Eliminating the extras we don’t need is what cleansing is all about.
Finally finished! (although this update is late)
By the end of the 11 days, I adhered to the cleanse quite well, and I developed an utter disgust for the food items I had been eating. A week later, I still am avoiding baked chicken breast.
But what I wanted to eat — my cravings during the cleanse– weren’t sweets or junk food. I mostly craved cheese, other milk products, and bread. I really just wanted a sandwich. Which is not necessarily unhealthy, depending what goes on it.
On the other hand, by the end of the cleanse, I did feel lighter and healthier. It wasn’t anything dramatic, but I did feel good about my food choices that past week and a half. Although it was hard to pass up chocolate chip pancakes at 1 a.m. with my roommates, I didn’t regret not eating them. And passing on cheesy, greasy pizza and french fries throughout the week were also very difficult, but I felt better about myself for not giving in to that temptation. Good choices made me feel accomplished and guilt-free. Even when I “indulged” on the alloted daily ounce of dark chocolate…maybe 2 ounces here and there…it was an indulgence in a lesser evil anyway.
I recently spoke with my cleanse’s developer, Carmela Mandel, who said that most people who try the cleanse for the first time don’t adhere to it 100% — And that’s okay!
“We have a very mental, emotional connection to food,” Mandel said. “People would come to me and be overcome with guilt if they slipped up. People should take it easy and celebrate the changes instead. Any change in the positive direction is good.”
I think this is the bigger picture. There are hundreds of miracle diets out there, claiming to be “easy” “fast” and “cleansing.” The big picture is to make healthier choices without completely restricting any one food type.
There is definitely a science to nutrition, and the way that things we eat affect our bodies. By eating as close to Mother Nature as possible, we discover the power of cinnamon to boost metabolism and of celery to repair the liver, among others. Eliminating the extras is what cleansing is all about.