Laura: I love to eat! This may not come as a surprise to some, but for me I’ve definitely been thrown for a loop by such a realization. Most of my growing up years my mother would say to me, “you’re the type of person that eats to live, not lives to eat.” And I have believed it! Granted, when I am hungry, I am hungry and please stand back until I get something in my belly, thank you very much. But, I have never viewed myself as someone who loves to eat. For the last three days my husband has said often, “I am not physically hungry, but I am mentally hungry.” While I would say I am famished! This juice is not cutting it! My belly is hungry!
But today, Day 4 of the juice fast, I awoke feeling fine. I was not unusually hungry. We made a yummy breakfast juice – carrots, plum, apple, orange, lime, cherry and mango. We each had about 20 ounces. And where as the last three days I was again famished a short while later – today, I was able to wait until our midday “dinner” juice of Mean Green – kale, celery, kiwi, ginger, apple, cucumber and lemon, and feel just fine. Proving, I think, that my body is “getting used” to this juice fast. And I was actually able to make my children a nice dinner of spaghetti and salad and not feel that weird thing in my throat that was saying “feed me please”.
The epiphany is that I am mentally hungry, just as my husband had said. I want to eat!!! I took our son to the dentist office this afternoon. The hygienist had cooking shows on the TV. Talk about cruel and unusual punishment! So this journey, which I thought was simply about physical health is teaching me so much more. A greater level of compassion is what I am getting today. Much greater compassion for those who have little or nothing by way of food. And a sense of compassion for those who are addicted to food, which honestly, before this I had little if any sympathy towards.
Andrew: Like Laura, I too love to eat – the process of eating, the tastes, textures, etc. It’s really been an eye opener to see how much of life revolves around the next meal. This isn’t necessarily bad, but I am getting a better focus now that my meals are not something to look forward to with great excitement as they were before.
I’m not physically hungry much – here and there at most. I can overcome the mental hunger as well. The thing I am struggling with the most is the repetition of getting the juicer out, and making one of a few types of juice. It’s not that some aren’t tasty, but imagine if all you get to consume for the day is one of several juices that are more or less made from the same dozen or so ingredients! It’s like Groundhog Day around here.
I am finding that this can be helped by drinking some lemon and honey in hot water (yes, that’s okay on a juice fast) and Laura has had herbal tea. Tonight I bought some similar things to try to add some drinkable variety to our otherwise bland-beverage-based menu. Again, it’s not the veggies don’t taste great, but in a world of fat, salt, and sugar, it takes a while to retrain one’s tastebuds to appreciate the more subtle shades of dirt-like taste that are green veggies – and I love veggies! I feel so sorry for the poor saps who try this who hate veggies – man, oh man!
I’m also trying to adjust to the increase in carbs. Yes, increase! I am a protein-metabolism kind-of-guy. I love fruit, but the amount we juice in the AM is a sweetness shock for me. I hope to experiment with mixing fruit and veggies more to even things out. Thing is.. it’s hard to get my head around the idea of mixing some fruits with some veggies. And sometimes, the resulting color is between dark purple and brown – not very appetizing!
So aside from that, I am missing my daily dose of dark chocolate, good coffee, and lastly, the feeling of food in my mouth. That’s perhaps the weirdest thing. I noticed my mouth feels strange and for some reason, I am clenching my teeth – maybe my teeth are just eager to tear into something?
Every day I have more and more respect and awe for the suckers – err… brilliant men and women… who have done this for sixty days! Wow, that’s a heroic achievement! Lord willing, we’ll make it to at least ten and perhaps more. Stay tuned!