Sunday, March 11, 2012

To Rid My Addiction, I'm Gonna Have to Face a Detox

Dear Diary...

I've had something on my mind these past couple of days.  Something I've been considering.  Thinking about.  Researching a little.  Actually a lot. 

This past week has been absolutely TERRIBLE in terms of eating and exercising.  I've worked out in the gym once since last Sunday.  I've also eaten out at restaurants or grabbed fast food three days since last Sunday - and ate leftover pizza for dinner yesterday which technically makes it four days. 

This crazy week has messed with my head.  Big time.  I've been very busy, and in times when I'm so busy I just don't think about what I could eat that would be healthier for me - I just eat what I can when I can...and that almost always ends up being some form of fast food.  Even when I told myself that I'd eat from the salad bar while my kids ate pizza at Chuck E. Cheese, once the pizza was in front of me - I just couldn't help myself. 

It's no surprise, and I'm not admitting this for the first time, but I'm a food addict.  I am addicted to food.  A person that is a drug addict can say that they're going to give up drugs - but in order for them to actually rid themselves from the drugs - they have to go through detox.  That got me thinking.  In order for me to get over my food addiction, I too have to go through a detox.  I have to shed my body of the remnants of the junk in my system, put nothing but clean stuff in to it, and retrain my system to only crave and desire the good stuff much more than it craves the nasty junk.

I've openly admitted that I'm no fan of fad diets or strict diet regimens.  My junk loving brain has programmed me to shy away from any type of "plan" that promises to rid my body of the desire to crave junk foods.  But, when I think about those drug addicts again, I'm pretty sure all of them are dealing with a brain that has been programmed to reject any form of help for ridding their bodies the desire to get rid of the drugs.  When they do decide to try to give up the drugs, their body goes through a nasty detox process.  They suffer from shakes and fever and nausea and vomiting.  It's not a fun process, but if they are able to stick to it - they can finally start to break free from the hold that drugs have on them. 

Thankfully, for me, food detox doesn't involve any of the nasty side affects that drug detox has.  I am able to reprogram my body and mind by spending a few days ridding my body of the waste and replacing it with the good.  And, in the process, training my brain that the good stuff is much more beneficial than that bad stuff ever was.

So, I'm guessing you've figured out where I'm going with this, right?  Yes, I'm going to try a detox plan.  Nothing crazy.  No drinking strange, awful tasting concoctions.  No starving myself.  Not gonna spend days having fluids only.  Not going to take pills.  I'm going to detox myself by eating mostly fruits, veggies, and unprocessed foods for six days - starting today and ending Friday.

I went grocery shopping yesterday to prepare.  I still have a few things left to buy - but it was a start.  Basically, for the next six days I'm not going to eat any pasta, bread, sugar, white flour, or fat (other than healthy fat).  I will also be limiting my dairy intake to only involve a cup of milk a day, yogurt, and fat-free cheese.  I will be eating no more than 1 serving of meat per day, and it will be lean meat only.

The only foods that I will consume for the next six days are Kashi Natural cereal, Whole grain oats, fresh veggies, steamed veggies, fruit, 100% unsweetened fruit juice, eggs, 1 serving of lean meat per day, olive oil, unprocessed guacamole, Greek yogurt, whole milk, a very small amount of fat-free cheese, and flax seed. That's it.  All of the foods provide the carbohydrates, proteins, and fats my body needs - without any processed sugars, flour, or "bad" fat.  I won't be depriving myself of anything.  I'll be getting the calories needed to reach my caloric intake each day.  And that is key with these types of "detox" plans. 

You will notice I put whole milk on that list.  According to Dr. Oz, there is very little evidence to support that whole milk is worse for you than skim milk.  Skim milk has less fat, but it also has more natural sugar due to the processes it undergoes to remove the fat.  As long as I only drink 1 glass of whole milk a day, I'm just fine.

My hope and goal with this plan is that my body will start to reboot.  It will begin to adjust to the benefits that eating clean can do for it.  And, if after 6 days I don't believe I've reached that goal - meaning if the first thing I start thinking about is eating a cheeseburger - then I haven't gone long enough, and the detox will continue. 

The research I've done all says that this type of detox plan is NOT harmful to the body - or harmful if used on a long term basis.  Basically, I could live the rest of my life eating this way - and I'd be just fine.  That's not my goal, however.  As strange as it may sound, I don't want to spend the rest of my life eating mostly fruits and veggies all day long.  My only goal in all of this is that I can start being more mindful about my food choices, and get over some of the junk food cravings.  I want my brain to learn to love the taste of fruits and veggies - and not like the taste of bread, pasta, and sweets so much.  I still want to be able to eat those things, however, just in much more moderation. 

Hubby made a meal plan out for this week, so this week I won't be tempted near as much by fast food or eating at restaurants.  I'm feeling very confident that I can make it through this week - excited in fact.  It's going to be a challenge, I'm sure, but it will make the whole process a lot more meaningful in the end.

I will openly admit that I weighed in this morning - just to get an idea how much damage I've done this week.  This is not an official weigh-in (thank goodness).  The scale said 246lbs.  Oh.  Em.  Gee.  Can you believe that?  The sad part is, I can.  I totally deserve those added pounds this week.  And even though I'm going to stick with not "officially" weighing in until April 4th - I will be checking my weight this time next week, just to see how much of an affect my clean eating has on me.  It may just be the motivation I need to keep the plan going for another week.  We'll see.

Till next time. ;)


  1. Detox totally makes sense to get rid of cravings. That's what we did in my house. I notice that my sugar cravings really start to get to me during this time though !! So I've been using the Atkins bars as my sweet they have lots of protein and fiber.

    1. My hope with this detox is to learn how to cope with my sweet and salty cravings... hopefully with fruits and veggies. I'm a granola/protein bar junkie - and I want to get away from them. They are also full of a lot of stuff that I want to get out of my system. I haven't tried the Atkins bars, so I'll keep them in mind when the detox is over. Thanks!

  2. Joanna, you and me both, when it comes to being food addicts. That's a great idea to do a detox. I find that I do that after eating too much and/or junk , I need to cleanse my body the next few days. For me, it's kind of an ongoing thing. So, this sounds awesome! Good for you for getting everything ready to go. I am sure it will help.

    And I know teaching is stressful, isn't it? I was the same way when I was teaching -- it's very difficult to have time to do the right thing day after day, when you feel so exhausted. You are not giving up, though, and that's the important thing. You are not just letting it go and I know you'll get it! Take care!

    1. Thank you!! I've actually done several detox type plans in the past - but they almost always required me to drink some kind of weird concoctions or eat nothing but veggies. I knew that I didn't want to do that again - but this type of detox gives me a lot of variety in what I can eat versus focusing on what I can't eat.

      Several years ago, I worked with a woman who lost about 40lbs in just a few months by swearing off anything made with white flour or sugar. But, unfortunately, the minute she started eating like that again - the weight started to come back. I don't want to make that same mistake, but I see nothing wrong with doing a plan that's going to help my mind get in the right frame for making food choices. This really isn't about losing weight, it's more about restarting my head - so that I can enjoy healthy eating without constantly fighting off nasty, unhealthy cravings.


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