnosis here.]
Breakfast (after exercise):
A snack of a few goji berries.
Green Juice, made of green cabbage, celery, ginger, an apple and a little lemon.
1.25pm: I'm feeling quite hungry now.
1.40pm: The hunger disappeared now. The same thing happened last night... At least in my case these periods of hunger seem to be very brief - but it is probably because I have been fasting and eating restricted diets quite a lot in recent years. The body gets used to fasting...
Had 7 halves of walnuts, 6 hazelnuts and 4 almonds (for fat, minerals and protein), as well as approx. 2 tbsp goji berries. 1 digestive enzyme.
Mixed baby green leaves, romaine lettuce, celery, broccoli sprouts, mixed sprouts (adzuki, chickpea, lentil), lemon, ginger, red cabbage (very little). Mixed into the juice: 1 teasp siberian ginseng powder, 1/2 teasp liquorice root, 1/2 teasp fo-ti, 1/2 teasp burdock root. The herbs made the juice taste very nice!
I didn't feel hungry at all before drinking the juice, in fact was feeling very calm and peaceful in my mind. But after drinking the juice I started feeling hungry! Burbing helped a little but still feel slightly nauseous. I think the sprouts may make the juice too powerful for my belly to handle. Too much sulfur. I have had the same problem before with adding too much MSM to my smoothie (which is sulfur too) so that's probably what it is.
3.30pm: one very weak ceylon and liquorice tea (has caffeine)
Supplements: zinc, selenium, boron.
4.20pm: Not hungry but have a very slight headache and feeling a tiny bit weak and lazy.
5pm: 2 tbsp of spirulina mixed in the juice of four apples, B-vitamin complex capsule.
Headache getting slightly worse (still very mild headache) but my belly is feeling a bit unhappy now, I think it is because of so many strong superfoods, supplements and sulphur. Drank two glasses of water and that may have helped a bit. Feel slightly tired now, too, and tense, I notice myself biting my teeth together for some reason.
[The tendency the tense the jaw is a caffeine problem.]
On the positive side: I have not had the feeling of weakness in my muscles that I usually get, especially in the mornings, but often also during the day. The weak legs during running this morning was a very different kind of feeling. The usual everyday weakness I feel is more like a low-grade fever, where your arms and legs ache. But since I haven't had that, I think that it may have been caused by carbohydrate sensitivity and I may be overcoming that problem now! [Hypoglycaemia, i.e. low blood sugar symptoms, later note.]
5.30pm: Drinking the second weak ceylon and liquorice tea with a thyroid glandular. Headache is still there - feels a lot like a caffeine withdrawal headache.
7pm: Green juice (400ml): spinach, strawberry and cucumber.
8pm: I had a third weak tea some while back and the headache is still getting worse.
I am also a bit constipated.
I had two small pieces of raw, sugar-free and dairy-free chocolate, and the headache seems to have got a lot better. (Chocolate ingredients: cocoa nibs, cocoa butter, xylitol, figs, mint essence.)
I started feeling increasingly worse afterwards, with cold symptoms, and typical detox feeling that I get when I juice fast. But in addition I realised that I was getting my period (menses). So I took a salt-water enema, went for a walk in the shop, took a bath and headed to bed.
I felt better in terms of cold symptoms after the enema and the period pain went away quite quickly when lying in bed. The grounding sheets seem to have a huge impact on reducing the pain. The effect was not immediate but quite quick. I had my feet on a grounding sheet and a grounding mousemat on my belly. The pain started subsiding quite soon, and maybe disappeared within 15-20 mins. I then tried even to put the grounding mousemat on my head to get rid of the headache and that seemed to work too! Note that my feet on the grounding sheet only - without grounding the actual pain area - helps but is not nearly as effective pain relief. I also breathed in some "vitex" essential oil, which also helps for period pain, but seems to be a quicker-acting and a more temporary effect.
