Juicing is a PITA, Having said that…

December 5, 2013

PITA = Pain In The Ass

A client (and friend) of mine recommended a fantastic book to me. “Crazy Sexy Diet” by Kris Carr was my vacation reading last week in Israel. It’s not exactly a “beach read” in the vain of “DaVinci Code” but I really enjoyed Kris’ story.  Although, I have to admit I did sit by the pool reading this vegan manifesto while eating a few Bamba and Kinder Bueno!

Bamba

Bamba

The author, Kris Carr, was diagnosed with an incurable cancer at age 31 and faced with an incredible journey, took her life in her own hands and became a vegan and wellness warrior. Her documentary, “Crazy Sexy Cancer” was shown on TLC and she has appeared on Oprah spreading her message of “Make Juice, Not War.”

Kris Carr, from Origin Magazine

Kris Carr, from Origin Magazine

From Kris’ website, “My backstory and why the heck I know a thing or two … On Valentine’s Day in 2003, I was diagnosed with a very rare and incurable (yet thankfully slow-growing) stage 4 cancer. This whiskey tango foxtrot moment (that’s military lingo for WTF?!) sparked a deep desire in me to stop holding back and start living like I mean it! I wanted to feel better, love harder and enjoy my life more fully. So I hit the road on a deep healing pilgrimage and have never looked back. Nearly ten years later, my life is truly, madly magical–even with cancer. If I can pull that off, just imagine what YOU can do!”

I found her story inspiring and also a wake up call, even for me, someone who thankfully has never had to think about a cancer diagnosis. The message is so clear to me – eat a plant based diet to have the best health.

Wait, wait! Don’t go anywhere! I know the words “plant based diet” freaked you out and maybe made you want to run to Shake Shack for a burger. But wait, hear me out.

I’m not becoming a vegan.

Whew. (Side note, Jay-Z and Beyonce are becoming vegan according to the news today. I can’t believe we’ll never get the chance to bump into them at our local pizza joint, Lucali. They’ve been known to frequent it while in Brooklyn. Pizza ain’t pizza with the cheese, amiright?).

Having said that, I am adopting a 90% plant based diet.

I’ve been doing this for the last year, but always with some trepidation. Last year I attempted veganism for 1 week and I did so well it lasted 12 days. To which my cousin Paul (a well-known vegan in the family) scoffed, “12 days?!?!” Lame, I know. But it’s all I could handle at the time. I wanted a friggin’ poached egg at brunch, so sue me.

Veganism has always intrigued me because my blog is called MY LOVE AFFAIR WITH CHEESE. This is *not* a vegan manifesto. The idea of being so pure of body that you only put plants and nuts in your stomach seems romantic to me and lofty. “Only whole grains like teff and millet grace these lips, nothing so pedestrian as quinoa or god forbid – spaghetti. I’m just a perfect specimen of plant based godliness. I never crave pizza or Entenmann’s chocolate donuts. I only eat cocoa nibs for dessert once a month.”

Doesn’t sound like me at all. Yet, I’m intrigued by it. I admit it, I want a piece of that crazy sexy body and mind.

So since I am coming off of a vacation and admittedly a very stressful couple of weeks leading up to vacation, I decided upon return to “Make Juice, Not War.”  I had to go shopping for all the veggies and green apples for juicing first.  My fridge was so empty since we had been away, I only had a sad little piece of ginger in the crisper drawer.  I shopped and then I prepped all the goodies for juicing. I washed all the greens and chopped everything up into juicer friendly sizes.  Then I filled giant ziploc bags with the fixings for one juice where all the ingredients were ready-to-go.  This way in the morning when I am ready to juice, I just have to grab a bag and start chucking veggies down the chute!  I tried a new juice recipe from Kris Carr’s book that included kale, romaine, ginger, cucumbers, broccoli stem and a green apple. Surprisingly, broccoli stems are sweet and are a great source of Vitamin C & Vitamin K.  I also loved the idea of using the stems from broccoli that I would normally just throw out.

20131204-192531.jpg

First juice in a while!

A few tips from Kris that I found really helpful were:

1) You can juice ahead of time and keep the juice in glass mason jars in the refrigerator.  Fill the juice up to the top so there’s no space for air,  to prevent oxidation.

2) When creating a juice recipe use the ration 3:1.  That’s 3 vegetables to 1 piece of fruit. This way you are making sure you get your veggies in but with a touch of sweetness from fruit that makes it taste amazing!

3) Once you’ve juiced all your ingredients, empty the bin with the leftovers and re-juice. Sending it back through the chute could yield you another half a cup of juice.  If you hate the idea of waste, juicing the ingredients twice will make sure you get the most out of them.

I even took the leftovers from juicing and tossed them into my Vitamix blender for about 7 minutes (with an additional carrot and tomato, for flavor) and made a soup out of it!  Sure, it was green, but I liked it!

So yeah, juicing is a bit of a PITA because you gotta prep the ingredients and clean the juicer, but I feel so good when I’m drinking juice!  I think it’s worth it.  I bought a cheap scrub brush from Container Store that makes cleaning my juicer even easier.  And hell, I have a dishwasher.

I just bought Kris’ cookbook as well, “Crazy Sexy Kitchen” and I can’t wait to try more vegan juices and main dishes.  Maybe I will get a small piece of that plant-based godliness after all.

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One Response to “Juicing is a PITA, Having said that…”

  1. […] many times on this blog that I still enjoy meat and dairy, though in much smaller portions.  Having said that, I do eat more vegetarian and vegan sources of protein and calcium than ever before.  And I like […]

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