its beginning to look a lot like detox

check out day two of detox!

I am winding down my day with a hot shower and the use of a fabulous coconut lotion my friend S. picked up for me from Austrailia.  Detox makes me tired, so I’m going to study until 9pm, talk with Matt on Skype until 9:30 and hit the hay.  Funny, I didn’t think my body was THAT toxic, being as I just did this process in November.  Must have been all that time with family – I’m purging the foods and the family stress 🙂

At the end of this week I’m treating myself to a haircut at the Aveda Institute in Portland.  If I can’t eat out, at least I can have great hair!  They have great haircuts, products and service, and its easy on the pocketbook.

Rebecca

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Day 1 of a pre-holiday detox: GOING GREEN

Ti’s the season to DETOX!!!

So my friend A. and I decided to do a little detox before the holidays so that we could walk into Thanksgiving feeling pretty good about our choices.  Truthfully, after being derailed (in the BEST way possible) by my adventures in Italy and a visit to see Matt in California, its been a little hard to be as committed to wheat/dairy/refined sugar free living.  Once my tongue gets a little taste, it’s ON, sister!

With what I term as “the eating season” just on the horizon, now is my chance to get my body a bit back into balance and reconnect with why I love off-white eating/living so much: I FEEL BETTER.  My body has felt a little sluggish and my brain has also been a little less sharp b/c of the allure of the tasty white treats lately.  And I can’t help but wonder if my little visit from aunt “FLU” (yes, FLU, not flow) was worsened because of less than idea food choices (why did they have to make pumpkin bars at work last week and put them in the fridge where my lunch sits….)

Thank goodness for A. because she will help me stay on track, and I will help her too!  We are even co-house sitting for a mutual friend and have planned some fun “Cleanse Cooking” nights.  Yes, we have a sick sense of fun, and thank GOD we have one another!  If any of you have ever tried to eat a detox style diet (details to follow) you know how tough it can be to stay strong in the face of adversity, so having friend to do this with me helps A LOT.

Here’s the down and dirty of our detox diet, which will last between today (Nov 16th) and Thanksgiving (Nov 27th).  

 

  • A diet free of all dairy (incl eggs), flours of any kind (even spelt!) and concentrated sweeteners of any kind (looks like its stevia city for a few days)
  • Ample green veggies, such as collards, kale, broccoli, watercress, parsley, green onions, spinach ,etc.  Basically, we will be living on greens and green juices
  • Herbs and spices such as: ginger, lemon, garlic, turmeric, nettles, milk thistle, cinnamon are our friends
  • Fruits include only low sugar options: Green apples, cranberries, and dark berries
  • Flaxmeal and Omega-3 supplements daily
  • Healthy fats daily: extra virgin coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, avocado, raw and sprouted nuts
  • Lean protein: wild fish, organic white meats and a daily protein shake (I’m using Metagenix Inflameze protein powder 1x/day)
  • Fresh legumes, such as adzuki beans, black beans, and garbanzo beans, and lentils.
  • Eating regularly throughout the day (I said DETOX, not starvation diet or fasting diet….we need our strength)
  • Water, water, water, water………you get the idea
  • Warm lemon water upon rising every day

 

Sounds reasonable enough, right?? Well, already I’ve had to stare in the face of baking some  apricot pecan chocolate bars with pomegranate glaze for an upcoming work event.  I strategically planned on baking these bars today, on day 1, because I’m still fired up on this whole detox business, and I’m feeling pretty strong.  I also made a wise choice of baking the bars after eating lunch (Mixed greens with tilapia and avocado) so I wasn’t hungry.  Its amazing how avocado can almost taste like chocolate when I’m really imaginative……

So, when I was looking back through all of my handy-dandy little videos, I found a clip that I recorded when visiting Matt in Davis in Sept and its PERFECT, because its about cooking greens.  So, here ya go!!!  Enjoy and maybe it will inspire you to gear up for the holidays with a little abstinent eating.  Just think about how much tastier those holiday treats will be after a cleanse – like a tall glass of water after a long day in the desert!!!

Enjoy!

