Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Food Elimination

Two months out of the year, I do a liver cleanse, in January and in July. This isn't dangerous, and yes, I know what I'm doing. The cleanse is facilitated by my physician, and I use a medical food (that provides the protein I need) that can't be purchased over the counter. The cleanse entails eliminating foods over a two-three week period and then slowly adding them back into my diet. The foods that are eliminated (slowly) are typically soy based, corn based, sweeteners, caffeine, meat, dairy, peanuts, gluten based grains/veggie-meat alternatives, eggs, and tomatoes/acid based fruits.

I'm currently on my seventh cleanse, and each one is an advent ure in letting go, discipline, self-awareness, compassion, time management, and creativity. The cleanses do get easier in that I know what to expect, and I allow for quiet time and the least amount of activity as possible, especially when the most variety of foods are eliminated from my diet.

Currently, I'm into the second week of my first cleanse of 2012, and I've lost 7 pounds, without trying! A cleanse is not about losing weight, and I have never lost weight with a cleanse before, but I've cut back significantly on the white rice and buckwheat, which are permissible, and sticking with the fruits and veggies, and it's just coming off. Cleanses are not about weight loss!

This morning, I thought of my great grandparents, and I can imagine that they would have a hard time wrapping their minds around needing to do a liver detox and food elimination. They rarely ate meat, and while they did eat dairy, it wasn't full of chemicals and hormones. Their diet consisted of homemade pasta made of whole grains and vegetables. No need for them to do liver cleanses and food eliminations. They faced few pollutants, toxins, and chemicals.

So, today, I am feeling the deeper effects of the cleanse. There's an awareness of layers of old stuff being cleansed from my body, an energetic cleaning that is preparing me for something. That something is a mystery to me, but I know my bodymind and spirit well, and there's movement that's facilitated with a cleanse. The movement happens as a result of the letting go and surrender that is required for a peaceful cleanse. Without it, there's a constant struggle as food cravings and beliefs about food hammer away at the mind - things like, "I can't live without meat protein. I need milk to live. What will I eat if I can't have eggs?"

From a physical perspective, the numbers that my doctors focus on - the triglycerides, good/bad cholesterol, inflammatory indices have been beyond normal - more like utterly fantastic. I have a genetic predisposition for high cholesterol, but I am not obese, and I eat a vegetarian diet, so that has never been an issue. Since starting the cleanses, my numbers are incredible. To me, these numbers are an added benefit to an already deeper blessing.

That blessing is the greater inner awareness and opening in my body and spirit that is created when I let go of the attachments around food, and the space that is created in my body for new and greater energetic and physical miracles and possibilities.

To my great grandparents, "I'm thinking of you, great grandma and grandpa, today as I do what I know how to do to live vibrantly in a world that is so different from the one you knew."
Denise Chicoine
Founder, Soulful Life, LLC

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