Tuesday, 11th June 2013
I didn't have any pain when I woke up, but felt the effects of the period nevertheless, slight nausea, and extremely tired. I had slept all night on the grounding sheet and the grounding mouse mat on my belly.
10am: I had to wake up in the morning to reschedule the job interview I was meant to go to today, and I sat at the computer maybe 10 minutes (not grounded). That was enough to bring the pain back.
I went straight back to bed with the same two grounding methods, and kept sniffing the vitex essential oil as well. These methods seemed to help, but nevertheless the pain slowly got worse and worse. I would get waves of worsening pain and some relief in between.
My boyfriend was there to make green juices for me, and if he hadn't, I wouldn't have been able to continue the green juice fast and it would have been very difficult to recover from the pain. This is because the two first green juices with lemon he made helped with the pain and also felt like it was starting to bring some strength back into my body - as I was feeling very weak at the time. Then I asked him to make me freshly squeezed lemon juice in water - and this helped again.
But still, the pain was there and after a while got worse again. I felt like I didn't know what to do. I didn't want to take a pain killer, as I would have probably reacted badly to it because of the juice fast. And I didn't want to stop the green juice fast. I had a second grounding mousemat from Groundology - a much wider one - so I put that behind my back and wrapped it around the sides of my belly. All the while keeping my feet on the grounding sheet and the smaller mousemat on top of my belly. I put vitex oil on my belly and the soles of my feet and kept sniffing it so much that I started feeling quite dizzy, even though I was lying down. This organic essential oil from Living Libations is very strong, and it feels sometimes like I am overdosing on it - but it helps with the pain so I keep doing it.
(At this point there was about a three-hour long episode of using trauma-release exercises, mindfulness, grounding, and other means to overcome the menstrual pain. The whole episode is explained at the trauma release exercises diary in more detail.)
Then my boyfriend made me another green juice and I also had three small pieces of raw chocolate and water.
Although the pain became a lot less, I now had a headache, so I drank a ceylon-liquorice tea, a little stronger than yesterday's ones (maybe 1/2 teasp tea leaves, still quite weak). I was trying to fall asleep to rest but the remaining pain kept me from sleeping for a while, maybe half an hour.
This whole morning episode went on for many hours, and I finally managed to fall asleep.
5pm: I finally got out of bed, pain free, and took a very hot bath.
6pm: Just had a juice of 4 apples, 1 grapefruit, and one bunch of fresh coriander (cilantro). I felt like I needed some calories (still very little calories). I think the fruit juice is probably fine - not too sugary - since it is combined with the protein from coriander which should help slow down the release of sugar... I also took one adrenal glandular (the only one of the day).
Still feel quite hungry afterwards. Sitting at the computer now, hoping the pain won't come back as I am not grounded anymore. From the slightest sign of the pain returning, I'll go back to bed.
7.15pm: Still feeling fine sitting up, though weak still, and my belly feels a bit heavy, not hungry anymore. Very slight headache. Also, the raw chocolate seemed to make my throat phlegmy. Generally I am still detoxing dairy from three days ago, I can notice it when I scrape my tongue with a spoon when washing my teeth. Feeling tired.
I am quite happy that I managed to stay on the green juice fast during my menses - especially because I always get huge cravings for things during the first two (or so) days of the menses. I am still feeling quite out of balance now, nutrition-wise, and tempted to eat some heavy food to feel stronger. But I think I will wake up feeling better tomorrow so this time I will wait and see instead of acting on the cravings as I usually do (I usually eat something heavier and feel stronger as a result).
8.20pm: Still feeling fine, not so tired or worn out anymore but a little hungry.
Weight today: 58kg.
Exercise: I was too weak to go running today.
8.30pm: 8 hazel nuts; 1 pink grapefruit (whole, peeled) mixed with 2 tbsp spirulina and a little water.
The pain is slightly coming back now so I am going back to bed.
1.15am: Been reading in bed for hours, but still not sleepy as I was in bed much of the day. Just had a handful of broccoli sprouts and some water.
