Posted by: mvhuff | May 25, 2017

Detox Report

Lately I have been feeling like a voracious eating monster. I know about nutrition and eating well, but sometimes I just want that pizza or the chocolate or what have you. Or it’s just easier to grab a protein bar (it’s in the health section, so it must be okay, right?) than to prepare a balanced meal with protein and vegetables. It doesn’t help that I’m more comfortable and familiar with canned convenience and processed portions than with real and fresh food. Even though my mother grew up on a farm, I find it much more palatable to get my produce as far removed from the dirt as possible.

In order to counter some of these proclivities, I decided to do a 21-day detox program. I’m not so sure that I have toxins in my body from my usual diet, but I figured it would be good to follow something to get a handle on my eating and maybe even develop more of a taste and talent for using more real food.

I knew it would be a challenge because it requires giving up caffeine, dairy, gluten, and added sugar. I figured, a little discipline for 21 days can only help, right?

I went shopping last Saturday. A fellow shopper asked me where the watercress might be. I had to confess that watercress was one of the many vegetables I can only recognize with a label. Later at the checkout the cashier was certain that what I had thought was curly parsley was dill. Oh, well, it seemed to turn out okay in the recipe.

Day 0 – Sunday I started additional preparations by cooking some stuff for the upcoming week. I made a pot of vegetable broth according to recipe – boiling carrots, beets, kale, onions, and parsley (or dill) and then simmering for an hour. I have never seen so much broth in my life.

The recipe said I could toss the cooked vegetables or use them in another recipe, so I picked the latter. I have a great recipe for carrot waffles that also works with beets. It requires the juice of the vegetables, so I figured I’d juice the remnants from the broth. This turned out not to be the best idea – whether it was because they were waterlogged or cooked, when I put the beets and carrots in my juicer nothing seemed to come out until the very end – and then only a trickle of thick type of puree. I had naively assumed that all the rest was just being chucked into the waste receptacle of the juicer, but actually, the juicer had created a nice puree that just got stuck in the middle part of the juicer. I was able to extract enough to use in the recipe, but also had to clean up a lot of puree that got into parts it shouldn’t have – since it was mostly beet and there was dripping involved, my kitchen almost had the appearance of a crime scene. I won’t mention the debacle of the waffle iron.

Day 1 – Got up and started with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and water. I do not recommend it. I also made a protein smoothie and then set off for my day at work. I had warned my co-workers, so they were prepared for my sudden withdrawal from so many different addictive substances. Had a nice salad with chicken for lunch and had some herbal tea in the afternoon. I had a problem with a huge headache but managed to make it to the gym – where one of the coaches told me that I needed to have more carbs to fuel myself. It was kind of odd to think that I managed to have a low carb day without even trying.

I was going to have some brown basmati rice and other stuff for dinner, but when I read the directions I realized it had to simmer for 50 minutes and I thought, I don’t have the time or the energy for that. But I did manage something within the program and went to bed early because I was worn out).

Day 2 – Discovered that I probably will not get used to apple cider vinegar. It seems to make me nauseated, but there could be other factors at play in my intestinal issues (you know, adjusting to a different diet and such). This morning I had overnight oatmeal with chia seeds. It was pretty tasteful. I didn’t think I was particularly sloppy with it, but I found myself discovering dried chia seeds stuck to my clothing all day. I’m glad they are quite small and unnoticeable.

That night I did have time for the rice, so I had that and peas for dinner (I love peas, so that is actually a good thing). One thing I am not doing so well is that my dinner is supposed to be at least 3 hours before bedtime, but I can’t stay up that late!

Day 3 – This time I tried to add a bit of honey to the apple cider vinegar, but I didn’t want to add too much so I just dipped the spoon in the jar and stirred it in the water. Sadly, the honey stuck on the spoon and the bottom of the cup, so it had no effect at all on the taste. This was followed by another protein shake.

Part of the program involves staying hydrated, so I’ve been trying to drink at least 2 liters of water a day. On the second bottle of day 2 and this day, I added a bit of a drink mix that has stevia (allowed) in it. I thought the ingredients were all allowed, but it turns out it also had a bit of cane sugar, so I have inadvertently cheated. But I think it will be okay and not require a restart.

Day 4 – I gave up and just tossed the tablespoon of apple cider vinegar down my throat and then drank the water. It was much better this way. I think that maybe my body had finally gotten rid of all reserves of caffeine (I know, that probably isn’t how it works), and was falling asleep as I was getting ready for work. I decided I should probably just stay home as I wasn’t feeling the best. Kind of bad timing on a Thursday before a holiday weekend, but it was a smart decision as I slept most of the day.

Tomorrow is day 5. I think it will keep getting better, but we will see.

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