So it’s after Christmas time finally. We all enjoyed ourselves. We already let our stomach expand to the limit and swallow every sort of sweet and treat…and don’t forget about the bubbles…who doesn’t like them?
But since I pride myself to be quite a “looking ahead” person, I’m already preparing the next step for what is the most common new year resolution: loose the weight we’ve gained during the festivities.
In my opinion nothing is as quick and effective as a good cleanse.RELATED: RECOMMENDED PLANS FOR YOU
What is a cleanse?
A cleanse is a diet protocol focused on the exclusive intake of low caloric\high nutritious, high alkaline foods (possibly in a liquid state), for a short amount of time.
Let me develop.
1) Low caloric\high nutritious: Let’s define NUTRIENT DENSITY as the amount of essential nutrients (nutrients that our body cannot create by itself but we have to introduce them with food) amino acids, vitamin, fatty acids, minerals and other organic chemicals.
For example a highly nutritious food would be Kale. It has almost no calories for 100g but it has a very high nutrient profile if we look at vitamin and minerals. A very low nutritious food on the opposite would be ice cream.
2) High alkaline: I wrote already few articles about the PH balance and its effect on our health, energy and prevention of illnesses and diseases (just check my profile to find them). I will state again here that the most alkaline foods are green leafy vegetables, grasses, cucumber, lemon and grapefruit.
Acid foods on the other side are alcohol, coffee, sugars, dairy, white flower and most of grains…and of course every kind of meat and fish.
3) Mainly liquid: The cleanse focuses on clearing all the indigested, fermented or partially absorbed food that sits on our intestine for days after we’ve been feasting touching the bottom of gluttony. Why liquid? Well think about a colonic irrigation, that’s nothing but a cleanse coming from the bottom…
I have a less extreme and more enjoyable way to achieve the same results.
4) Short amount of time: Since it’s quite a drastic change in our eating habits I won’t keep the cleanse for more than three days. That should be enough to clear most of the intestine from the acid and toxic food we will be eating over Christmas.
After those three days another four days of progressive re-introduction of solid and acid food will follow, that will avoid the typical weight rebound people often experiment.
What does a cleanse do?
Just think about our intestine, its length is about 5km and its total space is almost equal to a whole tennis court. Most of us don’t know that the food spends several days to travel the whole Gastrointestinal Tract before we can eliminate it fully (exceptions are liquid stools, food poisoning and so on).
Acid foods especially tend to sit in our gut for very long time if not chewed properly. That cause an acidification of the small intestine and a subsequent proliferation of fungi, yeast and bacteria. They love acids and the crave sugars…remember that sugar crave feeling?
Most likely it’s not you wanting those cookies but the fungi in your intestine. In fact the small intestine in order to work at full potential and have all its enzymatic chemical reactions should be in a mildly alkaline state.
Overeating meat, sweets, alcohol and coffee will inevitably bring this equilibrium out of balance, making us feel tired, bloated and lethargic. I’m not going to talk here about all the side effects of chronic acidosis but you can find another article I wrote about this on my page.
Long story short: let’s swallow a lot of liquid alkaline foods and flush out all the bad stuff out.
The plan in action
1) Get the tools: Before you start you need to invest a bit of money into a tool that literally will change your life: the juice extractor. You can buy one on Amazon for as little as 60 pounds and it will literally revolution your life. You need one because you will need to drink around 3 liters of pure green juice every day during the cleanse.
2) Fish oil\Krill oil: I personally found the need of a compound called DHA to increase brain function and mood In general. There are plenty of studies about DHA and its benefits. It remains my number one supplements to be taken for life
3) Green powder: Should contain organic Chlorella, Spirulina, Wheatgrass. You can find these products at any health store
4) Vit D: a natural replacement for sunlight. I found that increases dramatically my mood and cognitive function if taken in combination with fish oil
5) Prepare yourself mentally: it will be hard for three days not to ingest any solid food at all and be at almost 1\10 of the caloric intake you have been used to in the last few weeks but the results will be astonishing.
6) Buy the veggies: the next step is to go either to a farmer’s market or to a wholefood store and pack up with veggies. For three days you want to buy the following
-6 whole cucumbers -500g spinach -6 lemons -6 green apples -500g Kale -50g ginger
-few chillies -3 unripe bananas -6 kiwis -3 avocados -1l coconut water-bag of almonds
Wake up: warm water with 1 squeezed lemon. Take the supplements (Vit D, and fish oil)
Breakfast 30 min later: Kale, Spinach, Cucumber, Ginger, Chillies (careful gets hot if you put too much), Apple, All juiced. Drink within 10 minutes from the time you made it with your juicer or you will loose most of the nutrition. It will give you a dramatic boost and you shouldn’t be craving other foods for the next few hours.
Before leaving the house: prepare the smoothie and bring it with you at work. Put 1 banana, 2 kiwi, 1\2 cucumber, spinach, 1 avocado, 50g almonds and enough coconut water to make it quite liquid(around 300ml). It should come at least 500ml of smoothie and you will bring it with you.
Mid morning: drink 1\2l of water with 1 scoop of the green cleansing powder
Lunch: have the first half of the smoothie
Early afternoon: drink the other half of the smoothie
Around 5PM: drink 1\2l of water with green powder
Dinner: green juice, same as breakfast
Pre bed: 1\2l of water with squeezed lemon
Repeat the protocol for three days
What to expect during the cleanse
You will drain a lot of water and it’s very likely to lose 2-3kg of weight in the first two days.
You will go a lot to the toilet because of the “liquid only” it’s obvious that what comes out it’s nothing but the indigested food you had the week before.
You will experiment a dramatic increase in energy and vitality. Literally your body will feel very light and “easy to carry around”.
Your skin will start look smoother and even a bit tan (no joke it really gets you tan!)
Symptoms like fatigue, constipation, acid reflux, heavy stomach, foggy mind will disappear.
What’s next? Back to real life
If you could get through my protocol well done! Now it’s time to get the best out of the experience you had. You simply experimented how the body feels in a highly alkaline state.
The good news is: you can have that feeling every day! What you do not want to do is going straight away for acid foods like sugars, coffee, meat and dairy blindly. For the next four days after the cleanse reintroduce solid food this way:
-Keep having the two green juices for breakfast and first thing when you get back home.
-Snack on nuts during the morning.
-Have your favourite lunch.
-Snack on nuts during the afternoon.
-Have a good dinner but make sure to eat some veggies with it.
-Keep having the water and squeezed lemon both morning and before bed.
-Keep taking VitD and fish oil in the morning, they’re simply good for you.
If you’re like me you will get addicted of that feel-good feeling and you will carry on with couple of green juices every day. That is more than enough to balance the acid foods omnipresent in our diet and to keep us healthy, young and happy. And every time you exaggerate with bad food or drinks you know exactly where to start from to clean yourself from the inside.
Now that I gave you this piece of advice I wish you a great New Year full of deliciousness and treats.