So I kind of have a new obsession these days. Basically, I’m drinking a lot of juice.
This has become bit of a fad in the world of late and I’ve definitely jumped on the bandwagon. I first heard of it in the film “Sick, Fat and Nearly Dead” – a documentary about an obese Australian guy who did a 60 day juice fast to lose weight. That led me to a 3 day Google-a-thon of this whole juicing thing and it wasn’t long before I knew I had to try it.
I often struggle to consume enough fruits and veges in a day (it’s recommended you get at least 8-9 servings daily), not because I don’t like eating them but mostly because I’m just too lazy. The mere thought of peeling a bunch of fruit or heating up the pan to cook some veges can feel like running a marathon sometimes. Not to mention, you still need time to do the actual eating! Can you imagine sitting there peeling 9 carrots one after the other and then chewing away on them like a rabbit? That’s at least an hour of your day gone just eating produce, and most of us probably couldn’t eat that much anyway.
So, until recently I’ve just ignored the whole 9+ a day advice and instead just enjoyed the odd apple and mandarin and my usual serving of veges at dinner time. However, that’s all changed. About a month ago I purchased myself a Breville Juice Fountain and have been knocking down 9-12+ servings of veges every day. And you know what? I feel awesome.
I drink between 1 to 1.5 litres of juice a day, trying out all kinds of different recipes and tweaking each one until it’s just the way I like it. Here’s one of my favourites (which I invented myself!)
My greatest invention ever
1 beet, 2 apples, 1 orange, 1 lemon, 8 carrots, 1 knob of ginger (makes around 1 litre).
With my work schedule getting a little crazy lately, drinking a batch of this has been the perfect way to stay on top of my diet. When’s the last time you ate 2 apples, 1 orange, a whole beet, 8 carrots, a whole thumb of ginger and a lemon in one day?
Worst juice in the world
Now, here’s one that didn’t go too well. You’ve probably heard of the legendary V-8 juice, a combination of 8 different vegetables rumoured to transform any regular human into a superhero. Well, I decided to try and make my own – carrot, cucumber, spinach, parsley, ginger, green pepper, celery and tomato.
Let’s just say it didn’t turn out so great (in other words, it tasted like ****). Doesn’t really look too appetising either. Did I drink it? Of course! But I cheated and juiced a couple of apples in to sweeten it up. Anyway, I’m sure my body was happy to see the sudden influx of vegetables – definitely more than I’ve ever given it before!
My first juice fast
I have no idea why I decided to do a juice fast. It just sounded fun, I guess.
Basically a juice fast is where you only drink juice for a set amount of time – no food and no other drink. The purpose of this is to give your digestive system a break by removing solid food from your diet. The juice provides all the nutrition you need, it goes straight into your bloodstream and your body doesn’t need to digest anything. This is then supposed to kickstart something called autolysis, which means your body will start getting rid of all the bad stuff in your body like diseased and dead tissue, fat deposits etc. Basically, it just gives your body a chance to reset and cleanse itself of all the crap you put into it.
Sound like a big bunch of fluff? Yeah, maybe. And of course please don’t quote me on any of that – it’s all stuff I’ve just regurgitated from the blogosphere.
Anyway, there’s only one real way to find out and that’s to try it yourself. Fasts can range anywhere from 1 day to 6 months. For me, 3 days was more than enough.
I drank around 2 litres of juice per day, with a good mix of fruit and vegetables, and didn’t eat a single thing. The first day I distinctly remember being really tired – I slept a lot, probably an extra 5 hours, and didn’t get much work done. The next day I had normal energy levels but I felt VERY hungry, as if I hadn’t eaten for weeks. Then on the third day, I started to feel right again, a lot of energy and the stomach wasn’t really grumbling at all. Now, you’ll be surprised how hard juice fasting actually is. It’s hard to describe, but there will be times when you really want to quit. The smallest sniff of food will drive you mad – I remember one night my Dad was cooking a curry and I nearly died just smelling it. Any more than 3 days and I would’ve definitely struggled.
Did it supercharge my body like it was supposed to? You know, I’m really not sure. I usually believe if something feels good that means it is good, and I definitely felt like my body was ticking differently. Interestingly, despite not eating any solids my body was still “disposing” of solids even on Day 3, so obviously I had something backed up in there. At the end of the day, I simply enjoyed it for the experience. I’m still kind of on the fence as far as regular fasting goes, but we shall see – might be the perfect way to recover from those stretches of super unhealthy travel eating.
Juicing while travelling
Probably the best part of all this is I’ve now finally found my way to keep a healthy diet on the road – I’m going to juice! Even at home I struggle to get enough fruit and veges in my diet but while I’m travelling this is doubly so. Because I’m usually without a kitchen I often go entire days or weeks without a decent meal and my body definitely notices this. I get sick quite often on the road, and I’ve no doubt that it’s to do with my crappy diet when I’m out there – lot’s of street food, lot’s of junk food, and a lot of irregular eating. Add on the late nights, long bus rides and general travel fatigue and it all takes its toll.
This last couple of months has definitely made me a juicing believer and I’m certain that seeking out a few litres of fruit and vege juice each day will keep you in good health on the road. Obviously I can’t take my juicer with me so I’m going to need to buy it from juice bars and the like, but I can certainly live with that.
What about you? Are you a juice fan? How do you stay healthy on your travels? Let me know in the comments below!