Congratulations on making the first step towards a healthier life!
The juice feasts are the perfect kickstarter in helping your body detox, cleanse and revitalise.
You might even loose a few pounds in the process, but that is not the main aim of this feast. These few days (and it’s only a few days!), are designed to give your body a rest from all the toxic overload, chemicals, sugars, salt and other ‘additives’ that are not natural to your body. Instead, you will ‘feast’ on an abundance of nutrients, in a form that is easily absorbed by your hard working cells.
In my FAQ I explain that 'detoxing' doesn't exist. A normal functioning body is able to detox by itself, but the problem is when we burden our bodies with an excess of toxins, pollution and chemicals. Our body can then use a little bit of extra support in this detoxification process. Detoxification frees up the vital activities of cells and organs to function productively and efficiently. You can think of this like cleaning your desk of clutter and papers so that you can do your work efficiently and happily.
The benefits of juicing are endless and many many books have been written about the subject. Luckily for you, I have devoured them all, so I can give you a quick synopsis!
Everybody knows you need to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables to stay healthy. But do we really do this? Apparently only 25% of us meet the daily requirements (and even those requirements are very very low). And that while fruit and vegetable consumption is associated with reducing your risks for an impressive list of illnesses. From reduced rates of heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes to certain cancers. Eating (and drinking) plenty of fruit and veg also boosts your immune system, keeps your weight in check and puts a lot less stress on your body. And I haven't even mentioned clearer skin, stronger nails and bones, better sleep and a clearer mind! Bearing this in mind, juicing makes perfect sense. You'll get the maximum benefits from their rainbow coalition of vitamins and minerals, enzymes and antioxidants. Just adding a daily juice to your routine will do wonders for your overall wellbeing. It might just be the best health insurance you'll ever need.
An important benefit of juicing is that it helps to keep the body's subtle pH balance between acidity and alkalinity in check. A lot can be said about this interesting subject, but in short, our cells thrive in a slightly alkaline environment (a pH less than 7 is considered acidic, and anything over 7 is alkaline). Our bodies are happiest and healthiest when they hover in the 7.3-7.5 range. Over-acidity can have many disastrous consequences. Unfortunately our standard diet is filled with acidic foods, including meat, dairy, highly processed foods and refined sugar (not to mention environmental toxins). In order to keep your pH in balance, your body will have to work harder to neutralise the acidic load, which can lead to a degeneration of health. The easiest way to help your body is to minimise the overly acid-forming offenders, and to maximise alkaline forming, mineral rich foods (hello juices!).
Inflammation is another cause for detrimental health. Inflammation in itself is actually a normal part of our body's defense system in response to injury or attack (think of the swelling and redness around a cut, or the release of histamines). But problems arise when bad diet and lifestyle choices cause it to run amok. Chronic inflammation is associated with allergies, hay fever, heart disease, chronic pain, and even cancer. Therefore it is essential to manage your inflammation. There are many ways that can be effective in helping with this, including stress management, exercise, adequate sleep and keeping a healthy weight. Diet is your best ally in keeping inflammation in check. Foods that contribute to inflammation are the same ones that fall in the acidic side of the pH scale (see the link?). Refined sugar, meat, dairy, junk food... Meanwhile, the same foods that help your body's pH balance towards the alkaline side, are also our friends in keeping the inflammation in check. Fruits and vegetables are the most potent anti-inflammatory agents known. And there is no better way to get them in your body then by drinking juice!
Some people might say that buying fresh fruit and vegetables is so expensive. But the truth is, the actual price of consuming the 'bad' food is much higher if you consider the implications on our health (and the NHS) and the environmental impact. Another point the nay-sayers like to mention is that they 'just don't like vegetables'. In my humble opinion they have just never tasted the real rich taste of fresh, ripe and organic produce. Many people's memories might be blighted by the slimy spinach their grannies used to cook, or the mushy broccoli we were served as a child. But I guarantee you that is nothing compared to tasting beautifully fresh produce straight from the fields. And by being creative and combining different flavours in juices and blends, it will make them taste absolutely delicious! They can be sweet, tart, spicy, creamy and are all immensely satisfying.
A typical juice or blend might include a big fistful of kale or spinach, a cucumber, some pineapple, celery, apples, lemon, beetroot, half an avocado or a banana. Most people would not even consider eating all that in one sitting! But put them all through a juicer or in a blender, and you have yourself a meal. And an extremely healthy one at that!
Juicing is a powerful way to invest in your health and well-being. Whether you are just looking to keep a trim body or recovering from an illness. Juices will deliver an incredible amount of nutrients directly to your hungry cells. And don't worry, you will be getting plenty of protein, calcium, and fatty acids. The idea you will be missing out on these while on a vegan or vegetarian diet stems from aggressive propaganda by the meat and dairy industry (but that's a whole other story!).
You won't believe how good you will feel (and look!) in such a short space of time! Tasting is believing, so go ahead and try juicing for yourself.
If you have any more questions, have a look at my FAQ page!
-----'Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food'---- (Hippocrates)