100 hours of juice fast.

Chard, orange, mango juice.

So, perhaps unsurprisingly, we broke the juice fast a little early. We aimed to go for one week, but stopped after four days. The main reason, if you’ll believe us, is that we were bored. Eating good food is one of the most important and interesting parts of our lives, and fruit and vegetable juices just don’t provide the same variety of tastes (and, of course, textures) that we require to keep ourselves entertained. Juice fasting is also kind of a damper for your social life, since (at least for us) socializing often revolves around food. We even had to skip out on Jon’s work’s holiday party, since we didn’t want to stand around and just watch people eat and drink.

Otherwise, juice fasting turns out to be pretty easily doable. Aside from the boringness of it, the other main issue was simply dealing with hunger. For the first two days, I was hungry a lot of the time, and that was just an unpleasant sensation for which I had not been prepared.  After the second day, I wasn’t hungry so much, and my appetite seemed significantly decreased.

However, I never experienced any of the detox effects – extra energy, clarity, etc. – that many people claim to get from juice fasting. Instead, I had a lot of hunger at first, and then I was just easily tired and constantly cold. I also didn’t seem to get any great cleansing in the digestive department. I took one tablespoon of psyllium husks each morning, thinking that the added fiber would help keep my digestion regular, but it had little effect for me.

In terms of weight loss, Jon and I each lost about five pounds in four days. For me, and if our scale is to be believed, most of that was fat. Since we started eating solid food again in the past couple days, I’ve gained about two pounds back (again, fat).

Everyone warns you to be careful about breaking your fast, and ease out of it with small amounts of plant-based foods. We thought about that, but then threw caution to the wind and went to our favorite taqueria to eat quesadillas and crispy nachos. Then, I got a terrible headache and felt horrible. So I wouldn’t do that again. But it does seem to be the case that my decreased appetite is sticking around — even four days after breaking the juice fast, I’m definitely eating smaller amounts of food than I was before. Considering that self-control in the quantity department is probably my biggest challenge in terms of eating healthily, that seems like a pretty good payoff for the effort I put into juice fasting for four days.

I might try juice fasting again in the future, and/or just substituting a juice for a meal once in a while. If I do a full-on fast again, I will probably try to do more research in preparation, since this time we just kind of intuited our way through, with a little help from Google. It was definitely a great way to efficiently consume a lot of fruits and vegetables. I do highly recommend the juicer we got, the Omega J8004 – it was easy to use, easy to clean, take apart, and put back together, and worked well for everything we tried putting in there.

Apple juice is bad for you.

That’s the conclusion of the Associated Press, which blames high calories, not dangerous arsenic levels. All the more reason to prefer cider, right?

Regardless of the dangers of juice, Jon and I are embarking on an under-prepared foray into juice fasting, inspired by our recent watching of the documentary Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead (which is currently free to watch on Netflix or Amazon Prime). We’ll see how long we last. I’ve noticed I’ve been feeling almost constantly hungry for the past couple days, ever since we put in our order for our new juicer, in anticipation of the coming deprivations, I guess.

Bottoms up!

Juice fast begins!