Why Cleanse?

As Massage Therapists and advocates of holistic health, we here at Eden Therapy do our best to walk the talk. Also, we are human beings who enjoy indulging from time to time. And, well, as the Comox Valley dampens down into the wet and dark winter months, the idea of putting ones feet up by the fire with a drab of scotch seems quite lovely. Balance, you know? That Genghis Khan in our heads can just chill. If you are on a roll of an evening glass of wine or six, running through all the Ben and Jerry ice cream flavours for sport, I really hope you’re not beating yourself up. When you’re ready to feel amazing, you’ll make the required changes. I believe in you, my friend.

Someone joked about the pandemic lockdown of March – May 2020, people turned into Chunks, Drunks or Hunks.  I think many fell into the first two categories! You know, the bottles of wine turned into boxes of wine, because, honestly, if you’re shopping every two weeks, you gotta get the box!

I’m not saying I did that. Wink wink. But this lady feels ready for a reboot. So I’m hitting the refresh button; washing the chalk board clean (a metaphor for the old folks); cleaning the slate.

Holistic Nutrition & Herbal Cleanse
The Wild Rose Detox, available in most grocery and health food stores, is a really nice reset. When you feel sluggish, getting up in the morning doesn’t seem like a good idea, there’s a general sense of poopy mind, your significant other is super irritating, more than usual, it’s probably time to check into your nutrition.

This cleanse goes for 12 days. It allows you to drink coffee. Sold! But if you like things with flours, sugars, it will feel challenging. So I suggest planning ahead, make sure you set yourself up for success.

The Pre-Cleanse Plan

Especially if you’ve never done a cleanse before, I suggest having a plan. Don’t wing it! It will feel too hard, and you’ll fall off the wagon. Here are some suggestions to set yourself up for success:

  1. Build a shopping list: There are a few things you’ll want to have on hand to keep your hankerings satisfied. You’ll likely find your own, but here’s my list:
  • Bragg sauce: This is a soy based seasoning. You can’t have anything fermented or sugar on this detox. That means no vinegar, mustard, ketchup, store bought salad dressing, nutritional or Engevita yeast, soy sauce, hot sauce. Bragg Sauce will be your new best friend.
  • Lemons and limes: These will replace your vinegar when you want some zip.
  • Avocado: Add some creaminess to dressings and sauces, as well as substance. Please buy organic if possible. I don’t like promoting avocado consumption, because of the industry. Also, monarch butterflies are going extinct, partly due to our infatuation with this weird looking fruit. So, make it a special treat. And plant some milkweed if you are in that climate zone.
  • Rice Cakes: I like the Plum Good brand. They have a thin, cracker like one that has a great texture. They are less bland than Quaker.
  • Almond Butter: If you are a fan of peanut butter, you’ll want some almond butter. Also,
  • Tahini: You can use tahini in cooking, sauces, or on those rice cakes. Tahini, with some raspberries is yummy! The sweet and bitter makes for a lovely combo.
  • Unsweetened oat, almond or soy milk: Since you can’t have dairy, you may want some on hand for your oatmeal or coffee.
  • Fruit: You can’t have oranges and tropical fruit (orange peels have yeast, and  tropical fruit is too sugary), but you can have apples, pears, berries, stone fruit. I make sure I have a bag of frozen berries on hand, fresh apples, and on occasion, a pomegranate. Pomegranate seeds looks so pretty on salads and Mediterranean style hot dishes. Or as a snack. This guy shows you how to properly dismantle the fruit.
  • Tons of veggies: Including sweet potatoes and squashes.
  • Almonds: They make a satisfying sweet snack. For savoury, soak almonds in Bragg Sauce overnight, drain, bake on a cookie sheet at 275 degrees F until crunchy and dried. Leave in the oven until the oven is cool. Yum!
  • Tea: Have some fun tea on hand. You’ll want some for your evenings. Licorice tea is naturally sweet, so if you like to sweeten your tea, it’s a nice option. Also, Celestial Seasoning Bengal Spice is an all time favourite.

    My tea cupboard

Well, I’m sure there’s more, but those are some basics you’ll want in stock. I like to have lots of fun spices on hand, as well as lentils, quinoa, buckwheat, beans, rice, etc.

2. Prep: For me, it’s head down, bum up from Monday – Friday. So on Sunday, I do some food prep. Today I have beans soaking, roast roast a chicken so I have meat to make a stir fry, salads, other cook ups. I’ve roasted a couple of sweet potatoes as a base for eggs, a sweet treat (cinnamon and butter). And I make up some sauce!

Getting ready to soak!

Roasted pumpkin seeds

3. Plan your exercise: Or, you may plan a modified exercise regime for the 12 days. I road bike. I’m finding, now on day 6 of the cleanse, that a hard ride doesn’t seem like a good idea. It usually does. So today, I plan to go on an easy spin, let my body dictate effort, and do lots of yoga and stretching. I still attend my Pilates Reformer class. Don’t sweat it if you take a few days off from bootcamp .

Some Recipes

Finally, here are a couple of recipes I made up for the cleanse. Wild Rose has a recipe book, and there is quite a lot of free information on the interweb. So have fun browsing!

Tex Mex Salad

Ingredients:
You don’t need to be exact with this recipe. Add, delete, do as you like. Please use this as a spring board for your own version.

1/2 orange bell pepper
several cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup frozen organic corn, thawed
1/4 cup black beans, cooked
optional chicken breast, pre-cooked
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons, purple onion, finely chopped
one stalk green onion, chopped
Several sprigs fresh cilantro (chop some, leave some for garnish)
1 Tablepoon olive oil
cumin, chili powder, coriander, salt and pepper to taste. Sea salt or Himalayan Pink Salt.
wedge of lime

Heat a frying pan over medium heat with the olive oil. Cook garlic, add  the corn, beans and chicken.  Add the spices and flavouring. Brown a little. Toss with the remaining ingredients except for the garnish, squeeze some lime juice on there. Pour the yummy avocado sauce over your salad, garnish with cilantro.

Yummy Avocado Sauce

Ingredients:
1 ripe avocado
lemon and lime juice (taste and add to your liking)
2 Tablespoons tahini
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup vegetable stock
cayene pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon Bragg sauce
1/4 cup unsweetened, organic apple sauce (for sweetness)
sea salt.

These measurements are approximate. Taste and see if you need more. Blend these all together. This dressing can thicken in the fridge, so add water or more vegetable stock if needed.

While I’m at it, here’s my favourite breakfast of late. I make enough for 2-3 days, heat it up in the morning.

Fruity Steel Cut Oats
Make the oats according to instruction, and add chopped apples and berries part way through. Add a bit of cinnamon. Serve with butter (it melts and makes it extra yummy), and oat milk if desired.

Oatmeal bandit

Enjoy!

Now on day 6, I will say my state of mind is more positive, and I’m sleeping better. I am more productive. My mind is more clear. I may continue on the 15 day Liver Detox after the 12 days. We shall see!