Third Cycle of 50 Day Cleanse

Today begins our third cycle through the 50 Day Cleanse. My husband and I are so eager to do this one just like we were from that first day back in April. I can’t believe it’s been that long. I haven’t turned on my oven since then either. I’ve made several tweaks to the cleanse as is always when doing something with participation input. I think this time it will be easier to maintain as well as continue on as a lifestyle change.

Days 1 – 5: Water Fasting 

This can include:

  • Organic Green and Herbal Teas and organic coffee no sweetener and no cream.
  • Himalayan Sole Water (Refer to the link)
  • Reverse Osmosis, Ionized, Kangen, Electrolyte and Spring water
  • If you take medications and supplements, continue taking them. If you need to take with food, eat 1/3 cup organic raw cashews or almonds and drink plenty of water.

How much water should you drink? Most experts say half your body weight in ounces of water. If you weigh 200 pounds then you should drink 100 ounces of water.

Hint: Green and herbal teas count toward your ounces of water. Coffee doesn’t since 1 cup of coffee eats away 2 cups of fluid from your cells.

Why Water Fast? 

Ever take your car for an oil change? Does the technician just pour fresh oil into the reservoir without draining the old oil out? No, that would be defeating the purpose of an oil change. Well, the same is true for our bodies. If we treat our bodies like a finely tuned sports car and clean out the old residue from our previous eating habits we’ll be able to absorb more of the nutrients of the new foods we’ll be adding to our diets (rebooting). Water fasting has also been shown to help combat diseases and aids in weight loss. It’s also being used by different oncologists in the treatment of cancer (Dr. Thomas Seyfried).

Days 6 – 50: Intermittent Fasting with Raw Alkaline High Fat Vegan Foods

What does this look like?

On Day 6 it’s a good idea to end your fast with a raw alkaline veggie smoothie or juice. Never, Never, Never end an extended fast with a full meal. (Unless, of course, you like puking!) Find a 4-hour window where you’ll have an alkaline veggie juice, an alkaline veggie high fat smoothie, and a nice big salad again with raw alkaline veggies and lemon/avocado oil dressing. (For me that 4-hour window is from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.)

Going forward, your meals will change and you may want to skip the juice and add a more hearty vegan meal, that will be your choice. I will be sharing more recipes with you as we move toward that goal.

Many people have asked, “Why Raw?”  “Why Alkaline?” and “Why high fat”

Raw because when we cook veggies we kill the natural enzymes a.k.a. proteins in the veggies and fruits. We need those enzymes to digest the food itself but when it’s the enzymes are killed. Now granted there are those individuals who for health reasons by their doctors will only eat cooked veggies because it kills the enzymes but cooking also kills the nutrients. If you think you still need to cook your veggies, steam them lightly after the cleanse when we transition to an alkaline keto vegan plan for the fall and winter months.

Alkaline because our bodies are under an extreme amount of stress which creates an acidic environment in our guts and digestive tract. When we eat alkaline foods we help our bodies stave off diseases as well as helping our bodies heal from within.

High Fat The right kind of fat will help you stay mentally focused because our brain is 60% fat. Our bodies love running on fat better than carbs. Fat is also great for the elasticity of our skin, it has an important role in the production of hormones, and it fills us up and keeps us full for hours which makes intermittent fasting easier. A high fat (good fats: coconut oil, MCT oil, nuts, avocados, olive oil, coconut oil, seeds, and avocado oil) helps stave off the maladies of aging.

You’re probably wondering what exactly can you eat now? Below is an infographic I put together to help you understand what’s allowable and what’s not on this 50 Day Cleanse.

Alkaline Food Plan

One last note: Please keep track of your gains and losses with a notebook. If not for yourself, then for me. I am interested in how this is working for all of you. If you’d like to join our 50 Day Cleanse group on Facebook for some group therapy, you’re more than welcome to.

To your health!

