and so the detox begins.......

What better way to start Spring than to do a little Spring cleaning right?  Well, yes, I cleaned my closet, switched heavy winter clothes to summer lightweights and wanted to do the same with my insides. No, not a fast, a detox !  Let's be clear, I "heart" food, delicious, scrumptious vegan yum-yums. There's no way in hell I would want to give up what I look forward to on a daily basis and so this 14 day, detox program led by a local Naturopathic Physician (Dr. Stephanie Bethune, ND) was right up my alley. I first tried this detox last year and already being a 20yr vegan, the elimination phase (which includes giving up meat, dairy, eggs, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds) was not all that hard. I was quite surprised at how good I felt and how much energy I had throughout the program and since then I have been keeping about 75% gluten free.

blog pic detox 2This year I am fortunate enough to have my man embarking on the journey with me. It's day 9 and it's been so much fun having a partner to bitch and complain with about how much I miss my daily dose of cashews (while he jokes he wants a cheeseburger! ) The two of us have giggled through minute long rants before falling asleep rattling off all the things we cannot eat until our bellies ache. I feel incredibly fortunate to have a man in my life that is open to trying new things and has such a lighthearted approach to life that a challenge of 14 days eating a strict clean food diet has been more of a bonding experience than a difficulty. That being said, we still have 9 days to go.........

When I decided to 'go vegetarian' I was 16 yrs old. I was writing an opinion paper for an English class on Animal Rights and I remember being called down to dinner (pork tenderloin) and proclaiming "I no longer eat meat". My parents took it with a grain of salt, assuming the dramatic decision would only last a few days. Years later I threw another curve ball when they picked me up from the train on a trip home from college (Concordia University, Montreal, Canada) and I told them I had 'gone vegan'. Over the course of two decades I have witnessed the growth of the health food industry, the emergence of 'dairy' alternatives such as soy, grain and nut "milks", the evolution of meat and cheese replacements and the growing concerns with regards to how our food is produced.

In the late 90's I attended a lecture about food production and veganism and the one 'golden nugget' (this is what I call 'sage bits of advice or info that I actually have remembered over the years) I took from the lecture was this "If you truly want to become a vegan, you must stand naked in the forest and hold your breath."  Though this sounds ridiculous it's actually quite profound when you think about the fact that we can refrain from actually consuming animals and animal bi-products but in our everyday lives we encounter animal products in clothing, plastics, body care products, pharmaceuticals,  and a myriad of other things, besides which, we breathe in microbes. What it boils down to is the fact that we each need to "Always do our best" the last of The Four Agreements. (this book is a MUST if you have not yet read it, ok....I don't read much anymore, I listened to an audio book, so no excuses!)

yoga detox pic_edited-1What does all of this have to do with detoxing? I look at it this way, I only get this one vessel (I call my physical body a vessel, yes, it's clay lingo) and with 40 yrs wear and tear, I damn well better do some yearly maintenance if I want to be around past 100! It's 14 days out of 365, it's a drop in the bucket. So I practice yoga to counteract the imbalances of hunching over a potters wheel and I eat clean food to counteract the toxins in our everyday environment (and because at my roots, I'm an Animal Rights Advocate). What's amazing is that despite my intimate relationship with food, experiencing a detox period has allowed me to understand the mental challenges that brief diet restriction presents. Typically I eat for comfort, to satiate my taste buds and to procrastinate more so than when I actually NEED nutrients. I realize we all know this at some level but when I can confront it head on I get clarity.

Clarity means I get to clear the cobwebs and create space for new ideas....like starting a blog!

and so the detox continues..........