Thursday, December 27, 2012
15 Pounds Lost in 43 Days
I have had a lot of people ask me just 'how' I lost 15 lbs in 43 days and so this post is just a bit of information for those of you who want to know exactly what my process was during the past 43 days. It truly was an easy fit into my life and if you like the taste of the veg/fruit smoothie, it will probably work for you too. In the same period, Ed lost over 20 lbs doing the same thing. Again - this is just what I did for the past 43 days - definitely consult a doctor before you do anything like this and if you have young children or seniors who want to do this - it is NOT a good idea for them to do so according to my favorite doctor.
First, I saw the documentary "Hungry for Change" (http://www.hungryforchange.tv/) and it talked about some of the tricks that the diet, weightless and food industry plays on us, and it comes from the same duo that brought us Food Matters in 2008, James Colquhoun and Laurentine ten Bosch - a documentary that looks at how food can improve or harm our health. It was interesting but, to be honest, perhaps a bit biased. In it, however, Joe Cross was mentioned and how he lost 100+ pounds, got off medication and got healthier through a juice fast. That piqued my interest.
I then saw the documentary by Joe Cross called "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead" (http://www.fatsickandnearlydead.com/) and it was my inspiration to try a 5-7 day juice fast to see if it would help me to lose about 15-20 pounds. I immediately went out and bought a Breville Juicer (which was used in the film) and 2 super blender/smoothie blenders, the NutriBullet and the Ninja Pro Blender.
I tried the juice that Joe Cross drank in the movie, 'The Green Machine' and for that, you need the Breville Juicer - or any juicer that pulverizes fruit and veg and extracts the juice. The Green Machine juice was not bad tasting but it isn't something I could drink for every meal and the thought of a pure, filtered, liquid juice diet was not appealing.
Aside from my own personal preferences, I also read a lot of testimony on the web where pure juice fasts/diets had the unpleasant side effect of causing constipation in many people because a pure liquid juice diet does not provide anything in the way of fiber. I've never had those issues and I wasn't going to start encouraging them now just to lose 15-20 pounds.
The NutriBullet blender recipe book offered a very simple formula for making what they called a fruit/veg smoothie. The recipe is simple: 50% of baby spinach or spring mix greens with 50% fruit of any kind, blitzed into a smoothie - skins and all - sans seeds, of course.
(A number of fruit seeds - apples, stone fruits - are not good for you. Please read the 'Apple Note' found at the bottom of the page at: http://patrickchadd.blogspot.com/2012/11/my-favorite-juice-recipe.html)
Anyway, the 50/50 formula was easy to remember and very tasty to my palate. My favorite is blending together 50% baby spinach leaves (or spring mix greens) and a 50% mix of cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon. From time to time I add strawberries or pineapple to the mix as well. I do remove the rinds of the melons and pineapple.
Here are the differences in the Joe Cross 'juice' and my 'juice' - Joe's is true, smooth, watery juice. Mine is a thicker, chunkier, fiber-full smoothie - I adjust the thickness with water.
Juice Differences: http://patrickchadd.blogspot.com/2012/11/my-favorite-juice-recipe.html
So when I say 'juice' or 'fruit/veg smoothie', I am talking about the same thing - a blended mixture of greens and fruits, skins on; not just extracted juice.
So, now for my own personal process:
Through my whole process, I decided that I was NOT going to give up my daily Dunkin' Donuts XL Turbo Hot Coffee with Cream and Sugar. Most days, I have 2 or 3 of these coffees.
Other than the coffee exception, here is what I did:
Day 1 - Day 7: Just drank veg/fruit smoothies. I drank 2 or 3 a night for dinner and some days when I was hungry I had them for lunch and a snack. My snack drink was often just some apples (skin on) and water blitzed into a apple-saucy smoothie.
Day 7 - Day 21: At least 3 to 4 days of the week, I had 2-3 large glasses of the veg/fruit smoothie for dinner. I augmented this every day with fresh cucumbers and tomatoes sprinkled with seasoned salt made up of salt, pepper and garlic powder. I also made fresh roasted sweet petite bell peppers or sauteed mushrooms cooked in a bit of olive oil and their own juices.
For the other days of the week, I grilled skinless, boneless chicken, salmon or steak and had 12 - 16 ounces of protein with my fruit/veg smoothie.
Day 21 - Day 43: I continued with the veg/fruit smoothie and grilled protein just as I had for Day 7 - Day 21: but a couple of nights, I added in some white rice, white bread or potatoes and other carbs which I did not have for the first portion of the fast/transition. A carb-free lifestyle is not something I can do or aspire to - it's not healthy. I specify white rice because that's what I grew up on, that's what I like and what I always eat. If you want to replace this with quinoa, farro, brown rice - it should be fine. I am not a proponent of the "white food is bad" movement and I frankly like way too much of the bad white foods.
Holidays and Restaurants:
Not really thinking, I started in the full glory of the Thanksgiving/Hanukkah/Christmas/New Year's holidays and so attended many holiday parties and dinners given by a variety of people from work and home. I can happily say that at each of those events, I ate my fill of what I wanted and liked from soup, to appetizers, to main dishes, carbs and sweets. In spite of that, I still kept losing weight, and I think it is because I incorporated a daily veg/fruit smoothie on most days.
Right before an event, I would have a glass or two of juice and on the days in between events, I also had a glass or two of juice.
I actually like the taste of the juice and I crave that pretty much every day so it has been an easy adjustment to make.
What will be interesting is this next two weeks in Japan with my family. I left the US at 187 lbs. I won't be getting on a scale until I get home on the 12th of January, 2013. I think I am bound to gain some weight because there is SOOOOO much yummy food in Japan I can't get in the US that I usually pig out when I am there.