that won’t make you feel like you’ve given up the right to be happy. Because… above all else… you deserve to be Happy and Healthy (at the same time!).
1. CUT OUT SODA AND PASTEURIZED JUICE
Replace with water, Pellegrino, or unsweetened tea. I would recommend not even using Agave. Purchase the tea called “Throat Coat” by Traditional Medicinals. This tea is naturally sweet and adds a nice flavor and sweetness if you brew with other teas (more than one tea bag will make enough tea for a couple of sittings. And try Sun Brewing Your Tea). One beverage that I love is a bag of Throat Coat tea steeped for 10 minutes in a glass of ice cold Pellegrino. The bubbles help release the flavor of the tea, and it’s very much like a cream soda! YUM!
Another sweetener I recommend is Stevia (keep a little container in your purse and you can enjoy sweet beverages when you’re out and about without breaking the rule 🙂 ). A couple of tea spoons of Organic Coconut Sugar from Essential Living Foods, Raw Honey or Organic Grade B maple are okay after the two weeks. During this two weeks you really want to train yourself to appreciate beverages without sugar.
2. REPLACE RICE WITH SALAD GREENS
Salad is filling like rice, but it helps you get a little extra hydration and fiber – both keys to detoxification and cleansing. This is a very easy transition to make. At home, whether you’re making a grilled free-range bird or a stew, it will be just as satisfying over a plate of greens. Use pre-washed, organic salad greens or serve it over Raw Greens (use Kale, Collard, or Swiss Chard).
How to Prepare Raw Greens…
Wash a bunch of greens (shrinks to about half the size) and dry them with a clean towel. Tear the greens into bite-sized pieces and put them in a large bowl. Give the greens a few good scrunches with your clean hands. Throw a pinch or two of Celtic Sea Salt (less is more – the flavor of the greens is released with this method and they become very flavorful. The salt is mostly useful for drawing out the water and making them tender). Continue to massage until tender. (Optional) Add a couple of teaspoons, or to taste, of Organic Cold-Pressed Olive Oil or any oil you like (try Og. Raw Coconut Oil, Walnut Oil, or a dash of Sesame oil for an Asian flavor) and continue to massage gently until combine. The greens actually look like they’ve been lightly cooked, and they TASTE AMAZING. Add a teaspoon or two of minced garlic and/or dried/fresh herbs to REALLY TAKE THE FLAVOR UP A NOTCH.
3. REPLACE BREAD OR BUNS WITH LETTUCE, CABBAGE, OR COLLARD LEAF
Bread and concentrated protein like Meat or Dairy is the worst combination for your complexion and your figure. The combination is indigestible and mucks up your colon with toxins that make you old and sick, especially when eaten everyday, which is common in the West.
Try wrapping any of your favorite sandwiches or burgers in fresh romaine lettuce (or even iceburg if that is the only option – don’t be embarrassed. Ask the people at McDonald’s to do it. You’re worth it!), red cabbage, or a collard leaf (remove the thickest part of the stem – about halfway up the leaf). I sometimes even bring my own lettuce or greens if I have good organics at home. Bring it in a container in your bag and discreetly pull it out and put it on the bread plate while you’re waiting for your meal.
4. REPLACE KETCHUP WITH MUSTARD (not Honey Mustard. Plain Mustard)
Ketchup is full of empty calories. It spikes your blood sugar and sparks your cravings. This one little change, which will be one you’ll make regularly if you eat out, is a great exercise. Helps you practice preference in a way that really works for you, and this gives you power for the other choices in your life.
If you don’t like mustard, try oil & vinegar or fresh lemon. You’ll be surprised at how pleasing the natural flavor of food is when you just enhance it a bit with a little tartness. On the rare occasion that I eat French Fries, I love them with a spritz of fresh lemon juice and some black pepper. Try it today, and learn to love, not just the taste of foods, but the way you feel when you eat them…
5. SKIP THE SIDE DISHES AND DESSERT
If there’s a side dish on the menu that catches your eye, like the Truffle Mac & Cheese or the Scallop Potatoes, make that the center of your meal and order a salad without dressing to go with it. Your flavorful side dish will give your salad bulk and flavor.
After dinner, resist the urge to order dessert (at this point it is usually not more than an urge, or something we’re “used to”). While everyone else is halting their digestion with cheesecake, sip an herbal tea or black coffee and savor the temporary pleasure that everyone relishes around you. If you must enjoy a particular dessert, make it your meal and have it alone. Desserts are generally tough on digestion and sugar is tough on the liver, and as much as we enjoy them, we need to consider kindness when it comes to our most prized possession – OUR BODY
Bonus: Learn to drink coffee and tea black or don’t drink them at all, and refer to Rule #1.
After the two weeks, keep up these rules as often as possible. You will see your body and life become more beautiful everyday. I promise!
P.S. If you think any of these rules are impossible, just ask yourself…
…do I like what I see when I look down …?
Want to take it a few steps farther after you get through the two weeks, check out my blog for a Post-Holiday Cleanse