Nasal Congestion Beaten – Decongestant Juice Recipe

file000878463335I don’t know if it was coincidence, or a food reaction, but on Thursday I had the worst battle with nasal congestion I’ve had for months. The image is a representation of how I was feeling!

On Wednesday night, I had my most ‘un-raw’ meal that I’ve had in some time.  It was noodles, vegetables and salmon in white sauce.  One of my previous quick and easy go-to meals after a long day at work.  I’m trying to clear out some ingredients from my pantry that I won’t be using any longer, and that night I chose the noodles and salmon.

Thursday morning, I was miserable!  Sneezing like crazy and completely clogged up.  Rather than popping cold and flu tablets, I pulled out the juicer.  The fridge was raided for pretty much anything that could be juiced, with some select key ingredients: lemon and ginger.  A similar theme to my cold-killer juice, though with more greens.

I don’t have a photo to share, as I wasn’t thinking clearly enough to remember to take one.  I also hope I haven’t forgotten any of the ingredients, as I didn’t write them down at the time.

Decongestant Juice

  • 2 apples
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1/2 lime peeled
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 4 kale leaves
  • 4 celery stalks
  • 1 beetroot
  • 2cm chunk ginger
  • Tumeric root (approx 4cm x 1cm)
  • 1 cucumber

Juice Detox Day 5 – Juice Master Spring Clean

Well, I made it!  I am a little tardy with my update post, but I did indeed do the full 5 days of the detox.  Other than the headaches, I felt no negative side effects, though did find myself feeling lighter through the day.  And I did lose 1kg, an added bonus.  I can only wonder what would have happened if I followed the program to the letter!  Maybe next time.

I really enjoyed the breakfast/evening smoothie on Day 5, but struggled with the middles ones.  I’m not a fan of pears, and this juice retained that slightly gritty texture that pears have.  It also had a peculiar ‘earthy’ undertone to it, which I struggled with.

One of the things I have valued in this program is being forced to try new flavours that I would never have tried otherwise.  Some paid off, and I will actually have those juices again.  Others, well, let’s just leave them in the detox cupboard.

One reason I’m running late with this post is that I went away for my father’s 70th birthday party yesterday – the day following Day 5 of the detox.  From previous experience, I thought it would be fairly easy to find something reasonably healthy to eat.  Wrong!  Party pies, sausage rolls, meatballs, beef kebabs, prawn cocktails, and dairy-based desserts filled the menu.  I selected a couple of the ‘least worst’ items so I didn’t starve, but am really feeling the effects today.  Bloated, lethargic and generally flat.  So out came the juicer and blender this morning to try and flush away the ill effects of yesterday, and start clean again.

I’ll have to take my own dish next time and introduce them all to the wonders of raw.

imageSweet Beet Smoothie

  • 1 apple
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1 medium red beet
  • 1 large handful of blackberries (fresh or frozen) – I used mixed berries (raspberries, strawberries & blackberries)
  • Small handful of ice

 

 

 

 

 

image

Pear ‘n’ Parsnip

  • 1 apple
  • 2 pears
  • 1 medium parsnip
  • 1/2 peeled lime
  • 4 sprigs mint

Juice Detox Day 4 – Juice Master Spring Clean

imageOn the downhill slide now, with Day 4 in the bag!

Feeling pretty good, no headache today, so my body must be adjusting to the lack of caffeine.

I’ve passed my first weight milestone too! That makes 5kg in total since starting on the raw diet. Pretty happy with that!

Today’s drinks were neither my least nor most favourite. I did remember to have the Ginger Shot though, which was pretty potent. I tried making it the first day in my Thermomix, and it didn’t work – just too small an amount for the blades to crush properly. The last two days I’ve simply forgotten it.

Today, I finally remembered, and fully understand why Jason says it will give “a Kapow!” Oh my word, it sure does pack a punch! I’ve never tried Tequila, but I assume it would provide a similar jolt to the brain and fire all the way to your belly. At least this shot is good for you though.

Ginger Shot

  • ½ apple
  • 2cm piece of ginger

 

imageNature’s Super Blend

  • 2 apples
  • 1 large handful baby spinach leaves
  • ½ medium zucchini
  • 1 peeled lime
  • 2 medium carrots
  • ¼ cucumber
  • 2cm broccoli
  • ½ stalk celery
  • ¼ green capsicum (I skipped this as I cannot eat them)
  • ½ avocado

 

 

imageMinty Sunshine

  • 2 oranges
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 thin slice ginger
  • 4 sprigs mint

Juice Detox Day 3 – Juice Master Spring Clean

The detox program calls this Wobbly Wednesday.  I guess that, similar to ‘hump day’, this middle day of the program is where you are most likely to cave in.