References:

Dr. Jason Fung on Intermittent Fasting for weight loss and health

Dr. Thomas Seyfried using water fasting as another tool for cancer treatments

Dr. Alan Goldhamer, DC: Water Fasting – The Clinical Effectiveness of Rebooting Your Body

A chemo free cancer survivor tells how he beat cancer using a Raw Vegan Diet 

Dr. Edward Group Understanding An Alkaline Diet and Its Benefits

Protecting your brain from aging

 

Disclaimer:  The information listed here is based on my own experience. It is not intended as a substitute for the advice of trained medical or mental health professionals. The participant should regularly consult a physician, therapist or counselor in matters relating to his/ her physical or mental health and particularly with respect to any symptoms that may require diagnosis or medical attention. In the event, you use any of the information listed here the author and blogger assume no responsibility for your actions.

 

 

 

 

Benefits of Water Fasting

Many of my friends have asked me the age old question, “WHY? Why are you doing this water fasting thing?” My answer is always, “To give my digestive system a break and reset my body into a fat burning machine instead of a sugar burning machine.” They don’t get it as most people don’t understand why someone would put themselves through something this drastic. What they don’t understand is this I am a sugar addict, while I haven’t had any sugar for the last few days doesn’t mean I am cured of being a sugar addict. I will always be a sugar addict just like an alcoholic will always have problems with alcohol.

I needed to make this change and help my husband also make this change. He too is a carb addict. While he’s trying to do this with me as closely as possible he is having one alkaline veggie juice every night so he can take his medication. Someone asked me if I worried about becoming water logged and if I drink too much water. I’m not because I only drink 160 ounces of water a day. I’m also drinking 3 20-ounce mugs of organic chamomile tea with no sweetener which is part of my 160 ounces of water.  My taste buds have really come back and I’m helping the cells of my tongue regenerate without the bombardment of always needing something sweet.

One of the first things I’ve noticed after the second day of doing this water fast is my skin doesn’t itch anymore. Last night (third night), I noticed that I had a whole lot more energy and my mind is clearer. It also helps that I lost 8 pounds so far. I know most of it is water weight, but I’m also gaining muscle because I am continuing to do my workouts along with the water fasting.

I’ve found a slew of information on the benefits of water fasting; I’ve decided not to regurgitate all their material here but give you a set of links to research when you have the time. This way you can make your own informed decision about whether doing a 1-, 2-, 3-, 5-, or 7-day water fast is right for you and your situation.

Let’s get this party started…Wait a minute, while I drink some water.

 

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My Constant Companion

 

  1. All About Fasting: This place is great for all the different kinds of fasting not just for water fasting. You could choose whichever fast works for you.
  2. How Fasting Can Help You Live Longer: While Dr. Joe Mercola advocates intermittent fasting which is extremely beneficial. He goes into how it can help you live longer and live better.
  3. Reset Your Immune System: We can reset our immune system in only three days of water fasting and our brain grows. As we age our brain shrinks so brain growth is a good thing. Wonder if this has something to do with the clarity that I have now.
  4. Eat, Fast, and Live Longer: This is a documentary done by the BBC that is phenomenal about why we should make fasting part of our lifestyle.
  5. Rejuvenated Power of Fasting: Our bodies need a break and water fasting gives our bodies that break and a chance to heal and rebuild.
  6. Water Fasting for Health: This will go through everything you may experience while on a water fast and how to prepare and come off a water fast.
  7. Fasting is Worth Trying: Here another husband-wife team up to do a 5-day water fast and document their journey.

Water fasting is a change in mindset. While I’ve had much more time on my hands because I don’t have to pay attention to meal prep or clean up, I’m also not thinking about food like I used to either. I’m looking forward to week two of my 50-day cleanse and adding an alkaline veggie juice to my water regime. Because I’ve changed my mindset, my attachment to food is different. It’s not about filling an emotional need but filling my nutritional needs.

Take a chance, change your mindset and reset your life with water fasting.

MY JOURNEY WITH COCONUT OIL

I’ve been using coconut oil for years, even before it’s become as nutritionally accepted as the best oil to use. I turned to coconut oil eight years ago because I’m allergic to dairy. Since then my journey with coconut oil has taken me on a path of real health and helped me to see that this highly saturated fat is one of the most important building blocks in my arsenal of alternative health therapies.

Health Benefits of Coconut Oil

Coconut oil used to get a bad rap because it is a saturated fat which was said to raise cholesterol, blood pressure and can cause heart disease. Heart disease, something I’m all too familiar with. My father, my mother, two uncles, and an aunt died from it. All because they bought the claims that saturated fat caused their heart problems, so they ate margarine and anything else that was artificial.

