Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Blah ... It's Detox Time

You remember that opening scene in Trainspotting when ewan Mcgregor is nailing himself into a room to kick the habit? Well, that's kinda how I feel right now.

Yes, you read right, today was the first day of Operation Detox around here. Technically it should have started on Sunday, but there were other distractions and when I eventually rolled out to the shops, the selection was pretty minimal and hey, if you're going to do it, you should do it right?? (Oh the justifications!). I suppose that the turn of the year is a time for many to reflect on their goals and waistlines and it's no different for me. Or rather, I have been doing so for months now but haven't gotten around to actually doing something about it. And I could always think "Oh in January I'll do a detox month". But now January is here and I have no choice but to get healthy.

I'm generally following a detox designed by Ann Louise Gittelman. She's an interesting author and I've learned a lot about nutrition from her, but who goes around calling themselves "The First Lady of Nutrition"?? I mean, honestly. I've been down this path several years ago and I remember that I had very good results. I had tried to block out the memories of the sheer sensory deprivation (no dairy! no soy! no vinegar!) but until today I didn't realise how hard it would be to have NO CHOCOLATE.

That's right, not one piece of chocolate has touched these lips today. Oh, I have stared at the block of Lindt in a vase in the lounge room (yes I know I have very weird storage). And at a very low ebb this afternoon, I came into the kitchen, grabbed a container of Callebaut and just inhaled. Long deep breaths until I knew I could put it down.

And this all goes against my nature so much because I am into indulgence. Particularly of the culinary kind. But unless you are lucky, an obsessive interest in food and eating and cookbooks and food shopping and reading food blogs leads down a particular path. The Half-my-clothes-are-under-my-bed-because-I-haven't-worn-them-since-last-Easter path. And apart from sheer vanity, there are health considerations to finally kick me into gear and co-host this month of torture.

So, for the next 27 days or so, it'll be more like the healthy picture above and less like this

But don't go thinking that I am a lady of virtue or something. I have decided to give myself a break once a week, to be saved for social occasions. The severe restrictions brought friends to the verge of breakdown last time. And I won't describe the pained expression on Figman's face when we ate out in a Thai restaurant and I carefully listed to the waiter what I could and could not eat. He ended up bringing out the chef who cried "But that's not Thai!". Enough embarrassment. And I've already cheated today. Okay, half a cup of couscous doesn't fall into the same category as a block of chocolate but everything in my body is screaming "We want more sugar! We want more fat! Where the fuck is the salt?". So, if you have any tips on how to quell the discord, please let me know.

Only 27 days to chocolate ....


At 12:52 AM, Blogger Kalyn said...

Very funny. I am generally quite a healthy eater, but over the holidays I was on a bit of a sugar binge. The first day I got back on my normal eating pattern (lower carb) I had a headache all day. I know it was the sugar screaming it's way out of my body.

At 4:53 PM, Anonymous Barbara said...

Did you see the doctor on the Today show this morning Plum? For detoxing he recommended a couple of days lots of fresh fruit and vegies, water and juice. Now that is not too hard.

At 10:17 PM, Blogger plum said...

Hi Kalyn - yes, the first time I gave up sugar my body was completely thrown by it. It's a little more used to it now since I mostly eat whole grains and not much sugary stuff (despite what's on this site!). The cranberry juice helps dilute the sweet craving (although not much today).

Hi Barbara - no I didn't see it. I'll have a look on the site to see if they have the details up - they often do because these are so popular at this time of year when everyone is (a) trying to get over the Festive bulge or (b) trying to get into bathers!

At 4:08 PM, Anonymous stef said...

hmmm... curious to learn more about your detox diet. i've been talking to hubby about it for months -- he says yes, but isn't entirely convinced -- but i think we REALLY need to do it because his allergies have been really bad lately and i haven't even given him cheese (his worst enemy)! do you need a dr.'s permission to do this?

At 10:48 PM, Blogger plum said...

Hi Stef, thanks for stopping by! The author has a site at . It really caught on when it became highly popular on ivillage and they probably have the details of the basics up there. I was much more strict last time I did this, but this time around I'm allowing myself a little olive oil to cook with. There is an original book, then a journal and a cookbook and in each of these she makes slight additions to what's allowed. Her books are not massively well organised and could do with a rehaul, but there is a lot of valuable nutrional information (she really pushes omegas and CLA and GLA).

All diets will advise you to see a doctor first. I suspect most people don't bother but with your hubby's allergies I would definitely see the doc before starting any detox. This one is really tough at the start (it even restricts the type of herbs and spices you can use) and the first two weeks are very streamlined - lean protein, certain vegetables, limited fruit, flaxseed oil and so on.

Good luck and feel free to ask me any more questions!

At 12:55 AM, Anonymous stef said...

hi plum, thanks for visiting -- i had forgotten where you were! thank you for the advice on detox, i am looking into it.


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