The Star-News


From cop to juice head

Sat, Feb 04 2012 12:00 PM Posted By: Tom Basinski

When I was diagnosed with cancer three years ago a high school friend told me, no badgered me, to start “juicing.” He didn’t mean for me to take steroids like the athletes. He wanted me to enroll in a vegetable juicing program, either in Tijuana, Hungary, or a modified program offered locally.

Briefly explained, juicing is extracting the juice from several different plants and vegetables. The pulp is discarded.

One is supposed to drink 13 glasses of the stuff at varying intervals during the day. One also eats a vegetarian diet that is free from animal fats, dairy products, salts, sugars, coffee, tea, and just about everything most people eat. You are allowed to eat tree bark, certain leaves, and air. (Just kidding about that last one.)

Trying to have an open mind, I did some research on this therapy, considered what I had read, then shelved the idea.

My classmate wouldn’t let up, and ultimately convinced my wife that juicing might help me. The juicing idea became more of a reality when scans revealed lesions in my lungs. Fortunately it has skipped my liver and lymph nodes, for now anyway.

I didn’t embrace the juicing idea wholeheartedly, or even slightly. I just told my wife I would try it. (You married guys know what I mean.) So, she bought a juicer and a therapy book on how to do the program.

Naturally, I began thinking up jokes. When we first began going together my wife thought I was a funny guy. That opinion declined over the years. Apparently the juicing jokes have brought the humor appreciation to an end. When I joke about juicing I don’t even get the rolling of the eyes any more, or her blank face. I get her “homicidal stare.”

If juicing does what the quacks, I mean experts, claim I’ll admit my mistake and order up another 25 pounds of organic carrots, beets, celery, kale, greens, and the other stuff that goes into those concoctions. While scanning the huge bag of carrots the cashier at Sprouts asked my wife if we owned a horse. Not really, but it would have been funny, for me anyway.

The first joke was on me. I looked at the menu and the schedule. The entry was for “Coffee at 8:00 a.m.” Not bad.

When I looked closer it was for a “Coffee ENEMA” at 8:00 a.m. No thanks. I like my coffee black, accompanied by a dish of fruit and the sports page, not with a bag and attached hose.

Everything is supposed to be organic and natural, right? Not exactly. There are a ton of supplements you’re supposed to take. Why, I ask, do you ingest all this natural organic stuff, toss away the pulp, that contains all the fiber, and then have to take a powdered supplement or pills? It makes no sense to me. Why take synthetic potassium when you have a bowl of bananas sitting there?

My wife has embraced it. My oncologist said it won’t hurt, and I also believe that. The cancer doc is familiar with the entire program and asked if I was going to do the coffee enemas. I hope the “Hell no!” answer didn’t offend her. I don’t do the entire 13-glasses a day. I have a few glasses and eat regular food. Like I said, it can’t hurt.

The Super Bowl is coming and I’m having my sons over. I wonder how they’ll like pizza, wings, chips, guacamole, chili, cashews, cookies, and brownies when they are run through the juicer. Yum!

Along with his regular team of excellent local doctors, Tom Basinski is currently also being treated at the Moores Cancer Center.


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