Spring Detox: I do Love a Challenge

Here I am, on day 10 of a 14-day “Spring detox” with a big group from my gym.  And I’m miserable.  Okay, perhaps that’s a bit too dramatic- I’m not miserable, but I’m definitely not feeling like myself.  However, I am learning a lot…

Past cleanse experiences have left me feeling weak and hungry- not something I was willing to put myself through with a young family and busy career to manage.  Jennifer Morris, the owner of Crossfit Altitude, and Dr. Jordan Robertson, ND, are leading this group, and explained that the meaning of this detox is to:

  • give yourself a break from daily habits
  • incorporate more nutrients, sleep, and healthy habits
  • learn about how your body works
  • overcome cravings, vices, and unhealthy habits.

Bingo.  I decided to join in to break myself of a few habits that have crept in; namely, near-nightly sweets, a drink with dinner, and far too much coffee. There’s strength in numbers, right?  And it’s been a couple of years since I’ve done a cleanse, so it seemed like a good way to kick-start myself into better health and better nutrition.  And I do love a challenge.


The “rules” of this cleanse have been pretty easy to follow- it’s basically strict paleo-style eating, which I tend to roughly follow in my day-to-day life anyways- no wheat/gluten, dairy, legumes, or nightshade vegetables, which are all pro-inflammatory.  But it’s eliminating sugar, alcohol, and caffeine that’s been the challenge.  I’ve also been having one superfood-shake per day, a “detox formula” twice/day, some apple cider vinegar, and litres upon litres of lemon water.  Simple.  Easy to follow.  Except it hasn’t been for me.  I’ve had headaches, fatigue, digestive symptoms, and moodiness.  I’ve been choking down my superfood-shake and gagging on apple cider vinegar (you can see that lovely video here).  I’ve been dreaming of coffee and thinking about sugar.  I haven’t had the energy bursts, the lack of bloat, the clear-headedness that everyone else seems to be having.  So why am I doing this?  Ah yes, I do love a challenge.  I’ve been assured that the reactions I’ve had are likely all part of the “detoxification” of my body, mingled in with the complex processes of adrenal fatigue, food sensitivities, psychological challenges, and liver processing.  In short, everyone reacts differently.

Aside from two cheats on the weekend (coffee on Mother’s Day and a glass of wine with my girlfriends on Saturday night), I have followed the plan to the letter, 100%, all-in.  So there’s a sense of accomplishment there, and the horizon is in sight.  I’ve definitely broken my candy-on-the-couch habit and although the caffeine cravings are still there, they’re lessening.  So even though my body has reacted poorly to this, I’m still glad I did it.  I’ve gained some willpower, some misery-loves-company stories, and some knowledge about how my body and mind operate.

And I only have four days left…

The Kid’s Menu

We went out for dinner as a family on Saturday night, which we don’t often do.  With our 4-year-old and 1-year-old in tow, we got to the restaurant around 5:30pm to keep things early and kid-friendly.  Great.  Good.  Having fun.  Then the waitress gave us a ‘Kid’s Menu’.

The Kid’s Menu did not contain miniature portions of adult menu items, but rather a list of entirely different offerings.  Things like Kraft Dinner, cheese pizza, and french fries.  Things full of white flour and salt, with very little nutritional value.

I don’t get it.

As mothers, we find out we’re pregnant and we do our very best to grow a healthy baby.  We eat well, we stop smoking and/or drinking, we stay well-hydrated, and we make safe choices.  When our baby is born, we continue to do our very best to keep them healthy-  we often choose breastmilk, we often make our own babyfood (only organic, right?), and we avoid giving them extra sugar, salt, and processed foods.  Their bodies are little temples to be grown and supported with only the highest-quality ingredients.  We discuss topics like folic acid, BPA, and omega-3s.  We listen to the buzz surrounding gluten-free, dairy-free, and non-GMO food.

And then we take them out for dinner, and we’re given choices like this.

If we aren’t eating these things, then why are we feeding them to our kids?  Kids need top-quality food to grow top-quality bodies and brains and immune systems.  Kids need top-quality food to support learning and attention and behaviour.  Kids need top-quality food to help them make top-quality food choices as adults.

I don’t get it.