I plan to stay with the cleanse for a full two weeks. The author recommends three weeks, but we'll be traveling by then, and I don't think I can manage the blender meals while we're on the road.
So far I have been eating CLEAN for 6 days.
I was skeptical going in, but I wanted to give it a try. I wasn't having much success with other methods of getting my weight down those last 10 pounds. Plus, I noticed that I was pretty much constantly puffy, with swollen knuckles, etc. Maybe there are some foods that my body isn't tolerating so well? Maybe it's true that our modern lifestyle is filled with toxins and my body was on overload?
I talked it over with Mark, and he said he wanted to try it, too. Yay! That makes it so much easier than trying to prepare food for two different eating styles. Mark is a CHAMP. Plus, his stomach had been bothering him for a while, and he wondered if cutting out some foods would help him feel better.
So far, the thing that has amazed us both the most is that the foods for the cleanse are so amazingly delicious. And filling. We hardly ever feel those hunger twinges.
Bonuses so far: I am sleeping 8+ hours a night with no difficulty. If I wake to go potty I can fall right back to sleep. My rings fit over my knuckles early in the day (used to be I'd wear them on the wrong finger until the afternoon, when the swelling had finally gone down enough to get them on the right finger).
And I am losing weight!
Hoo boy. It's almost a little scary, except I feel so good. I don't have food cravings and I am almost never hungry. Wait, I take that back. Tonight I was longing for a piece of garlic bread to go with the lamb chop I was enjoying. But seriously, I cannot believe how the pounds are dropping off.
How much weight have I lost?
On Wednesday morning I weighed 142 pounds.
This morning I weighed 136 pounds.
6 pounds lost!!!
I know, of course, that the first two or three pounds were extra fluid my body had been retaining. But I am back to a weight I can live with while the rest of the pounds come off gradually.
Seriously, Skinnies, I am very pleasantly surprised so far with how well this is working for me. I have read lots of articles about unhealthy cleanses. I knew the red flags: all you lose is water weight, they strip your body of nutrients, you are constantly hungry, etc, etc. But when I read the book, I was impressed that this cleanse isn't so extreme. The food portions are reasonable, and the food variety is very healthy.
Now, do not go to the Clean website and buy all those products. WAAAAY too much money.
If you are interested in trying this yourself, just buy the book. Clean by Alejandro Junger. You can pick up a used copy for $8.00 on Amazon.com.
In a nutshell, here's how it works.
Eat a "liquid meal" (a smoothie) for breakfast.
Eat a full meal for lunch.
Eat another liquid meal (a cold "soup" made in the blender) for dinner.
Allow at least 12 hours between dinner and the next morning's breakfast.
The book comes with 7 recipes (each) for smoothies and soups, and 21 recipes for full meals.
The recipes are AMAZING. There has only been one so far where we didn't say, "Oh my gosh, this is SO delicious! Can you believe how good this tastes??"
Or you can create your own food choices, using the the Clean "Yes" and "No" lists for food choices:
The "NO" List:
Citrus, grapes, bananas, dairy, eggs, gluten grains (wheat, oats), beef, pork, soy products, peanuts, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, butter, margarine, mayonaise, alcohol and coffe (I don't use those anyway), soda, refined sugars, honey, maple syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, chocolate.
The "YES" List:
All fruits except the ones listed above, all vegetables (preferably fresh), dairy substitutes (rice milk, almond milk, coconut milk--unsweetened--YUM!!), brown rice, quinoa, other non-gluten grains, fish, chicken, turkey, lean lamb, split peas, lentils, legumes, sesame/pumpkin/sunflower seeds, pecans, almonds, walnuts, nut and seed butters, olive oil and other healthy oils, water, herb tea, agave nectar (small amounts), stevia sweetener
Ready for a recipe? Here is one of our favorite breakfast smoothies:
Berry Smoothie with Coconut Milk and Cinnamon
(Makes 2 servings)
2 cups mixed blueberries and raspberries (I used frozen)
1 1/2 cup coconut milk (I buy it in the health food section at the grocery store)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 to 2 teaspoons agave nectar
1/2 cup ice
Check back next week and I'll tell you if the CLEAN cleanse is still working for me!