Read 'em and weep...I am on Day 11 of my Detox Diet, otherwise known as "the worst is behind me" or "Chicken and Fish Eve"! I must admit, I can't believe it is so, but I have survived 10 days of eating vegetables, fruits, brown rice and lentils. Let me share some of my insights over the past few days...
Weekends (the things we just had...) are immensely more challenging than weekdays. Weekends are often a time of departure from one's normal diet - a time to let your hair down, relax and reward yourself with some food pleasures, especially if you are housebound as many of us were while waiting out the likes of Irene. Such is not the case with detox. The only departures you experience while on detox are caffeine, alcohol and processed foods. I was hoping for a different kind of departure. Desperate in my pursuit, I did encounter a new-to-me beverage that is allowed: LaCroix Coconut Sparkling Water!
I found this gem of a beverage at Target. I added it to a pineapple smoothie and wha-lah a Detox Pina Colada Smoothie was born! While my husband was relaxing with a bottle of beer, I was psssshhht-ing a can of LaCroix Coconut water. I may have discovered this on detox, but this will remain a favorite in my diet for many days to come.
I have lost 5 pounds (can we ever say this is permanent?). I have not experienced a headache since day 4 (see earlier post). I am not fatigued. And, after watching the documentary "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead", I am strongly considering buying a juicer and building juicing into my post-detox lifestyle. While the title may leave you thinking this is not a viewing for you, think otherwise, as I believe most of you will be inspired.
Today, I am happy for many many reasons. First and foremost, for reaching Day 11 without a blunder. Second, to have another weekend behind me when my food woes really set in. Third, that I feel great. And, lastly, that I get to add two new and different foods to my diet tomorrow - chicken and fish.
One final and significant insight to share...throughout the first week of my detox diet, I was able to focus on feeding myself. My husband fended for himself & my children have been away and are not scheduled to return for another week. On Friday night, I decided to be a loving wife and cook for my husband as I normally do. The aromas and the feel of the foods I wasn't going to be enjoying with him were almost too much for my olfactory system to bear. On Saturday, I prepared homemade Chocolate Chip Bars. Getting past the dough was the hardest part. No licks from the beaters or scrapings from the bowl this time around as I immediately flung them into soapy dishwater to exert control over this very tempting situation.
So, let me know your thoughts...do you think I am crazy for doing a detox? Have you done one yourself & have anything you care to share? What were your greatest hurdles & how did you overcome them? Are you a juicer? Did you watch "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead"? What did you think?
Ta-ta for now, I am off to Target for more Coconut LaCroix and to swing by the fish counter to pick up some fresh fish for tomorrow!
I was close to throwing in the towel at the time of writing my last post. I had a terrible night of sleep (insomnia is common with detox programs - who knew that NOT consuming caffeine keeps you awake!) but I woke up and must admit, I crossed the hurdle. I would guess that this might be my equivalent of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel that anyone detoxing from alcohol or drugs is experiencing.
On the beginning of Day 4 my headache had subsided and my cravings were greatly diminished. I would describe my mental state as somewhere between accomplished and empowered. It was as though I went from begrudgingly self choosing this program to signing up with a pen in hand ready to recruit newbies.
Now that my mental stamina is in place, I am seeking more creative ways to feel satisfied with the remaining 16 days ahead of me.
Tonight I made Baked Kale Chips. They are not dipping friendly, but they satisfied my craving for something salty and crunchy. I encourage you to go to All Recipes and look up the recipe if you would like a low calorie, high fiber, unprocessed chip fix.
I also invested in some tea - Berry Detox by Yogi Teas. Slightly more palatable than other detox teas containing detoxifying herbs. I find it helps with the encouragement to drink lots of water.
The program recommends 2 to 3 smoothies per day. Before beginning the program, I feared that I would be starving and, hence, I was happy with this allowance and found myself making bigger smoothies that left me feeling too full. Because you need to consume a powdered cleansing supplement and a powdered whole food supplement, you really need to rely upon smoothies as the best delivery system. With eight smoothies under my belt now, I make the smallest smoothie possible and find that raspberries are my favorite and the addition of half a banana helps most concoctions taste slightly sweeter and creamier. Remember, there is no addition of milk or yogurt on this dairy free approach.
Baked Sweet Potato Fries have also provided some great sensory pleasure and they cook much more quickly than traditional sweet potatoes.
The ingredients in homemade guacamole are all allowed. Unfortunately, the chips you really want to have with the guacamole are not. So.........sliced cucumbers enter the scene.
Today, feeling a much greater confidence, I believe I can finish what I started. But, I promise to keep you informed and let you know how I am doing after a few more days as an herbivore.
I hesitate to admit that as a nutritionist, I have recommended detox programs for many people but have never fully followed one myself. I don't smoke. I don't drink excessively. I don't live a high stress life. And, I eat pretty well. But I would be fooling myself if I thought that those habits alone insulate me from needing to detoxify. In fact, it probably is a good idea for most people to explore the idea of detoxification.
I had lunch with a colleague who reminded me of Standard Process, an excellent supplement company in Wisconsin that uses organic raw materials. She emphasized how much she likes their detox program, more specifically known as the Purification Program. It is a 21 day detox that uses supplements in the form of powders and pills along with a protocol for a an uber-clean and simple diet free of caffeine, alcohol and processed foods. During the first 10 days you subsist on vegetables, fruits, brown rice and lentils. On day 11 you can introduce fish and chicken which will no doubt feel like a luxury after 10 days of being an herbivore.
I decided to take the purity plunge for multiple reasons. I felt it was time for me to experience what is a common recommendation to my patients. My health and my body have felt "stuck" and I have high hopes that some of my health issues will improve or at least recalibrate. And, I would be lying if I did not admit I hope to lose a few pounds in the process.
After day 3, this is what I can share with you thus far:
This is one of the hardest things that I, an adorer of food, have ever done.
My general coffee consumption is 1 to 2 cups per day and I have had a headache of varying intensity since the start of my program, day 1.
While I aspire to be a vegetarian, I don't think it is for me. If this were hunter-gatherer times, I would be out hunting right now.
My body aches.
I feel fatigued.
I find myself needing to stay busy, but not in the kitchen, in an effort to minimize feeling deprived and wallowing in thoughts about what I would rather be eating.
My husband created a calendar to "x" the days once they are completed to serve as visual motivation.
I do think I eat quite well, but realize that I have a regular presence of vices that I am missing sorely and it is only day 3.
Perhaps you have heard the advice that if you embark on a diet you either tell no one or you tell everyone. I guess one can presume that posting about my choice to do a detox diet is a decision to tell everyone. I hope that in a weak moment, I will remember that I told the world what I was doing and my pride will keep me away from caffeine, alcohol and the vices I mentioned earlier. I can do anything for 21 days, right? Well, I plan to keep you posted about my pursuit of purity.
I would love to hear from any of you who have cleaned your internal closets!