Spring Cleaning for the Body

The goals of this 3 week Spring Detox program:

1) Support the liver – the body’s detoxifier – in its natural cleansing process after the winter season.  The spring season provides baby bitter greens to cleanse and rejuvenate the liver, gallbladder, stomach and intestines, blood and body tissues.  Nature provides no high-sugar foods during the spring season.  We are genetically imprinted to eat sugars in the form of fruit only in the seasons they naturally ripen.  In the spring, we are genetically imprinted to eat spring greens and other spring vegetables, and protein foods. Having a diet high in sugars year-round sets us up for allergies, hormonal problems and degenerative diseases associated with abnormal blood sugars/insulin resistance.

2) The body is able to clear the blood, lymph and cells of toxic residue from junk foods, sugars and chemicals only if every molecule it is eliminated from the diet.  So for these 3 weeks, we eliminate all caffeine (coffee, tea, colas and chocolate), alcohol, sugars, artificial sweeteners, margarine and other partially hydrogenated oils, MSG and chemical additives.

3) To relieve the body of pain and dysfunction caused by chronic, low grade inflammatory reactions to commonly eaten foods, we eliminate the most common irritants for 3 weeks: milk products, eggs, wheat, corn, yeast, soybean products, peanuts, bananas, oranges, grapefruit and the nightshade family (tomatoes, potatoes, bell pepper and eggplant).  This will allow the stomach, intestinal lining, joints and other tissues to eliminate the residues of these food irritants, so healing can take place.  If you tend to eat a certain favorite food every day, consider eliminating it for at least 10 days.  Then any kind of reaction, or the allergic reaction of a faster pulse, will be more obvious when you eat it again.  (Please refer to my article Are Your Favorite Foods Draining Your Vitality?  I use the NAET technique in my practice to identify and clear sensitivities to foods:  www.NAET.com.)

It is best to discontinue the above foods all at the same time.  If your symptoms are caused by some of the above foods, or other addictive stimulants you’re eliminating these 3 weeks, the symptoms may intensify for the first 3 to 5 days and then you will begin to feel much better.  To help relieve detox withdrawal symptoms, take vitamin C buffered with magnesium/calcium: 1000 mg, several times/day away from meals, and drink large amounts of pure water.

So the diet for these 3 weeks is: all vegetables except the nightshade family, brown rice or millet, beans and peas, raw or dry-toasted seeds and nuts, fresh fish, fowl and meats.  Fresh and organically grown whenever possible.

You cannot over-eat vegetables, which are cancer-inhibiting.  Asians typically have vegetables, including various cooked seaweeds, for breakfast, lunch and supper.  Seaweeds are high in iodine, a cleansing and metabolism-enhancing mineral.  Breaking up a piece of the seaweed Kombu into the cooking water of beans makes them non-gas producing.  (See LEGUMES,     below.)

If you can find baby dandelions before they have flower buds, have them fresh in salad, or boiled.  Also excellent are the mixed spring baby greens in produce sections, asparagus (for kidney health as well), beets, carrots and artichokesBeet greens, chard, kale and collard greens can be boiled (but not past the bright green stage) or sautéed with fresh, chopped onion and garlic.  Between meals, you can drink as much raw vegetable juice as desired.  My favorite is a combination of carrots, beets and cucumber.

GREEN DRINKS: The green comes from chlorophyll, which is considered a blood cleanser and general detoxifier.  A shot each day of fresh wheat grass juice is ideal.  (Country Aire in Port Angeles sells a manual wheat grass juicer for $71, and can order trays of wheat grass that comes in on Saturdays.  One also can purchase electric wheat grass juicers, or wheat grass juicing attachments to some of the regular juicers.)

However, a heaping teaspoon of wheat grass or barley grass powder in pure water each day has helped with many physical conditions.  Broken-cell chlorella, blue-green algae and spirulina are also rich in chlorophyll, protein and other nutrients.  To make your own fresh, enzyme-rich chlorophyll drink with a blender, you can chop up a handful of parsley, along with other greens, throw in the blender, cover with water, blend, strain off the green water and drink!