I used to use only Promise margarine in the tub. Then one day, one of my sons forgot to put it back in the refrigerator after he used it on a piece of toast. In the morning, while the margarine sat at room temp overnight, it became as solid as a rock. You couldn’t get a knife into it. When we turned the container over it fell out of the plastic tub like a solid piece of plastic. That was the last time I used margarine because my inquisitive mind kept thinking that if margarine turns solid at room temp, which in our house was 68 degrees, then imagine how much harder it became at 98.6 degrees.

I tried refrigerating extra virgin olive oil. I used it on toast but it wasn’t the same. So I headed off to the health food store and researched other oils. That’s when coconut oil entered my life and changed it forever. I tried coconut oil on my toast (when I could still eat bread) first, and I loved how it tasted so good and light. Coconut oil also became the only oil I used in cooking.

Then I started using coconut oil for my skin and my hair. I use a tablespoon to wash my face every morning, no need to use soap, or makeup remover, or even any other moisturizer. I also use it on my hair as a deep conditioner. Since I dye my hair, (I know it’s not good for me, but I’m just not ready to stop yet), I deep condition my hair and scalp every 6 weeks. I also use coconut oil for oil pulling.

Today my journey with coconut oil took on another turn. I added it to some Vietnamese coffee, which I love, and it tasted like a cappuccino. It’s a great way to get coconut oil without having to resort to heating it up in the microwave (I’ll talk about how dangerous microwaves are in a future post).

I’ve heard all the stories of coconut oil helping with diabetes and blood sugar issues, fights aging, reverses dementia, balances cholesterol, aids in healthy thyroid and adrenal function, unclogs arteries, and aids in weight loss. I didn’t start my journey with coconut oil because I wanted to address a health issue but these are definitely some perks that have made this a life long choice.

Below are some articles and videos that you might find informative.

http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/surprising-health-benefits-coconut-oil

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dckWiJ5x6K4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yxR24JMAE0c

http://www.earthclinic.com/Remedies/oil_pulling.html

http://www.organicfacts.net/organic-oils/organic-coconut-oil/health-benefits-of-coconut-oil.html

http://wakeup-world.com/2012/09/05/13-evidence-based-medicinal-properties-of-coconut-oil/

DETOX DAY 7: Sleep

What is the most important aspect of going through a detox or cleanse? You might think it’s eliminating the toxins, or replenishing your body with good, nutritious food and clean, distilled water. While those two things are equally important I feel the most important aspect of cleansing the body is sleep. When we sleep our cells get a chance to rejuvenate and we are better able to handle the stresses of life. That is another aspect of cleansing that I will discuss tomorrow: Stress. But for right now sleep and rest is the best way to get through a detox with my mind intact.

Our bodies need sleep just as much as they need water. But the right amount of sleep is different for each person based on their nutritional needs. For me the right amount is a good 7 hours. 7 hours helps my body remain in the holding pattern of homeostasis or balance, and while I’m detoxing these 7 hours are more important than ever before. One reason is that my body is dumping many toxins out and while I’m eliminating the toxins my body needs every chance it can to get back to a holding pattern where it can regroup and be stronger than it was yesterday.

Interesting facts about our health when we sleep.

Interesting facts about our health when we sleep.

Here’s what sleep can do for you even when you’re not detoxing.

  1. It keeps your heart healthy by lowering your blood pressure.
  2. It may prevent cancer. (detect, repair & replace, this is how our cells prevent disease)
  3. It reduces stress. (Yes I know that sometimes it’s the stress that prevents you from sleeping).
  4. Sleep reduces inflammation, but only if you sleep in the prone position. (sleeping in a chair does the exact opposite.)
  5. Sleep makes you more alert. (You’ll do better on tests if you have a good night’s rest instead of cramming all night.)
  6. Sleep makes your memory better. (You’ll remember the facts for that test and you’ll also remember where you put your car keys at.)
  7. Sleep also helps with weight loss  (Because when you sleep you don’t crave carbs as much.)
  8. Sleep is also associated with reduced risk of depression.
  9. Every cell in your body repairs when you sleep.
  10. Sleep helps you look youthful longer.

