Gastronomy 101, a blog about food and Los Angeles restaurants

DETOX: The Rejuvenation Diet

There's not much to write about yet as far as my detoxing goes, because the first day you don't have to do anything except read over the menus and kind of prepare for what you're about to do. You're also supposed to clean out your kitchen of all bad things and go shopping for an immense amount of food and products, but since my husband would probably murder me if he came home and found all the sugar and dairy and alcohol gone from our kitchen, I decided not to do that. Also, since I am blessed with an organic market about 30 seconds from my door, I prefer to do my shopping bit by bit rather than all at once.

So my first post is basically a description of what exactly it is that I am doing. My diet is based on Helene Silver's book, "Rejuvenate." It is pretty loosely based, because the book provides a plan so comprehensive, expensive and time-consuming, that only a wealthy housewife with lots of free time could really hope to follow this plan to a tee. But I have had the book for several years and I have worked out the plan that works for me, which is basically to ignore most of the non-eating related stuff and just follow the actual plan for what you are supposed to eat, leaving out the enemas and massages and supplements and trampolines and whatever else.

I like this book though, because if I'm going to do this sort of thing, I really need someone to tell me exactly what to eat and when. Otherwise, the stress of trying to figure out what to eat when my stomach is telling me I want pizza is far too much. Plus, the book contains lots of information most of which I find extraneous for my purposes but there are certain things I like, like the sections about dealing with stress, and dealing with cravings for things that are bad for you and basically describing what kind of physical changes you may experience and how that's okay. Also, there's some stuff about how different types of food react with each other and with your body that explains some of the more unsavory effects you might experience were you to eat those foods or eat them in conjunction with each other.

The basic plan is in three phases, each lasting a week. The first week is an elimination phase where you start with a diet meals that consist of protein + vegetables, or starch + vegetables. You also drink a lot of cleansing beverages and teas and make sure you get 30 min. exercise and do stress reducing activities like yogas and baths.

The second week begins to more aggressively eliminate things so that you shed the starch and animal proteins and move to a diet of raw and steamed vegetables and fruit. Then for two days you do a liquid fast and then you begin to transition yourself back to normal for the last week.

That middle section gets really hard. I am hoping it's easier now that I have a regular schedule and go to bed at a decent time. The first two times I did it coincided with law school final exam periods and I would find myself up studying late at night just dying for a bread and dairy combination, even just one English muffin. I felt like a total junkie as I would go to the toaster oven, and reach for it, and then stalk back into the living room and tear my hair and think that even if I could just have a cocktail or something--SOMETHING--That was bad for me, I would be okay. It's kind of disturbing to try to do this and realize how much you enjoy things that strictly speaking, are not that good for you.

Another book I recommend if you are thinking about detoxing is the False Fat Diet, by Dr. Elson Haas. Dr. Haas is an MD who has also studied Nutrition and Physiology and "Oriental Medicine," and the book is a similar detox program, but the book is also pretty good at explaining food reactions and allergies and how to figure out what yours are and how to detox from them.

I know a lot of this stuff, if you read these books, seems very new age-y, but I think if you read enough, you can kind of intuit what are common themes and use your common sense to figure out what is important to take away and what is not vital. I also think it really is a good idea to detox in some sense every once in a while, because as Ms. Silver points out in the beginning of her book, toxins are not just in the food we may be eating. You could eat all organic, all the time and still just by walking down the street expose yourself to pollutants from various sources. Taking some time to aggressively cleanse your body and hopefully wash away some of what's been building up in there all year is not a bad idea.


*twitch* That's a pretty hefty dose of denial you've set yourself up for, but you're right about it being good for you. Good luck!

- Chubbypanda

said by Chubbypanda at 6:54 PM Delete

*le sigh*

Tell me about it. But it works.

said by Anonymous at 8:51 PM Delete

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