Woke up at 10.30am.
I drank a glass of water and went for a run. Running felt fine for a while and I ran a bit faster than usual, but then I started feeling very tired and couldn't make it my usual 2 laps, just 1.5 laps around the park, maybe 15 minutes of running. I felt again like I couldn't breathe my lungs full. I get this problem sometimes, not sure why.
11.50am: Mixed one whole orange (peeled) with 2 tbsp spirulina in a blender and drank it to get quick energy.
12.30pm: Did my muscle tone exercises and stretches which felt unusually difficult as well. I put this down to the menses instead of the green juice fast, however, because the second day of the menses is still usually very low energy anyway. I also had a handful of broccoli sprouts and now will take a bath. I feel like the belly ache is coming back a little bit when sitting by the computer.
2.30pm: Feeling very weak now. I'm hungry but not in the usual way - my belly doesn't have any feeling of hunger to it - I just feel weak and know that I need to eat. And get cravings. Went to the shop to get green juice ingredients and could barely carry the shopping bags up the stairs. My boyfriend said I look pale as well. Then I drank a weak ceylon-liquorice tea.
3.40pm: Green Juice (700ml): One bunch of spring greens, two lemons, one cucumber, two stalks of celery, 1 tbsp flax seed oil. Mixed in: 1 teasp burdock root powder (for iron), 1 teasp ginseng (for energy and adrenal glands), 1/2 teasp fo-ti, 1/2 teasp liquorice powder. I hope this will bring my strength back, if not, I will make another one.
4pm: Green Juice (300ml): Kale, 2 apples, 1/2 orange, celery.
6.20pm: It seems that the two juices together did the trick, and the few calories in the second juice (because of fruit) were very much needed. Feeling a lot stronger. Legs still feel weak but it may be because of the running earlier. Feeling sleepy though.
7.10pm: Another weak ceylon tea...
I hope I will feel better tomorrow, as it would be nice to feel additional energy and lightness on this juice fast as many people report they do. But the main objective was to lose weight and am doing well on that front, so far lost 2kg (4.4 pounds, 0.3 stones).
According to other reports you will feel worst on a juice fast for the first 2-3 days, then ups and downs until the end of the first two weeks, and on the third week you start feeling real benefits and having lots of energy.
Others yet say that only very overweight people feel energetic on a juice fast.
My plan, in any case, is to continue the fast until Saturday, which is the seventh day. I will break the fast on Saturday evening with a smoothie. Then on Sunday I am planning to eat only smoothies and perhaps juices as well, while making sure everything has protein and/ or fibre in it and not too much sugar.
From Monday I will eat more mixed food, not sure what yet, but I will fly to Finland (back home) next week so I won't be too strict about eating while there. I will try to stick to an exercise routine and get some writing done for the website while there as well.
7.20pm: I keep getting this headache combined with a red face on this juice fast. Now it's started again, not sure why. Also, I have been getting slight stings (pains) at the lower back, on the right hand side. Perhaps it is the kidney? Hopefully it means it is cleansing.
...and apparently it is the kidney, it seems to be a common symptom while fasting. But I think it also means that the kidney is overloaded with trying to clear out all the toxins, so I think Samudith in the below comments is right: I should be drinking a lot more water to help my body with the detox. And in fact I drank a couple of glasses and the kidney pain went away quite quickly.
8.15pm: Feeling a bit stressed out, a bit irritable, can't fill my lungs all the way (this comes and goes), red face, slight headache, tired, difficult to concentrate. I wonder if it has to do with the caffeine from the tea. I will make another juice, hopefully it helps. I guess this is all just detox though, and toxins moving about in my system. It seems that this green juice fast and limited calories is a lot more powerful detox than the juice feasts - makes you feel a lot more lethargic and more detox symptoms.
[The caffeine would have harmed my blood sugar balance and the red face, according to a later Chinese Doctor visit, is a typical symptom of liver weakness. Later note.]
