During a fast the body’s energy is freed up to “clean house and repair.” The body spends around 80 percent of its energy on digestion. During a fast or juice fast, the nutrients are absorbed directly from the small intestine and are not stopped in the stomach to be acted upon by digestive agents. The fast is a fast-track tool used to jolt you away from your current life-state and give you momentum towards health.
While on a juice fast, no solid foods are consumed, only liquids. We are still drinking our full amount of daily calories but our bodies expend minimal energy to process those nutrients—this frees up enormous stores of energy to be sent around the body to clean and repair. It normally takes from eight to twenty-four hours for the body to go into “cleanse” mode. Cleanse mode happens when the liver does not have to worry about digestion and realizes it is free to start cleaning things it had previously backlogged. The liver and the body literally work their way through everything that has been stored since your birth. During a fast, particularly your first fast, you will literally relive every illness and injury you have ever had that the liver did not have time to fully repair.
Some people lose a lot of weight while fasting; others do not, but most people lose sizes. The body gets rid of all the toxins that make us look “puffy.”
Tips for a successful fast
|5 Tips for a Successful Juice Fast|
|1. Drink 8-16 eight-ounce glasses of freshly pressed juices, vegetable broths, and herbal teas. Nothing can have added sugar of any kind and all chemicals are to be avoided. For best results use fresh juices, but pasteurized juices will suffice if necessary (once again, never with sugar added).|
|2. Avoid tomato, orange, and grapefruit juices. Although all of these juices have a positive alkalizing effect on the body’s cells, each is very acidic which encourages the stomach to produce stomach acid—stomach acid makes us feel hungry. We want to avoid the release of stomach acid and the feeling of hunger on a fast whenever possible!|
|3. Avoid moderate and strenuous exercise. This is to prevent hunger pains and conserve your energy for healing and detoxifying the body. Experienced fasters can sometimes handle moderate exercise, but it is not recommended for beginners.|
|4. Drink vegetable juices and herbal teas in the morning (before 2:00 p.m.); then if you must have fruit juices have them sparingly after 2:00 p.m. This avoids spiking your blood sugar early in the day when the body is in its most acidic state. The three exceptions to this are cranberry juice (plain with no sugar added; this will be incredibly sour), lemon, and lime juice. These three can be sipped at any time; cranberry is especially good first thing in the morning if you have any kidney problems. (If you have any liver problems or candida/parasites, you most likely will have weak kidneys, because the kidneys have been filtering everything the stressed liver could not process.)|
|5. Drink warm vegetable broths or bone broths if you get hungry or want something warm. (It is great to warm the body on a fast because your body temperature will naturally drop and warm liquids can by-pass hunger pains.) Boil cubed potatoes or turnips, carrots, celery, onions, and garlic for at least 20-minutes—drink just the broth; you can add some sea salt if you would like. Organic sugar-free broths can also be purchased from organic grocers.|
Some fasting books recommend eating fresh watermelon or fresh applesauce (puree a fresh apple) when you feel you must eat. I do not recommend this; anytime you chew or have something sit in the mouth for extended periods of time the stomach is activated and this always makes me hungrier, and I feel worse. (Chewing gum has the same effect and must be avoided!) If you are extremely hungry, or are detoxing too quickly, you can do the apple puree but water it down enough so you can drink it. The apple fiber gives the body something to bind to the toxins, which reduces the detox symptoms and makes you feel full.