Well, I held up pretty well.  I did have a few more snacks – fruit, veggies and nuts – than I should have, but I was really hungry.  That was my biggest hurdle today.  Water and the juices simply weren’t satisfying my stomach’s need for substance.  I think all in all though, I didn’t do too bad.

I only had a mild headache today, and was actually feeling a bit more energised.  The breakfast/evening smoothie today was scrumptious, although the middle juices were a little ordinary.  I persisted though!

imageBerry Banana Crunch

  • 2 apples
  • 2 handfuls of mixed berries (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 tablespoons of natural yoghurt (obviously not raw, so you could either skip this, or use a nut creme as an alternative)
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2 tablespoons mixed seeds (I used sesame and chia)

 

 

 

 

 

imageGreen Refresher

  • 1 apple
  • 1 pear
  • 1/4 cucumber
  • 2 large handfuls baby spinach
  • 2cm broccoli
  • 1 lime, peeled

Detox Day 2 – Juice Master Spring Clean

imageDay 2 done and dusted! Had a cracker of a headache today, which is probably caffeine withdrawals.

Coffee is one thing I still have not broken away from until now. Considering I didn’t even like coffee until I became a uni student – whereby coffee becomes as necessary as air – it has been the single biggest food addiction I am trying to break.

I also don’t know if it’s due to the abundant liquid I am drinking, toxins being flushed out, or a combination of the two, but I am paying much more frequent visits to the little girl’s room. They are the only two real indications of detoxing so far. Oh, plus I’ve lost ½ a kilo!

The morning smoothie wasn’t quite as yummy as Day 1’s but I enjoyed the two middle juices more.

Veggie Power

  • 2 apples
  • 1 large handful of baby spinach
  • 1 large handful of kale
  • ½ lemon
  • ½ stalk of celery
  • ¼ medium cucumber
  • 2cm broccoli
  • ½ avocado
  • 1 small handful of ice

 

Ruby Tuesday

  • ¼ pineapple
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1 red beetroot
  • 1 thin slice ginger
  • 4 sprigs basil
  • 1 small handful of ice

Juice Detox Day 1 – Juice Master Spring Clean

image001-6Well, I have survived the first day of my first ever detox! It actually wasn’t as painful as I expected. There was only one period where I was feeling hungry, but otherwise, the juices and smoothies were keeping me well satiated.

As you have probably gathered by now, preparation is not something I always think of, and I sometimes decide to jump into things before entirely thinking them through. I would never have previously labelled myself as impulsive, and I don’t think I still would. I deliberate long and hard about important decisions, and research all avenues before making my choice. However, it’s once I’ve made that choice that things go a little pear shaped. I then become very impatient, and want to act on my decision – now!

This is where I found myself. This is a JUICE detox, yet I don’t have a juicer. Well I did purchase a small manual juicer when I first decided to go raw, but found it far too painful to use, so it has been sitting in the cupboard. It would never work for this detox, as it takes a good 10-15 minutes to make 100ml of juice – I’d be standing there cranking all day!

I have been using my Thermomix to make juice, by blending and then straining through a nut milk bag. This works a treat, and I have used it many times, however it once again becomes a time factor. This was my method for Day 1. Yet chopping, blending and straining two large servings of juice is simply not practical in my mad rush of getting ready for work. I will leave this for weekends, when I have a little more time.

The other major hurdle with this is that I cannot make a small juice. The first item on the menu is a shot-sized juice, and this simply did not work in the Thermomix.

Hence, last night after work, I purchased a juicer. It’s a centrifugal juicer, which is not the ideal for the raw diet. For me though, with limited time, space and money, it is the best option for now.

Anyway, back to the detox. The plan is to start each day with the Ginger Shot, then there are two serves each of two different juices throughout the day.

Turbo with a Kick

  • 2 apples
  • ¼ pineapple
  • 1 handful of baby spinach leaves
  • ½ lime, peeled
  • ½ stalk of celery
  • 3cm cucumber
  • 1 cm ginger
  • ¼ ripe avocado
  • 1 handful of ice

 

This was made in the Thermomix as a smoothie. One of the nicest smoothies I’ve had to date!

