Look how puffy I was just 31 days ago! This is embarrassing for me because I’m not very big with posting selfies, but I feel I have to share, as other people may actually benefit from this!
Why Did I Do a Reboot?
For quite some time, I’ve been feeling overall weak, fatigued, water-bloated, and foggy-headed, and I couldn’t understand why. So back in September of last year (2015), I had a blood test done to check my levels and to see if I was gluten-sensitive. And just as I suspected, I not only was gluten-sensitive, but the doctors diagnosed me with celiac disease. This was on top of my high cholesterol which runs in my family. So for a time, I maintained my plant-based diet and cut out bread…. well… “almost” completely. Hey, I’m only human, right? Plus being gluten-free is what I call a “severely anti-social diet.”
When this last February came around, I decided to clean up my act and cut out gluten completely. However, by then, I had already ballooned up with even more water retention, and was feeling more fatigued, foggy-headed, and water-bloated than ever before. So I cleaned up my diet even more and started working out 6 days a week. But over the course of 4 months, I felt no changes, as a matter of fact, I gained even more unwanted weight. That’s when I knew that my entire digestive system was full of inflammation. So after re-watching Joe Cross’ movie “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead,” on Netflix, I decided to give his “Juice Reboot” a go.
The premise of the movie was that Joe Cross was severely overweight and on a large cocktail of prescription medication for various conditions that he’d been suffering for several years, including autoimmune disease. So he took to juice fasting for 60 days. In short, the idea behind juice fasting is that juicing extracts all the fiber from the veggies/fruits and allows your body to absorb the vitamins and nutrients much faster and more directly than smoothies or simply eating a plant based diet. Juicing then facilitates the natural healing of your body. So not to spoil the detailed results of the movie, as predicted, Joe’s Juice Reboot had completely changed his life (otherwise he wouldn’t have released his movie, duh!!!).
That’s when I decided to buy myself a juicer and to try the Juice Reboot myself for 30 days just to try it out. I could have done the 5, 10, or even 15 day fast, but decided “what the heck,” I’ll just go for the full 30 days. Because I’m a practitioner of holistic medicine and lead a life of meditative health practices, I’m very sensitive to what my body is telling me (though sometimes I don’t listen), so I was fully prepared to stop the reboot if I knew I was hurting my body.
I started July 10, 2016 and just finished yesterday August 9, 2016. And I’ve never felt better. I no longer feel heavy and bloated, my blood pressure normalized, my mind has cleared, my energetic Qigong meditations have been out of this world, I can “listen” to my patients’ bodies with more clarity, and my energy has gone up tremendously. I also lost 25 pounds. I haven’t felt this good since I was 20 years old (over 22 years ago)! I can’t wait to get another blood test to see how much my cholesterol level has gone down, and to see if it’s affected my celiac disease!
So now that I’m finished, I’m going back to drinking my green smoothies, eating a largely plant-based diet, and exercising regularly. This, on top of my daily meditation/Qigong practice to help me center my mind and body in order to maintain the clarity that I’ve gained. A clear and relaxed mind helps prevent making bad diet decisions!
What Kind of Juicer?
So my first step was to get a juicer. You can get any juicer. Joe Cross used a Breville brand centrifugal juicer, which works fine, and is relatively affordable. I used an SKG slow-masticating juicer. The difference between centrifugal juicers and slow masticating (or cold press) juicers, is that the slow juicers tend to maintain the integrity of the veggie/fruit nutrients better than the centrifugal juicers, where the blades spin so quickly that it heats up and burns out some of the vitamins and enzymes essential to the food. But really, I don’t think it matters too much since it worked for Joe really well. In any case here’s my juicer:
What did I juice?
Second step, it was time to get some produce. For my juices, I used kale, spinach, pineapples, apples, carrots, oranges, lemons, ginger, beets, cucumbers, grapefruits, and dandelion greens. But not all at once. The mix of fruits and vegetables that I used during most days were kale, cucumber, carrots, green apples, and ginger. It was a simple recipe, and it tasted pretty decently. And since I was pre-making juice for the whole day (about 70 ounces), I needed to use produce that yielded a lot of fluid, such as cucumbers and apples. So basically, I drank 70 ounces of juice throughout the day. Joe recommends you drink 16-20 ounces of juice 4 times a day.
Third step was the hardest part… the dedication, motivation, and discipline. The thought of not eating any food and only consuming juice and water for 30 days was crazy to me. It’s even crazier to actually go through with it! So be prepared for a mental jousting with yourself.
Motivation and Dedication
I got sick of feeling bad all the time, and as a practitioner of holistic health, I felt that I wasn’t a good example for my patients. So things had to change. That was enough motivation for me. But the real test of my motivation came in the morning, when I was faced with the daunting task of having to spend one hour per day to prepare my juice (from clean kitchen to clean kitchen). I had to prepare the juicer and the produce, make the juice, dump the juice in a large enough container (I used a Thermos), and then clean the juicer. There were times I wanted to give up based on the amount of work I had to do. But I kept going. It was only temporary.
For the first five days of the reboot, there were some times – awful times – when I’d feel headaches, severe fatigue, and just overall… blaaaah. Sometimes I didn’t even wanna get out of bed or talk to people. Sometimes you regret making your son some nachos only to listen to him munch on them when you’re sitting at the couch sipping juice. Sometimes I had the wildest cravings for all the garbage that got me in trouble in the first place, such as pizza, cheese enchiladas, and fried chicken. But that’s going to happen throughout the fast. I had to dig really deep to find the discipline to stay on course. And I’m glad I did.
So the first few days are pretty rough. But believe me, it gets better. I promise. Eventually, finding the discipline, motivation, and dedication gets easier and easier. And once you’re off the food withdrawals, you start feeling more and more energetic. By my 6th day, I began walking 3.5 miles per day. By my 1oth day, I was doing walk/jog intervals for the same distance. It’s hard to believe I can do that considering I haven’t had anything in my mouth but juice, but it’s true. If you’re eating the true essence of plant life, you’re absorbing what you need to survive and to stay active.
I was going to post my Juice Reboot journal entries here, but it became hard creatively try to find euphemisms for all the bad language I wrote during the first few days! Hey, I’m part Navy Sailor, remember? But definitely keep a journal of your experiences.
For more information about the Juice Reboot, you can either watch “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead” on Netflix, or visit Joe Cross’ website at http://www.rebootwithjoe.com/
And please make sure you check with a doctor before you try this reboot. The results are amazing, but the process can be quite intense. And remember, this isn’t meant to be a permanent lifestyle. It’s simple a tool to jumpstart your newfound healthy life.
My goodness, I feel great! 🙂