Why I started juicing once a week…

A few years ago I read a book by Dr. Scott Connelly called Body Rx and who also invented MetRx.

This changed my entire nutritional outlook on life. I highly recommend everyone read it.  He is a bodybuilder and medical doctor that worked in an emergency room setting for years. He was amazed at how terminally ill patients being fed thousands of calories through tubes could still be losing weight. Those studies led to this book and if you are into nutrition, it is fascinating.

One of the biggest premises in the book is to convert your body into a fat burning machine 24/7, not just when you work out.  Two of the biggest factors that help contribute to this goal is sugar (less of) and fiber (more of).

Without getting into the details of the book, I changed my eating habits completely. I ate well already but obviously was lacking in several things, fiber being one of them.  It is a key ingredient into cleansing out your digestive tract of all the toxins and wastes that sits there rotting and lining the intestinal walls with junk that doesn’t allow nutrients to be absorbed efficiently.

Increasing my fiber intake had amazing results both in regular bowel movements (yes I had to go there!) as well as fat burning ability.  I was able to tell the difference within two weeks.

Along comes juicing…

About three years of this put me in the best shape of my life but I always love to further educate myself.  I was fascinated with juicing. Not the type that extracts the pulp out of vegetables and fruits and gives you a clear liquid, but rather the type that pulverizes everything into a liquid form.  Two excellent blenders for this are the Ninja NJ600 Pro Blender and Nutri Bullet NBR-12 12-Piece Hi-Speed Blender/Mixer System .  I use the latter but both are just as effective.

At the same time, I was reading up on anti-oxidants and free radicals and how that impacts inner and outer health (more on this in a future post).

I started incorporating daily juicing as a replacement or addition to one or two meals in a day. Seeing that I eat six times a day this was easy and made food prep more convenient.

One key difference between my juicing and others is that I incorporate protein powder (whey) into my shakes.

The ingredients…

I have read mixed reviews on juicing, especially when done for one to two weeks and longer and the impact on muscle atrophy. To err on the side of caution, I supplement my shakes with whey protein powder since I attempt to take in one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight daily. It is very hard to do without some form of supplementation. I could not see going down to almost zero protein grams even though it would only be over a 24 hour period.

So when I juice all day, always on a workout rest day, I incorporate protein, anti-oxidants and fiber.

The program below is what I use. I prefer to use fruits but you can also incorporate dark green veggies as well.

Typical Shake:

  • 30 grams of whey protein (you may use whey isolate if you can’t handle milk products)
  • One or two of the following fruits: banana, rasp/black/blue/straw berries. These are very high in anti-oxidants
  • A small scoop of each of the following; chia, sesame and flax seed (very high in Omega 3’s, anti-oxidants, minerals and fiber). You may also incorporate hemp seeds
  • A small scoop of uncooked oatmeal (again, high in fiber)
  • You must pulverize the seeds and oatmeal in the blender before mixing it with the fruits and protein. The reason is to remove the outer shell covering of the seed for easier digestion
  • Once the seeds are pulverized into powder form, mix in the fruits above, protein and water for an amazingly tasty shake. I like to add chipped ice to give it a frosty feel and I also use alkaline water (see my post on that in my blog)
  • You can replace water with other liquids but I caution to look at the sugar content. You just can’t go wrong with water

What to expect…

As I already stated, I already have ‘juice meals’ once or twice a day and have found that it cleans out my digestive tract pretty good. The less toxins you carry in your body 24/7, the healthier you are going to be and your body will process foods in a more efficient manner.

When you juice for a full 24 hours, make sure you also drink lots and lots of water! You want to flush your body as much as possible.

Initially the first couple of shakes will be ok, nice and filling. Once you start hitting the afternoon you will start craving for some solids, especially carbs. When that happens, have another shake! The same craving will come back in a few hours and you repeat with another shake. The amount of shake that you drink will depend on how hungry you are. Play it by ear, everyone is different.

If you have also been drinking lots and lots of water, you should start some very intense bowel movements (yes, yes, I went there again!) later that afternoon or early that night. If this does not happen, it may not take place until the next day.

By the following day you will spend the first part of your morning definitely flushing out your system especially if you didn’t the night before.  Eat a small breakfast to ease your body back into solids then the rest of the day you should be able to go back to your normal eating habits.

I normally lose 3-4 pounds over that 24 hour period. I don’t feel tired since I fed my body well but the weight loss is from all the waste that was sitting in my intestines.  There is no way that you could lose 3-4 pounds in 24 hours from fat, muscle or water loss especially when you were hydrating yourself so well.

The best way to determine how much junk you got rid of is to weigh yourself first thing in the morning after going to the bathroom and before you begin juicing, then weigh yourself again the next day after you went to the bathroom.

You should always check with your doctor before going on a juicing program for an extended period of time.  Adding it to your regular meals should be ok but if you have metabolic or digestive issues and want to go on one for 24 hours or more, it is advised to see your doctor.

I do not recommend this program for periods of more than 24 hours.  Since I have never tried that, I cannot tell you what to expect and what the results will be.

Juice periodically to become….Fit Forlife

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