Try to store your water in glass, so the body can detox plastic residue. (Yes, the plastic does leach into water; the softer the plastic, the more the plastic leaches into water.)

Nut milks can replace milk for now, and grain/herb coffees (such as Inka, Roma, Cafix, Pero, Teeccino) replace regular or decaf coffee.  Use organic herbal teas rather than regular/decaf tea.

Salad dressing is a natural oil (good for the liver/gallbladder is organic olive oil), lemon and/or lime juice, and Celtic salt (a health-giving unprocessed salt.)  Use cayenne pepper instead of black or white pepper.  All other herbs and spices are fine.  Other excellent oils are: grapeseed, sunflower, safflower, sesame, coconut, flax.  Keep oils refrigerated except for coconut oil, and small batches of olive oil.  Clarified butter (also known as ghee) has had the allergenic milk proteins removed, and is OK on this cleanse.

To read more on why we are avoiding all margarine and partially hydrogenated oils, refer to the book Fats that Heal, Fats that Kill and other books by Udo Erasmus.)

A supplement of evening primrose oil is fine during this time, to provide essential fatty acids we have a harder time making in our bodies as we age or become sick.  High quality enzymes and probiotics (health-giving intestinal flora) can also be taken.  Take a rest from all other supplements during these 3 weeks.

GRAINS: Have whole grains only – no refined flour products.  To cook whole grains, it’s ideal to soak the grains for at least 7 hours, using 1 cup warm water to each cup grain.  Add another cup water or broth per cup grain to cook, skimming off foam.  Grains can be cooked up in large batches and frozen.  Millet tastes even better if dry-toasted in a pan till golden brown before add boiling water to cook in.

Millet and brown rice are the best grains on a cleanse.  However, all other grains are permitted except wheat and corn.  These include wild rice, rye, barley, oats, buckwheat, amaranth, quinoa, teff.  For complete details on how to prepare various grain dishes, read Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig, PhD

Most breads and crackers are off-limits these 3 weeks as they contain yeast.  However, yeast, wheat and corn-free breads, crackers and pasta are available at health food stores, health food store buying clubs and even most supermarkets now.  Read labels, or ask the clerk to show you the yeast-free products.

LEGUMES: All bean products are fine except soy.  This includes all bean soups and stews, lentils, chickpeas and split peas.  Beans and bean products are good to eat along with grains, as the combination makes a complete protein.  The best ratio for the body is eating 1 part bean product with 2 to 3 parts grains.  Healthiest is to purchase dried beans and soak overnight before cooking.  Adding some drops of food grade iodine, or a 1 inch piece of the high iodine seaweed called Kombu to the soak water prevents the beans from causing gas.  (Drain off the soak water, and cover with fresh water to cook, skimming off foam.)

For those who want to speed the cleansing process up, we have the 10 DAY BROWN RICE DIET: Eat only cooked brown rice, lightly salted with Celtic salt for 10 days.  Eat all you want, as frequently as you want, and have nothing else but pure water.  This allows for rapid, easy elimination of toxins and excesses.  This stands on its own as a fast, or can be used as the first 10 days of the 21 day cleanse.

ADDING FOODS BACK IN (refer to the foods eliminated in paragraph 3): Add one of the foods back in every other day.  Eat your fill of that food for those 2 days to see how it agrees with you.  Any reactions should be obvious now that you’ve avoided that food completely for at least 3 weeks.   It could be increased pulse, fatigue, mental fog, headache, muscle or joint ache, a rash, stuffed sinuses, gallbladder, stomach or intestinal distress or other symptoms – take notes!  Add supplements back in the same way.

If you do develop symptoms, go off that food or supplement and wait for the symptoms to subside completely, before attempting to add another food.  If reactions become too confusing, consider having NAET evaluation and clearing of your suspected sensitivities.