About that juice fast… and what I learned about my gut; and some mysticism for fun

So.

Although I had the intention of doing this juice fast for two weeks, I did not. Instead, I began eating fruit starting Monday of this week. Why did I do this? Well, before I get into that, I must give you a little peek into my mystical perspective…

You will soon find out — soon being right now — that I tend to not answer why questions, because that is part of the Great Mystery of What Is. You see, I can only ever, at best, tell you the ‘how’. In fact, this is the best that anyone can do, even highly trained scientists. In double-fact, that’s what Science as a methodology is all about: exploring, discovering, understanding, and explaining The How. We can understand the relationships between specific causes and specific effects and identify patterns that tend to repeat, thus allowing us to make informed predictions about how future situations will be. All of this deals with ‘how’, not ‘why’.

If that doesn’t make sense yet, that’s alright. I didn’t intend this post to be about howzits and whyzits anyway, and I’ll probably make one especially about that stuff sometime. That little tangent was just an elaborate way for me to tell you that I don’t know exactly why I ended my juice fast after only seven days. However, I can tell you my reasoning for doing so, while also examining the events — both physical and mental — which occurred around my decision to do so. If all this seems rather wiggly to you, then good. Because the Whole Thing is made up entirely of wiggles (thank you Alan Watts). [1] Alright, I’m done now. The mystic in me just had to come out and play for a bit, and now Mr. Mystic is satisfied.

So! Here’s why I think I ended my juice fast earlier than originally planned.

Hmm… I don’t know. It just felt like the right thing to do. And you know what? I am so glad to have made this choice, because it gave me some profound insight into the condition of my gut. Remember, in the last post, when I alluded to some traumatic event in my past that gave my a powerful personal experience of how high stress directly and negatively impacts the gut? Well…

I’m not going to tell you about that! (Not yet, anyway). We are, however, getting closer.

So a thing happened. These days I like to refer to that horribly dreadful time of my life as my Big Shit, because it makes light of the whole thing in a comical way which allows me to reflect on how much I have positively transformed since then. After my Big Shit, my gut was a mess. I couldn’t digest much of the food I was eating, I would get terrible gas, bloating, constipation, and all kinds of hypersensitivity in my intestines. I even lost twenty pounds, which brought me down to 130 pounds — not a very healthy weight for me — because the nutrients weren’t absorbing well. I began researching. I made it the topic of a health project for a course I was taking in undergrad. What I found was very helpful.

There are certain foods which contain higher amounts of what are called FODMAPs. This acronym stands for Fermentable, Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides, And Polyols. I’m not going to explain the chemistry of these “short chain carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed in the small intestine”, [2] mostly because I don’t know much chemistry and I would just be parroting whatever resources you could read on your own. What I will say is, they were messing me up.

Since that time, about 7 years ago now, my gut has improved and worsened and improved again, and I seem to have forgotten about FODMAPs — until I ate fruit after fasting on juice for a week. I bought apples, bananas, and dried Medjool dates, all of which were delicious, and all of which are classified as high-FODMAP foods. Needless to say, they messed me up.

That’s an exaggeration, for humorous effect. Really it was just gas and bloating, but still uncomfortable, perhaps more so emotionally than physically. You know, it’s like, “Alright, yeah! Just fasted on juice for a whole week! Now let’s enjoy some tasty fruit!… OH NO!”

Yeah, like that.

Now, at the time of writing this post, two days after my first day eating all that fruit, I am happy to say that I have enjoyed eating some other kinds of fruit which are low in FODMAPs. It seems like I will be adhering to this diet for some time, to allow for further gut healing action! I am glad to have eaten that fruit this week, before I go to the zen center (plan to go, anyway). It’s a strict diet but I look forward to enjoying raspberries and cantaloupe tomorrow for lunch. There are plenty of low-FODMAP foods, and many helpful apps to find out which foods those are. [3]

So why (do I think) am I sharing this? Well, it is my intention to share all of my knowledge, wisdom, and experience which I believe will be helpful and healing. Utilizing my knowledge of FODMAPs has certainly helped me to relieve many uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms, and this knowledge has helped many others as well. I would be honored if someone who could benefit from this knowledge were to first discover it here on my blog. Wouldn’t that be something! [4]

You know, simply by being who we truly are, and sharing our true self with others, we unwittingly help so many — so many people!

That’s all I have for now. I wanted to share this update and information with anyone who is interested. I think my next post will be about something other than my bowels, and perhaps of a more philosophical nature. Stay tuned in for that, if you wish.

. . .

In Benevolence,
Devin The Mindful Mage

. . .

Footnotes

  1. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Watts
  2. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/FODMAP
  3. Here’s one I use: Fast FODMAP Lookup & Learn by Recovery Record | iOS – https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/fast-fodmap-lookup-learn/id1357894765?mt=8 | Android – https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.recoveryrecord.fastfodmap
  4. It may be helpful to check in with a professional practitioner about gut health, if you are just starting your healing exploration.

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