8.30pm: Looks like flushed face could be a dehydration symptom as well - more water!
8.50pm: Green juice: Kale, 4 small apples, a handful of purple (seedless) grapes, cayenne pepper, a little bit of pink himalayan salt. The juice was quite sweet (and non organic) but I am hoping that it won't cause problems.
I also ate 7 hazelnuts and 3 brazil nuts. Wow, brazil nuts never before tasted so good!
Drinking a big pot of chaga mushroom tea, which is a super-antioxidant, because of this:
"Antioxidants convert toxic free radicals into harmless elements. Therefore, having high levels of bio-compatible antioxidants in your system causes fewer detoxification "side-effects" than those produced when the body has to eliminate, rather than neutralize, toxins, as in water fasting and other forms of bodily cleansing and detoxification that don't incorporate bio-compatible antioxidants."
- Jameth Sheridan: "Free Radicals, Strategies for Minimizing Their Harmful Effects and Greatly Improving Your Health" on Wishgranted.com
I take this to mean that: While I am eliminating toxins via fasting, getting more antioxidants into my body will help neutralize toxins before they are eliminated.
Drank lot of chaga mushroom tea. Went to bed at about 1.30am and still wasn't feeling tired and it took me a while to fall asleep.
[Valerian herb in tea, tincture or capsule -form would have been a useful natural sleep aid here.]
Weight: 57kg (9 stones).
Had a really good night's sleep, woke up feeling strong and well-rested! Looks like my juice fast luck is starting to turn. I felt stronger and better-rested this morning than I have felt for ages!
I still only got out of bed at midday, though. Skipped running today, just took a long lazy bath before juicing.
2pm: Green Juice for Breakfast: Kale, celery, four apples, cucumber, handful of purple seedless grapes.
3pm: Ate half a cup of mixed sprouts (adzuki, lentil, chick pea) with a teasp of hemp oil and a little pink himalayan salt. Also drank some water and took a thyroid glandular. Going out to town now, shopping.
6pm: Came back home, didn't eat anything while out but felt completely fine - strong, fresh and awake - no tiredness.
6.30pm: Green juice (500ml): 1/2 bunch fresh coriander (cilantro), celery, broccoli, one green pepper, lemon.
7.45pm: Six brazil nuts, lots chaga mushroom tea (600ml).
I haven't had any caffeine today and really don't feel like I need it! I remembered and noticed again that caffeine actually makes me feel stressed out and irritable. So happy to be rid of that for now. Before, when quitting caffeine, I have actually noticed that chaga mushroom tea is very helpful, it helps with the withdrawal symptoms to some degree.
[An article on the connection between antioxidants, negative ions, alkalinity here.]
9pm: Bought a new fruit I've never tried before from the local Turkish shop, whose name is 'musmula' or 'yeni dunya' in Turkish, apparently. The only English translations I can find are 'medlar' and the 'maltese plum'. I had one of the fruits, it has a very nice sweet taste, and quite a thick but edible skin.
Green juice: 1/2 romaine lettuce, 2 apples, 1 grapefruit, celery.
Still feeling good, drinking more chaga mushroom tea.
Green juice: lettuce, cucumber, hemp leaf powder.
1am: I think a green juice fast is a lot better than normal juice fast. At least when combined with plenty of chaga mushroom tea.
I think my body is doing a lot better with minimal sugar and carbs as well, including minimal fruit sugar. Or perhaps if I ate actual meals I could have natural sugars as long as they are not processed and combined with fibre and/or protein for slow release. This will be something to figure out when I come off this green juice fast.
Going to bed: 1.30am
Woke up at 6.30am, lay in bed and tried to go back to sleep but wasn't sleepy at all so got out of bed at 7.30am. I feel good this morning generally.
Breakfast: One musmula fruit, cold chaga mushroom tea from the fridge (400ml).
