I’m fasting for the next 60 days, drinking only freshly made fruit and vegetable juice and eating no solid food. No, that’s not a typo. You read it right. You’re not crazy, I am… or, at least, crazy enough to give this a try.
I got the idea after a recommendation to watch the documentary film “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead.” You can watch the 97-minute documentary for free on Hulu, and it’s also available on Netflix instant streaming.
In summary, the documentary is about an Australian businessman named Joe Cross who was overweight, sick, and generally unhealthy in most respects. He decided to go on a medically-supervised juice fast for 60 days, and lost 100 pounds, not to mention no longer having to take any of the medications he was on (quite a few).
My dad offered to buy me the juicer if I thought I could get into juicing as a way to lose weight and be healthier. He and my stepmom aren’t doing the fast like I am, but neither of them are as unhealthy as I am, either. I watched the video, and did a lot of research. I realized that Joe and I are almost the same age, we’re the same height, weight, build and we had the same diet. So I decided that if Joe could do it, so could I.
My goal: Go 60 days with my only food intake being the juice from whole fruits and vegetables, and lose 80 – 100 pounds in the process.
My concerns, and how I’m dealing with them:
- I live in Houston, the fourth-largest city in the nation. And that’s not just in terms of population numbers, either. We’re also the fattest city in the country, and food is a huge part of the culture here. So going without any solid food for 60 days will be very difficult.
- How I’m Dealing With It: I have a great many supportive friends here, so that will help a lot. I’ve also got loads of willpower, when I need to, and as long as I can keep my eye on the prize (weight loss), I’m fairly certain I can go the whole 60 days.
- I’m also concerned (or I was) about the cost of doing this sort of thing. The juicer notwithstanding, buying lots of produce is, in itself, expensive. Or so I thought. More on that later.
- How I’m Dealing With It: It’s nowhere near as expensive as I thought it would be. See below for details.
- I’m told that losing that much weight that quickly is unhealthy.
- How I’m Dealing With It: Sure, losing weight super-quick is probably not the best thing you can do for your body. But from all the research that I’ve done, this idea seems to be largely blown out of proportion by a lot of people. Even if it isn’t, that’s not the whole story. Which is worse for your body, in terms of stress? Losing 100 pounds in 60 days, or having 100 pounds to lose? I’m relatively young, in nominal health except for my weight, and have no major medical conditions that should cause me concern.
So, even with all my concerns, the potential gain (being a healthy weight, having tons of energy, etc) seem to far outweigh (heh) the risks. In short, there’s not much of a reason NOT to do it.
This is what my shopping cart looked like today. Here’s the shopping list:
- Granny Smith apples (20)
- Pears (3)
- Kale (3 big bunches, about 50 leaves)
- Blackberries (1 pkg)
- Strawberries (1 pound)
- Cucumbers (16)
- Spinach (3 bunches, about 10 handfuls)
- Papaya (1)
- Fresh Basil
- Celery (2 bunches, about 20 stalks)
- Oranges (1 bag)
- Romaine Lettuce (1)
- Watermelon (1 quarter)
- Beets (3, small)
- Carrots (1 pound)
- Lemons (4 pounds, about 20)
- Tomatoes (4)
- Ginger Root (1)
Want to guess the total? It’s less than you think. $65 at H-E-B. That’s for a whole week, and I added some stuff not in the recipes. So realistically, if you can find a good produce vendor who’s cheaper than the grocery store and you stick closer to the recipes, you could probably get away with $50 – 55 a week for food.
There’s one concern down.
Here’s the juicer I’m using. It’s an Omega VRT350. The difference between this one and the one in the film (a Breville JE98XL) is that mine is low-speed and squeezes the juice from whatever I put into it, rather than chopping it up really fine with blades like the Breville. In general, this provides more juice.
Plus, it’s the one my dad paid for, so…
I decided to make the Red Rush Juice Recipe first, because it involves a lot of fruits, and I was having a hankering for something sweet.
Red Rush Juice
- 10 cherries (pitted)
- 1 cup watermelon
- 1/2 cup strawberries
- 1 tomato
- 1 beet (small)
- 1/2 fresh basil leaves
I learned several things when making this: Cherries are not in season in Texas in November, beets make better juice if you peel them first, and I hate beets and will not be including them in other recipes. I also figured out that it’s best to chop up the ingredients into slices or parts no more than 1/2-inch thick, so they go into the hopper better.
This recipe wasn’t anywhere near as sweet as I expected, so for batches 2 & 3, I added some papaya and an orange (and peeled the beets). I also wasn’t expecting quite so much pulp to be wasted, so I’m going to switch to the other filter for now and see how that does. I’d rather consume it then throw it away.
So that’s juice one of day one done. It’s two hours later and I haven’t finished that first jar yet, so this is clearly not a winning recipe. I’ll be making the main meal I’ll be having in the evenings here in a bit. It’s the one Joe made in the movie, and is called “The Mean Green.”
The Mean Green
- 2 cucumbers
- 5 large kale leaves
- 2 celery stalks
- 1/2 lemon (no rind)
- .5″ piece of ginger root
- 2 Granny Smith apples
I’m hoping I like this one, since I’ll be having it every day. I haven’t been hungry, but I expect that to change pretty rapidly. My scale is busted, so I’ll be posting my weight/measurements later today in an update after I go pick up a new one (and some bananas).
Lastly, I bought this quite awhile ago, but I’ll be using it a lot. If you can afford to buy organic fruits and veggies (I can’t), then you don’t need to bother with this. If you’ve never used it on non-organic produce, I’d highly recommend it. You’ll be amazed at how much cleaner the stuff you eat will be. This is an Earth-friendly brand that contains nothing harmful to anything, as far as I can tell.