When I first discovered the world of health and wellness, juicing & smoothies were my first introduction to what became an instant obsession. I spent hours researching the best ingredients, recipes to use and what their uses were. I was so eager to discover the worlds healthiest foods, I wanted to know which countries had the least reports of cancer and other diseases and I wanted to figure out what their diets and lifestyles were like. Fast forward a couple years, smoothies and juices are still my most recommended ‘go to’ for a nutrient dense meal addition or replacement.
I discovered Green Press Inc. while taking a stroll downtown Oakville, ON. I was so excited and wanted to buy everything. I had a budget to stick to, so I went back frequently each time I was in the area to purchase a bottle or 2 at a time.
This summer of 2017, I got married! During the weeks leading up to my wedding, like any bride would I wanted to look and feel my best. So I decided to do a 3-day juice fast. I had tried juice fasts in the past and failed miserably within a couple hours, so I was concerned how I would manage 3 whole days with no food only juice. But this time I was determined to complete it successfully for such a huge life event that I would remember forever. The juice fast from Green Press Inc. includes 6 juices a day. I purchased 3 day’s worth and started on a weekend so that I could really focus on it away from my usual busy weekday schedule.
On a regular day, I generally don’t get hungry until mid-afternoon, so during day 1 of my fast I felt great up until about 2:30 pm when I started to really ‘feel it’. I was tired, weak and I had a headache. I had another juice hoping it would help. It didn’t. By around 7:00 pm, my headache got more intense and the room was starting to spin. I was quickly losing my will power. At this point my thoughts were “Oh no, I think I’m about to fail!”. I could see a bottle of Advil looking at me from across the room but somehow, I managed to resist. Taking medication would go against the whole point of a juice fast, for me at least. By 9:00pm it was game over! I reached for some unsalted almonds and called it a night.
I was so disappointed in myself. Why couldn’t I fight through it? But I honestly felt like my body had reached its limits, I was pushing myself too far too soon. It might have been a good idea to follow a reduced diet leading up to the start of my fast, then it wouldn’t have been such a shock to my system. It turned out Green Press Inc. included some helpful information in the cooler bag that the juices were provided in. Had I not gotten so carried away I would have read it first. Reading through it, I learnt the difference between a juice fast and a juice cleanse. During a juice cleanse, you can still eat. But from a list of recommended foods, which was surprisingly and pleasantly long. I suddenly didn’t feel so bad for eating those almonds, but I accepted the fact that my juice fast was now a juice cleanse. But instead of eating all the recommended foods which luckily included almonds, I stuck with only almonds. So I suppose what I did was somewhere in between a fast and a cleanse.
It was smooth sailing all morning. Mid-afternoon came and I was hit with hunger pangs, I felt light headed with a mild headache. That terrible feeling was solved by having a few almonds with each juice. By dinner time I was really chowing down those Almonds to help keep me going.
I felt lighter and less bloated. I had a slightly sensitive stomach and a few frequents trips to the ladies’ room which I later learnt was normal. This was the detox doing its job cleansing what wasn’t meant to be there. My system seemed to have gotten a little more use to the reduced calorie intake as I wasn’t as hungry as I had been on days 1 and 2.
After my cleanse ended, I found that I didn’t eat as much. And when I did, I craved cleaner healthier foods. For this reason, I lost 6 lbs. during the week after my cleanse. I felt different, I didn’t have that heavy, sluggish feeling I had a couple days prior. I knew for sure that my system had reset. My cleanse was a success! I will certainly do another in a few months, but will be sure to follow these rules:
1. Reduce the amount of processed foods gradually before starting a fast.
2. Decide ahead of time whether or fast or a cleanse is better suited for your health and lifestyle.
3. Plan your social activities carefully around the time you decide to do a fast or cleanse. It could be in your best interest to pass on the invitation to go out for drinks or dinner. The less temptation the better.
4. Let your family & friends know in advance. They could be a huge support system for you when you feel like quitting.
5. Remember that day 1 is never easy. Fight through it and you’ll be glad you did!