Losing a significant amount of weight and improving overall health can be a challenging journey for many people. However, with dedication and commitment to making lifestyle changes, incredible transformations are possible. One inspiring example is Joe Cross, widely known as “the guy from Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead.”
Joe Cross’ Weight Loss Journey
In 2010, Joe Cross created the documentary Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead chronicling his 60-day journey across America while juicing and drinking only fresh fruit and vegetable juices. At the start of his journey, Joe was 100 pounds overweight and taking prescription medications for an autoimmune disease. By the end, he had lost a remarkable amount of weight and came off all his medications.
Joe Cross started his cross-country trip in New York City and traveled west to Arizona and then back east to DC. Along the way, he only consumed juice from a portable juicer he brought along. His extreme juice fast lasted for 60 days straight.
Prior to starting his juice fast, Joe weighed 310 pounds at over 6 feet tall. This classified him as obese with a BMI over 35. He was also suffering from an uncommon autoimmune disease called chronic urticaria, which caused itchy and painful hives on his skin.
Juice Fast Diet Plan
During his juice fast, Joe only drank fresh fruit and vegetable juices about every 2 hours. He made juices from produce like apples, carrots, kale, spinach, celery, oranges, and more. He often mixed greens like spinach and kale with fruits like apples and oranges to create more palatable juices.
By only consuming the nutrients from juiced fruits and veggies, he took in drastically fewer calories than his usual diet. However, he still received most of the vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and antioxidants since juicing removed the fiber but kept the nutrients.
Joe strived to drink 6-8 juices per day, adding up to around 4-5 pounds of raw produce. He estimated his daily calorie intake to be around 1,000 calories.
Throughout his fast, Joe emphasized feeling satisfied from drinking juice alone. He noted mental clarity, stable energy levels, and feeling full between juices. Hunger and cravings for solid foods diminished significantly after the first week.
Documented Weight Loss Results
By the end of his 60-day juice fast road trip, Joe Cross lost a documented 82 pounds. This took him from 310 pounds down to 228 pounds, a remarkable weight loss achievement.
In his film Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead, Cross provided updates on his weight at several points along his journey:
As shown, he experienced rapid weight loss in the first 2 weeks, shedding around 15 pounds. He continued losing steadily through the remaining 6 weeks of his extreme juice fast.
Other Documented Health Improvements
In addition to weight loss, Joe Cross gained several health benefits during his 60-day juicing experience:
- Stopped taking medications – After less than 2 weeks of juicing, Joe was able to stop taking prescription drugs for his chronic urticaria. His painful skin outbreaks cleared up after eliminating inflammatory foods.
- Lowered cholesterol – Joe’s total cholesterol dropped from 204 to 135 after his fast. His LDL dropped from 113 to 73.
- Lowered blood sugar – He reduced his fasting blood glucose from 90 mg/dL to 71 mg/dL.
- Lowered blood pressure – His blood pressure went from 155/95 down to 117/70, a very significant improvement.
By removing processed foods, animal products, salt, oils, and other unhealthy ingredients during his all-juice diet, he reduced inflammation levels and improved numerous biomarkers.
Lasting Lifestyle Changes
After completing his 60-day juice fast, Joe Cross slowly reintroduced solid foods again. He continued emphasizing fruits, vegetables, and plant-based meals.
However, he did not strictly stick with juicing long-term due its level of restriction. He has shared that juicing can be used for a reboot or cleanse but is difficult to sustain forever.
Instead, Joe maintained his weight loss and health improvements through ongoing positive diet changes. He follows a mostly vegan diet full of produce, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. He includes plentiful vegetables at meals and snacks on fruits.
Joe also incorporated more physical activity through regular exercise. Walking is his main form of exercise, but practices yoga occasionally as well.
By maintaining a nutrient-dense plant-based diet and active lifestyle, Joe Cross kept off the majority of the weight he lost during his original juice fast.
After his own weight loss success, Joe Cross began working on documenting other people’s juicing transformations. He produced Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 2 in 2014 featuring success stories from others adopting juicing diets.
He also founded a nutritional reboot program called Reboot with Joe. This provides recipes, plans, and support to help people add more juice and plants into their diets for improved health.
Joe continues sharing his juicing knowledge, advice, and encouragement through Reboot with Joe. He aims to motivate people to prioritize nutrition, manage weight, and prevent chronic disease through diet and lifestyle changes.
Joe Cross’ 60-day juice fast led to impressive health improvements and 82 pounds of weight loss. However, juicing should be used strategically for resets and boosts, not as an indefinite diet. The key lessons from Joe’s journey include:
- Drastically increasing fruits and vegetables can spur quick weight loss, improved biomarkers, reduced inflammation, and discontinued medications.
- Juice fasts allow flooding the body with nutrients without excess calories for rebooting health.
- For long-term health, emphasize whole fruits, veggies, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds. Minimize processed foods.
- Regular physical activity amplifies the benefits of an optimized diet.
- Sustainable lifestyle changes like plant-based eating and daily exercise maintain weight loss and health.
Joe Cross’ inspiring weight loss story demonstrates the power of fruits, vegetables, and lifestyle changes. While extreme juice fasts can kickstart progress, shifting to consistent healthy eating and active living helps create lasting wellness.