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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Now, wait a minute! Wasn't there another juice?

Yes. It got pushed to the back of the fridge and I had to climb in to get it. I drank it over the course of the last couple days with my lunch, much to the amusement/disgust of my coworkers. Because, you know, I was drinking something GREEN. And having it with a salad.

One of my coworkers watched me tear up my lettuce for my salad yesterday and mentioned that she didn't know how I could eat it without cutting it up into tiny pieces. "Of course," she also added, "I put waaayy more salad dressing on my lettuce than you do, too. I don't want to taste that."

I used to be a dressing dipper-- you know, I'd dip my fork into my salad dressing. Now, though, well, especially at work, I don't have a little soufflé cup or anything to put dressing in. I can't stand the thought of pouring a small bowl of dressing and then having it get thrown away or forming a crust on top... so I've turned to pouring dressing back onto my salad. Just a little drizzle--I estimate (and yeah, I know we humans are bad at estimating) about a tablespoon. And then I toss the salad around to make sure some dressing gets spread across. Frankly, once I've added the cheese and meat to give my salad some protein, there are only a few bites of salad that taste like lettuce with dressing. Or spinach and dressing. Or some other green leaf with dressing.

Anyway, the last juice in my fridge was the Naked brand Green Machine. It was sweet. I think the first two ingredients were apple juice and mango puree.

Finishing it made me think of trying one of these Superfood capsules or drinks that are available--but they are all WAY out of my price range. I don't trust the reviews of them, either. I can't remember what it was, but there was some tropical superfood-type-thing that came out, a kind a juice, about 6 or 7 years ago, and I did try it, along with my best friend, and neither of us thought it was worth continuing after a couple bottles. It wasn't entirely disgusting, but it was definitely what I'd call an acquired taste, and we weren't feeling the benefits that would have made it worth acquiring.

Lately I've been remembering an episode of my life when Big Sister was about a year and a half old. I had a sinus infection and inflammation, and it was truly awful. I think my doctor prescribed 3 different things. The coolest was this anti-inflammatory. When my husband and I went to pick it up, I actually used one of the store's little wheelchairs, because I wasn't really capable of walking as far as from the front of the store to the pharmacy area in one go, and I knew there wasn't a rest stop in between. That's how badly off I was.

When the pharmacist handed us my prescription, he explained the anti-inflammatory so that we'd both know how it was supposed to work. 7 pills the first day, 6 the second day, 5 the third day... and so on. Plus, the pills were all color-coded for some reason. The pharmacist also explained that while I was taking these, I shouldn't drink coffee, because they tended to make people jittery.

I didn't get jittery, but I did feel more awake than I had felt in YEARS. Everything came to me clearly, I got stuff around the house done, and I slept like a baby.

And speaking of babies, these prescriptions were the reason I had to stop breastfeeding my little one. It was about time anyway, as far as I could tell--I was down to feeding her at night, before putting her in bed--and she never even got upset about it. It was as if, the day I took those pills, she knew we were done with that, and she started going to bed without my "help".

Now, I'm not saying I have no energy on a regular basis. I feel "normal" or what is normal to me, at least. But I've been semi-looking for the kind of energy I got from those anti-inflammatory pills ever since. I'd prefer to do it naturally. I'd prefer if it weren't a matter of taking something, or eating something, or whatever. Back when I was younger and could drink 12 shots of espresso without feeling hyper, I didn't have this much energy. Heck, I can drink a cup of coffee and go to bed. (I try not to, and recently I bought some decaf so I feel better about having a cup in the evenings, because to me, coffee--especially warm coffee--is more about relaxing and enjoying than trying to wake me up.)

And it's not about needing rest, I think. Before I had kids, when I had time to sleep in or take a nap without planning it and working out the details with my husband, I could sleep all night, wake up and get a bite to eat, then fall asleep watching a movie. I did that a lot before I got married, if I was out of work. I'd wake up feeling no more or less energized than if I'd just had a night's sleep.

Sometimes, the most energized I've felt has been after staying up all night. I've been a night owl since I was a kid, and I have always preferred to be up at night. My mother, my paternal aunt, and my sister--and apparently a couple of my paternal cousins--have all been night owls. Big Sister is a night owl, when we let her. So I can't help but feel that if I didn't have to have a day job, if I could work at night, I'd be better off. But it's hard to function with the rest of the world that way. If I worked at night, I'd still see my kids a bit, but I wouldn't be able to go to many of their school things. You can't get any banking (or in my small town, shopping) done. 98% of the world is suspicious of anyone who leaves their home at night.

