By now, you have probably heard of all of the benefits juicing offers you. I thought about it from time to time but always thought of it as too much work. So, I continued to eat pasta, deli meats, and anything that contained salt and sugar. I didn’t feel great, but I didn’t feel horrible. At least I didn’t think so.
About 2 years ago, I went to my general practitioner for my usual check-up. Of course, I was overweight by about 30 pounds, but so was my doctor so he didn’t say anything. Then came the blood work. I was near the danger zone for pre-diabetes and I had hypothyroidism, or an underactive thyroid. I thought, “Great! A reason that I’m overweight without having to blame myself!”
Then my doctor told me I needed to watch my sugar intake and take a pill every day to help my thyroid. I asked if there was anything I could do to improve my thyroid myself. His answer was simple with no explanation, “No.”
So, I left the doctor’s office with my prescription in hand and had it filled. That night I took to the computer and did some research on thyroids. Nothing came up. Nothing! Just the medications I could take for it.
I went to bed that night, but caught barely a wink of sleep. My mind was going crazy trying to figure out a way to avoid taking the medicine. “I could just not take it.” But then I remembered my doctor warned me if I didn’t take it, my thyroid would get worse and I would need a higher dosage. So that clearly wasn’t an option.
And then, around 4am, a light went off in my head: Try juicing! That was it. I couldn’t sleep now that I had decided to put my doctor’s words to the test. I eagerly browsed the Internet to find out what I needed to know. I read about a documentary called Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. It changed my life.
I bought my Breville juicer and waited patiently for it to arrive. I gave myself four months. If I went back for blood work and nothing was fixed, I would accept my fate and take the pill.
Before my juicer came, I went to Whole Foods and bought the fruits and vegetables I knew I liked.
Apples, oranges, kale, spinach, romaine, and cucumbers. I researched some recipes and found one using what I bought.
After what seemed like forever (it was really only three days), my juicer came! I unpacked it and put it on the counter. That’s it. I was scared. What the heck do I do with this thing? It was huge, intrusive, and looked like it was ready to juice ME!
I let it sit there for a day, then another day. It stared at me and begged me to use it. I’m pretty sure it grew evil horns. After all of the excitement I felt, did I really just spend $150 on a juicer to let it decorate my countertop with its evil stares? No!
Finally, I had enough. I was 30 pounds overweight because I have been scared of success. I was not going to let that hold me back again!
I boldly took out my fruits and veggies, gave them a wash, and turned on what was probably the loudest kitchen appliance ever made. Well, if it didn’t heal my thyroid, it would certainly make me deaf.
I finally pushed the produce through, and this green liquid emerged. I imagined Joe from the documentary drinking it and making it look simply delightful. I was excited to taste it!
I chilled the 32oz. of juice while I cleaned the juicer – much easier than I thought! I took a picture of my delicious drink to show off to all of my Facebook friends about how healthy I was about to become and I bravely took my first sip. Wow!
It was probably the nastiest thing I ever had. It was too much. Too much kale! It was bitter, and oh-
But I just spent a boatload on produce and I wasn’t about to throw away this probably $7 juice. So I held my breath and chugged it. The feeling I got for the rest of the day was amazing! I felt energized, happy, and satisfied. Though only for a short while. I learned early on that juice fasts are tough. You need to juice a lot in order to stay satisfied. But, I was on a mission. I did not fast the whole time.
Only a day or two at a time. The rest of the time I ate organic chicken and spinach, salad, or eggs. I avoided wheat, sugar, and dairy.
Four months, about 100 recipes later (yes, there are some great tasting ones!), and 35 pounds gone, I was ready to get my blood taken!
I went off to the doctor and nervously awaited my results. He came in quiet. I was sure I had killed my thyroid and given myself diabetes.
He looked up from my test results and gave me the saddest smile I have ever seen. Did I only have months to live? What is the look for?!
“Amanda, your test results are perfect. Your thyroid seems to have fluctuated back to normal, your sugar is good, and your cholesterol is down.”
I liked the term “fluctuated,” as if my thyroid did it by itself and anything I did was just coincidence.
I stared blankly at him and blinked a few times. Then, I smiled, shook, his hand, thanked him for his time, and said my last goodbye to the doctor who tried to get a perfectly healthy 24 year old woman on meds for the rest of her life without giving her options!
My goal here on this blog is to let you know, no matter how tight your budget is, it is always better to focus on your health now or you will pay for it later. I am a newlywed on a tight budget getting ready to begin my new life with my husband, and I want to bring you on my journey to juicing on a budget!
Thank you for reading!