This week, Aaron volunteered to document his Three Day Juice Feast experience, and his wife Kristen joined him! Here's how it went:
My wife and I began really focusing on health about 5 years ago. We had always worked out and thought we ate reasonably well. However, moving to Spain, we found buying fresh and local was better for our bodies than buying pre-made meals packed with preservatives. We enjoyed the farmer's markets there so much that after a few months we decided to shed some of the foods that had previously been staples in our diet. We removed processed foods, dairy and meat from our diet. We also began working out consistently. Our philosophy was liberal; in our home we would eat a vegan diet, however, when at a restaurant or at someone's home, we would eat whatever was on the menu. This offered us a sense of freedom and if we wanted a pizza, we knew we could have one once in awhile. Even though we thought we were healthy before, after the change our weight dropped and our energy levels soared.
We came back to the States knowing the temptations that were before us and were determined to maintain our lifestyle. While my wife was able to maintain a healthy lifestyle, I let the junk creep back in. I discovered that despite mostly eating well my blood pressure was slightly elevated. Once the holidays hit I stopped exercising and starting eating all the things I had given up on a daily basis. I became too tired to get through the day and stated chugging coffee to compensate. This quickly became a bad cycle as my weight shot up and my energy disappeared. I was desperate to get back to a healthy lifestyle but the cravings for junk were too strong and life was moving too fast to do anything about it, or so I thought.
Day 1 of the juice 'feast' was a welcome event. I knew there would be some challenges but welcomed the positive changes that would come about if I could remain faithful to the juices for just three days. I was pleasantly surprised with the taste of the juices, I liked them all! I tend to put more fruit than vegetable in my own juices to sweeten them up but these green juices were amazing! The first day was the most challenging for me as a sinus headache had settled in the night before. If I hadn't already received the juices I would have easily used the headache as a reason to postpone. Thankfully I stayed with the plan and while the first day was challenging, I believe it worked out in my favor that I was giving my body nutrient dense juices instead of the nutrient stripping junk I would have likely had otherwise.
Day 2 saw a rebound. I was feeling better than the previous day though I still had a bit of a sinus headache. I was anticipating strong food cravings this day but instead only desired to chew something a couple of times. I just reminded myself why I was doing this and didn't dwell on the thoughts of food and made it through the daily relatively easy.
Day 3 was the day where everything came together! I practically jumped out of bed well before my alarm. I couldn't believe how much energy I had. The energy lasted throughout the day and I had very little hunger pangs. The cravings for salt sugar and fat were gone. Instead, when I thought about food I was thinking of baked sweet potato and steamed broccoli. I found this very amusing as even when I am eating a vegan diet I tend to not eat these two items as much as I should.
Even from someone who has fasted before, I couldn't imagine how much change could come about in just 3 days. I couldn't have hoped for a better outcome. The junk food cravings that were plaguing me are gone and I am actually craving vegetables, not just tolerating but craving. I went from a gallon of coffee a day to zero caffeine overnight and am choosing to stay away from coffee for awhile to ensure I don't fall back into the cycle. I feel as though I am back on track after just three short days. I stayed committed to the plan and didn't deviate. It was great to have my wife fasting along with me as we were able to encourage each other and both benefited. Fortunately Kristen is also an amazing vegan cook so it will be easy for me to carry on this lifestyle now that I am back on track. I am so thankful for this juice 'feast'!
-- You rock, Aaron. Well done and good luck!!