60 Days of Celery Juice: Here’s What Happened

Heller, BBs! In this post we are going to get REALLLL PERSONAL. So, if you are looking for in-depth rawness regarding the past 60 days, keep on reading!

For the past year and a half, I have been sharing my journey with IBS-C via IG: @_jasminvanessa and here on the blog. But for the first time in the past 8 years since diagnosed with IBS, I have FINALLY found what has actually worked… read on.

For reference, IBS, also known as: Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a chronic intestinal disorder that causes pain, bloat, gas, diarrhea, and or constipation. In my case, I have IBS-C, Irritable Bowel Syndrome with constipation but some people suffer from both. Flare-ups could be triggered by food, trapped toxins AKA constipation and/or life stressors/anxiety. About 6-7 days of the week, my stomach flared up, to what my mom even said, was larger than any of her full-term pregnancies. I would literally not be able to zip up the very pants I wore going into a dinner. One bite of a trigger food (onions, garlic, tomato, cabbage, etc) was enough to have a 10-12 hour flare-up, where gas and cramps were non-stop the entire time. There would be multiple days where I could not use the restroom, and even if I was hungry, I knew there was little room in there to consume any more space. Some weeks, I would try multiple laxatives, fiber powder, eat as many fruits and veggies as I could, and still have no success.

It is a silent disease with little research and understanding. It is also, rarely talked about as there is no definitive cure and lets be honest, a fairly uncomfortable topic as it deals with your stool. However, it can be manageable-ish***. In fact, there are so many IBS sufferers out there, “managing” their daily pains, who are not even aware that their conditions fall under IBS. For reference, I was diagnosed with IBS at 18 years old, however medications and commercials for gut health said to help manage the conditions, are all usually geared towards the elder audience. I am by far the youngest patient whenever I go into my GI appointments, go figure! So I am so pleased I was able to share my journey with so many of my fellow peers, because IBS is wayyyy more common than we think! And although we are young, we are certainly not suffering alone.

This illness, of course, affects your physical health but most importantly your mental health. You feel trapped in a body that does not bring you peace. Literally ingesting anything is a gamble! So many nights are sleepless due to the pain, and almost every meal no longer seems enjoyable. It is an incredibly frustrating disease because the human body: eats, sleeps, and poops, so when this disease or really any other GI condition basically robs you of all 3 basic functions, it can feel hopeless!

So, from deep deep experience, celery juice has been a legitimate healer in my life!

Read on to learn how:

FAQ: 

  1. Q: What are the main benefits of juicing celery? 

                AHEALS AND ACTIVATES GUT:

    • PC Answer: Celery Juice acts as a healer to the digestive system, activating and relining the gut.  It helps us metabolize quicker, and restores the acid, riding of the bad bacterias, and assisting the break downs more efficiently.
    • Real AF Answer: IT WILL MAKE YOU SHIT A TON MORE. During my first 21 days, I would nearly have to run to the restroom, minutes after drinking. I became extremely regular, going 3-5 times a day! For an IBS-C sufferer, that is only a dream! Especially during travel, my ability to use the restroom successfully was almost a joke! Often times, not even the strongest of laxatives worked. So juicing, basically serves as a natural laxative, without the pill! FIBROUS AF!

                B.  REDUCED BLOAT/FLARE-UPS:

    • PC Answer:  Celery Juice is an anti-inflammatory: It’s properties are known to  ease nerves and reduce fluid retention. By producing better stomach acids, it    eases the uncomfortable symptoms like gas, pressure, and fullness. IBS-C flare- ups can be caused by the several reasons listed above, however, with finally being more regular, the “constipation bloat” essentially disappears.
    • Real AF Answer: Now, of course, food triggers are usually triggers for the long- haul but I did notice that foods that once upset my belly, had less potency after drinking celery juice on a daily basis. If I accidentally missed to pick out, lets say, an onion, out of my dish, prior to celery, I’d have to prepare for WWIII. I mean 8-12 hour flare ups, potent gas for hours, and cramps that felt like child birth. Where as now, if I swallowed a piece of onion on accident (true story) I’d maybe be bloated for 1-2 hours, and likely would be able to use the restroom and relieve the pain a bit! I mean, I went to bed looking well over 9 months preggo from 6-7 nights a week, to maybe 1-2 nights tops…SOLELY because of a food trigger bloat, and NOT due to constipation bloat. PRAIISE JESUS!

