Once in a while, I'll get all pumped up to do a detox. And every time, without fail, everyone I tell wants to do one as well. Apparently everyone secretly desires a squeaky clean colon...they just need someone to spark the idea. My detox wasn't too crazy, and I opted to ingest some avocado and coconut because I wasn't doing this to lose weight, and I also didn't want to keel over with a patient on the table. Days one and two SUCKED. I was tired, cranky, and my head was throbbing. On day three I woke up feeling like Wonder Woman (remember her? I'm old.) I felt like I could run a marathon. I could feel energy thrumming through every cell of my body...no wonder people eat all this raw, insanely expensive Whole Foods crap!
The strangest thing I noticed was my complete lack of hunger. I wasn't really hungry at any point during the week, which makes me doubt the accuracy of what my stomach normally tells me. My friends kept asking me if I was starving yet, but I honestly have to say that I never experienced anything more than a low-grade hint of hunger-nothing I couldn't ignore. In fact I felt so good on this cleanse that I considered adding a week; the only reason I didn't was that I started to miss the actual act of eating.
This was interesting: hunger wasn't the issue, nor were cravings for things that I was missing. The hardest part of cleansing is trying to find ways to fill up the space normally devoted to meals. Oh, and also the alienation that comes with knowing you have to sacrifice your social life for a week.
We don't realize how much of our lives are dedicated to dealing with the issue of food, until we give it up. Even through my typical eating schedule is far from typical, I still know that there is a certain amount of space for "time-outs" during the day when I can relax and put something into my mouth. Without these times, I felt kind of confused and aimless. I would start to think about what sort of meal I should have when I got home, only to realize that...nope. No food for me. I'd have to find something else to do to fill that void. I did lots of reading and exercising and writing (not to mention spending LOTS of money at the mall), but it felt inauthentic, like it was just filler.
It was strange, how my life felt like it shifted into a totally different gear. It was only food I was lacking, but giving it up made me see how much of our time we spend eating and drinking. The beautiful weather made my heart cry out for social activity, but I didn't want to call any friends to go out. I knew it would lead to me sitting in a bar with a glass of club soda, tortured and drooling over the aroma of yummy food all around me.
Don't get me wrong; I'm glad I did it. I feel fresh, glowing, and motivated to start eating cleaner foods. Eating clean really makes SUCH a huge difference in how we feel; sometimes we just need a kick-start as a reminder of this. Also, getting rid of sugar and salt for a week totally revamps your taste buds! The very thought of adding any salt to my food turns me off completely. By the end of the cleanse, interestingly, the taste of avocado was so overwhelmingly sweet to me, I could hardly stand it. Most people assume that the day after a cleanse is a big sugary carby greasy free-for-all, since you have been deprived all week, but I can't imagine eating any of these things. If anything, my normal cravings for sugar are (at least temporarily) in hiding.
By the way, if anyone wants the details of what this detox entailed, just shoot me an email-I would highly recommend it!