Thursday, January 3, 2013

Detox Cleanse

     If you read my last post, you will know I recently found out I have a milk allergy that has been causing a lot of problems in my body including a bacterial infection (another doctor said the bacteria caused the milk allergy but chicken or egg- the fact remains, I accidentally beat the crap out of my body with a combination of cheese, milk and cookies, and froyo...oops) Anyways my doctor suggested I do a cleanse to "reset my body" and essentially I'm trying to get rid of the bacterial infection naturally and without antibiotics which some people believe can cause more problems than they fix. Here are the fast facts of this cleanse:
  1. I get to eat actual food (no cayenne lemonade or grapefruit cabbage diets here) 
  2. It lasts 4-6 weeks
  3. It's about detox NOT weight loss so if you want to follow in the footsteps of your favorite model or celebrity by doing a cleanse- you should probably look up the cayenne lemonade. Although you will lose weight, that is not the goal of this cleanse.
  4. The only supplement for this cleanse can be bought at Wholefoods
  5. This cleanse is good for almost anyone but especially people who have stomach issues, food allergies, weak immune systems or alot of fatigue
  6. I read a lot about cleansing before I did this and most people talk about it being a spiritual journey and feeling more energized and in touch with themselves. That is great for them. I won't lie- I am not one of those people. The only thing I wanted to be in touch with was a Steak N' Shake cheeseburger.
fridge full of veggies, fruit and juice
Here are the things you'll need for this cleanse:
  • Lots of fresh fruit and veggies (except Oranges/Grapefruits- too acidic)
  • 100% fruit juices (except orange juice)
  • Supplement: True Vitality (comes in chocolate or vanilla. the chocolate one is disgusting)
  • Olive oil
  • Organic chicken breasts or salmon 
  • Lots of lemons
Here's a basic breakdown of what you can and can't have. If you have questions feel free to contact me it can get confusing. 
  • Things you can't have: any grains (including rice, corn and other gluten-free grains) any milk products or substitutes (including coconut milk, almond milk, etc),  processed foods or things with preservatives, most seasonings and sauces (more on this later), any type of meat other than organic chicken or salmon, eggs, soy, peanuts, dried fruit (they add sugar), canned vegetables and fruit (again because of salt and sugar content) caffeine, chocolate, alcohol, tobacco and any other drugs (including advil etc)
  • Things you can have: fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts (except peanuts), organic chicken breasts and salmon, herbal tea, 100% fruit juices, about 2tbs of salt a day, about 2tbs of balsamic vinegar a day, olive oil, herbs, frozen fruit and vegetables (as long as there is no sugar or sauces etc added)
 I know, I know. That's a lot to handle but here's a basic how to and I'll follow it up with some tips.
  1. Breakfast- Shake (fruit and 1 scoop of powder with half a lemon squeezed in)
  2. Lunch- Shake (fruit and vegetables and 1 scoop of powder with half a lemon squeezed in), small salad
  3. Dinner- 6oz of salmon or chicken and vegetables
  4. SNACKS: fruit and vegetables throughout the day
  5. WATER: you should drink half your body's weight in ounces every day (ex: you weigh 100lbs, drink 50 oz of water a day) 

