Three words: food, beer and food. Or maybe thatâ€™s two. Anyway, after a vacation in Thailand with two of my favorite people (Jodi and Mike), I decided that my body needed a rest.
I have done cleanses in the past, but this time I actually really enjoyed it. And Jodi joined me, so we cooked the meals together and shared the joys and pain of it all. Itâ€™s always nice to have a partner, whether itâ€™s someone to work out with, go on a run with, or, to eat with. â˜º Having her on my side made it much easier to reach my goal: finishing the cleanse.
Why, you may ask, do I do these silly cleanses? The simple answer is: to give my body a rest from all the toxins (caffeine, alcohol, processed foods and hard to digest foods). Your digestive system, especially your liver (the bodyâ€™s main detoxifier), works hard to rid your body of toxins, so every once in a while, it needs a little vacation, too! In preparation for your cleanse, try to eat fresh fruits and veggies, lean meats/cold water fish, grains, and fiber to prepare your body.
Some people experience headaches, nausea and fatigue with a detox-type diet, but I felt so energized this timeâ€¦and I still feel good! My goal was accomplished!! I usually end my cleanse with somewhat unhealthy options, but after the three days, I continued eating detox-friendly foods (see after cleanse meal below)! Also, remember to give your body some exercise, but not TOO much - keep it simple with some yoga or low impact cardio just to get the body moving.
The last cleanse I did was a juice cleanse, but I wanted to eat some food so I went to back to my favorite, which was shown to me by my acupuncturist in NYC, Laura Kauffmann. If you go to her website, click on newsletter and then inner body cleanse â€“ this will show you how to structure your cleanse, but I added and changed a couple things. She also has some great products (She Beauty) to use while cleansing; my favorite is the She Washing Grains - try them out!
During the cleanse, remember to: Eat plenty of veggies Drink lots of filtered water and herbal tea Steer clear of caffeine, alcohol, soda, red meat, sugar, flour, processed and refined foods, and anything artificial Move your body! Exfoliate daily Sweat it out in a sauna or steam room
Some people take part in the Master Cleanse, but drinking just lemon water, cayenne pepper and maple syrup doesnâ€™t seem healthy to me, so I will probably never take part in that one. Because people swear by this cleanse, I decided to incorporate it into mine: for a pre-breakfast drink to wake up my system. You know what, that drink is really good, but after 10 (or even one day) days of just that? No, thank you.
Day 1 Pre-breakfast: Master Cleanse drink: 10oz of water with 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, pinch of cayenne and 2 tablespoons of maple syrup (grade B) Breakfast: steel cut oats with soy milk, cinnamon and agave Snack: strawberries and pineapple chucks Lunch: rice with zucchini and broccoli, topped with soy sauce, garlic and fresh scallions and tofu Snack: herbal tea and more strawberries and pineapple Dinner: rice with zucchini and broccoli, topped with soy sauce, garlic and fresh scallions and tofu
Day 2 Pre-breakfast: Master Cleanse drink Breakfast: steel cut oats with soy milk, cinnamon and agave Snack: one orange Lunch: brown rice with asparagus, garlic and onion, topped with fresh scallions Snack: strawberries and pineapple chunks Dinner: quinoa with kale and onion and steamed turnip with garlic
Day 3 Pre-breakfast: Master Cleanse drink with psyllium husk (natural fiber powder) Breakfast: quinoa with soy milk, cinnamon and agave Snack: strawberries and pineapple chunks Lunch: brown rice with zucchini, garlic and onion with a small piece of salmon Snack: apple Dinner: quinoa with kale and onion and steamed turnip with garlic with a 3oz piece of salmon
Day 4 (no longer on the cleanse!) Breakfast: regular oatmeal with soy milk, cinnamon and agave and a cup of green tea Snack: green juice from Trader Joes (celery, spinach, parsley, cucumber, kale, and romaine) Lunch: brown rice with soy, salmon and avocado, with a fresh carrot juice Snack: prunes and pear sauce (like apple sauce) Dinner: sashimi, edamame and vegetable roll