Have a bit of a cough this morning, at least after drinking the cold chaga mushroom tea. Hard to believe that it's heartburn, perhaps something else? But it feels like the exact same kind of cough as I usually get and it felt like it was triggered by the (very) cold drink.
[Chinese Doctor later advised me to completely stay away from cold foods and drink because of my body's 'cold and damp' constitution, which easily causes mucous problems.]
9am: Just came back from running in the park. I ran three times around it! Normally I only run two times around.
I still couldn't breathe my lungs completely full all the time, but it didn't feel nearly as bad as sometimes. And at points I could fill my lungs up all the way properly. So I can conclude that I feel very strong on this green juice fast compared to usual. The only way I noticed I was getting weak was that I was getting a little light-headed, already from the start, which doesn't usually happen. I could have possibly ran a fourth lap if I didn't feel like that would have been pushing my body too hard. So the signs to stop running were different from what they usually are.
It is possible that this improvement is due to eating less carbohydrates and more protein, and/or the super-antioxidants from chaga mushroom tea. I think both of these things probably contribute. But mainly my guess is on the green juice fast. Either way, we will see what happens when I return to eating.
11am: One pink grapefruit mixed in a blender with 2 tbsp spirulina. One thyroid glandular.
12 noon: Green juice (300ml): 1/2 bunch of coriander, one apple, cucumber, lots of fresh ginger, 1/2 lemon, romaine lettuce.
12.50am: One adrenal glandular, water, six brazil nuts.
3.30pm: Chaga mushroom tea. Just came back to the house. One handful of mixed sprouts (adzuki, lentil, chickpea sprouts) with 2 teasp hemp oil and a little himalayan salt.
4pm: Was feeling very tired and detox symptoms coming back on, had a 50min sleep. I also didn't sleep enough last night. Afterwards still feel very worn out, probably because of the lack of juices today.
5.50pm: Green juice: One bunch of spring greens, half a bunch of purple grapes. One thyroid glandular.
I'm having some kidney pain again as well, on the right hand side, so I will drink more water.
8.10pm: Just had another long nap. Still very tired, legs are hurting from the morning run as well. Ate one piece of raw chocolate.
9.30pm: By now I'm feeling well again, detox symptoms and tiredness is gone. Seems like it is true that during a juice fast there are waves of feeling well and unwell. I hope I've purged a lot of toxins now!
I think partly the reason I started feeling unwell this morning may have been because I didn't eat for a long time - had very few calories this morning and then a long pause. Eating some calories (i.e. including some fruit in the juice) seems to make me feel better if I'm feeling weak or if I have detox symptoms like headache etc. (like early this afternoon). But I guess the calories will slow down the detox as well. I don't mind it though, because I think it is better not to stress my body or feel too bad. And I'm not interested in doing a water fast or anything like that so this speed of detox should be ideal for me.
10pm: Green juice: Kale, cucumber, red pepper, apples, oranges, ginger. Thyroid glandular.
Caffeine free today again! I've kicked the habit (again)!
1am: two hazelnuts, water. Going to bed.
Evening weight: 56kg
Woke up at 11am.
I had a bad nightmare yesterday that freaked me out for a little while. However now it doesn't seem that bad... I wonder if it's somehow related to the green juice fast - subconscious mind cleansing.
My weight is 56kg which means that I have lost half a stone in a week! (Exactly 0.6 stones, 4kg, or 9lbs.) I am still 1kg away from my ideal weight which is 55kg.
I feel good and strong today, not hungry. But I still sleep way too much. So I'm not sure if the green juice fast is giving me the energy I need. I definitely feel a lot better in many ways and the primary object this time was weight loss and quitting caffeine, which I have achieved.
However, as towards my ideal, long-term diet, I am still perplexed. Of course one cannot expect to feel great all the time on a juice fast - clearly there are periods of 'cleansing crisis' - but I would expect to feel more energy at the good points between, like this morning. Perhaps a longer green juice fast would achieve this. I don't know.
