By Nadine Kam
On my first morning back from Blue Tree Cafe's juice cleanse, I have the last juice, the tomato and celery Virgin Mary that I had hoarded from yesterday, and a fistful of raw unsalted almonds. I believe the total calories is about 350. — Nadine Kam photos
At Blue Tree Cafe, one of the mottos about their juice cleanse is that “It will change your life.”
I do feel great, lighter and energized though I was correct in that the 1,500 calories a day would not result in weight loss for a petite person.
Time will tell how much this will change my diet. I’m not one to be concerned with diet in the first place. Obviously, I eat for a living so don’t shy from trying new things. But, while on the cleanse I did become aware of how much social dining I do, and how that leads to extraneous meals when I want to hang out with friends, when we all eat—not because we’re hungry, but because we want to hang out and talk.
In having to resist foods, I think anyone who initiates a juice cleanse will realize how little food the human body requires, and how much most people overeat on a regular basis. For the most part, eating today is more a sensory than survival instinct. It takes very little food to stay alive.
At this point, a bowl of ramen would be too much for me. I would only be able to manage a few spoonfuls of broth and a few noodles.
I’m not naturally a snacker. I don’t keep much food at home because I simply don’t crave it. Yet, I know now that I do a lot of mindless eating, picking up on cookies or candy in the office, not because I’m hungry or even want them, but because they’re simply sitting within arm’s reach. In the process of not eating, I’m surprised by how much I can resist.
Unlike many people I know, I don’t crave bread, pasta, pastries, candy or cookies. My downfall would be fat, seafood, meat, french fries or anything potato. If I could curb those appetites, cut back on extraneous and mindless eating, and make a more concentrated effort to get enough fruit and veggies, that would go a long way in reducing my junk food intake and living more healthfully. So, that’s the plan for 2014 and beyond.
Through the juice cleanse, I craved solid food and longed for the end when I could eat again, but yesterday I realized I couldn't just jump back into normalcy, which would surely lead to heartburn as the stomach amps up the digestion process.
What to eat? After the accomplishment of a cleanse, you don't want to return to old habits right away and put toxins back into your body.
Because I was too full to finish my juices over two days, I managed to carry a Virgin Mary over, and drink that for breakfast. I thought about making oatmeal, but was too lazy, so just grabbed a fistful of almonds.
The night before, I had gone shopping and because I craved fat, wanted to buy an avocado for lunch today, but they were all too green. I spotted corn and thought it would be easy to boil that and bring for lunch, to ease my way back to carbs. The fiber is a continuation of the detox process, though nutritionally, a sweet potato or yam would have been a healthier choice.
I have carrots at home. I buy celery, onions, kale and chicken to go into chicken soup later today, to ease back into protein.
I chop the veggies ahead so I can start the soup when I come home from work. Can't wait to have a taste of chicken, though it will be about 1-1/2 ounces per helping. I plan to have two servings, spaced out over a few hours.
The great thing is that, having started and ended when I did, I just have to maintain healthy thoughts for 2014. The hardest work has been done.