Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead. Four words with negative connotations, to be sure.
But it’s also the name of an inspiring documentary that’s been getting a lot of buzz.
Released in 2010, the film follows Joe Cross who, at 310 pounds and taking steroids to combat an autoimmune disease, had reached the end of his rope in terms of his poor health. According to the website, “With doctors and conventional medicines unable to help long-term, Joe turns to the only option left, the body’s ability to heal itself. He trades in the junk food and hits the road with juicer and generator in tow, vowing only to drink fresh fruit and vegetable juice for the next 60 days. Across 3,000 miles Joe has one goal in mind: To get off his pills and achieve a balanced lifestyle.”
Cross talks to more than 500 Americans about food and healthy living while on his journey. He also meets Phil Staples, a truck driver who suffers from the same rare condition. At 429 pounds, Phil is walking a fine line and, inspired by Joe, begins his own journey to get well.
The transformation these two go through is nothing short of amazing. You can see for yourself by watching it on Amazon, Hulu and Netflix.
I happened to watch it with my daughters a few weeks ago and we were all transfixed. The girls had never heard of juicing and I was pretty unfamiliar with the topic myself. But needless to say it made an impact on all three of us. As the credits were rolling, they asked if we could try juicing. I didn’t need much convincing. Not 10 minutes later we headed to the store to get the necessary supplies: a juicer and a hefty supply of fruits and veggies.
To clarify, I would never subject my kids to a juice fast. There are various schools of thought on the subject, but in general it’s not recommended for children. (It should also be noted that Joe and Phil did their juice fasts under strict medical supervision.) But drinking 100 percent fruit and vegetable juice — and not the kind you find in stores that are filled with preservatives and added sugars — is a healthy way to quickly introduce vitamins and minerals into their little bodies.
The first recipe we tried can be found on Joe’s website: RebootwithJoe.com.
Joe’s Mean Green Juice:
- 1 cucumber
- 4 celery stalks
- 2 apples
- 6-8 leaves kale
- 1/2 lemon
- 1 T. ginger
- Wash all produce well.
- Peel the lemon, optional.
- Juice it all.
- Pour over ice and enjoy!
It serves 1-2, so if you want more, double it.
Now, I was a little nervous about how this would taste, but more so of the girls’ reaction. But that was wasted energy because we all loved how deliciously light and fresh it was. Throughout the weekend we tried different recipes and were equally pleased with those. So, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by this experience and will continue to experiment with other ingredients in the days and weeks to come.
What about you? Ever tried juicing or juice cleanse or fast? Let me know your thoughts.