  • At first all I could focus on was what I couldn't have and going in to the grocery store was a nightmare because I felt like I literally couldn't eat anything. So eventually I started sticking to the produce aisle and got creative and it became much easier. You have to have a lot of willpower to stick to a cleanse, especially for four weeks but it gets easier.
  • The second week is the hardest. I felt so drained of energy, and I kept doing stupid things and forgetting stuff. All I wanted to do was curl up on the couch and sleep. Again, it will pass. Sleep if you need to! (and if you're lucky enough to not have things to do) 
  • Warm baths help. I don't know why, they just do. Baths help in any situation really.
  • I got sick a few days after I started my cleanse and although it was SO hard to not take nyquil I just doubled up on Vitamin C and managed to get through it. It really wasn't that bad.
  • You will cook a lot more than you ever realized and it's fun. Look up vegan recipes and things and you will get really creative with food. 
  • Going out to eat is hard. I only did it a few times and I'd make sure that the restaurants had something on the menu I could eat like chicken or salmon and then once I got there I'd be "that girl" and tell them I needed it plain with a side of veggies. 
  • You're going to cheat, but try not to, and if you do don't beat yourself up about it. I felt so guilty when I put honey in my tea but as my mom pointed out - If cheating means putting honey in your tea, you're still a lot better off than all those people eating Big Macs and Twinkies. 
  • Don't cleanse during the holidays. I did and it was ok until I went home and the cookies and cakes, and hot chocolate, and ham etc etc. It makes you depressed haha don't do it. 
  • If you managed to get off the sugar and you no longer have cravings for it, stay off. I cheated over Christmas and had a sugar cookie and started craving sugar all over again. Same thing with coffee. Don't cheat with those kinds of things because it makes it 100 times harder to go back to the cleanse.
  • Whole foods will be your savior. Even if you don't buy your food there, if you just have to get out of the house for a meal go to whole foods for lunch. Their food bar is so good and they list all the ingredients clearly so you can steer clear of things you shouldn't have and they always have some kind of kale salad which you get bonus points for because it's a "super food"
  • Avoid temptation if possible. Try not to eat out a ton, don't go drinking with friends because not only will you not be able to have alcohol, you won't even be able to have the late night pizza afterwards.
More tips on WHAT to eat:
I'm a snack person and at first I was so angry because I couldn't grab a bag of potato chips or a cookie but here are some snacks that made eating a little more enjoyable.
  • Freeze dried fruit. This became my savior. As long as it doesn't have anything added (which most don't) it's fine to eat! On multiple occasions I sneaked a bag of freeze dried raspberries into the movie theater along with a bag of walnuts. If you eat them together it's kind of like eating M&M's and popcorn haha.
  • Salad dressing: balsamic and olive oil (light on the balsamic)
  • Rice substitute: cauliflower, pulse a few times in a blender or food processor then fry it with veggies like fried rice (but remember no soy sauce- so you have to get creative)
  • Honey has lots of sugar so agave nectar works well in herbal tea or just a lot of lemon to give it flavor
  • HUMMUS with your veggies. Guacamole as well. Try to make your own or buy the ones in the deli section of the grocery store so that you can make sure 100 things are added to them
  • Kale chips! So good! They were also a good snack as long as you make sure you get the kind that again doesn't have much added except herbs for seasoning. 
  • I was given a vegetable steamer as a present a few months ago and it was awesome. I would just put my veggies in there set the timer to 15 minutes and cook my chicken.
  • Experiment with herbs and different ways to cook the chicken. Chicken breast can get really boring but cooking it with onion and garlic help a lot. 
  • Beans! These are a really good way to get more protein into your diet if you are feeling too depleted to function. 
  • Late night snack- cabbage and onions, little olive oil in a frying pan. Burn them a little if you're aching for flavor. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Don't burn them too much though, basically the more a vegetable is cooked, the more nutrients you lose. (not to mention the carcinogens
Last but not least- If I can do this, you can do it. I cleansed over Christmas. The second week, which I had been warned will be the hardest, I was on set and if you've never been on a film set it is snack heaven. The craft service table has every type of candy, soda, coffee, puff pastries, potato chips, etc etc and my favorite crafty, Kim, makes chocolate chip cookies and passes them out! It was torture, but I resisted. Chocolate chip cookies happen to be my second favorite thing in the world. My dog is first. You get my point. I also had to wake up at 4:30 a.m without coffee for 4 days in a row. It was rough-but again I did it, and it has actually paid off. I'm 96% sure that I no longer have a bacterial infection and it seems that I have gotten rid of most of my other problems (though it's still too soon to say it out loud I don't want to jinx it). I was moody, I was pale, I was skinny (not the attractive kind) and at some point my mother threatened to stuff a steak down my throat if I didn't start looking healthier, but I can honestly say it was worth it and you're probably rolling your eyes right now and saying "that REALLY doesn't sound worth it" but it is! I now have a greater appreciation for food (you know actual food, the type that doesn't come in a box with 8 types of preservatives). I feel healthier and again I'm 98% sure that I actually am healthier and more than anything I'm really proud of myself for actually doing it. Obviously now that the cleanse is done, I'm going to start eating more normally but I think I'm going to stick with being dairy and gluten free. It's just healthier. I'm also going to try to limit my sugar and eat more vegetables. I picked up this awesome book the other day called Crazy Sexy Kitchen. It's vegan recipes but I plan on adding meat here and there, but the author also talks about ways to shop healthy cheap, healthy substitutes for things like sugar and flour etc, and the science behind all of it. The author also wrote a book called Crazy Sexy Cancer that my mom read when she had cancer that helped her a lot (she didn't get sick from her chemo once). 

Anyways! Sorry this one got long as well, my blog is now going to go back to simple recipes, but since the past month has been pretty life changing and it has to do with food I couldn't help but post it all here :) Please let me know if you decide to do the cleanse so I can cheer for you! :)

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