Green Juices were my morning foundation, and they typically consisted of kale or collards, apple, cucumber, celery, and sometimes ginger. Every once in awhile, I'd throw in a beet to turn my green juice into red juice:
I didn't really mind eating raw until dinner, but I was always very thankful for warm cooked food at night. Honestly, eating a mostly raw diet didn't make me feel much different. I did start to notice my hunger regulate though. When eating all raw on my monthly Raw Food Tuesdays, I tended to stay hungry all day. But during the cleanse, I easily filled up on raw food like this Zucchini Pasta Pomodoro from The Raw Food Revolution:
Or this Walnut Currant Squash "Rice" from Ani's Raw Food Kitchen. The rice is made from finely chopped butternut squash!
Eating raw certainly felt clean, but I missed the hell out of bread. Peanut butter and ricemallow creme sandwiches are my favorite thing in the world, but I had to avoid those during the cleanse.
Steering clear of sugar was no picnic either. I swear I swooned at the sight of a piece of candy on the ground in my office parking lot one day. I looked at that half-eaten, squished-up gummi bear and thought, "ooh, candy!" I had to stop myself from picking it up off the crusty asphalt and popping it into my mouth. Yep, it was that bad. Gummi bears aren't even vegan. I don't know what had gotten into me.
And don't even get me started on coffee. All I can say is coffee and I belong together, and we shall never part again. In the past couple of days, since I've been drinking coffee, I finally feel like myself again. I never experienced any detox symptoms unless you count the occasional emotional breakdown over coffee in the first week.
As for alcohol, let's just say weekends are no fun without a glass or two of red wine. And bars are intolerably loud, obnoxious places unless you've got a couple beers in ya ... that's what I've discovered over the past month.
But I'm not totally going back to my old ways. Here are some changes I plan to implement as a result of my ACT cleanse:
- Since I cannot afford to green juice daily (I spent way too much during this cleanse!), I will substitute a daily dose of Amazing Grass SuperFood powder. It's loaded with healthy green stuff and it's cheaper than daily juicing.
- I will attempt to limit evaporated cane juice and turbinado (I don't do white sugar anyway) to a couple of times per week. And I'll try not to buy too many products that contain added sugar. Most days, dessert will be fruit or something sweetened with brown rice syrup, maple syrup, molasses, or agave.
- I will start drinking my coffee with agave and unsweetened soymilk instead of turbinado and soy creamer.
- I will eat more raw foods. Instead of limiting myself to a once-a-month raw day, I plan to make several raw meals each month.
- I will eat a salad or cooked greens (or both) everyday, when possible.
- I will try to only buy vegan wines and drink good beer (no more Bud Light just because it's cheap).
- I will continue to dry brush daily. I never mentioned this before, but ACT requires that you brush your skin with a bristly brush each morning before hopping in the shower. It sloughs away dead skin and gets your circulation moving.
- I will continue to work out 5 days a week — some spent in classes (like boxing, spinning, and yoga), others spent training to run.