I'm done! For 21 days, I've been eating high-raw style, using Gena Hamshaw's recipes from her Choosing Raw cookbook. I'd say about 70 to 80 percent of what I ate from January 2nd to the 22nd was raw, and the rest of my diet was made up of cooked whole grains, beans, and starchy veggies. I had very little refined sugar (only a few cookies at a party, a mini cupcake, and some sugar in my coffee creamer), no beer (until yesterday), and no processed food.
Today, on the last day of the cleanse, I just had leftovers or repeats of meals I've already had. But here's a picture collage of what I ate. There's a mint chocolate protein smoothie, a no-bake sunflower oat bar, raw spaghetti with quinoa meatless balls, apples with coconut caramel dip, coconut curry kelp noodles with tempeh, and steamed kale.
I do a cleanse like this every year, and some years are so very hard. I've done the Crazy Sexy Diet three times now, and I struggle with it every time. But I've learned that the key to a successful January diet is not setting insane restrictions. I let myself have coffee this time, and I let myself have a few cheat days. I also allowed red wine, so I never felt socially deprived. And you know what? It was easy this time! It definitely helped that Gena's cooked meets raw approach was sensible and delicious!
And I feel great! I'm hoping to continue eating as healthily as possible moving forward. I mean, I'm totally gonna order some vegan pizza this weekend, and I plan to have more beer. And bread! Omg, bread. I'm gonna have some of that. But I'd like to do a good job of balancing my regular splurges with healthy meals.
But out of this whole experience, you wanna know what my biggest takeaway was? Snacks. I need more snacking in my life. Before this diet, I typically had a small morning snack each day at my desk — a few nuts, a few cracker. But rarely more than 100 calories. And I rarely ever snacked in the afternoon. But I've found that slightly smaller meals and larger snacks throughout the day make me feel better.
Plus, I need more dessert in my life. I had healthy raw dessert almost every day on the Choosing Raw Challenge. I plan to continue that. Some days, like tomorrow, I'll have a not-so-healthy cupcake. But most days, I'd like to enjoy some sort of healthy dessert.
So that's it! I'll be back after the weekend with a recap of my relapse. I'm sure it will be delicious!