PS: I make reference to some Himalayan sea salt but really it’s not actually sea salt….it’s from the himalayas, which are clearly different than the ocean….must have been the Davis heat going to my head 🙂

Stress and sugar, Part III: HOW TO GET OFF SUGAR

Ever wish you were the kid picked to visit the chocolate factory in the Willy Wonka stories?  Ever make up ridiculous fantasies in your mind about larger-than-life candylands?  Yeah…me neither…. 😉  But if you did, or still do, this post is for you.  First, a video titled “I want candy”

So, basically, this post is the summation of my whole blogging purpose. GET OFF SUGAR. Do it now! Don’t wait until you have diabetes, arthritis, obesity, depression. Of course, if it were easy, I wouldn’t have a blog, a job, or half of the life experiences I have been blessed with. I suppose being human means that some things are not easy.

I’ll be honest. I am not 100% off white, but I am about 90% off white sugar, 100% off white flour (90% off wheat altogether) and 100% off milk, cheese and yogurt. I feel a lot better, have less sugar craving, and I poop regularly. Seriously, being chronically constipated and ‘full’ all the time was a MAJOR side effect of eating too much sugar and dairy.

So, if you want to get off sugar, here’s what I suggest:

1. Find your willingness. Before you do anything with your diet or lifestyle, you have to find that strong desire for something different. What are you willing to change about your diet? Are you willing to stop drinking soda altogether? Are you willing to have fruits or pass altogether on dessert? Are you willing to spend 3-4x as much for unrefined grains/flours/sweeteners so that you can feel better.

No question is more important than the question of your willingness. On a 1-10 scale, how willing are you to do what it takes to get off sugar. Don’t be upset if its not a 10. Rarely is a sugar addict stoked about this process. But, look for what you ARE an 10 on. For instance, I was a “10” in a willingness scale to give up all candy on Feb 28, 2004 (first day of lent – I quit candy and never looked back), but about a 3-4 to give up hot chocolate. So, now I just make healthier hot chocolate and that helps. You have to start where you are and continue checking in with that willingness.

Let’s say you’re willing and ready. Next steps;

  • Give yourself a 3-7 day detox period. If you want to do a colon cleanse, that can go on for longer, but clean up your diet for a few days. For me, this means none of the following: wheat, corn, dairy, caffeine, chocolate, alcohol, sugar, fake fats, artificial sweeteners. You will be instead eating TONS of veggies, fruits, lean meats, eggs, olive oil, coconut oil, whole grains like brown rice, etc.
  • After your detox phase you might crave sugar a lot less already. This is good. Start drinking lots of water. Flush out all the “junk” and cell “memory” of wanting sugar. Your body remembers what you’ve always done and its used to it. If you drank a lot of sugar in soda or beverages, replace the habit with water. Just do your best. Get support if you need it (or start a blog to blab about it, like I do!)
  • Eat protein at every meal. Vegetarians won’t like me much because I advocate more meat consumption for those kicking sugar than some people might be comfortable with. The reason is that lean protein, esp animal protein, helps stabalize blood sugar, which is KEY in kicking sugar. Also, if you use high quality meats, then you are getting B vitamins, healthy fats, iron, as well as protein. You can certainly eat things like beans, tofu, lentils and nuts, but I find carb-based proteins to “confusing” for my body at first.
  • Balance that carnage with a boatload of green veggies. You just can’t have too many. Eat 1-3 cups of green veggies/day, cooked or uncooked. Suggestions are: mixed green salads, adding spinach to omelets, steamed asparagus, soups with zucchini, leeks, bell peppers, collards/kale, snap peas, etc.
  • Express your feelings. So much of our desire for sugar is to taste the “sweetness” of life. What are you really craving? Write about it, talk about it, go for a walk or jog to blow off steam. Whatever you do, get your voice and your ideas heard.
  • Get rid of all the white stuff in the house. Its a conflict to your mind when you are saying “no” and you still have white sugar/flour. Maybe for a while you keep none in the house. If you must bake or cook with sugar/flour, use sucanat, agave nectar, molasses or stevia. Use whole wheat flour (less ideal, but okay), spelt flour, oat flour, or get to know gluten-free flours. check out www.glutenfreegirl.com if you want some good gluten-free baking recipes.
  • Cleanse your liver. Start a practice of hot water with lemon in the morning. This will help “lube the tube” as well as detox the liver. If you have a long history of processed foods, your liver needs a break. Other liver cleansers include: stinging nettle tea, green culinary herbs, asparagus and milk thistle. Bitter veggies also cleanse the liver.
  • Educate yourself about reading labels and finding healthier alternatives to the foods you used to eat. Some things can be modified to have less sugar, such as baked goods and cereals. Other things, like marshmallows or store-bought cookies, are pretty much not and option if you want kick sugar. You might have to pick and choose what its important to you and then let the rest go.
  • Find out if you have any food allergies. My sugar obsession was made worse by my dairy/soy allergy. I had no idea until I was tested. I think I mentioned this before, but check out Diagnostech if you want to do some testing.
  • Take it day by day. Progress, not perfection will help you move toward freedom from the white stuff. You can do it. I believe in you. I don’t even know you, and I believe in you because I was the toughest sugar junkie ever and I’ve made it to the other side…..or at least to where sugar is the exception and not the rule in my life anymore.

