Cheers to a Healthy 2020!
As we face the new year, many of us are looking to jumpstart our health. If you’re like me, during holiday celebrations, you may have happily over-indulged in treats, sweets and celebratory liquid calories, but now it’s time to face the scale (or the jeans), own the numbers and reprioritize. Do we NEED a “cleanse” to DETOX? Nope, that’s what our kidneys, lungs, liver, and spleen do for us. Forcing fluids up, down, around or through our GI tract does not “detox” anything. However, so many of my patients have tried unhealthy “detox” methods or asked me for some kind of “cleanse” that I eventually realized it’s more productive to offer a simple alternative than to discourage other potentially harmful options. Therefore, back by popular demand, here is my now annual new year’s WORLD FAMOUS Dr. Grimes’ SUPERDOC Cleansing 3-Day Detox Diet* (or insert whatever over-the-top superlative and overstated title you prefer)
Eat #VEGGIES #FRUIT #PROTEIN + Drink #WATER.
Yep, that’s it. Processed foods are eliminated. This “cleanse” is automatically gluten-free and dairy-free (which helps those with undiagnosed celiac disease or lactose intolerance). Skip everything with high fructose corn syrup and additives or chemicals you can’t pronounce. Skip carbonation, caffeine and alcohol. YES. These are extras our body does not need. If you consume enough caffeine that you are likely to get a caffeine-withdrawal headache, keep one cup of coffee but drink it plain- no sugar, cream, etc. Feel free to add a lemon, lime or orange wedge to your water if you want flavor. Please skip sugar substitutes (aspartame, etc.) We are going for a “cleanse” here!
What counts as a protein source?
- Eggs, fish, nuts, beans or lean meat
Can you cook them?
- Absolutely! This is not a “raw food” diet, but a simplified diet. Feel free to use olive oil (one to two tablespoons should be enough per meal), salt, pepper, or herbs to season and cook the protein or veggies.
Can they be frozen foods?
- Sure! The idea is simple foods. If frozen veggies are easier or cheaper, grab those, but I’m talking frozen broccoli, not broccoli smothered in cheese & pasta.
How much should you eat?
- Limit your protein to a serving roughly the size of your expanded, cupped hand (at each meal)
- Fruits and vegetables? No maximum, but a minimum of two servings per meal (a handful is one serving.)
- Eat three or four meals: (breakfast, lunch, optional afternoon snack and dinner.)
- Make sure your first meal is within an hour of waking up.
How much water?
- One large glass with each meal, and any time you are thirsty (no maximum)
*Despite the tongue-in-cheek Master cleanse name, there is nothing special or magical about this recipe. Does it work? Well, yes- it does. It “works” to help you realize what your body needs, versus what your mouth, eyes or mind want. For those with lactose intolerance or celiac disease, this often “works” to improve bowel/abdominal bloating and discomfort. For those trying to focus on better nutrition and weight loss, this frequently “works” as a great jump start. Can you modify this and use yogurt as a protein source? Certainly! The point here is to spend a few days with simple eating and no extra…”extras”.
BOTTOM LINE: If you’re looking to “cleanse” your body for a few days, keep it SIMPLE and stick to water, fruits, veggies, and simple proteins (eggs, beans, nuts or meat) for a healthy jump start!