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Master Cleanse… ended.

I broke the Master Cleanse on day 3 for a few reasons.  First, I had an undeniable desire to eat actual food.  Second, it felt like SO MUCH sugar!  I know warm lemon water is a great liver tonic, but adding Maple Syrup to the mix was starting to mess with my biology, to say it politely.  I felt like I was on an energy roller coaster.  Just like if you eat refined foods that give you instant energy and then you crash so that you have to have more, this is the roller coaster I was on and it didn’t feel like a good idea to mess with sugar, both in the glass and in the blood, this way.

I also did some deeper research and found a few key things about this cleanse.  First, when you fast this way, you’re bound to lose muscle tissue.  That’s not terribly desirable considering I’ve lost a lot of muscle over the years during periods of hyperthyroidism.  The problem is twofold.  The body is indiscriminate and will take muscle not only from those you lift weights with, but also from the heart.  According to Paul Pitchford:

“In the case no food
is eaten, then I suggest folks add the appropriate
micro-algae to balance blood sugar and protect
the organs from damage [during fasting and
cleansing protein can be taken from the heart and
other organs to maintain bodily functions].”

I have intermittent arrhythmia due to Graves’ Disease, and the couple of nights I was on the cleanse, my heart was beating quite fast and I was experiencing more frequent arrhythmia.  It can also cause an electrolyte imbalance which is especially dangerous for those with heart or kidney ailments.  On top of that, the reason I was looking to do a cleanse, was to give my digestive system a break as well as cleanse my kidneys.  Normally the kidneys filter your blood and release the toxins while keeping protein.  Leaching protein from my muscles just didn’t seem like a good idea on top of everything else.

During the fast, you’re meant to take a laxative tea morning and night to aid in elimination.  What I found was that (unrelated to the tea), I was dehydrated.  I was taking in plenty of water, but the cleanse itself was a heavy diuretic. Fortunately I tried this while off from work.  This is the first time I’ve ever tried a laxative and it doesn’t stop working.  I couldn’t even go to sleep because I was up every ten minutes.  I did not want to risk sharting at work!  Seriously.  That may have been my most compelling reason to end the fast.

So, I’m off the Cleanse and am doing my best to eat a clean diet.  Starting the day with warm lemon water and eating mostly fruits, vegetables, and beans.  I’m glad I experimented with it, as I had been curious and I like to speak about these things through personal experience.

 

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Posted by on September 15, 2011 in Lifestyle

 

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Master Cleanse: Day 1& 2

Last spring, I took about 8 weeks off from drinking alcohol.  I realized that in about a decade, I hadn’t gone more than a week without a drink.  I decided to do it partially to see if I could, but also to give my body the rest and to reset my relationship with alcohol.  After working in bars for so many years, it got so easy to have a drink or two after work, and if you work 4 or 5 nights a week, that’s a lot of drinks, especially when you include wine with dinner or a few pints with friends on a night off.  It became too habitual to have a drink after work, so I wanted to eliminate the habit and adjust my relationship with alcohol.  It was just what I needed, and it did just what I wanted it to.  It’s something I feel I should do at least once a year.

Recently, I started a new job at a restaurant that includes a bakery.  Without going into too much detail, the bakery is where most of my on the job “nutrition” comes from.  The last few weeks, I’ve been eating in a very out of control fashion.  I love food, sometimes I wonder if I don’t go through periods of food addiction.  When I’m eating well, it’s relatively easy to avoid the refined stuff, but once I start on it, it spirals out of control.  I’ve been able to mitigate my exposure to sweets and super refined calories by not keeping it at home, but it’s in my face constantly at work, and I’ve succumbed.  I feel like in the last few weeks, I’ve had a very dysfunctional relationship with what I choose to put on my plate.  I’ve been making poor food choices, eating too much, eating when I’m not hungry, and quite voraciously regardless of the status of my hunger.  I’ve often read of food addiction being compared to drug or alcohol addiction and heard it said to be a trickier thing to control because you can not cut food out of your life, you have to eat it.  The thing is, you can cut it out temporarily.  That is partially why I am trying out the Master Cleanse for ten days, it’s my food rehab.  Much like the sabbatical I took from alcohol, I am taking one from food.

I started the cleanse yesterday and most of the times I craved food were when I drove by a place that I’d normally stop if hungry and nearby.  I noticed how many times I’d have the impulse to reach for food out of habit over hunger.  I’d get excited like eating something “bad” was a fun thing to do on my day off and have to remind myself that I’m off food for the moment.  When I sit down at the computer, I habitually have food.  I know that’s an awful habit and that’s why I want to break these.  I want my impulses to eat food to stem from hunger; to feed my body, not overload it.

Yesterday I felt mildly headache-y most of the day, but my mood and energy were pretty good.  I had a haircut and there were a few hours where I got rumbles in my stomach, but nothing too bad.  Today I haven’t really had any rumbles, though I can definitely feel it when the lemonade wears off and it’s time for another.  I was under the impression that today was supposed to be the day where I felt bad physically due to toxins being released, but actually I feel pretty good.  As for the saltwater flush, I couldn’t get the whole quart down this morning, the taste was just dreadful.  I think I got enough down for it to do the trick, though, as elimination is a very important part of this cleanse.

In general, I’ve eaten real food, most of the time in the last couple of years, as my diet and learning about food evolves.  However, in the last few weeks I’ve chosen way too much refined flour & sugar.  In the last ten years I used to smoke and work in a smoke-filled environment, I used to drink diet energy drinks, I used to microwave plastic wrapped veggie burgers, I used to drink Slim-Fast as a meal replacement at work…  aaaaand I’ve been on medication for almost 5 of the last 6 years.  I’m sure there are plenty of toxins built up in my fatty tissue that are keeping me from feeling my best.  I’m looking forward to releasing it as well as my toxic relationship to food.

 

 
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Posted by on September 12, 2011 in Lifestyle

 

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