Truth:unrefined

When I started this blog, I wasn’t sure exactly what and where I wanted it to go.  Simultanelously, in my personal life I’ve been working deeply and intently on releasing my attachment to sugar and refined carbs.

Well, truth be told, lately my commitment to being “off white” has been less than ideal.  Okay, it sucks. I have  some health issues (leaky gut and candida…..sexy,huh!) that really need me to be very low sugar and high veggies and protein.  Sugar is seriously like crack for my brain and like a train wreck for my digestive system.  It  simply does not work.  For a while I was rockin’….and slowly the white stuff began creeping back in.  A slice of bread here,  a piece of cheese there, etc.

This past week has been tough because my body has been hit hard again with what I know always happens when I eat lots of sugar, dairy, and grains.  I feel like crap.  I gain weight. I get constipated (TMI for some of you, and I’m sorry, but it’s true!)

And then last night, a cathartic moment:  I can use my blog to share my journey as I recommitt to the off-white lifestyle, and maybe other people will get something out of my trials and tribulations.  I mean, if I’m going to suffer through sugar detox yet again, at least maybe one of you can learn something or at least get a good laugh as I lament about the hardship of driving past the donut shop without the overwhelming urge to pull in and eat every cream puff and bismark bar available.

So, in addition to the other stuff I ramble about, I’m gonna ramble about me too, and about my off-white journey.

What I did to get started:
You know, when I  start a new project, I like to begin with a clean slate.  For me, this means having 2-days of very “light” eating, to give the ol’ GI system a  rest.  Lord knows I’ve been asking it to work double time lately with those extra bites of bread, the walnut pig-out earlier this week and the ever antagonizing junky hot chocolate.

To reset myself, for two days, I eat the following:

3 servings of veggies/day, with at least 2 being green (today was spinach mostly, with some tomatoes and carrots thrown in there)

2-3 servings of whole fruits, and maybe a few anti-oxidant rich dried fruits like dates.  Yes, I know dates are high in sugar, but I’m trying to just reduce what I eat and keep things simple.   I will focus on low sugar fruits soon.  I don’t give up the sweet easy, you see.

2 servings of high quality protein powder/day, made into a shake.  I like Whey Factors because I can’t have soy (allergy).

Tons of water and some herbal tea if I want.  I choose to have some random cinnamon/cardamom tea at a local coffee shop.  Good stuff.

What I noticed:

  • Even in 24 hrs I have more mental energy than I have had in several weeks.  In the course of the evening I went walking, called my mom, returned an item via UPS (required packaging it up – I’d been putting it off), gave my husband a mini-massage, cooked some sweet potato and spaghetti squash for the weekend, called a friend, vacuumed and am now blogging.  And its only 9;15pm.  This is more than I’ve done all week.
  • My digestion is already better.  That whole constipation issue…yeah, its gone.  Enough said.
  • I’m not hungry, despite the light foods I’m eating.  I’m getting what I need.  I’m not stuffing just a little more in.  I feel good.
  • I’m actually excited about the potential of being free of the sugar/white stuff bondage.  It is so oppressive.
  • I’m willing to share this with you.  That is a big deal for me.

That’s it kids!  More tomorrow.