What is the Clean Program? I often get asked that when I say that I am doing a cleanse. A cleanse usually brings to mind either juice fasting for days on end or living on lemon juice, water, and cayenne pepper. When I first started researching doing a cleanse, I was drawn to the idea of a juice cleanse. I was nervous about living on just juice for a week though. I have a pretty busy life with my own business, a daughter to get to and from places, and my home to take care of.
That’s when I heard Gwyneth Paltrow talking about this cleanse that she was on, the Clean Program. I was intrigued because you are allowed actual food and smoothies. I got the Clean book by Dr. Alejandro Junger to learn more. This is really a great place to start as it explains why you are removing certain foods in order to reduce inflammation, acidity, and toxic chemicals from your body.
I really wanted to do the cleanse, but was initially put off by the large cost of the Clean Kit.I started looking around in their forums and discovered that you could put together your own kit. I’ve put together my make your own Clean Kit recommendations based on doing the cleanse five times now. It really is much cheaper and that way you can buy more higher quality foods while you are cleansing.
So what exactly does the Clean Cleanse entail? It is a pretty simple formula really. For 21 days you have:
- A smoothie for breakfast filled with green veggies (spinach, kale, chard, etc), water, protein powder, a good fat (avocado or nut butter), coconut or almond milk, and some fruit (I stock up my fridge with a variety of frozen fruit).
- A solid meal for lunch. This should include some hearty greens, a good source of protein, and healthy fats.
- Another smoothie for dinner or a pureed soup.
- Daily supplements and probiotics. These include digestive enzymes, milk thistle to support the liver, an anti-microbial such as oil of oregano or berberine, and magnesium at night.
- Drink plenty of water, often with fresh lemon or lime juice to help increase alkalinity in the body.
- A twelve hour window of fasting between dinner and breakfast.
It really is pretty straightforward, but it can be pretty tough. Some of the things that you must exclude from your diet include:
- dairy and eggs
- processed sugar (including honey and maple syrup)
- coffee, soda, and alcohol
- beef, pork
- tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, potatoes, yams, sweet potatoes
- bananas, strawberries, citrus (other than lemons and limes), and grapes
- most processed foods
I know that the list can seem very limiting, but there are so many options of great recipes and foods out there that you can have. It really is great to eliminate these things from your diet every once in a while.
The first few days can be rough as your body is detoxing from sugar, caffeine, and the other items on the list. I usually suffer from a headache the first few days, but once that is gone I feel pretty good. My tastebuds change and things that are usually tempting are not any longer.
After the cleanse is over, you go through a reintroduction process where you slowly have new foods to see how they affect your body. It can be a great way to see if there are any toxic triggers that you may want to permanently eliminate or reduce from your diet.
The cleanse is also great for helping your make better choices in your everyday diet. Weight loss is not the main focus of the cleanse but it can often help your body get to the weight that it should be. I have found it to be a happy side effect.
It is definitely something that I highly recommend. I have had so many positive side effects from this including better sleep, clearer skin, and a better moving intestinal system (ahem).
I welcome any of your questions or comments about the Clean cleanse below. I would love to help!