Foodie Friday: Falling Off the Wagon

Raise your hand if you fell off of the healthy-eating wagon this week.

I know I did, and if you did too, you are not alone. Something about a natural disaster makes people binge. I think that it’s partially a testament that eating can easily become an emotional outlet. I think another part dates back to our hunter-gatherer instincts. I watched a documentary during Sandy, which said that humans used to be conditioned to eat food when they could, in preparation to survive for long bouts without it. Maybe knowing that access to food could potentially be cut off makes us load up a little extra? Whatever the case, I know I was guilty of baking brownies instead of making salads during the dreadful week indoors.

Image courtesy of boyfriend’s instagram

The New York Times reported Wednesday on the “Sandy Five,” and the Associated Press also reported on New Yorkers finding comfort in junk food. So just when I was starting to feel down in the dumps for gaining back what I lost with my BluePrint Cleanse, Linda Wagner, one of my favorite bloggers, reminded me that it’s ok. We can’t be perfect all the time, but we can be positive.

Image courtesy of Linda Wagner

So don’t beat yourself up if you’ve fallen down a bit. Get back up, wipe off the dust and start over. Ask for help where you need it, and get back on track.

I’ve had a lot of stress this week, and I know that is another reason that I fell off. But knowing how to identify this, and eating a piece of fruit or drinking a juice instead of going for coffee and cookies is something I am trying to do moving forward. It feels great to scarf down some junk food to feel better, but it never feels great afterwards.

What triggers your unhealthy eating habits? What do you do to avoid turning to junk in times of stress? 

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The BluePrint Cleanse in review

Two weeks ago, I embarked on my first ever juice cleanse. Being the food-lover that I am, this was not an easy decision. I am also a big fan of juice, so after about a year of contemplation and hearing different friends’ experiences, I decided to take the plunge. I chose a three-day BluePrint Cleanse. This cleanse came highly recommended from friends, and there happened to be a promotion for a discount on GILT when I ordered.

First, some background

The BluePrint Cleanse includes six juices per day. There are three cleanse levels to choose from based on your normal dieting habits. I’m a fairly healthy eater, so I chose the second level, referred to as “Foundation.”  These are the six juices that I drank each day:

  • Juices one, three and five are a green juice that contains romaine, apple, celery spinach, cucumber, kale, parsley and lemon.
  • Juice two is pineapple, apple and mint.
  • Juice number four is spicy lemonade with lemon, agave nectar and cayenne extract.
  • Juice six is cashew milk with agave nectar, cinnamon and vanilla extract.

Day One

The first day was not easy. I woke up with a headache before even drinking my first juice, and that headache lasted until I went to bed. I’m not sure what caused it, since I hadn’t started the cleanse yet. It may have been caffeine withdrawal, or possibly a result of eating very light the previous day.

A lot of people complain about the taste of the green juice, but I personally love it. It is recommended that you wait at least an hour in between juices, and I tried to leave two or three hours in between mine. Juice two was delicious, and I wound up looking forward to it the most on days two and three. Throughout the day I felt fine besides the headache. I wasn’t hungry and I didn’t crave food. When I came home from work the headache quickly turned into a migraine, and I had trouble getting the cashew milk down. Warning: that stuff is CHUNKY if you don’t shake it up a lot.

Day Two

Day two was phenomenal. No hunger. No headache. Tons of energy. I was as happy as a slinky on an escalator.

Day Three

Day three was torture. I was starving all day. By 5 p.m. I had to leave work because I had a migraine. I came home and slept from 6 p.m. until 1:30 a.m. When I woke up I still had the migraine but couldn’t get back to sleep until 4:30 a.m., only to wake up two hours later for work. The rough night meant that day four, (now off the cleanse and back to real food), was also pretty miserable, and I was left wondering why I spent so much time and money torturing myself.

Was the juice worth the squeeze?

I waited so long to post about my cleanse because I wanted time to reflect on it. After a good night’s sleep on day four, I felt good again. I lost four pounds, and my stomach looked nice and flat. I felt healthy and didn’t have a huge appetite. Healthier food decisions came easy. I posted a few pictures on instagram and Facebook in the process, and received a great amount of interest and support from friends. I would do the cleanse again, but probably the six day option. I felt that the three days I did were only enough time for my body to withdrawal, and not enough time to go through a full cleansing process. If anyone is interested in trying a cleanse, I recommend either taking time off from your normal responsibilities or starting on the weekend so that your body can adjust appropriately, and considering extending the experience beyond three days.

Juicing is not a “lose weight fast” fad diet, although you WILL lose weight while doing it. If you’re interested in a juice cleanse, it should be because you’re looking to incorporate healthy eating habits into your lifestyle. The juice cleanse will provide your system with a nice ‘reboot,’ but once it’s over it will be your responsibility to continue on a healthy path.