I feel as if I perhaps still haven't had enough protein on this diet.
On the other hand, I feel that I can conclude that I feel better on this green juice fast than on my last pasteurized fruit juice fast - which probably means that I should avoid excess sugar and carbs. What kinds of carbs and to what degree to avoid, I will have to try and see how I feel. Perhaps I should limit all carbs and concentrate on more protein for energy. Or perhaps I should only eat carbs in moderation and always with protein or fibre. Or perhaps I should include some carbs in large quantities, i.e. whole fruit, and eliminate others completely, i.e. sugar, wheat and processed carbs. I don't know yet but will have to experiment.
The suddently and massively improved running performance yesterday was quite a surprise, however!
In any case, it is normal to need more sleep during a juice fast because the body is cleansing.
They say it generally takes one month on raw food for each year of your life for you to return to health. I don't think I come anywhere near 34 months on raw foods yet so on one hand I feel that I really should be more patient and just stick to the raw eating plan.
On the other hand I feel that I may be missing something, and feel that I should by now be feeling better energy levels - since I have done so many different trials already.
In any case, I will eat a bit more freely (though still healthy) during my three week holiday back home and see what kind of diet I will start when I get back.
I can expect some of the weight to come back when I come off the juice fast - so I may have to do another green juice fast after my holiday.
I will continue on the green juice fast through the day today and break the fast with a smoothie in the evening.
12 noon: Green juice: Spring greens, apples. Thyroid glandular supplement, B-vitamin complex, zinc, water.
Also, I was reading online yesterday and think that it is possible that my menstrual pain may be related to low estrogen levels instead of high estrogen as I have previously thought. I thought this based on Dr. Lawrence Wilson's article titled "Menstrual Dysfunctions (premenstrual syndromes, post-menstrual syndromes, cramps)" (www.drwilson.com/articles/pms.htm).
For healthy estrogen balance, this is what one should do, based on Maggie Ney's article: "Healthy Estrogen Diet" ( Drmaggieney.com ):
3pm: Green juice (500ml): 1/2 Lollo rosso lettuce, 1/2 cucumber, two apples. Four brazil nuts.
Went shopping at Wholefoods.
7pm: Broke the fast with a smoothie (400ml): Apple, organic lettuce, vanilla bean, bee pollen, spirulina, burdock root, liquorice root, fo-ti (he shou wu), siberian ginseng, chia seeds, water. Also had three more brazil nuts.
The smoothie tasted extremely sweet, because of the bee pollen, and that worried me a little bit. I think bee pollen should be considered a sweetener - it is almost like honey but has less of a distinctive taste. I will be using that more sparingly from now on.
Next I had four small slices of Finn-Crisp rye crackers with a small scraping of organic, unpasteurized (raw) sheep's cheese and cold-smoked salmon. And a digestive enzyme and adrenal glandular supplement.
My belly feels a little heavy now after eating the food, although it wasn't that much. I guess it's a lot to break a fast with, however.
It is very hard to keep yourself from eating a lot when breaking a fast because the hunger just hits you when you eat something! I could eat much more but I won't because I don't want to shock my stomach too much.
Got a slight cough after eating, it was either the raw cheese or the rye cracker (gluten). Now feeling quite nice tingly feelings in my upper stomach and chest area.
Drinking chaga mushroom tea.
From here onwards, I will have to monitor carefully how I react to different foods. It is quite possible that the fast will uncover 'new' food intolerances. Sometimes when one abstains from foodstuffs for more than four days, and then reintroduces them, one can get acute allergy symptoms to that specific food. The reason for this is that there has been a chronic allergy reaction underlying, and causing symptoms, to a food that is regularly eaten. Often these are foods that we are also addicted to - like white flour, sugar, etc. I write more about this in the 'Brain Allergies' book review.