All that being said, since I've had kids, my brain shuts down right around 11 if I haven't already gone to sleep--and usually, I have. Tuesday night, I was asleep around 7. That's disturbing, even to me.

My juice experiment... I don't know whether or not to consider it a success. I'm sure I got some of the nutrients of green fruits and veggies I wouldn't have had time to eat, but I know I didn't get the fiber, even from the bottles that need to be shaken because of settling. There might have been more fiber than in, say, the store-bought highly-processed apple juices, because they definitely had a thicker texture. Other than the Daily Greens, though, they were... sweet. I always cut fruit juice with water, so I've gotten away from needing the really sugary juices, and I don't do cocktail juices anymore, strictly 100% natural juice. This makes me think that the Daily Greens was probably the most healthy, and probably the closest to what I'd have if I threw some stuff together in a blender. On the plus side, they had the spirulina, dulse, and other things that you're not going to find in a small-town grocery store, so there was some stuff in these bottles that I wouldn't have been able to throw into a blender.

But do I feel different after having them? No, not really. I didn't go whole-hog and ONLY juice, but that's not something I could do while nursing Baby Boy, and probably wouldn't want to do, anyway. I'm a skeptic about juice fasting, but I was more than willing to add juice to my diet for a week or so.

I'm glad I did. I think that if I have a couple bucks to spend on a bottle of juice, I'd be happy to have one of these--not Daily Greens, unless I could combine it and one of the others. I'd very happily drink one of these instead of a soda, but I probably only drink about 12 sodas a year, anyway--and a couple of those would be ginger ale when I'm not feeling well.

The success is, I guess, knowing which one to avoid if the opportunity arises, and feeling entirely comfortable drinking the others.

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  • 2HAMSDIET
    My husband travels a lot and tried the juice route. He deiced that they were to much juice and not enough whole things. That is when he found he could make smoothies the night before and take with him. They don't seem to separate and he is happy as they are chilled and not frozen like normal. We use frozen greens many times in them as it is fast and easier. We looked into all those other stuff that they put in them and deiced that wasn't needed in our diet.
    Is it possible that you could be having some brain fog. I get if from being hyrpothroid and from having intoirlence to gluten and dairy. Some thing to ponder as I would have never guessed that that could happen.
    Good thing I don't work in your office as some times I make lettuce wraps and fill them with chopped lettuce/veggies. That would really throw some people for a loop Have a good weekend and hope you get some night owl time. My husband is a night owl too but has also be force into the day light club with me the sunrise worshipper as he calls it.
    1834 days ago
  • WALLAHALLA
    My favorite kind of juice is really a smoothie. I tend to be lazy, and pressed for time, so I put a small bag of frozen fruit in the blender, add some fresh veggies and a lemon (or a bit of lemon juice), and puree it. If it is too thick, I add some water. I get all the fiber and nutrients that way, and it is very filling, It also thwarts my cravings. In the long run it is cheaper than buying bottled juices/smoothies. I had to experiment to get the amounts where I like the flavor. I never seem to taste the spinach or kale, but if I get to much celery or cucumber it is overwhelming. My co-workers make fun of me all the time, but I don't care. I'll have the last laugh in the long run.
    1835 days ago
  • KATELJM
    When I was working, I kept a small bottle of olive oil and a bottle of balsamic vinegar at my desk, so I could add them at the last minute. When I was eating a low-fat diet, I enjoyed balsamic vinegar without the olive oil; but it needed to be a good quality balsamic.
    1835 days ago
  • KATELJM
    Coming from a personal history of strange reactions to Rx since the age of 4, I ask, did you check the possible side effects of your magic inflammatory pills? Sometimes we try to fix one thing and cause a new problem. But I understand the desire to feel clear headed and full of energy. I tend to have sinus issues, too, but fortunately I found Claritin to be effective on short notice for me without causing me to hype up or feel drowsy.

    So have you checked which foods tend to increase inflammation? Have you tried to eliminate a suspect food and replace it with something less alarming to your digestive system? When you review your nutrition intake by nutrient, do you see any that are consistently lower than recommended? I have found SP's Nutrition review to be very informative, and it led me to investigate some of the nutrients in greater depth.
    1835 days ago
  • KOFFEENUT
    Like you, I'm not sold on the whole "juice fasting", although I will fix a smoothie for myself when I want to change things up. It's a great way to get rid of veggies/berries that aren't enough to use for an actual meal, but add a little volume to a smoothie.

    It's a great feeling when our brains are super-engaged, isn't it? Like we're connected at a level we don't usually live at?
    1835 days ago
  • SUNSHINEYOURWAY
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    1835 days ago
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