References

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2003/10/22/cancer-sleep.aspx

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/sleep-deprivation/AN01344

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/guide/tips-reduce-stress

http://www.greatschools.org/parenting/health-nutrition/620-sleep-the-secret-weapon-for-school-success.gs

http://healthysleep.med.harvard.edu/healthy/matters/benefits-of-sleep/learning-memory

http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/lose-weight-while-sleeping

http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/brain_basics/understanding_sleep.htm

http://www.oasisadvancedwellness.com/learning/sleep-skin-care.html

ITALIAN GIRL SAYS GOODBYE TO PASTA & LOSES 15 POUNDS

Two and a half weeks ago, I decided to do something drastic for the health of my husband and for myself. I decided to go Paleo and totally grain-free. If you’re a frequent reader of this blog then you already know that my husband has been gluten intolerant for more than two years. But I learned something interesting about myself almost 3 weeks ago. I have a gluten allergy and while I don’t have Celiac’s Disease, this allergy causes some pretty disturbing issues for me. So this Italian girl said goodbye to pasta and lost 15 pounds in 18 days.

I know what you’re thinking…It’s simply not possible to lose that much weight in that short of time. If’ I didn’t see the scale numbers for myself I wouldn’t believe it either. The clincher came when my jeans became so big it was difficult to hold them up. So I tried on my skinny jeans, and they were loose on me too.  Eating grain free is so easy for both me and my husband. I thought I would miss the pastas but I really don’t probably because I haven’t had regular pasta in over three years.

My scale is my friend.

People are constantly asking me what exactly do I eat and what kind of crazy exercise routine am I doing. So here goes this is what I’ve been eating:

Breakfast: 1organic egg cooked any way I want, with some Himalayan Salt and 1 small organic banana, 1 cup of Earl Grey Tea with 2 stevia drops, and 32 ounces of water.

I don’t eat for four hours between breakfast and lunch.

Lunch: I have a 20 ounce cup of tea with stevia and a salad with either tuna, or whatever protein we had from the night before.

Snack: a handful of soaked almonds or a homemade “Laura Bar” (My own versions that have no added fat except the nuts).

Dinner: I’ve been making burgers and all kinds of different ethnic stir fries (husband can live on stir fries with no soy because he’s allergic to that too) , another salad and for dessert a serving of frozen fruit puree. My favorite so far has been Pineapple Vanilla Sorbet. It’s super easy to make.

I’ve also instituted no eating after 7 pm.

This is my basic diet, I haven’t strayed from it at all. I drink 96 ounces of water a day.  The most interesting this is that I’m not hungry all the time. I do give myself one cheat meal once a week, but for me that’s usually a piece of chocolate.

I’ve been walking and using my old Shwinn Airdyne exercise bike that a friend gave me to use. And that’s it. I will start my weight training routine Next Monday.

This way of eating has really cause me to take a second look at how I feel because before, while I had a lot of energy, I was still having inflammation issues. Now that I’m totally grain free, those inflammation issues are not such a problem anymore. Another plus at eating this way is meal prep takes only about 30 minutes, and some of the stir-fries I’ve made in less than 15 minutes from start to finish.

My husband’s results to this eating plan are totally different than mine, he hasn’t lost as much weight but he hasn’t taken any digestive enzymes (which he was popping like candy) since starting this plan. Plus he hasn’t had a problem with his lipomas (fatty tumors)  or the pain in his side caused by his IBS of which he has not had a problem with this whole time and he’s been under a great deal of stress.

This Italian girl is staying on this plan until she reaches her goal weight of 145 pounds. I thought I could do it before December but if the weight keeps falling off of me at this rate, I’ll be at my goal weight much quicker.

Pastas will come and go; people will forever be posting photos of delectable foods everywhere we look, but we don’t have to succumb to these and give up our dreams and goals for a moment of tongue bliss. It doesn’t matter what ethnic heritage you are, you can lose weight and stick to a program especially if you’re seeing results. This program is easy, it’s simple too. I find the simpler the plan the easier to stick to it. Many people out there are trying to find ways to come up with recipes that mimic the regular version, that’s so time consuming and nothing we try will ever taste like the old version. So just make peace with yourself and resolve to change your tastes.

This Italian girl said goodbye to pasta and lost 15 pounds.