By the way, now I started feeling slight ache next to my shoulders which feels similar to the ache I often wake up with. I think this may have been caused by the very small amount of gluten I just ate. Also, I got a slight taste of blood at the back of my throat which I have previously linked to gluten/ wheat flour as well. I would like to keep one kind of bread as a 'crutch' for myself but I don't think this rye cracker can be it after all. And probably it can't be anything containing gluten. Maybe sprouted bread would do, as the wheat is predigested? On the other hand, David Wolfe recommends not eating wheat at all because it is such a domesticated grain. And many gluten free breads have other problems with them, e.g. added sugar and vegetable oil. Maybe there is a spelt cracker that I can keep for now?
Anyway, it seems that my diet from now on should be as close to gluten-free as possible. And since it seems that I am probably carbohydrate intolerant, I will do my best to include a protein source at every meal. I will try to keep all my carbohydrate intake to a minimum, although I will allow individual pieces of fruit here and there. If I must drink alcohol during my holiday, I will try to have spirits with a non-sugary mixer, like gin-and-tonic. But probably I will stay away from alcohol most of the time. I will definitely stay away from beer because it includes lots of carbs and also quickly fattens you. I will include cooked vegetables for now, until I return from holidays and figure my next meal plan out. But the key now is to have all meals include protein, reduce carb intake, and not have any sugar or heated or denatured vegetable oils. I may have some heated olive oil but try to keep this to a minimum as well. Definitely no sunflower oil, corn oil, deep-fried food, etc.
Anyway, I'm happy about this green juice fast, it has been a success. I can notice a reaction from people on the street, I get more looks than usual as soon as I've lost some weight!
8.30pm: I really notice the bad effect which I suspect was caused by the bread and not the cheese. Because I can still feel the bread kind of 'stuck' in my throat. And I got slight chest pain and slight fevery feeling - my typical food intolerance symptoms.
9pm: Had a two egg omelette (organic eggs) cooked with coconut oil, mushrooms and spinach. Some garlic powder, oregano, black pepper, caynne pepper and himalayan salt was added also. I also mixed in a handful of sprouts after cooking.
9.30pm: Pulse 64bpm so I probably wasn't allergic to anything in the omelette..
However, I did feel slightly phlegmy after eating it so eggs may actually cause mucous buildup in my case.
Funny thing was that although I normally like omelette, this one tasted really bland! Like after drinking greens for only one week my taste-buds had changed! I felt like I needed to add the sprouts and perhaps some tasty tomato or vegetable into it for it to have a nice taste!
However, I am feeling quite bad now, with a funny numb feeling in my mouth and at the back of my throat. Some throat ache also. Still feel as if I have bread stuck in my throat (when I clearly haven't). My face is also flushed and I got a slight cough. Oh no, the bread (or something else) was a very wrong thing to eat straight after the fast! But at least I'm learning something... I think all gluten will go on my allergy list for now and also I have to keep a close eye on eggs.
Drinking water and chaga mushroom tea.
10pm: Also sneezing now and runny nose!
I checked the next day and I didn't get a raised pulse when eating the same rye cracker, raw cheese and cold-smoked salmon. But I didn't feel well after. So I think I am gluten sensitive at some level (unless it's something else in the food) but it won't show as a raised pulse for some reason.
In terms of weight, I weighed myself the next morning and had immediately put 1kg back.
I will keep including as many greens in my diet as I can from now on, including during the holiday, as it seems to work well for me.
I went to Finland on four-week holiday and didn't observe a specific diet during that time. I clearly noticed, however, that if I didn't include enough protein in my diet, I would start feeling the same achy weakness in my legs and the rest of the body as I have felt many times felt before [hypoglycaemia, low blood sugar]. I am thus now trying to make sure that I get some protein on every meal and also tried to ensure that during most of my holiday.
