Juice Fasting

Green Juice
Green Juice

Last Friday I read about the BluePrintCleanse and decided to juice fast for the weekend. I was considering ordering the BPC (I still might), but I had just made a fresh batch of pineapple, cucumber, and cilantro juice and wanted to do it right away while the inspiration was fresh in my mind. If I were to order from BPC, I’d probably do the Excavation Cleanse. It’s 6 juices a day- four green juices, a spicy lemonade, and a cashew milk. I had everything already in my kitchen, with a little improvisation. My green juice was my pineapple mixture, I made spicy limeade with limes, water, cayenne pepper and agave, and I had almond milk.

Prep and Day 1
I unintentionally prepped on Friday by having veggie soup for lunch and green juice for dinner. I really wasn’t hungry anyway. Saturday was my official first day and it went pretty smoothly. I had three glasses of green juice, limeade, and almond milk mixed with a little chai tea. I snacked on a few chocolate crispies from One Lucky Duck. They’re vegan and raw, and I had about half a handful. By the end of the day I felt good.

Day 2
Sunday I had some killer cravings for random ethnic foods like tacos, Chinese, and spicy Indian. I didn’t feel hungry, but I wanted to taste those things. I had a few shelled sunflower seeds during the day and another 3 glasses of green juice. I didn’t feel like the limeade or milk so I skipped them. I did buy a bottles of Botlhouse Farms juice to bring to work to make it easier for Monday. I had about a quater of the passion fruit one Sunday night. I also bought glutten free crackers and cookies, along with a 100 calorie pack of guacamole.

Day 3
I wasn’t sure if I was going to get through Monday at work. I figured it would be okay if I quit since I did pretty good over the weekend, but to my surprise I was still feeling really good all day. I had 1 quart of juice during the day along with a lot of tea. I went to the gym and felt really really good running. I only did a little over a mile, but I felt bored more than tired. I was careful to make sure I wasn’t dizzy or weak, and did a quick work out. After I got back from the gym I felt like I was starving. I don’t think I was actually hungry, but the thought of having crackers and guacamole was overwhelming. I had about 7 Nut Thins crackers and half the pack of 100 calorie guacamole. I was by no means stuffed afterwards but I was content to feel something in my stomach. A little while later I had cravings again. It was a test of my will because my body didn’t feel hungry, but knowing that there was food in the kitchen was almost too much temptation. I folded my clothes and went to bed successfully.

Day 4
Today is Tuesday and I figured however I felt this morning would determine my next step. I successfully finished a three day juice fast with very minimal cheating. It wasn’t the very best juice I could find, but it was of good quality. This morning I wasn’t hungry at all, I felt like I went to bed full. My body still doesn’t feel hungry at all. I’m not light headed and I feel pretty solid. I’ve lost about 3.5 lbs since Friday, and I’ve felt happier. Possibly not because of the fast, but a noticeable observation. Tonight I start biking marathons again (or close to it) so I will probably eat a few crackers and the rest of the guacamole before the gym.

The first few days of a fast or special diet are always the hardest for me. You need to have a certain motivation and excitement to overcome the cravings. Now that I’m a few days in I may or may not continue. I will do it based on how my body feels. I’ll be really surprised if I’m able to bike a whole 26 miles today, but I’m going to give it a good try. I’m guessing that I’ll be extremely hungry tomorrow after exercising, and in that case I’ll break the fast slowly.

Killer Candles?

I’ve been seeing a ton of articles lately saying that common (paraffin) candles (especially scented and aromatherapy ones) emit toxins that cause cancer. Yuck. (I admit, everything gives you cancer it seems.) I like burning candles enough that I wouldn’t let the threat of toxins deter me, BUT since there are safer kinds of candles, like vegetable and soy based ones, why not use those instead?

Some facts:

-The smoke from paraffin candles emits benzene, toluene and ketones (linked to cancer, asthma and birth defects).

-The National Candle Association says candles are safe.

-The Environmental Protection Agency says that the toxins emitted can be absorbed by the deepest part of the lungs and lower respiratory tract.

-Wicks made with lead were banned in 2001, but can still be found on the market today.

-Soy candles don’t contain the chemicals paraffin candles have, and produce less soot.

*See links for references below

If you’re local to central PA, you can find soy candles made by Pawprint Candles at The Hodgepodgery.

You can also check out GoodLight Natural Candles.

EPA on Candles (PDF)

Candlelit dinner with a side of toxic chemicals?