Brown rice fast – day 1

Today is the start of my ten-day journey of accomplishing a brown rice cleanse/fast as per the recommendations of George Ohsawa, one of the pioneers, teachers and “grandfathers” of macrobiotics ­čśÇ I was really looking forward to this fast because I wanted to experience a cleanse which is efficient, yet gentle and doable in the way that you are not depriving yourself totally of food…I can actually eat as much as I want, provided it┬┤s a grain and I chew each mouthful at least 50 times. This is also called Ohsawa┬┤s “no. 7” diet, which is a 100% grain-based diet. It has though several variations and levels of strictness, I am first starting with one of the most strict versions, that is consuming only brown rice and gomasio (or tamari, tekka and such condiments) and some roasted tea (today hojicha, but I think I will prefer the twig teas such as kukicha and genmaicha in the next days). Later on I plan to add some pickles and also some other grains so that I can transition back to a “normal” MB diet. But rice is the most cleansing grain, so I┬┤m sticking to that one now – besides, it is my most favourite grain!

It saves me a lot of time spent in the kitchen, too ­čśÇ In the morning I just made a huge pot (actually, pressure cooker) full of rice (4 cups of rice, as my boyfriend is fasting with me as well, at least for some time), and later on I just scooped some into a bowl or steamed it to reheat it a bit. I must admit that while I love the taste of the brown rice (especially with yummy homemade gomasio), I am already craving some soup or veggies ­čśÇ But the cravings are not too bad – yet. I am sure it will get worse still…I just miss some freshness and variety of taste/structure/energy.

In the last days I was indulging, and yes, bingeing…knowing that I will soon be on a pretty strict regimen and that even afterwards I will have to come back to a more usual diet slowly, and perhaps I will want to maintain a more healing diet for weeks if not months. That thought made me eat stuff I normally avoid (especially since we lately went to eat out a lot, to all kinds of ethnic restaurants, which was all very tasty, but WAY too much oil, salt, spices, and even some small amounts of egg, dairy and sugar which you could not control, such as in sauces etc.). There is so much that I need to heal…IF this rice fast helps me improve my condition significantly, then I think I will be motivated to not slip so often to unhealthy food – that┬┤s my theory at least ­čśÇ

The first day my impressions are mostly that it┬┤s really long and tiring to chew each mouthful until the rice becomes liquid…Each time it took us one hour to finish a not too big bowl of rice!! I was first counting, but then I found out it┬┤s easier to just always chew until I get the required porridge-like texture of the content of my mouth. I was fascinated to observe how much saliva my mouth can produce! ­čśÇ Also I can confirm that rice really becomes sweet when chewed long. But man, do my jaws hurt from all the exercise!! I think at the end of this fast my jaw muscles will be made of steel…

In the morning I woke up with a lot of mucus coming out after the last indulgent days…congested nose and headache and sneezing and runny eyes…All day I am having a headache and a general tension in my head, plus I feel tired, but that is just the start of the discharge :-p And I would probably feel like that anyway, even without the fast, as my discharge mechanisms are quite strong. But I am expecting to experience still some more dramatic effects in time…

Well, eating just rice definitely makes me hungry after a few hours (and we were just home lazy all day!), so I am already looking forward to dinner! ­čśÇ


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