The detox diet is all the rage right now. Detoxing, or cleansing, is supposed to rid the body of toxins, clear out the digestive tract, and sort of reset the system. Thought to be good for the skin, the colon, the blood, and, of course, as a means of weight loss.
Here’s the real deal on detox, though. The thing you don’t often hear. You have to choose the right detox diet for YOU. Yep, as with so many other things in life, this is not one size fits all.
How do I know? I took on a detox this week. I’ve been working out like crazy, really watching what I eat since the first of the year, and just haven’t seen as much of a difference in how I look as I’d like. I was so focused on my stomach not being perfectly flat and thinking about how I looked that I forgot to think about how my body felt.
Well, the detox brought my attention to that in a great big hurry.
So I took on the 3 Day Cleanse from The Plan author Lyn-Genet Recitas. Looks simple enough, you get to eat so you won’t be starving, and c’mon, it’s 3 days! Since I am not at all a picky eater and love my veg, I thought it would be a breeze. Honestly I was more concerned with having to prepare extra food than the actual eating of it.
Until I started eating it. The first day was ok. I was definitely full, not particularly satisfied, but for sure thought I’d have no problem getting through 2 more days of it. Until right around lunch time of day 2, that is. After my second lunch in two days of husky greens with chickpeas, cucumbers and lime juice vinaigrette, I felt sick to my stomach, had a headache, and the thought of eating more ultra fibrous veg for dinner made me want to vomit. I decided I would just skip dinner and look forward to day 3, when I could have a few crackers and a little chicken.
By around 3:00 the afternoon of day 2 I’d decided I didn’t need a detox anyway, like a smoker convincing themself that a cig isn’t really that bad. Detox ditched.
Rather than feeling light and free and happy, I spent the next two days getting my digestion back on track, battling a raging sweet tooth that hadn’t made an appearance in a while, and feeling (and looking!) downright exhausted.
Here’s my take away on detoxing. Be sure that the detox works for your body, your system, your individual makeup. You know your body. If you need warm foods, don’t do a raw food cleanse. If you are an eater, avoid juice cleansing. There are lots of different detox diets out there, choose the one that feels right. Detox can even mean eliminating refined sugar or cutting back on caffeine.
Bottom line is this; I had a good thing going with my style of healthy eating and regular exercise. Even though I was not seeing radical results, I felt great and am in reasonable shape. The whole detox thing really threw me off track. Don’t go with the fad or what works for someone else. Do what makes you and your body feel good.