I first did Carol Vorderman’s famous detox diet when I was 21, it was all the rage back then and everyone was doing it. And yes my skin radiated like I was, erm, 21 (BECAUSE I WAS) and yes, I had boundless energy and could party all night long but that’s probably because you’ve guessed it, I was 21.
So fast forward 10 years and post 18 months of broken sleep and skin that was dulling by the day, I believed another detox was in order. Following the old diet Carol rammed down the nation’s necks, I would cut out meat, dairy, wheat, alcohol, sugar and no doubt, pleasure. In that order. Pass the rice cakes.
Following the old diet Carol advocated back in the day, I would cut out meat, dairy, wheat, alcohol, sugar and no doubt, pleasure. In that order. Pass the rice cakes.
Surprisingly, it was easy: bean casseroles, vegetable soups, lentil curries, tonnes of brown rice, stir-frys, mangoes by the dozen and bananas till I could take no more. “I’m fabulous”, I cried brandishing my mug of peppermint tea feeling saintly in my success as one detoxed individual. By day 3, I was not so self-congratulatory. Head pounding, nerves on end, I wasn’t sure this extreme detox was for me.
I lasted until day 5, finally coming out the other end, feeling healthier, lighter, glow-ier, with the promise to myself I was turning vegan. Forever.
I was eating chicken livers before you could say carrots.
So here I am again, back on the detox but with own dietary twist. I followed Vorderman’s lead but along with everything you can eat on it, I’ve also introduced fish, yoghurt, cottage cheese, granary bread, wine in moderation and dark chocolate. What? It’s more obtainable now and I need dark chocolate in my life.
Unlike the more extreme version, I actually think I might stick to this way of eating. You know every day. I feel fantastic, am sleeping like a baby (just not my baby, you know a baby that actually sleeps) and as a wife of a pescatarian, eating meals together just got a whole lot easier.
Despite being winter, I’ve even kidded myself it’s actually summer (I’m so clever) and started juicing. Furthermore, the detox or rather ‘my new healthy way of eating’ has helped me maintain my weight. I have lost 3 stones of baby-bulge over 15 months getting to a size 10 six months ago and feel eating this way helps to keep my weight down and my mood up.
So here are my tips if you want to have a go:
Eat up all the steak, eggs and dairy milk in your fridge and cupboards before you begin. Get rid of temptation.
Buy online to keep costs down and you won’t be tempted by the cake aisle in the supermarket.
Fill up on fresh fruit and get creative with lentils and pulses. Here is a lentil curry recipe I love from the BBC (don’t forget to leave out the cream). More on the website.
Start the morning with porridge. Will keep you full for longer.
Enjoy a square (or small bar) of dark chocolate a day. My particular penchant is Green & Blacks.
Do it for as long as it feels good and always ask your doctor before embarking on any kind of diet.
Most importantly, as we Greeks say, “everything in moderation”. And that includes moderation. Try and remember that one when you’re knee deep in Green & Blacks.