To Detox, or Not To Detox – Pt. 2
by Melissa Pancini – Melissa Pancini
It’s one of the quickest ways to increase elimination of wastes and enhance the healing processes of the body.
Although therapeutic fasting is probably one of the oldest known therapies, it has been largely ignored by the medical community despite the fact that significant scientific research on fasting exists in the medical literature.
Fasting is a period of abstinence from all food and drink except water. During the absence of food, the body will systematically cleanse itself of everything except vital tissue.
Starvation will occur only when the body is forced to use vital tissue to survive. Although protein is being used by the body during the fast, a person will not suffer a deficiency of protein, vitamins, minerals or fatty acids. In the breakdown of unhealthy cells, all essential substances are used and conserved in a most extraordinary manner. There is an unwarranted fear of fasting that strength diminishes from the catabolism of proteins from muscle fibers. Even during long fasts, the number of muscle fibers remains the same. Although the healthy cells may be reduced in size and strength for a time, they remain perfectly sound.
Juice fasting is an often misunderstood practice and can be very detrimental if not approached correctly.
When used intelligently and carefully, juice fasting can be a beautiful, nourishing tool to improve your health, clarity and sense of connection to self and your spiritual life. It can allow you to go deeper into cleansing your body, breaking down acidic waste matter and rejuvenating your body at a cellular level, which is then reflected in the health and vitality of all of you.
It is a certain period of time when all you typically consume only liquids, specifically water, herbal teas, fresh fruit and vegetable juices and strained vegetable broth.
Just as important is what you are not consuming when fasting — any liquids which will tax the body such as coffee, caffeinated teas, milk, soda, pasteurized juice, protein powder mixes, diet drinks and so on. Solid or blended foods are also not consumed as the fiber content activates digestion which is avoided during fasting.
When you juice your fruits and vegetables, you remove the fiber and drink only the liquid which contains the organic hydration, nutrients, vitamins and enzymes from the plant food. Although you do need fiber in your diet, going for a certain period of time without it will give your body a chance to spend less energy on digestion.
Around 70% of your energy every day is spent on digestion alone, so when you are eating 3 meals a day plus snacks, you are rarely giving your body a chance to direct energy to deeply cleansing the body and drawing up old acidic waste.
Enjoy plenty of fresh vegetable juices, particularly green vegetable juices with a touch of fruit to sweeten the juice and ensure it is still delicious. You can also use sweeter vegetable such as carrot, beetroot and bell pepper to add sweetness.
A good rule of thumb is to ensure that at least half of your juices when fasting are green vegetable based juices, and then use other juices for fun and variety. Be particularly careful not to overdo fresh fruit juices as they will send your sugar levels out of balance and feed yeast if over consumed.
Low sugar fruit juices are a better option. Fresh grapefruit juice alone is divine, green apples add sweetness to any juice, and berries add a whole new indulgent flavor. Use lemons and limes in everything if you like! They are brilliant alkalizers and extremely low in sugar.
How much juice you drink when fasting is a very personal decision as it should be directed by your own hunger signals and how you feel. However, it is ideal to include at least one liter of green vegetable juice every day, if not more. Then you could enjoy another one to three litres of juice dependent on how much you feel you need.
For both myself and a lot of clients that I guide on fasts, two to three liters of juice over the day feels good, although some days might be a little less or more. Get your one to two liters of mostly green vegetable juice in as your non negotiable and then have more juice according to your body’s needs.
There are lots of detoxification diets but they all have similar guidelines. A detoxification diet will be rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, fruit and vegetable juices and high quality water. Normally we need to eliminate consumption of animal foods since they are harder to digest. You can eat as much as you want and at any time, it’s wise to stop eating 3 to 4 hours before bedtime. Drink a lot of water with lemon to help detoxify faster and more effective.