 

Natural Energiser

  • ¼ pineapple
  • 1 large handful of baby spinach leaves
  • ¼ medium cucumber
  • 1cm fennel
  • ½ medium zucchini
  • 15 sugar snap peas or beans
  • ½ lime
  • 1 handful of ice

 

I made this one in the Thermomix and strained through the nut milk bag. First sip saw an interesting face being pulled – not too sure on this one! By the end though, it was quite palatable, though I still couldn’t truly say I enjoyed it. Very much a veggie juice.

No real side effects from the detox as yet, other than a slight headache. I’m hoping to avoid drastic repercussions! Fingers crossed.

Progress Update and Looming Detox

Orange wedges dropping into waterI’ve mostly just been sharing recipes lately, so thought I should update you on my progress in general.

My weight is very slowly dropping, and I have almost met my first milestone, which is pretty exciting!

Another thing I have really noticed is that I am not so much of a puffing billy anymore. Walking from the car park to my office, which is on a very slight incline and includes two flights of stairs, used to leave me puffing and wheezing. Now, I am only breathing slightly heavier, and usually only if I am weighed down by excess luggage – laptop, travel bag etc. For me, that is a huge improvement!

I am about to undertake my next big challenge though – a juice detox.  I have always been dubious of detox programs, and have never seriously thought about doing one.  This juice detox however, is based on natural raw juices and smoothies, so fits right in with the lifestyle change I am attempting.

I doubt that I will go flat out and do a hard-core detox.  The program does call for only the juices to be consumed for 5 days, and only SOS foods to be eaten if absolutely necessary.  I don’t think I’m quite game enough yet to do that, so will probably still have a raw evening meal, or something along those lines.  I will definitely keep you updated – this could get interesting!

Cold-Killer Juice Recipe

imageI have been a little quiet over the last week.  This is due in part to a sequence of events that caused life to spin a little out of control; and partly due to me trying not to get sick.

Friday saw me with a snuffly nose, sneezing, coughing, killer headache, and that general feeling of blegh.  A cold or flu was doing its utmost to pin me down.  I don’t have time to be sick!

However, I brewed up a killer cocktail that caused that bug to hightail it out of here.  By Saturday, the worst of the symptoms had greatly subsided, and by Monday, all that remained was a slightly sniffy nose.

The Cold-Killer Juice was roughly based on the Dragon Juice recipe I obtained from Tansy at the workshop  I attended last month.  As my head was too foggy to track down that recipe, I just threw together some of the key ingredients I could remember, and that I know to have excellent anti-bug properties.

The result was pretty potent, but it truly did help clear my head.

image

RFD Original Recipe, adapted from Raw Food & Joyful Eating with Tansy

Ingredients

  • 1 orange, peeled and segmented
  • 1 lemon, peeled and segmented
  • 4 baby carrots
  • 1 cucumber
  • Chunk of ginger, approx. 1 inch square, peeled
  • 1 clove of Russian garlic
  • ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 4 ice cubes

Method

  • Blend all ingredients thoroughly and strain through nut milk bag

or

  • Juice all ingredients together (ice cubes not required)

This makes 2 servings.  Gently sip throughout the day.

image

Wake-Me-Up Juice Recipe

imageAfter only 4 hours of sleep last night, I was walking in my sleep this morning.

In desperate need of an energy boost, I came up with this juice recipe, now dubbed the ‘Wake-Me-Up’.

While it may not look too pretty, and my hands, chopping board and benchtop once again looked as though murder had taken place, it tasted quite delicious!  And better yet, it worked!

Whilst I am still tired, and looking forward to reacquainting myself with my bed, the fog has lifted, and I have been able to function sufficiently to do what needs to be done.  Let me know if it works for you too.

 

 

Ingredients

  • 2 leaves of curly kale
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 1 cucumber
  • leaves from 2 stems of mint
  • 2 apples (core removed)
  • 2 lemons (rind & seeds removed)
  • chunk of ginger – I used a piece roughly 1cm x 2cm
  • 1 small beetroot
  • 1 teaspoon raw honey

 

Method

  • Chop fruit and vegetables into pieces and add to a blender with about half a cup of water.  Blend for 1 minute until well broken down.
  • Pour into nut milk bag and strain well.
  • Squeeze as much juice from the bag as you can (be prepared for pretty pink hands!).
  • Pour into a tall glass and enjoy!

Note:  I will try adding a couple of ice cubes next time to chill the juice, as I think that will be even more refreshing