Catalyst Juice Cleanse: Pre-Cleanse Day #2

Another day of juice cleanse preparations…the juice cleanse is scheduled to arrive on Friday to begin first thing Saturday morning! Today I focused on eating as many raw foods as possible. The only “cooked” items were the tortillas wraps in my lunch, the edamame in the hummus, and the steamed artichoke with my dinner.

Breakfast: “Watery” Fruits

Started off my day with hot lemon water and apples for breakfast. Yep, apples are considered a watery fruit. They seem pretty dense, but they are actually 84% water. I know, boring choice. No fun smoothies or interesting juices to report on. It was nice to have a grab and go kind of breakfast with no dishes to clean up afterwards (you should see my kitchen on the mornings where I use my juicer). Surprisingly enough, the apples kept me full all morning through lunchtime. I usually prefer smoothies, sprouted grain toast with almond butter, or some sort of oatmeal/hot cereal but my goal today was to go as raw as possible. So, apples for breakfast it was.

Lunch: Veggie Tacos

I was browsing through one of my books about cleansing when I was designing my pre-cleanse menu and happened upon this delicious idea. I used organic brown rice tortilla wraps, and filled them with shredded romaine, homemade guacamole, and homemade pico de gallo. Um, yes please! Once I’m done cleansing I would make this again but add rice, beans, or quinoa to make this dish more substantial. I happened to have brown rice tortillas in the house, so I used those. Food for Life, the brand I prefer, makes sprouted grain and sprouted corn tortillas that I’d also use in the future. It was packed with tons of flavor and I really enjoyed it.

Dinner: Greenmarket Salad with Basic Vinaigrette and Steamed Artichokes with Lemon Aioli

My husband is the best sport about all of this. I make the same meals for him that I’ll make for myself, even throughout my cleanse preparations. He jokes, “If you’re cleansing, I guess I’m cleansing.” I didn’t go as far as to order him his own juices, but he’s been eating dinner with me each night. As a matter of fact, he handled the sea veggie salad from day 1 way better than I did. So when dinner rolled around last night, he just went with it…and loved every bite of it!

I made a basic salad with mixed greens, tomatoes, red onion, fresh dill, fresh mint, sprouts, snow peas, and avocado with a basic vinaigrette dressing. All safe, delicious choices. Let’s talk about the artichokes. I’ve always loved them, but I grew up stuffing them with cheese, breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley, olive oil and transforming them from a healthy vegetable to a heavy side dish. Don’t get me wrong – I love them when prepared like that, and I’m sure I will make them that way again. This time, I steamed them in water with a few slices of lemon, and served it with a vegan Lemon Aioli. It was outstanding, and I was full by the time I finished dinner. This is something I’m definitely planning to prepare for dinner again regularly.

Lemon Aioli

  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked for 1 hour
  • ¼ cup of water
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground mustard seeds
  • Pinch sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Blend all the ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth and well emulsified.

Snacks: Spicy Lemonade and Spicy Edamame Hummus

Enough about the lemonade. Edamame hummus! I replaced the chickpeas with shelled, cooked edamame. Of course, the usual ingredients like tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and cayanne pepper still went in with it. I ate a serving with celery in the afternoon. I’ll definitely be keeping a batch of this on hand in my refrigerator.

Spicy Edamame Hummus
Makes about 10 ounces

  • 3 ¼ cups water
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 cup frozen, shelled edamame (8oz)
  • ½ cup sesame tahini
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • Pinch cayenne

In a saucepan, place 3 cups of water and 1 teaspoon of the salt; bring to a boil. Add the edamame and allow for the water to come back to a boil. Cook, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Drain the edamame and place in a high speed blender or food processor with the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth and serve.

Pre- Cleanse Day #2 Reaction/Thoughts

I really enjoyed everything I ate today, and loved the variety. I would eat like this everyday, except I would prefer something different for breakfast. Over the past few days, I’ve had a lot of energy when running and felt lighter and more flexible in my yoga practice. I thought I was imagining it, but when I was at the yoga studio last night the teacher adjusted me in several postures and asked if I stopped running. She was surprised to hear that I’ve actually been running more miles since the last time she saw me. She thought I was much more open and flexible in my practice. In the weeks leading up to my birthday, when I wasn’t incorporating as many fruits and veggies into my diet, I found myself to be stiffer when on my mat and less energetic when running.

As for Asha, she ate a very similar diet today, with fresh juices, a vegan burrito, hummus, and roasted spaghetti squash for dinner. This was day 2 with no meat or dairy, and she is definitely missing those items from her diet! One observation we both had: when we woke up after day #2, we both felt kind of bloated – the opposite of how we felt after day #1. It makes sense, since most of our day was filled with the kinds of vegetables that would cause that to happen.

Other than the sea vegetable experience on day #1, I’d say the first two days were a success. I didn’t want to eat my hand off by the end of either day and I had tons of energy. I’m realizing that I snack more than necessary, and have some new food ideas for me to eat at work.

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