Step on the juice and throw out the junk

liquid fast

I have been practising this juice-based fast on a fairly regular basis for years and always feel better at the end of it. It needs to take place over a long weekend when you can relax and be quiet. It is also good if you can have some sort of relaxing treatment at the same time, such as an aromatherapy massage, or a long walk in the country. You will almost certainly have side-effects, especially the first two days, including headaches, nausea (occasionally vomiting), spots or other skin problems, and dizziness if you have very low blood pressure. At the end, you should feel well and full of energy, as well as having clearer skin and having lost a few pounds. Internally, the juice fast cleanses the blood, the digestive system and all the main organs of elimination - liver, kidneys, digestive tract and colon. It also gives them all a rest.

Before the fast, spend a couple of days on just raw fruit and vegetables and do the same for two days aferwards. One of the main points of a fast is to re-educate the body in terms of what it wants to eat - it should feel so much better without the junk food you have been eating that you will probably decide to give up such food altogether.

Day one: fruit juice day

8am hot water with juice of 1/2 lemon

9am carrot and apple juice made of 4 carrots and 2 green apples

10.30am half-pint of mineral water (still) or herb tea (peppermint or camomile)

12 noon grapefruit (1) and orange (2) juice

2pm half-pint of water or herb tea

3.30pm pineapple (1/2), mango (1) and papaya (1) juice

5pm water or herb tea

8pm repeat one of the two last juices

9.30pm herb tea

Day two: vegetable juice day

8am hot water with juice of 1/2 lemon

9am carrot and apple juice

10.30am water or herb tea

12 noon carrot (4), parsley (2oz), and cucumber (1/4) juice

2pm water or herb tea

3.30pm beetroot (4oz), cucumber (1/4), celery (2 stalks) watercress (small bunch). This is a strong juice and will need diluting with mineral water

5pm water or herb tea

8pm repeat one of two last juices

9.30pm herb tea

Day three: fruit juice day (or repeat day one)

8am hot water with juice of 1/2 lemon

9am carrot and apple juice

10.30am herb tea or water

12 noon raspberries, strawberries, cherries (4oz each), 1 peach

2pm water or herb tea

3.30pm carrot and apple juice

5pm water or herb tea

8pm berry juice (1 peach, 1 punnet each of raspberries and strawberries) or one of juices from day one

9.30pm herb tea

These juices can only be made in a juice extractor (about pounds 40) or buy freshly squeezed juices in season.

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