  C.  GREAT FOR YO’ SKIN:

    • PC Answer:  Since celery juice alkalizes, it not only cleanses your body of toxins, but also the blood stream…reflecting in your skin! With improved blood flow and circulation paired with celery’s antioxidant properties, you and your skin are receiving tons of electrolytes, balancing the pH levels, increasing it’s overall hydration.
    • Real AF Answer: Although, my skin has been great to me this year, I will say that since juicing celery, my skin feels more hydrated than it did before. If I didn’t lather my face in Vitamin E oil, my skin and it’s hydration wasn’t that forgiving, where as now,  I can commit skincare suicide and fall asleep on the couch, without doing my full nighttime skin routine, and still wake up feeling hydrated!

               D. INCREASED ENERGY 

    • PC Answer:  Since celery helps the break down of protein and fat, you’ll likely  also feel a boost of energy!
    • Real AF Answer: I feel way less sluggish! If you are used to having a morning coffee, I can guarantee you, that by swapping these two, you will see a difference in feeling a natural energy boost. Since I workout in the AM, right before drinking celery juice, the combo basically sets the tone for a productive morning! No more laying in bed, with a heating pad right on my belly, trying to rid the 12 hour flare-up that stole my entire night’s worth of sleep!

      2. Q: When should I drink it and how much? 

    • A: It is best to drink 10-16oz (2-5 hearts, depending on size) in the morning on  an empty stomach. Also, be sure to wait 30 mins before consuming breakfast or any other foods. 16oz is suggested but especially during the first 30 days, more than 10 oz at a time, would scream a run to the restroom, like IMMEDIATELY! Now, after 60 days, since my body has stabilized a bit, I am able to drink the full amount without the theatrics and simply remain regular throughout my days. But I say, if you are in REAL need of beginning this journey with juicing and are FOS (sorry, but like actually), give your body some time to adjust and detox, as it probs needs it desperately. It won’t always be a running to the restroom, type situation…your body will adjust! So you can def work your way up, with serving size!

3. Q: Should I add other veggies or fruits to the juice blend? 

    • A: No! Adding any other ingredients to the juice will dilute it’s medicinal properties as each vegetable and/or fruit serves different functions. When added to it, celery juice is essentially denatured. I used to make several juice combos, including celery into those blends, but I NEVER saw the benefits that I do now, with juicing celery on it’s own. Also be sure to stray away from adding water or ice! Plain celery juice is best!

4.  Q: What juicer do you recommend and how do I prep it?

    • A: I’ve been using my Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus 850-Watt Extractor    (click to shop) for over a year now and love it! Affordable, easy set up, not too noisy, and quick break down! Plus, it does a good job of maintaining some pulp (many juicers tend to extract it all) which is where most of your fiber lies! Whether you are using a juicer or a regular blender, you want to ensure you wash the celery thoroughly! I can not even tell you how many bugs I’ve found between stalks! I like to chop off the base and the top of the stalks, feed the washed celery through the feeding tube, and drink immediately. If you are using a traditional blender, you would follow the same techniques, however, consider using a nut milk bag to strain/remove any large chunks from the juice.

5. Q: Can I prep the juice in advance for the week? 

    • A: You can but it is not ideal! It is best to drink the juice immediately to benefit from all it’s healing powers. However, if you have to, make sure it is kept closed tight in a mason jar in the fridge! When I worked full-time in the office, I did not have the time to juice daily, so this was the only way I could drink it! However, try not to prep more than 1-2 days in advance.

