Week One – Detoxifying Foods

Nearly a week into the Consciousness Cleanse, I find that I am – as one of my favorite authors, the esteemed Dr. Seuss, would say – un-slumping myself (which is not easily done).  This morning I awoke with a bit of natural pep in my step and the notable absence of groggy-I-need-coffee-fog.

I’ve been detoxing.  That’s all there is to it.  Abruptly quitting caffeine, alcohol, processed sugar, and dairy has been a bit of a shock to my already sleep deprived (read:  11-month old baby mama) body.  It’s tough to pinpoint the major culprit of the sluggishness, headaches, and general fog I’ve been experiencing for the past week, but I’m glad it is (or they are) leaving my system!

In the past six days, I’ve done more than a simple elimination diet.  I’ve also worked to bring myself back into a place of meal planning and cooking whole foods from scratch.  Cooking calms me, brings forth my creativity, sustains my soul, and satisfies my need to nurture.  I realize it’s not the same for everyone, and consider myself blessed to gain so much enjoyment from something so simple.

Googling “detoxifying foods” led to the inspiration for a week’s worth of meal planning.  Before I went to the grocery store, I wrote “Meals” on the left side of a notebook page and mapped out each dinner for a week.  On the right side, I wrote “Groceries” and listed the ingredients I would need to purchase for the corresponding meals.  I’ll admit that I am not great at breakfast and lunch, favoring an all-day snackathon, but this week I made an effort to notice what I ate and drank.

First, I made a huge batch of my special Bush Tea.  It’s a recipe I fell in love with while living on St. Croix, USVI, mainly because of its amazing capacity to heal and prevent sicknesses up to and including hangovers.  The recipe I use is one part each ginger, Tulsi (holy basil), and lemongrass.  Turns out, lemongrass is a hugely detoxifying herb!  This time, I added some nettles for extra nutrition.  I steeped it in freshly boiled water all day while I went to the beach and then dumped it into a half-gallon glass maple syrup jug that had about a tablespoon of the sweet stuff left in the bottom.  All week long, I’ve had a glass or two over ice when I’ve felt myself dragging; this has satisfied my urge for an evening “grown-up drink” and curbed my cravings for sweets!

Most mornings, I eat two slices of vegan whole grain bread (I like Eureka! brand) with Teddy’s all-natural peanut butter and about a teaspoon of local, raw honey spread over the top.  I’ve also been eating organic fruit:  raspberries, strawberries, plums, and melon.  This is paired with a quart-sized mason jar full of water, my whole-food prenatal vitamins (because I’m still breastfeeding), and a one-ounce shot of E3 Live blue-green algae.

For lunch, I typically eat handfuls of nuts – pistachios are my current obsession but I also eat tamari-seasoned almonds and cashews – and/or seeds like sunflower or pumpkin, plus more fruit like plums, grapes, or apples.  Lately, I’ve also been eating peanut butter & (local) jelly sandwiches.  Sometimes, I also snack on my famous “Rasta Pop,” organic non-GMO corn chips, wasabi peas, dried plantains, a salad, and/or leftovers from a previous night’s dinner.  This is all paired with more and more water from my ever-handy mason jar! I drink at least 80 ounces of water each day.

Dinners this week included:

Tuesday’s leftover spicy lentil marinara over organic pasta with a huge spinach salad (chopped bell peppers and red onions over raw organic baby spinach tossed with sunflower seeds and homemade quick dressing of apple cider vinegar, Bragg liquid aminos, and cold-pressed organic olive oil);

Wednesday’s sesame stir fry over wild rice (veggies like summer squash, broccoli, onion, garlic, fresh ginger root, carrot, and wild mushrooms pan-fried in organic 100% sesame oil, aminos, sea salt, red pepper flakes, chili powder, and black pepper and topped with chopped tamari almonds);

Thursday’s crock-pot chili (2 lbs of dried mixed beans from a local farm, lentils, bell peppers, organic tomato paste, garlic, onions, carrot, and tons of organic spices) with local vegan farmer’s market bread;

Friday’s burrito bowls with leftover chili & wild rice plus fresh spinach, homemade guacamole (avos, cilantro, onion, bell pepper, sea salt, olive oil, and lime), and fajita veggies (sauteed bell peppers & onions);

Saturday’s grilled sweet potatoes, grilled stuffed portabellas (stuffed with Annie’s organic refried black beans, chipotle powder, & Hungarian paprika), grilled cauliflower (spiced with onion powder, chili powder, Himalayan pink salt, and pepper), and raw kale salad (baby kale with coconut oil, tahini, sesame oil, curry powder, honey, apple cider vinegar, & aminos dressing plus sliced red onion, orange bell pepper, and sunflower seeds); and

Sunday’s lazy dinner of grilled vegan sausages with peppers & onions on vegan buns with non-GMO kettle salt & pepper chips.

Tonight, I have yoga teacher training so will be bringing a PB&J sandwich, nuts, fruit, and water and leaving husband to make himself a farmer’s market tomato sandwich with nuts & fruit.

Whew! So that’s food.

In addition to preparing and eating whole-food meals, I’ve been hugely limiting my screen time.  I plan to do a whole post about how mortified I was when I realized just how many hours – yes, HOURS – I regularly spent on my phone, so here I will simply say that I’ve drastically cut it.  And as a result I’ve been a lot more mindful and present with my family! I also attended an amazing didgeridoo journey meditation on Thursday night (hence the need for a crock-pot meal) which I hope to detail in a later post as well.

So far, so good.  My body is making its way out of the detox slump-sluggish-ick feeling and is well on its way to feeling invigorated, energized, and clean!

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