Today is my first full day of the Fresh Start program and, I have to say, with a little planning and creativity, it’s been pretty easy.
As I explained in my previous post, this first week of the program is a cleanse week in which I can only eat fresh fruits and vegetables (or lightly steamed) and drink lots of water. I am also taking several supplements from Shaklee to help the cleanse process along. These supplements are alfalfa, Liver DTX, Herblax, and Optiflora probiotic.
I have spent this whole day consuming nothing but raw fruits, vegetables, and water. I’m actually staying with my “sister-in-law” today and tomorrow and she has done Fresh Start before so it’s been really helpful doing the program with her to start out. Since fruits and vegetables don’t pack nearly as much of the calories as protein or carbs, I am eating a lot more to keep my blood sugar stable and to keep satiated. Basically, we’ve been eating all day long. But we planned ahead for this. Last night, we cut up some carrots, radishes, and red peppers to snack on. We also made a dip for them by blending up some peas and avocado with some cumin, salt, and pepper. And we made some roll-ups using collard leaves stuffed with slivered carrot, pepper, guacamole, and salsa. All of that came with us to her office this morning (I was shadowing her) and we polished most of it off along with some oranges and an apple. We started the day off with a fruit and vegetable smoothie, a banana, and some herbal tea. For dinner tonight we had some cauliflower rice with mushrooms seasoned with cumin and a side salad of kale, greens, carrots, and avocado with some olive oil and vinegar.
So far, the most difficult part isn’t the food – it’s staying hydrated. When you eat a lot of fiber, as we are with so much raw produce, it’s critical to drink a lot of water – even more so when your goal is to flush toxins from your body. I’m at about 78 ounces of water so far and it’s been…inconvenient, if you know what I mean. But I don’t feel like I’m forcing myself to drink more than I want – I’m actually needing this much water.
In preparation for this week, I cut way back on my coffee intake last week because I knew that would be a challenge to give up along with carbs, diary, meat, etc. One thing that I have learned in giving up the coffee is that I really don’t NEED it physically. I’ve been doing fine energy-wise and have gotten only a minimal headache. However, I’ve come to realize that coffee for me is a major comfort source. I like to take my mornings slow, stay warm in my comfy clothes, and the aroma of coffee brewing and enjoying that warm cup is a huge part of my happy morning ritual. So I’ve been finding that I am craving coffee far more on an emotional level than a physical one.
Today has really brought to light for me just how much mindless eating I do in a day. I keep catching myself wanting to reach for the open bag of this or that on the counter or wanting to accept whatever food someone is offering a taste of. This week will definitely be an exercise in mindfulness.
I know that as the week goes on, I’m going to have to get more creative with my food to keep myself from getting bored. So I’ve put together some meal options that I can create during the week. Some of those are:
- Sweet potato noodles with EVOO, sage, and diced apple
- Beet noodles with balsamic and shredded brussels sprouts
- Avocado and salsa with peppers instead of chips for dipping
- Riced cauliflower with corn, carrots, peas, mushrooms, and liquid aminos (similar in flavor to soy sauce)
All in all, Fresh Start has been a piece of kale (see what I did there?) so far. I’m feeling really good today and am looking forward to how I’ll be feeling at the end of the week. Check back here for more updates as the week goes on!