If I can do it, so can you.

SMALL CHANGES

Each day we are faced with the same tasks as we go about our routine in making our life the way we want it to be. Each day we are faced with the same choices as well. From what we want to eat, how we choose our clothing, and the conversations we have; it’s all a choice. We look at the difficult tasks of losing weight and getting healthy as too daunting to do anything. But it is the small changes we do each and every moment that matter the most.

Small Changes

I made a small change this week in my diet; I stopped eating bananas for breakfast and instead I’m eating two organic eggs (cooked anyway I want). This small change has made a big impact in my life, I don’t crave the sweet treats all day long. I am satisfied with the eggs, and my cup of Earl Grey tea. This small change has also affected my snacking throughout the day. I don’t feel the need to snack until mid-afternoon. Then I grab a handful of organic raw almonds, another small change I started. I’m no longer tethered to my cravings for sugar, or carbs.

Another small change that really helps is to stay positive. When we find ourselves in a negative, depressing mood we tend to binge on comfort foods. If we stay positive, it helps us in staying away from the foods that are keeping us from our desired health and wellness goals. You know what your comfort foods and offending foods are, the ones you run to when you’re depressed and mad at the world. If you have to, print out some positive quotes and tape them up around your home.

Every two hours while I work here at home, I set a timer that goes off and I turn on a YouTube 10 minute cardio video. This small change of doing 10 minutes of cardio every two hours helps me to get in 40 minutes of cardio a day. Plus for me it’s great because of my structural issues.

Other small changes that you can make:

  • Ordering smaller portions in restaurants: I usually order off the appetizer menu or I’ll ask for a box with my meal so I can take half the portion away.
  •  Bringing your own healthy snacks to movie theaters: My favorite is chopped apple and almonds
  • Scope out different activities that aren’t surrounded by food: have a healthy picnic and bring along a Frisbee, or a football, or go for a walk; Go on a hike, take a ceramics class with friends. Go to a clay-painting shop, a health seminar or a book reading. 
  • Park in the farthest spot from the door: I saw this yesterday on my walk. The lady looked like she was in her 70’s; she parked her car in the farthest spot away in the outdoor shopping mall I was at. She walked to a couple of stores, brought her bags out to her car and walked to other shops. I noticed she did this about 4 times. Then she got a cup of coffee and sat down at the table next to mine. We talked about her form of exercising. She said she hates shopping so she makes a game of it and tries to get in as much exercise in as she can when she has to shop.

Find some small changes that work for you.

In time these Small changes will add up in a whole new you!

 

YEARNING FOR OUR OWN WELLNESS

We’ve spent the entire month going through the alphabet in April’s Action Steps to Wellness. I can’t believe we only have today and tomorrow left. In going through my own steps, I’m reminded how each of us need to be yearning for our own wellness.

It’s easy to tell other people what they need to do to become and remain healthy but when it comes to ourselves we just do the bare minimum and expect our wellness to soar. When you tell people you don’t feel well they are always ready with an old wives remedy or whatever they do to counteract whatever symptoms you have.

Steps

Webster’s dictionary says that we should be longing persistently or yearning; we should have compassion or yearning for ourselves. It’s easier to have compassion for other people but do you have the same compassion for yourself that you yearn to make your healthy and strong? Do you persistently long after wellness and make your own wellness steps part of your life? If we’re not yearning for our own wellness than what are we doing just playing or dabbling in the wellness pool? You consider yourself a swimmer if you’re sitting on the side of the pool and only stick your legs in. What is it exactly that we’re doing?

Sometimes I think we look at health and wellness as an afterthought. A busy mom or student might say, “When I have more time, I’ll get around to it.” “It’s something I’ll take more seriously when I’m older.” “I don’t need to think about health and wellness I’m only a teenager, or in my 20’s, 30’s, 40’s;” put your own age time limit on it. “I’m not sick yet!” These are some of the statements I’ve heard in the last couple of years.

Don’t wait for illness to catch you in it’s grips, you may not have enough time to get out. If we all start yearning now for our own wellness, we’ll be able to stave off illness, slow down the aging process, and lose weight. Waiting only makes it more difficult. Long persistently for your own wellness. Be compassionate for your own health. Yearn for your own wellness!