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The 31 day cleanse challenge

A document of two room mates with major dietary restrictions.

     Well clearly I should’ve kept better track of this from the beginning, but I didn’t so here we are, on day 21 of the “challenge.” Kind of a stupid name but we called it that because it’s our own made up cleanse. But what would possess us to cut out what seems like virtually all food from our diet? Well, it’s a matter of giving your system a break from garbage food. Consider how much processed or packaged food we consume. Pesticide laden GMO vegetables. Hormone/antibotic meat. Chemicals in bath and beauty products and virtually everything. Exhaust and smog. It’s all a little hard to digest at times literally and figuratively but if we experiment we can try doing something differently in our lives that could lead you to versions of yourself you didn’t know existed. Change is a good thing.

Though we changed our diets somewhat drastically, we didn’t take any herbs or tinctures although that is beneficial and sometimes necessary depending on what you’re trying to achieve but it’s expensive enough to buy all the organic fruits and veggies you end up consuming. We cut out sugar, me all of it until recently I joined Nicole in enjoying a little maple syrup and honey after she presented a case backed by a magazine article about what sugars are good and what are bad. We also stopped consuming caffeine, alcohol, and gluten. I stopped eating grain for the first week as well, mostly as an experiment and to see about potential allergies. When I read this back, it sounds like we ate no food at all. So I want to list a few things that we could eat. Beans, hummus, almond butter, nuts and seeds, any fruits and vegetables; and when including grains— quinoa and amaranth, and… well, the list goes on much longer than those grains that are glutenous which include rye, various wheat (including spelt and kamut), barley and something called  triticale. Here’s a good link for more deets on various grains. Find out where oats stand.

Though I was eating plenty in the beginning, I wasn’t when I got what I suspect was a norovirus (stomach flu) on day 14 to day 18 so I did not eat much and it kind of threw a wrench in the “food and how I feel” saga. I’m feeling better now, but as I was on my way to getting better my mom kept pushing glutenous soda crackers on me telling me it would sop up whatever was in there and that’s how pregnant ladies made themselves feel better. After laying down a few solid ‘hell no moms’, her persistence paid off and I took the bait. I started to feel better so I got hooked and had a few more unsanctimonious cheats (more crackers, a couple coffees, and a half a croissant! with brie cheese and spinach and tomato… I know getting out of hand with the cheats, sorry Nicole you just plain have better will power than me. Tip: DO NOT go into coffee shops. Also, I had more cheats than that.

But I’m still here, I haven’t broken down and eaten a whole chocolate bar yet and we’re planning for a strong finish, getting back to juicing and eating greens everyday. When we were doing that in the beginning we both agreed that our skin looked great, our minds clear. We’ve both lost around 5 pounds, look less puffy and bloated. We’ve been going to yoga, snowboarding, going to the gym and sauna, trying to stay active and give the body a chance to expel toxins and enhance circulation. Movement is key we figure. We’ve been drinking a hell load of Rooibos tea. It’s my new coffee. A lot of a lemon water. Definitely a need becomes evident to learn weird new recipes. Like vegan crap. There’s some delicious-ass-looking-shit out there. I’m going to make cashew cheese (I made the ricotta and it turned out great). I had it once on a vegan pizza in Nelson, BC which was to this day the best pizza I ever ate.*

I’ve had a few embarrassing moments where I start talking about the diet I’m on and people just look at me like ‘what the hell are you saying to me right now?’ or me and Nicole will have a conversation about what we’re going to eat in front of someone and I can just hear that it  sounds complicated and pretentious. I don’t want to have to be that guy. It’s like a snobby foreign hipster language sometimes. Try to keep sorting out the fine details to a minimum in front of audiences I suppose. They’ll ask if they want to know what the hell it is you’re eating for lunch. I have a juicer which is an awesome way to get lots of nutrients in your body in one glass. A good one is a couple hundred dollars and some say they take a minute to clean, but I’ve used mine lots, friends love it it’s kind of a novelty when they come over and once you get the hang of it it takes no time at all to clean. A food processor would be a good thing to have to pull off some experimental new food. Cauliflower rice? (I ended up making a cauliflower pizza crust from this “cauliflower rice” with the aforementioned cashew cheese as well as zucchini, mushrooms, and onions fried up a bit, marinated roasted red peppers and roasted cherry tomatoes.) So while my body’s loving it I’m thinking what’s the next step after this? Where do I go from here? I’ve opened to new ideas so much during this process, I want to keep on this path.

*The restaurant is called Jaganatha but you can’t get the pizza there anymore. It was the daughter who made it and she’s doing other things now or something.

UPDATE: We started that cleanse on New Year’s Eve. That’s right folks, we did not drink on New Year’s. It was great. I started the New Year off not hung over and it’s been a long time since that’s happened. We’ve experimented before and since with not drinking and going out and it’s actually fun. Plus you can drive yourself or your friends anytime without getting one of those breathalyzers in your car. Now it is February 22, and I’ve strayed a plenty. And it’s delicious. And it makes me feel like shit. I mean when I reflect, I think sugar and basically gluten and processed foods hurt me. I can say that instinctually and from the results of this cleanse. Nicole mentioned to me in the kitchen that she wanted to go back to the diet. My sentiments exactly.