Juice fasting – the basics of a powerful detoxification practice
Children, pregnant women, nursing mothers and those who are underweight. Diabetics and others diagnosed with disease should only do so under expert supervision.
By fasting, we can slow down the ageing process, look better, become slimmer, reduce our risk of degenerative disease and feel great about ourselves, whilst also healing our mind, emotions and spirit.
Juice fasting is preferable to water fasting, since many people are already in a state of nutritional deficiency, which is exacerbated by water fasts. When we fast on raw, nutrient-rich juices that are high in vitamins, minerals and enzymes, we eliminate maximum toxins with minimum disturbance, and if the correct juice types are chosen, we balance the blood sugar to avoid pancreatic stress and fasting “highs and lows”, such as hunger or cravings.
The best type of juice for fasting is the green juice. This may vary in its list of ingredients, but always has a base of cucumber and celery, with sunflower green sprouts and pea shoots. So why do I recommend this combination of ingredients? Firstly, cucumber is a great base since it is a non-sweet fruit and is very hydrating. During a fast it is essential to remain hydrated since "the solution to pollution is dilution” – toxic waste is being flushed out of the cells and this process will be made easier and more comfortable with good hydration at a cellular level. Celery adds minerals and gives a slightly salty taste that most people find very pleasant. It is also a good source of organic sodium, a mineral that many people are deficient in, particularly those with adrenal exhaustion or anyone suffering from chronic stress.
Sunflower greens are very high in protein and contain a complete spectrum of essential amino acids. Protein in the juice helps to balance blood sugar and eliminate the risk of cravings whilst fasting. For those interested in energy systems and, in particular, Kirlian photography, it’s fascinating to see that the sunflower green sprout has a Kirlian field that extends out two feet in every direction, making it the most energetic of all plants. In addition, sunflower greens are a fantastic source of enzymes and chlorophyll. Pea shoots are also an excellent and balanced source of protein. Personally I feel it is essential to use sprouts in the fasting drinks, since they contain 10 to 30 times the nutritional value of the best quality standard vegetables. Avoid them and your cells won’t be as well fed as they deserve.
These ingredients make up the standard “Hippocrates Green Drink”, which is served daily at the Hippocrates Health Institute. The reason is simple. It gives the maximum nutritional value and alkalising potential for the body, whilst avoiding any insulin surges. Alkalisation is very important during a fast, since the waste products we are trying to eliminate are almost exclusively acidic in nature and need to be balanced out.
Try to ensure that all the ingredients used in your fasting juices are organic. A fast is a time for detoxification, and you will not detoxify as easily if you are taking in traces of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides in your juices. As far as quantity is concerned, I suggest that for most people, 300ml of green juice, 4 to 5 times daily, is appropriate. This gives you approximately 1.5 litres per day. If you choose to be particularly active or are feeling hungry during your fast, you may want more.
How long to continue? That’s up to you. At about the 3-day point the body begins the marvellous process of autolysis. During autolysis, old, diseased or redundant cells are preferentially broken down and eliminated, thereby beginning true detoxification. The body is very clever, and will never break down healthy calls during autolysis – it’s always the old or diseased ones that go first. Provided that you continue to consume large quantities of nutritionally dense green juices of low glycaemic index, the body will really start getting to work for you.
You may feel a little tired or sluggish on day 2, but after day 3 there is generally a shift to a situation in which it is much more common to experience energy highs and fantastic feelings of lightness and well-being. On my first 3-day fast, I felt so amazing on day 3 that I could not ever imagine wanting to eat solid food again! If you are feeling good on a 3-day fast, you can extend it for up to 7 days with no likelihood of adverse effects.