“I believe juicing has not only changed my life, but also has SAVED my life” says Lori Camper, who describes herself as a “a 40-something year old stay-at-home-mom, living in the Midwest (USA)”.

Lori told me how she first heard about juicing more than 15 years ago, when a friend of hers juice for whenever she got sick or wasn’t feeling well. It was about 5 years ago, after she had a conversation with a friend, that she was compelled to try it for herself.

Lori says: “A friend at church had lost a substantial amount of weight. I asked her how she did it, and she handed me the movie, Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead.”

“I started juicing for weight loss. About 20 years ago, I did a high protein, low carb diet. It did work, and I lost 40 pounds very quickly. However, after doing that diet for a few months, I was very, very tired of that way of eating.”

“Just like any other diet, it only works as long as you’re on it, and I soon went back to my old ways of eating and gained more than twice the weight I lost.”

“I finally came to the wrong conclusion that my weight was not something I could control. I will never diet again, but instead have made a lifestyle change.”

The headline of Lori’s blog says “Striving to be half the person I used to be.”

To date she have shed 105 pounds (14 and a half stone) and her goal is to drop another 50 pounds, which will take her to less than half her starting weight.

It is NOT only about weight loss

Lori has a a blood disorder called MTHFR. She explains:

“My body processes folate at about 30%.  My body does not process folic acid, so it is recommended that people with my disorder stay away from gluten simply because most foods containing gluten are enriched with folic acid.”

“I take a vitamin formulated specifically for my blood disorder and make sure that I eat and juice lots of leafy greens.”

“Juicing is the most efficient way to get the nutrients my body is lacking into my bloodstream.”

“The biggest changes, of course, have been my weight loss and how I look.”

“Other changes have included clearer thinking, clearer skin, bluer eyes, better vision, lots of energy, and feeling better than I have my entire life.”

“Juicing has also changed my taste buds and the foods that I desire. I no longer want the high-carb, sugary, salty, processed foods, but instead desire fresh fruits and vegetables. Processed foods and soda taste so salty and sweet to me now, that they don’t even taste good anymore.”

Lori shared some of the challenges she faced on her journey, together with some sound advice for avoiding impulse buying in the supermarket.

She says: “My biggest challenge was making sure that I had what I needed when I needed it. I’d plan a time to make juice, and then find that I didn’t have the ingredients I needed and I was too exhausted to go to the store.”

“I found a grocery store in my area where I could order my groceries online and either have them delivered or pick them up. I did this for several months when my life was so busy that it was difficult to find time to go to the store. I figured that the $2.99 pick up fee more than compensated for the impulse purchases I would not be making.”

“I believe juicing has not only changed my life but also has saved my life due to my blood disorder,” says Lori.

Increased energy

“With juicing, I’m able to get lots of nutrients into my body that I could not otherwise. I am more active than ever before. I feel better now than I have my entire life,” Lori told me.

She adds: “I rarely take a nap anymore, which gives me more time to be active with my children (who range in ages from 8-25) and my two new grand-babies.”

So did Lori make any juicing mistakes?

“I think my biggest juicing mistake was not tapping into the juicing community right away,” she says.

“I didn’t know anyone else that was juicing on a regular basis. I was out on my own for quite some time and did a lot by trial and error.  I could’ve avoided a lot of the mistakes I made by tapping into some groups online. I made a lot of horrific tasting juices. The first juice I made tasted like battery acid because I didn’t peel the oranges.”

Lori likes to prepare her juices in bulk. She said she doesn’t have to make juice fresh for every meal or even to juice every day.  Instead, Lori will usually make 2-3 days of juices at a time, making sure to store them effectively to protect the nutrients.

Lori exercises 5-6 days a week and says the type of exercise she does varies depending on the season:

I asked Lori which she feels is more essential to health and wellbeing, exercise or diet and nutrition?

“That is a hard one to answer because I believe they are both very important. However, if I absolutely had to pick one, I would pick diet and nutrition. I’m going to have a lot better chance of survival and fighting off sickness and disease if I’m putting good, healthy food into my body.”

Lori exercises 5-6 days a week and says the type of exercise she does varies depending on the season:

“If the weather cooperates, I prefer to run. If it’s lightning or below freezing, I go indoors simply for safety. So, during the winter I spend more time at my community centre. When indoors, I try to do a variety of exercises. The community centre has a lot of fun and challenging classes that I like to go to. Often I’ll go to a class and then do some weightlifting, running on the treadmill, and/or spinning.”

On a typical day, what does Lori eat?

“A smoothie for breakfast is a quick and easy way to start the day. I use unsweetened almond milk or juice, a frozen banana, spinach or some type of greens, up to ½ of an avocado, chia seeds, protein powder, and cocoa powder if I’m wanting chocolate.”

“For lunch I’ll often have some type of salad or spiralized zucchini with chicken as my protein. Dinner this time of year often consists of some type of chili or soup.”

“I started drinking hot, green tea to help with the cold weather. In the summer time, I will drink it iced occasionally. I drink lots of water daily and have learned that water consumption plays a big part in weight loss. I have gone back and forth from making sure that I drink one juice every day from doing a 5:2 food plan where I eat five days a week and do nothing but juice two days a week.”

Lori rarely consumes caffeine these days and says:

“In September 2015 I went to a movie with my daughter and didn’t realise that I hadn’t had any caffeine in several months. I drank a 32 oz. cup of unsweetened tea because I didn’t want to drink soda or the flavoured waters with sweeteners in them. Later, I started having heart palpitations and thought I was having a heart attack. If I have caffeine now, it’s on a very limited basis and a rare occasion.”

So what is Lori’s advice for someone who is thinking about adding juicing to their life?

“Juicing is one of those things that you start for one reason and find that there are many more benefits that you hadn’t imagined. Whatever your reason to start juicing, if you truly give it a fair trial, you will not be disappointed. You will make some mistakes–perhaps some horrific tasting juices that you can add some berries to and make a great-tasting smoothie. It’s a learning process just like anything else.  You don’t have to go it alone, either.  There is a very active and knowledgeable community of juicers out there ready to encourage you and help you along. You don’t have to give anything up. You can add juicing to your life and continue to add more fruits and vegetables until they start crowding out the unhealthy foods.”

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