Spring is here and it’s time for spring cleaning. Time to dust, sweep out the old cobwebs and now is the perfect time for a cleanse. Many of us think that this has to be a cathartic dramatic experience and sometimes it can and should be but I’m here to give you a kinder gentler path. One of my Nutritional Therapy teachers wrote the article below and was kind enough to share it with us. This diet is designed to regulate blood sugar balance and free the body from addiction to starches (flour and grains) which rapidly convert to sugar once consumed. Grains aren’t bad we just are coaxed into over consuming them in too large quantities by the food industry and of course eating refined sugars of any kind (see article below) also feeds this addiction. My personal spin on this diet would be to follow it to the letter for the 14 days and when you feel your energy and wellness returning at the end of two weeks continue the diet but eat larger meals at meal times (so not as frequent as every two hours. Read and stay well.
Shawn Kinsella LMT,CA,PYT
YOUR 14-DAY WHOLE FOOD CHALLENGE
CREATE GREATER HEALTH – NO MORE ‘LEAN CUISINE’
The following is a trial eating plan designed to: help you transition from a processed food rut; improve your digestion and blood sugar handling responses, and recalibrate the body’s natural detoxification mechanisms. This whole food diet increases energy and vitality when followed closely. While certain individuals may find the diet does not provide complete nutrition for optimal health over the long-term, it is hugely beneficial for everyone during a trial period. As physical symptoms related to poorly functioning digestion, blood sugar and detoxification systems improve, some eliminated foods may be added back into the diet in a moderate manner. This way of eating takes planning, but is well worth the effort. Most people will lose many of their cravings for unhealthy foods within one or two weeks. Many are pleased to experience weight loss without feeling hungry or deprived. Others who need to gain weight often find weight return without undue effort.
THE KEY: Eat small amounts of food every two hours. Between meals, a small amount of nuts, or one half of an apple with a small amount of nut butter is enough. No processed or packaged foods are allowed. Eat only whole foods as found in nature. Choose organics when possible, look for seasonal variety.
BEGIN EACH DAY WITH A GLASS OF PURE, CLEAN WATER, SIPPED NOT GULPED. For an early morning detoxifying beverage, try this: 15 minutes prior to breakfast, squeeze the juice of a lemon in an 8oz. cup of hot water and add a pinch of cayenne pepper. Sip slowly and feel the energy return!
NOW, WHAT TO EAT!
Each meal should include a minimum of 2-4 ounces of protein. Eat as much as you desire of healthy, organic protein sources. Meat, poultry, fish, and eggs are unlimited. Consider a homemade protein shake using whey, rice or hemp protein (no soy) as a quick, easy meal.
Eat as much as you desire, you can’t eat too many veggies! Focus on dark leafy greens, and a variety of bright and rich colors. Consider vegetable juicing to increase your intake of plant foods. Eat some vegetables raw or lightly cooked every day unless otherwise directed by your doctor. Try to avoid starchy vegetables such as potatoes or yams.
Grains often cause a food sensitivity for many people, causing digestive and immune system dysfunctions (especially when not properly prepared as in most processed foods, including breads), so they are not allowed on the 14 Day Whole Food Challenge. Consume no wheat or other grain containing foods, including breads, rolls, muffins or pasta. A gluten-free starch may be allowed at the discretion of your Nutritional Therapist : whole grain brown or wild rice, ½ cup serving only at the evening meal. All rice should be roasted first before cooking. Place dry uncooked rice in pan and brown, some of the kernels will pop. Then steam or stovetop cook as you normally would. Try quinoa as an alternative, higher healthy protein content then rice.
Eat plenty of wholesome natural fats such as butter, lard and chicken fat, avocado, coconut, hemp, sesame, olive, walnut or sunflower oils. Supplemental fish oil is often recommended. Eliminate all artificial fats or oils such as margarine, hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils, and refined corn or vegetable oils.
One or two pieces of fresh, whole fruit per day from the recommended fruit list will encourage an alkaline environment in your body, helping your detoxification pathways function optimally. If you are concerned about your blood sugar levels, eliminate all fruit from your eating plan for 2 weeks and focus on increased vegetable intake. When enjoying fruit in your diet, eat it in combination with a nut butter (to balance the protein, fat and carbohydrate ratio), and the combination is best eaten as a snack between meals. Never eat fruit in combination with a flesh protein as it will slow digestion of the meat. Avoid the sweeter fruits such as bananas, mangos, grapes, persimmons, papayas, dried fruits, etc. Choose low glycemic fruit such as apples, pears, peaches, berries.
Raw nuts (soaked overnight and then low temperature dried), especially raw cashews, almonds, walnuts, pumpkin or sunflower seeds, etc. make good healthy snacks. Be sure to chew well!
Dairy products are also commonly a food sensitivity, and they are difficult for many people to properly digest. Consume no dairy during this phase of your eating plan. A concession may be to allow some cultured dairy, such as whole-fat plain yogurt or kefir, or soft white raw cheeses such as feta. Small amounts of butter or ghee for cooking may be appropriate; splashes of heavy cream in decaf coffee or tea are also allowed.
To stop the sugar addiction: Use No Sweeteners of any kind. (No honey, sugar, agave, or stevia; and especially NO artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, sucrulose/Splenda.)
KEY: SNACK EVERY TWO HOURS
To avoid crashing blood sugar levels, eat something every 2 hours of the waking day. Only a small amount of food is necessary at one time. Consider sipping a homemade vegetable broth or water-diluted chicken or beef stock as a snack. This will boost your metabolism and fuel your detoxification pathways with healthy nutrients.
KEY: DRINK PLENTY OF WATER
Divide your body weight in pounds in half; this is the recommended number of ounces of water you should consume on a daily basis. For example, a 150 lb. person should consume 75 oz. of water each day.
Avoid caffeinated beverages. If this is not possible for you J, add 12-16 oz. of water to your daily intake for every 8 oz. caffeinated beverage you do consume. Avoid alcohol as well during this 2 week eating plan.
After one to two weeks on this eating plan, your body will be digesting foods more effectively, increasing the nutrition you receive from all the great foods you’ve enjoyed. Many people find their blood sugar control mechanisms will be more balanced and cravings for sugar reduced. Your ability to detoxify and cleanse your body will also be enhanced. We’ll discuss how to incorporate additional healthy foods, with balanced ratios of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, back into your daily diet after this two week period.
Cathy Eason, NTP, CHFS, CGP, Abundant Health, LLC
You can email me with and questions or comments at Shawn@mettariver.com