Adopting a healthier lifestyle isn’t easy; especially for Chad and Kenny, two men who realize their current habits aren’t in line with proper health. With Kenny’s past in the military and Chad’s as an athlete, they realize their lives (and bodies) have taken a downward spiral.
As illustrated in the documentary “Real Men Juicing,” Kenny & Chad decide to embark on a journey to better their health…for life. And it all starts with juice.
We sat down with the documentary’s creator, James Vaughn, to find out the truth about juicing and how to commit to a lifestyle of juicing.
LF: One of the reasons you started juicing was weight loss, but what was the “tipping point” that really inspired you to make a change?
JV: Looking in the mirror one day. It was that simple. Seeing the person looking back at me was not who I thought I was or wanted to be. I took a picture and looked at it everyday for a week. My eating was bad and my exercise habits were poor. Health and fitness were not choices I was making for myself. If things were going to change, I was going to change them. Fitness had to a priority and eating well a habit. It starts and ends with me.
LF: Other than weight loss, what were some of the biggest changes you noticed, either physically or mentally?
JV: Other than weight loss, I would say everything has changed and improved for the better. Mental clarity and the ability to focus better. Higher energy levels resulting in more and better productivity. Digestion has been better along with clearer, healthier looking skin. Isleep better and wake up refreshed and ready to go. Overall, my body seems to function better. There is also something motivational about the effort that goes into juicing. The confidence it gives you knowing you are treating your body well and its going to respond in a way that sets you up for success. Going to the store, buying loads of fruits and vegetables and then juicing and consuming that juice makes you feel strong and confident knowing you are fueling your body with the very best.
LF: Outer beauty is prominently associated with women, but as discussed in film, appearance is also important to men. Do you think men feel just as much pressure or desire to be thin, strong, in shape, etc as women?
JV: This is a great question and one that surprised me during the filming. Men are just as concerned with their appearance and how the opposite sex views them as women are. It’s not something that’s discussed as much but it certainly exist. A standard of beauty exist for women. A standard of fitness, I believe now exist for men. Men are in better shape then they have ever been. Six packs and chiseled frames are on the cover of every men’s magazine. Men are looking around at other men and realizing that a new expectation of fitness is upon us. That new standard now shapes how we feel about ourselves and how we think women see us. It’s an interesting dynamic that men juggle and struggle with.
LF: The film shows two men juicing for 7 days, do you believe juicing is a sustainable eating plan for weeks, months or even years?
JV: Of course, one should consult with their doctor before embarking on a prolonged juicing only plan, but a short juice cleanse is completely doable. A 3-5 day cleanse can really help to detox and reset your immune system. After that, including juicing in a mostly plant based eating regime can reap lots of health benefits. I juice every morning to get my day started. The first thing I consume each morning is fresh juice and my body loves it. You could also do a short juice cleanse every couple of months each year, adding a day each time as you get the hang of incorporating juicing into your daily life.
LF: What about other essential nutrients you can’t necessarily get from juice? Namely, protein?
JV: The protein question always comes up with regards to juicing. There are many ways to get enough protein. Many experts agree that diversifying your protein sources is optimal for maximizing your protein intake and absorption. Most people are very familiar with animal sources of protein. If you are juicing and incorporating a plant based eating plan, there are a multitude of sources and ways to add protein to reach the daily recommended levels. If you are juicing add green veggies like spinach, kale, broccoli, collard greens, and even asparagus. If you are making a smoothie, add bananas, avocado, peaches, raspberries, strawberries and watermelon. And of course in a plant based world everything from beans to tofu to lentils to nuts to quinoa are all packed with protein!
LF: What are you hoping others will take away from this film as they embark on their own health & fitness journeys?
JV: Whether it’s health or fitness, we hope people will realize that its about making small changes. Each day try adding more fruits and vegetables to your plate. I think we have to ban the use of the word diet from the English vocabulary. Diet has such a negative connotation and limits the thought process. Incorporating a meatless day of the week like meatless Monday. It’s a lifestyle change, a mental turn in how we think about eating and nutrition. Instead of saying…I’m going on a diet, it should be…how many fruits and veggies can I consume today! Try new ones and experiment with different ways of preparing old ones. Those small changes will grow and multiply over time resulting in a habit of eating, living and being healthy. Juicing and exercise is a lifelong lifestyle. There are no quick fixes or shortcuts to getting healthy and staying healthy. It takes effort and planning just like other areas of your life. The benefits of adding juicing, plant based foods and incorporating exercise into your life cant be understated. It’s a gift you can give yourself everyday!
Can two regular guys survive going from fast food to fresh juice? Find out!
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