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Soooo that about covers all of your frequently asked questions regarding this healing phenomena! I went far too long, suffering DAILY, hearing about its’ benefits, and still choosing not to give into this “Instagram fad”. But I am here to tell you, celery juice has truly transformed my overall physical and mental health! I no longer cry myself to sleep, stuck in fetal position, feeling literally trapped in a unhealthy vicious cycle of constant pain that comes with my chronic illness. I no longer have to skip out on a meal at a friend’s outing because everything on the menu is a trigger. I no longer have to look down at the massive bloat belly, no longer fitting into the very clothes I was wearing that same morning! I no longer have to look at food as an enemy of sorts, because now I can actually enjoy my meals in peace. And I no longer feel hopeless in my journey to good health. IBS may not have a tangible cure yet, but drinking my juice daily, has been the closest I’ve ever been to a healed and healthy gut! If you feel like you have tried everything and nothing has stuck, I URGE you to give celery juice a shot…IT IS LIFE CHANGING, SIS! Let’s raise a glass (of celery) to good health. Xo

 

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How to Stay Positive During an Injury

As many of y’all know, I sprained my ankle this week 😦 The sprain is considered a grade III sprain, so ya girl has not been able to walk in like a week! The injury stemmed from bad form at the gym and it has been such a struggleee! Watching your time and weekly goals slip through your fingers can cause even the most resilient of us to spiral into frustration.

Today is day 6 in bed but its felt like an ETERNITY, FAM!! The first word that came to mind, (aside from all the curse words) was, “inconvenience.” Not only am I sidelined from the gym and my 9-5, but most importantly I am disabled from going out and shooting some new content!

On the onset of the injury, I still forced myself to go out and shoot, but joke was on me, because I woke up the next day extremely swollen and in agonizing pain! Panic & anger overcame me! As a creative, not being able to do what you identify the most with is always frustrating! As much as the physical pain hurts, the inability to create, feels even that much more painful! I had so many scheduled shoots, location ideas and collabs that needed to be executed. UGHH!

And even though, I am not even half way healed, heck, I still can’t even walk on the damn foot, I’ve come to finally accept what cards I’ve been dealt.

So as everything does happen for a reason, what is the light of the end of this tunnel?

This is the question, I had been asking myself for the past couple of days.

So here are my 5 reasons, an injury can actually be beneficial to your life and well-being.

  1. Grow a new appreciation for your body 
    • I mean why did I ever complain before? Haha! In all seriousness, the human body is so magical and now more than ever, I see how ungrateful I was for all that I could do with it.  I miss my normally functioning legs, y’all!! These crutches have not been kind to me 😦
  2. Mastering your perspective on shitty situations 
    • As much as I’d like to sulk around all day, I’ve tried my best to shake off all of the negative energies and focus on the progress I’ve been making!
      • Day 6 and I am now able to wiggle my toes!! YAS!
    • Instead of wondering, “what if I get worse?” I am saying positive affirmations aloud! E.g: “I will get better everyday!”
  3. Plot your comeback
    • THIS! THIS! THIS! As bummed out as I was, I have planned out the exact content I will be creating! Scratch what I had in mind before, I will be pushing the boundaries on my new stuff & let me tell you, it’ll be f*cking dope!
    • Part of me sees this as a blessing because before, yes, I had a vision in mind but now I’m yearning for something even greater.
  4. Trust the process
    • UGH, this can be so hard! I am one of the most impatient people I know! I hate when things don’t go as planned so trusting in the chaos is for sure easier said than done! And to be honest, all I want to do to get back out there and shoot if even for 20 mins a day! But as I learned, that’ll only bite me in the ass!
    • So in order for me to embrace what is happening, I have to trust in the unknown. Of course it’s scary, but hey, the unknown has it’s own way of working, and most of the time, for the best!
    • I know this may sound crazy, but I try to think what could have happened to me, if this injury did not occur. How about if I was shooting on a street, and a car missed the stopped sign and hit me? Or how about if I was biting off more than I could chew and had a breakdown? I know these are extreme, but maybe just maybe this injury prevented those situations from occurring!!

 

*I hope this read is helpful for anyone who is in the same predicament! My biggest take from all of this is to be kind to yourself, hard I know, but we will get through this! Xo