I have not put on any weight since then, despite eating carbs, sweets and dairy. I think the inclusion of protein helps, I still weigh 59kg, which is what I weighed couple of days after the juice fast. The juice fast itself didn't result in a lot of permanent weight loss but perhaps if I did it again, with a carefully thought-through diet after, I would be able to hold the weight loss permanently. This is a classic problem with a juice fast, however, as many people say that the weight tends to come back quickly.
I am now starting to monitor my pH levels daily, while having a fairly free diet for a while. The intention is to keep tweaking my eating so that the pH stays at the ideal level, not too acidic. I will try to stay away from cheese as much as possible, however, because it clearly gives me a lot of phlegm. I will also endeavour to drink chaga mushroom tea every day (as I've just read David Wolfe's book about it - it is a super-antioxidant), as well as take Chinese and other herbs (reishi, liquorice, fo-ti (he shou wu), burdock root, siberian ginseng). I have these in powder form. I will also keep drinking schizandra berry tea because it seems to have a nice balancing effect on me.
I will try to observe as many diet recommendations as I can from David Wolfe's 'Chaga - the King of Medicinal Mushrooms' -book. However, I will eat small amounts of organic beef, which he does not recommend.
These are some of the recommendations from Wolfe that I will try to follow to the most part:
- No bread, some raw crackers
- Dairy: only butter, organic when possible
- Lots of green leafy vegetables
- Green vegetable juices with celery
- Soaked nuts eaten in moderation
- Soaked seeds
- Sprouts, no legume sprouts
- Fermented foods
- Plenty of vegetables: cooked and raw
In addition, I want to stay away from heated vegetable oils as much as I can, because I just read in a book that they are full of particularly evil types of free radicals, which basically fry your body from the inside out. I will also stay away from sugar and limit the amount of carbohydrates I will have. I won't limit fruit, however, because I believe those are good.
For protein I will have: Fish, some organic beef, eggs, beans, organic soya products, hemp protein powders, other superfood protein powders, spirulina.
Omega 3s and zinc: I will take supplements.
I will see how this goes - and tweak accordingly. I will slowly build-up to an ideal diet for me, whether 100% raw or high raw. But I realize now that this transition - if it be permanent - takes a lot of time because the body and the mind need to get used to it.
I am still caffeine free and have stayed so through the holidays. I am considering another green juice fast soon as well, but at the moment am going to a lot of interviews for a new job and need to get that sorted out first before I can fast again - because on the fast you can have good days and bad.
Sample of pH Levels AFTER the Green Juice Fast:
Thu 25th July: pH 6.75, morning (ideal would be pH 7.35-7.45)
Thu 25th July: pH 7.25, afternoon
Sat 27th July: pH 4.5, 9am (after drinking beers the night before)
Sat 27th July: pH 6.5, 12 noon.
My new realization has been that being alkaline improves my energy levels a lot so I have started drinking plenty of lemon water on a daily basis.
In addition, I notice now that I really am very intolerant to sugar and carbohydrates. So I will now cut out all processed carbs and sugar from my diet, including all gluten and wheat. I won't do a strict diet diary for now, but will concentrate on learning new healthy recipes, trying them out, and writing a recipes section for this website. I am also moving house and starting a new job this month.
Benefits of Wheatgrass Juice, as Taught by Ann Wigmore
This article is relevant to green juices too since it discusses mainly chlorophyll, which is the green pigment of the plants, and the health genefits of drinking it.
Queen Afua: Health Thyself - Book Review
Queen Afua also writes about the importance of greens.
Forward to a later green juice fast: The Hormone Diet Diary
Back to the First Part of this 2013 Raw Food Experiment:
38-Day High Raw Diet with Cheat Days
The diary above includes a 10-day juice fasting diary.
Back to the Second Part of this 2013 Raw Food Experiment:
One Week 100% Raw Food Diet
7-Days Water Fasting, Diary Summary
Will It Magically Heal You To Stop Eating for 7 Days?
My full health journey up until now:
My Natural Health Journey
Ulla is the Editor of Cheap Health Revolution, covering natural remedies and health solutions.