The long awaited day has finally arrived! It’s funny too because through the latter half of the 7th day and waking up this morning I felt terrific, as if I could have gone on for a few more days actually. Well, there’s always next time. This morning I got up to an amazing sunrise and managed to practice pranayama without falter, wavering focus, or energy dipping so low I need to lay down. It was just easy and beautiful with an amazingly clear intention set during the last antar kumbhaka(retention of inhalation).
After practice I cleaned myself up and got everything ready for my debut back in public. My prime objective: to return to Vikasa Yoga and make juice! I brought with me something I made last night to aid in friendly flora love returning to my digestive tract. A weakly fermented coconut juice. I used the meat, the juice, another 50% water, and about one teaspoon of a special probiotic product from Japan called EM Probiotics(which smells delicious!) It has a large variety of healthy bacteria stabilized in molasses. This was the first thing I had this morning, mixed with another 50% water. The leftovers of this blend is also for making my first coconut “cheese” later!
I let it set in and moved to the real deal. Juice. I think most juice concoctions have been invented but I seem to have come up with this one independently. A lot of cucumber, some aloe vera, not too much pineapple, and a little bit of mint. I also added more fermented coconut water. The first day breaking a fast is a delicate matter. You should avoid strong concentrations of sweetness and keep everything soft. Mostly green juices mixed with a little bit of fruit and probiotics throughout the day are ideal. Then go to soft fruits. The flavor explosion was ecstasy. I sat in a chair, reveling in the mint and pineapple twist, cooled by the cucumber, while I munched thoroughly on the un-blended aloe chunks and looked into the trees and greens around me. Did everything look this bright and colorful ever before? I must admit I probably looked funny. That aside, success! No “pit” feeling in my stomach and only a slight sugar high. I lay around and talked with Vikasa friends for about an hour before making my next juice. The day continued on like this and my power quickly soared. I went out to do errands, set up work projects and practiced a few Asana.
Today’s Intake:8:30 Fermented coconut water, aforementioned juice 9:30 Cucumber and Orange juice 60%/40% 11:00-12:00 Coconut Oil Massage 1:00-2:00 2x Carrot, Parsley, Celery, and Orange juice then a spoonful of coconut yoghurt 4:00 1 Shot of Wheat grass with an orange slice(first solid thing requiring chewing!) 5:00-6:00 2 Dragonfruit with fresh lime juice 6:45 1 Orange 7:30 1/2 glass carrot juice and Coconut Milk soup rich with lemongrass, Kaffir Lime leaves and Carrot, little bit of chili powder!(couldn’t resist!) 7:45 1 spoon of cashew “cheese”
On Carrot Juice and Vitamin A or β-Carotene…
While having dinner I talked with Stan and Catherine, mostly about fasting. Both of them informed me having either too much Vitamin A or beta-Carotene after a fast is bad for the liver. I had never heard of this so last night I checked it out. Thanks guys. Like many things, moderation is best. It turns out that these beneficial nutrients can be harmful in excess. While Vitamin A is detoxifying for the liver, in excess it itself is toxic. Beta-Carotene is a precursor to Vitamin A. The duodenum uses a special enzyme to split in half making…Vitamin A. So, you were both right! The question here is how present is the enzyme after a fast? Beta-Carotene does not seem to be toxic in excess since the body stores it in the skin to no ill effect, but it will make you turn orange. Moderation again. Most sources I checked said no more than 8-24 ounces of carrot juice a day for normal diets. For fasters and breaking fasts I’d recommend two 6-12 ounces mixed with green juice twice a day.
What would I do different?
Next time I need to bulk up more, especially if I want to do a 10 day water fast as I’m intending. This has always been a challenge for me as I’m a very active and Yoga seems to turn anyone who practices lithe and lean. I didn’t have a scale around to measure the weight differences but I got really skinny in 7 days. It’s also difficult because healthy eating does not put on fat easily.
So…how will I do it? I’ll keep researching but I plan on keeping this coconut yogurt and cheese in my life. A week before I’ll eat a lot of nuts and avocados, and alternate dinners between fatty fish and hearty pasta or grains.
Take more Bentonite clay during the fast. I had never used this substance before so I was using it modestly. Some people recommend taking 1-2 tablespoons mixed in water every morning. It seemed like a lot of clay to me. I slowly built up to a full teaspoon by my last day and now think the full tablespoon is a good idea to get maximum effectiveness.
After this carrot juice lesson I think I’ll drink less carrot juice as well when I break a fast. I didn’t exceed 24 ounces and my body felt fine drinking it but I did have a lot and again for dinner, lots of carrot. So, little less next time for moderation sake. Feeling great and looking forward to tomorrow!