Clean Eating Program Update

Hello! How are you all? I’m doing pretty well. Feeling pretty good. The laundry is almost all caught up from this weekend, now the house just needs to be cleaned a bit and we will be back in working order.

Clean Program Update

I wanted to give you an update on the Clean Eating Program I have been following for the last couple of weeks. For those of you who may have missed it, you can check out the clean program I am following by reading this post: Clean Eating Program.

If you will recall, the program offered the option of following the cleanse for 1-3 weeks. Along with the variation in length of time there was also an option of following the real cleanse which is smoothie/shake in the morning, solid meal for lunch, and a smoothie/shake for dinner OR you can simply follow along with the foods from the Elimination Diet OR you can try to do a combination of the two variables. The elimination diet removes dairy, eggs, wheat, caffeine, refined sugar, alcohol, red meat, strawberries, corn, and certain other foods that individuals tend to be sensitive to.

How I Followed the Clean Program

For the first 5 days I was following the cleanse to a T; a smoothie in the morning, a solid meal for lunch, a smooth blended soup for dinner. I would stop eating in the evening so that to allow my body 12 hours to digest and detoxify before my next meal in the morning. I was snacking in between meals only if I truly was hungry and would generally grab for raw fruits or vegetables if I did need something.

clean smoothie

Well, after day 5, I was starting to get real tired of all of this. I would dread eating smooth soup in the evening not only because it bores me having the same thing night after night but also because it was 90 something degrees outside and hot soup is just not appealing when it’s that hot. I’m not a fan of cold soup either. At this point I decided in order to save my sanity, I was going to continue the Clean Program, but would allow myself more solid meals from the elimination diet if I wanted to. This has been working out very well for me for the most part. Often I will still have a smoothie in the morning, a solid meal at lunch and a solid meal at dinner. I am trying to be careful with the snacking but have been finding myself grabbing for the jar of mixed nuts time after time. I believe it’s because my body was/is missing the extra protein.

It worked out really well to follow the modified version of the program while we were camping. There was no way I was going to be drinking 2 smooth meals while we were away. It could have been done, but it wouldn’t have been easy, or enjoyable. With a crazy amount of food preparation, I was able to make enough meals and snacks for us so that we could continue to follow the elimination diet while we were away.

spaghetti squash and meatballs

We went out to eat a couple of times and were able to mostly stick to the plan too. At the first restaurant we ordered a bison burger with a side salad. I just had to take the bun and the tomatoes off. The second restaurant I ordered whitefish with a side salad. I didn’t follow the plan exactly because I had their maple mustard on my salad. I couldn’t say no to that dressing when I was there, I mean come on. Again, I picked off the tomatoes, and the cheese and the strawberries, and enjoyed the rest of the meal completely.

angry trout fish dinner

Oh, and I enjoyed a couple of glasses of red wine too. That’s not in the plan. But for the most part, I did a pretty good job of sticking to the program.

How my body is responding

The intention of the cleanse is to remove excess mucus from the body and help to remove toxins as well. Our bodies are constantly working to remove toxins from the body but this just helps give the body a little nudge.

I can’t sit here and say wow, I feel incredible after doing that, but I can truly say I feel better. Quite a bit better in fact. I can’t really explain how I feel except for I do feel more “clean.” I will be anxious to follow-up with my naturopath and to find out how balanced my body is now compared to my last visit with her. I surely hope it has improved since last time! Otherwise I may be a little disappointed.

What I miss

Knowing that this cleanse was only temporary helped me when thinking of the foods I would need to remove from my diet. However, I am only human and I am really missing some of my favorite things: bananas, peanut butter, fresh summer corn, strawberries and tomatoes. Those are probably the main foods I am missing. Chocolate is another one but I have been able to make my own sugar-free version using raw organic cacao powder, coconut oil, almond butter, and stevia. I will be writing a post on this one soon! This has helped me a lot.

What’s Next

Three weeks is the maximum amount of time that one can continue on this cleanse (especially if following the option 1 plan with the two blended meals and one solid meal). After that time, it is recommended that you slowly wean yourself off of the cleanse and slowly reintroduce some of the foods you have eliminated. This is a perfect time to test specific foods for intolerances. It’s kind of like introducing new foods to infants: when you introduce a new food, you will want to wait a few days before introducing another new food to watch for any adverse reactions. Now that it has been two weeks, I am slowly reintroducing some foods. The first was raisins; my body tolerated them well. The next was wine, again my body seemed okay with it (my wine consumption is probably once every 2-3 weeks btw). Today, I will be reintroducing bananas which I am very excited about. I will continue reintroducing the foods back into my diet and watching for any adverse reactions until I am completely back to my normal diet.

I will most likely continue having smoothies for many of my breakfasts because it’s summer and a cold smoothie in the morning is pretty fantastic, but I am excited to be able to include more fruits like strawberries and bananas which were not allowed on the elimination diet.

My meals will become more exciting again! Wooo!! This means new recipes and fun food photos.

flounder and salad

I am very glad I completed this cleanse. Although I modified it slightly to fit my lifestyle and the events of summer, I do feel proud to say I followed it closely enough to feel the effects. I would highly recommend this Clean Program to anyone who is feeling they need a little detoxifying. Talk with your doctor first though, please!

Feel free to ask me questions about the program. I’m not expert but I did read the whole book and have been researching quite a bit about it the computer.

I hope you all have a wonderful Tuesday!

Veggie-Packed Green & Clean Soup

I mentioned in yesterday’s post that I made an awesome green, veggie-packed soup that was part of my clean eating program. I was bummed I didn’t write down the recipe because it turned out so great. Well, I went back and looked at the recipe that had originally inspired me, and I was able to pull the recipe together out of memory!

Inspiration from this recipe

So without further ado, I am going to keep this one short and sweet for you. Here is my recipe for Green & Clean Soup!

green and clean soup

Green & Clean Soup
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Ingredients
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 green zucchini, chopped
  • 2 cups green beans, chopped
  • 2 cups broccoli
  • ¼ cup raw almonds, chopped
  • 3 cups chicken broth*
  • 1 cup water
  • dash of Thyme
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • *I ran out of chicken broth so had to use 1 cup of water. You can use 4 cups of chicken broth, or if you want to keep this meal vegan, use vegetable stock.
Instructions
  1. In a medium soup pot, saute the onion. celery, and garlic in the olive oil for about 3 minutes.
  2. Next add in the zucchini, green beans, and broccoli and let saute together for 3-5 more minutes.
  3. Add in almonds, broth, thyme, and salt and pepper, and bring soup to a boil.
  4. Once boiling, cover pot, and reduce to simmer. Let simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Use a blender to puree batches of the soup until all of the soup is blended.
  6. Serve warm with a drizzle of olive oil on top.