This spring I did a crazy thing. I participated in a 3 week cleanse from Arise and Shine. These cleanses are often recommended to help the body get rid of toxins, kick-start a sluggish digestive system and give the body a rest from foods that are difficult to metabolize.
The Arise and Shine cleanse involved cutting out all the things I love: coffee, wine, baked goods, cheese, meat and dairy. The first week prepares the body for the cleanse by eating only raw, fresh fruits and veggies. The second week involved eating that same way and adding “detox drinks” and nutritional supplements. By week three, I was only taking the “detox drinks” and supplements. What that was done, I began the process of easing myself back into eating solid food.
If it sounds intense, I am here to tell you that it was! But it was one of the best things I could have done for myself this year.
The first week was the most difficult: I had a headache from no coffee, I was grumpy and frequently asked myself why I willingly agreed to this insanity. I have to say I was glad my husband was doing it with me–he understood my mood swings.
By the second week, my body was adjusting to all the wholesome food I was eating and I no longer wanted a glass of wine with my salad. The detox drinks were beginning to work wonders on my elimination system and I was feeling great. Because I had no stimulants in my body, I felt in touch with what it needed. I had alot of energy throughout the day, but often had to put myself to bed early and respect my fatigue. It was a little difficult to socialize, but I kept reminding myself, “Lori, it is only 3 weeks of the year. You’ve got this”.
The last week was very interesting. I was really beginning to feel the effects of the cleanse. The detox drinks filled me up and for the first few days I wasn’t hungry. I was feeling light and clean. We got a few colonics, which seemed to speed up the cleansing. My skin was radiant, I slept so deeply at night and woke feeling rested. My eyes were bright. I did see my Naturopathic Doctor (Keith at www.awenhealth.ca) at this point, and he gave me a few supplements to support my body as it cleansed. I have to say that I was starting to dream of food. Not just any food. Beautiful, well made, healthy, and wholesome food. I also looked forward to a piece of chocolate. I love chocolate!
It was an amazing 3 weeks, and I realized that it’s good to occasionally go without the foods that you think you need. I have a deep appreciation for healthy food, and feel so lucky that I have enough, which is not true for many people in our world. I feel more in touch with my body since the cleanse. I’m not a tempted to overeat, or to eat foods that irritate my system. The cleanse will become a yearly practice…and in the meantime, I will enjoy eating, socializing over food, and celebrating my healthy body.”