This is the second part of my post on therapeutic fast. I have covered in my earlier post on Fasting 101 – what it is about and why we should perform fasting as part of our Rheumatoid Arthritis treatments program.
My 11-Days Therapeutic Juice Fasting Program
In July (2012), I embarked on my very first 11-days therapeutic juice fast. In this blog post, I will recount the highlights of my fast and the incredible impacts that came out from this 11 days program.
The following juice fast daily plan is core to my therapeutic fasting program.
The Juice Fast Daily Plan
Additionally, I’d also practiced a number of methods enhancing detox into my protocol and I deem these key components crucial for reversing my arthritic affliction and restoring a satisfactory degree of bodily movement, health and wellness.
(1) Daily sunbathing – Allowed early morning sunshine to hit on my bare skin for as long as 15 to 20 minutes each day. This is a great and most effective way of manufacturing Vitamin D which works well with iodine, magnesium and thyroid glands for utilizing calcium properly and effectively.
(2) Daily gentle massaging and range-of-motion exercising – Gently massaged affected arthritic skin surfaces and joints daily, anytime desired. With my everyday shower, I also performed light joint rotation exercise on my wrist joints under warm/hot flowing water to improve my range-of-motion. On some days, I performed muscle group tensing and relaxation, where I performed up to 3 cycles of tensing a group of muscles for 5 seconds and relaxing for 10 seconds.
(3) Daily skin brushing – Before taking my daily morning shower, I will do a quick 2 to 3 minutes dry brushing with soft natural bristle. Dry brushing helps to remove dead skin and urid acid crystals from the skin.
(4) Daily positive affirmations – I repeated the following positive affirmations many times daily to strengthen resolve, courage and the tenacity to complete my intended fast.
Fresh Ingredients for my Juice Cocktails Preparation & How to Make My Juice
I went for an all-vegetables juice fasting. These were what I juice:
- Raw white russet potatoes with jackets
- Raw celery
- Raw carrots
- Raw cucumbers
I juiced the raw potatoes separately and let stand for 5 minutes in a bowl and pour the juice into a large pitcher. Any hardened starchy residue left over was thrown away. Then, I moved on to juice the celery, carrots and cucumbers. After straining away the juice, it was added to the raw potato juice in the pitcher. Stir and mix the juice with tepid distilled water in a glass and drink slowly. A rule of thumb is 1 ounce of juice to 1 ounce of tepid distilled water.
I must emphasized using a good juicer for making the green juices. This ensures that the live enzymes and all vitamins, minerals and phyto-nutrients of the juice are not broken down by the rapid blending process of a normal blender.
The Juice Fast Experience
Juice Fast Days 1-3:
I started my elevan day juice fast with my first “juiced” meal and my goal was to make it through the 11 days. “I must do it and I can make it,” I told myself but announcing my resolve to my whole family made it something that I could not turn back. I let my fears all go and drank my very first juice. Yes, the challenge started.
I somehow made it through the first day and first night well. I did not dare to step out of my house because I did not know what I would feel in the coming days. I remembered how books have described that the first 3 days will be the most difficult time for fasting. I was totally off any RA medications during my fast. At the beginning of the day, I was still feeling all excited and challenged. But as the day progressed, I started to feel hungry and feeble, not even wanting to move much. Sights of foods still tempted me to a certain degree but my emotions and determination remained strong. Joint pains crept into my left foot and both my wrists and I experienced stiffness all over my body. Nonetheless, I made sure that I stayed mentally focused on my goal, completed my daily health restoration worksheet and completed three self-assigned tasks. Yeah, I did it, and that was how my first day passed.
My mind and body were in active revolt against what I was forcing myself to do. My tummy seemed to grumble all the time and I still had very strong craving for solid food. I still experienced those familiar stiffness and pain throughout the joints but took a while for the stiffness to dissipate. For the pain, I made myself some alkaline potassium broth and drink it from time to time when pain became quite unbearable. On the bright side, I noticed that I have started to shed quite a bit of weight. Shame to say that I was really overweight for a long time, I was glad that I could finally take this opportunity to get back my pre-pregnancy weight again. Except for a few episodes of fainting spells now and then, the rest of the day passed uneventfully. I had made it through 48 hours without solids.
On the 3rd day, I no longer felt that the second hand of the clock was crawling away and I did not need to distract myself with things so that I did not focus on the hunger. I wasn’t imagining thing but my tummy wasn’t grumbling anymore even though I could still be tempted by food sometimes. I was starting to feel good because I was feeling less pain and I was losing weight. Physically, I did not have much complaints and felt good after every enemas! The swells on my left foot had subsided somewhat and walking longer distance had become bearable for the first time since ages. Looking back, I knew I was going to succeed, I had made it through day three!
Juice Fast Days 4-11:
The remaining of the juice fast days were pretty much easy rides after going through the difficult first 3 days. My body was completely broken of its craving for eating food and feeling a tons better. I felt more energized, to my surprise. I started to want to break free from my home cage and cruised around for some days. Pains, swellings and inflammation had calmed and subsided and my range of motion was slightly increased. I wanted to enjoy this new-found health and energy by using them. I felt that I could nourish myself indefinitely even when fasting by juicing. Uneventfully, I sailed through all 11 days successful and with great results!
The very best part of the juice fast
I thought a lot about this and the very best part of the juice fast was an incredible transformation at the end of the fast.
I lost 8kgs in 11 days, my swellings on my feet subsided, the screaming pains of my joints were gone and I felt incredibly well and healthy with a clear mind, confidence and focus. And it presented itself as an opportunity to alter and comply myself to a healthier and sustainable dietary and physical lifestyle.
A Penny for My Juicy Thoughts
As always, as with every of my past rheumatic disease treatment or reversal protocol, I will look back and evaluate what I can do better to make the experience more rewarding, and these are my thoughts:
(1) I should have done a longer fast, say a 30-days fast, instead of an 11-days fast. I have not fully reversed my RA and could this be the reason why I did not reap the benefit of a longer fast? And because I did not allow enough time for the fasting to perform its very cleansing of the very last layer of toxins within my body and cells? Would my RA be gone if I have insisted on a longer fast?
(2) I could have done better with my fast breaking and transitional diet. I followed the next 3 days breaking the fast with raw salads, comprising tomatoes, romaine lettuce, green and red leaf, avocados as well as cucumbers and a transitional diet that comprised brown rice with sesame oil, pineapple juice, mixed vegetables and everything healthy (with no meat proteins).
Yes, I know the diet sounded healthy but unfortunately, before long, the inflammation, swelling and pain found themselves back to my joints. What had gone wrong with this diet? I could not understand then but now, I do. It was not the diet that went wrong but my approach of reintroduction of food was wrong. There is no fixed diet menu for an individual with RA because we are suffering from different allergies or food intolerance. My diet would have worked very well for many perhaps, but it did not work for me because I am actually allergic to rice, sesame, pineapple, and many foods that I put myself in for the diet.
For those of you who read this and intend to try out the therapeutic fast, you must know your allergies for starter and you can do this by performing an ALCAT test. Or else, upon breaking fast, you can reintroduce food one at a time. Eat the same food for a few days and if there are no negative reactions, it may be safe to assume that you are not allergic or intolerant to the food. Continue this until you have a list of safe foods and start eating this diet on a four-days food rotation, meaning to say that the same food cannot be consumed over the next three days.
So have you ever done a juice fast? How did you react to your experience of giving up food and sustaining yourself with green juices and water? Share your thoughts in the comments and let’s talk fasting…