Since we shared this on Facebook, I’ve had several people ask me how to do it. So here goes…
First let me say that what we do is an amalgamation of stuff we’ve been reading and trying over the last few years – it’s what works for us.
There will be hard core purists saying “you do this wrong”, “that’s not right”, bla bla bla. Our goals with most things in life are “just do it”, “progress over perfection”, and “make it better than before” AND it has to be something that’s sustainable – meaning that we’re going to keep doing it. What’s the point in a really awesome, and extreme, diet if you’re not going to stick with it?!?
This is going to be a very condensed version of what we do every month. I will included references at the end if you want to understand how we got to where we are and do your own experimentation. Again, the only thing that matters is what works for you – otherwise you won’t do it.
Is The Raw Detox A Juice Fast?
Yes and no…
We have done juice fasts several times in the past and no matter which variation we tried, it always left me feeling hungry and generally tired.
So we have added 2 things to our juice fast that make it doable over and over again.
1. We added coconut milk to some of the fruit smoothies we drink. Coconut milk go really well with bananas, pineapple, and even berries.
This is about the time the juice guys are like “whoa” – that’s not in the plan… I really don’t care – it works for us and keeps on the plan far longer than without. There’s just something about the coconut milk that’s soothing, satisfying, and provides all day energy.
2. We have also added whole juice smoothies and optionally a raw meal at the end of the day – the added fiber in the raw meal lets me sleep good at night without feeling deprived. Again, the juice critics are going to throw a fit, but I don’t care – this is what works for me and doing it this way is FAR better for my body than not doing it at all.
This is why we don’t call this a “juice fast”, we call it a raw detox – in reality, it’s somewhere in between.
The Basic 4-Day Raw Detox Plan
For 4 days, eat nothing but raw food, preferably organic, with the major focus on juices and smoothies. Absolutely NO COOKED FOOD.
You could just eat the raw food, but there a lots of benefits to juicing it. (See the books at the end for details on the benefits of eating raw foods.)
The 7-Day Raw Detox
This one we do maybe once or twice per year and the big difference is the last few days. The protocol is the same as above for the first 4 days, but then the last 2 days, we stick to pure juice. I can do anything for 48 hours!
On the 6th night, we do a gallbladder cleanse – and yes it works!
Here are the official instructions for the gallbladder cleanse. (We’ve found that you still get stones, even if you drink other juices for a few days.)
Again, we have modified the original recipe because it was just too hard to follow! The original recipe call for nothing but apple juice for four days – talk about feeling crappy! The last time we did this we drank beet apple juice the last 2 days and it worked great.
The 7th day is a recovery day and it’s OK to start gently reintroducing food. Start with raw fruits for breakfast, and then maybe a salad later, and for dinner, you can eat a normal meal.
All of the fasting protocols tell you to eat light for a few days, but by the end of this all I can think of is pizza or pasta! Just try to control yourself…
Whole (Blended) Juice Vs A Juicer
There are arguments on both sides of this one. All I know is that I got tired of throwing away so much of the good stuff using a juicer. I get better results with my blender – even when I do strain the juice through a cloth strainer.
I’m not going to get into that argument other than to say that, if I like the juice as a whole juice – then I drink it that way. If not, I strain it. Our goal in all of this is to get as much raw stuff in our bodies as possible.
The blender works especially well for greens. Even if you do strain them after blending, there is far less waste.
Quick Tips For Whole Juice
Most juice recipes can be made with a juicer or a blender (whole juice). I prefer a blender – I recommend either the BlendTec or Vitamix – A cheap blender will NOT get the job done. I have the BlendTec – it has a “whole juice” button – which is awesome for this!
To make a juice into a whole juice, just put it in the blender and add 1-2 cups of water.
I have issues with a lot of pulp in my juice – Dan will drink anything! I have found that if I add 1 cup of ice and push the whole juice button and extra 1-2 times, even I can drink the whole juice and nothing goes to waste. (The reason for the ice is that the BlendTec blender is so powerful that the juice will start to get a little warm on the 3rd time.) If you don’t have a BlendTec, 3 whole juice rounds is roughly 2-3 minutes on high.
Before you get too excited, I wanted to challenge you to try juices of every color, including GREEN juices. Fruit Juice has a ton of sugar that not all of can handle. Yes, fruit juices are awesome, but I would limit them to no more than 1 per day – make the rest of your juices vegetable juices.
Another tip that I have learned is never mix red/orange with green – you always end up with baby poop brown.
You’ll develop a preference for your favorite “base”. Some people put carrots with everything. My favorite base is lemon (and a little ginger) – to me, pretty much everything tastes good with those two ingredients as the base. Others will put some sort of fruit juice in all of their green smoothies – that’s just too much sugar for me, so I use lemon instead.
Here are a few of our personal favorite juice recipes and smoothie recipes.
Other Detoxing, Juicing and Raw Food Resources
http://fitlife.tv/juicing-recipes/ – these are seriously some of the best tasting juice recipes available and tons of great video
Global Healing Center
These guys have what is in my opinion the best colon cleansing product on the market. We often combine the colon and liver cleanse with our Raw Detox. Good stuff in – Bad stuff out.
I highly recommend that anyone thinking of eating a more raw diet read her books. Her “Raw Food Detox Diet” and the idea of “raw til dinner” literally changed my life. I completely killed my craving for sugary carbs by following the plan in this book.
Additional Recommended Reading
I’ve read all of these books and highly recommend them. I’ve read many more, but when I look back and say which books changed my life, this is the short list.