I’m going to start a diet in a few days (a cleanse, actually) but that means I need to prepare a few things mentally as well as in my pantry so it makes life easier-bearable.
The cleanse is a detox which consists of a mix of whole food pills, fiber, and shake mixes you eat once or twice a day. The first 10 days are completely meat-free and then you can add some chicken or fish during the next 11 days. The whole detox lasts only 3 weeks, and it’s successful. The challenge is to maintain a healthy food lifestyle afterward. You can read about it more here
I’m no expert on it, have only done it twice and because I work out intensely on a daily basis, have always been advised by my health care practitioner to add eggs even in the first week. You cannot drink alcohol, caffeine, eat refined foods or prepared or canned foods, avoid nuts, beans, seeds, red meat, soy, diary, grains, wheat, or shellfish. Fish and chicken are acceptable after 10 days and apparently pure butter (ghee) may be used at any time.
I personally don’t use vinegar during this cleanse because I feel it is an additional food that is not needed in my diet. I usually use lime or lemon juice instead. I’m going to try to not eat eggs during the first week, either. As I rarely eat soy or use soy products, except fermented and in small doses, this detox is great for me. For those who utilize soy as a meat alternative, here is an article from Utne worth checking out. I’m not a proponent for or against soy, but I’m critical of what I eat.
I am also critical of studies that generalize a particular way of eating or an entire continent of people being made into a broad-stroke mass reason for vegetarianism. Soy in the form of tofu is not eaten by Chinese all the time and some families always shunned it as filler-food. Japanese don’t all eat macrobiotic diets or edamame snacks. Have you seen all the yummy pastries and mochi snacks? 😉 Many ethnicities of Chinese people eat a LOT of pork, offal and bones. Mooncakes even have a cooked egg yolk inside.. Vegetarian dishes often employ dried or fermented fish, oyster, and scallop. I should know, since I’m Chinese-American.
Anyway, my philosophy may not match anyone else’s but I won’t push any agenda. I just like the debate-dialogue about food. It’s only zealotry that turns my stomach. Critical thinking is a good skill. I like reading vegan recipes as much as I do charcuterie techniques. I’m just a lover of food and conscious eating.
A few things I need to prepare before I cleanse:
1. make kimchi! This condiment saves my life during the cleanse. It’s tangy, spicy, pungent and crunchy. I’ve also spent 5 variations on making a vegan version, so I’m going to make it so it has time to develop vitamin-B’s.
2. buy a lot of wild rice and lentils. (I already have a 20lb bag of brown rice from the Japanese market.)
3. plan out a general meal list for 3 weeks so I have variety and don’t overshop.
4. get frozen fruit for shakes
5. get green tea
6. rid pantry, fridge of non cleanse foods. (Sorry, Hubby! You want that grilled cheese sandwich? make it at work and eat it before you come home.)
I have a lot of recipes in my camera, so this cleanse will be a breeze.. at least recipe-wise. 😉 In the past two years, I’ve reduced my sugar use, coffee intake (used to drink espresso every morning and a double after lunch), dairy intake (used to have a cheese plate with dinner at least 2 times/ week!) do not eat more than one or two frozen or packaged meals (organic or otherwise) per month, make almost every dinner and lunch and breakfast, don’t consume any sodas at all, rarely drink and can enjoy the flavor of my food. I’m also an almost-convert to brown rice with the occasional basmati, jasmine, bomba when the recipes call for them. I read food labels more carefully and learn about farms I buy produce and meat from. I’ve gotten to know my local farmers, fishermen, etc. from the weekly markets and also my local butcher.
Getting to know food opens me beyond my self and to new things. Restriction forces creative thinking, so I can better understand my tastebuds and body.
Plus, everything tastes better after this cleanse is complete!
I realized that sugar, salt and fat is what I actually ingested on a normal basis, and not food. The cleanse offers time for me ti make a conscious decision to fuel my body with nutrients.
Watch out! I’m going to be quoting a LOT of vegan blogs in the next month! 😉