Now that I completed my Nutrition diploma I thought it about time to put some of my learnings into practise and trial out some new eating habits.
I think I generally eat pretty healthily – the vast majority of what I eat is unprocessed, homemade and nutritious however I am prone to bloating, bad skin, lack of energy and catching every cold around so after reading Jeanette Hyde’s “The Gut Makeover” I decided to give it a go.
I have completed week one of the cleanse and thought I would share my thoughts and a couple of recipe ideas with you.
Firstly, the theory behind the book centre on the gut being central to our weight and health so it sets out a 4 week cleanse plan to help repair the gut, re-populate with good bacteria and have us feeling better, happier, more energetic and healthier.
Our guts are filled with trillions of bacteria, processed foods, dairy, gluten and sugar are some key foods which act as irritants to the gut lining and cause an inbalance in the levels of bacteria in the gut. By removing these foods from our daily diet we are giving our guts a chance to recover, rebuild and rebalance. Good bacteria will flourish and we will hopefully end up feeling rejuvinated and glowing.
The author of this book makes it clear that this isnt a diet – it is more a makeover and whilst you dont need to follow the daily plans forever this cleanse will help form better food and eating habits and can be revisited periodically to routinely give yourself a bit of an MOT!
Essentially week one has involved cutting out caffeine, alcohol, dairy, gluten, sugar, salt and processed foods. Every time I have told my friends about this they have been horrified asking what I am able to eat but, being honest, the only thing I have really missed is cappuccinos! I have followed the advice in the book by snacking on fruit, nuts and vegetables. The plan recommends trying to eat a wide variety of all fruit and vegetables – 20 a week and I think I have achieved this!
This isn’t about calorie counting, it is about 3 healthy, nutritious meals a day with healthy snacks, plenty of water and herbal tea.
When I am at work I have followed the following plan:
Breakfast – Grapefruit with a Smoothie made with 3/4 fruits and vegetables – usually banana, kiwi, spinach and pear.
Lunch – Sweet Potato, Squash, Carrott and Chilli Soup
Snacks – a handful of nuts, an apple, melon and pineapple
Dinners this week have included Courgetti with Fresh tomatoes, chilli, garlic and anchovy
Warm Thai beef salad with Cauliflower Rice
Seabass with Chilli Greens and Mushrooms and Cauliflower Rice
Almond Crusted Chicken with Apple and Walnut Salad and Kale
Genuinely I think I am now a cauliflower rice convert – coarsley grate a quarter of a cauliflower and warm in a dry pan – I couldnt tell the difference between that and rice when it was mixed with the warm thai salad!
Again, by using ground almonds and crushed pistachios or walnuts to coat chicken instead of breadcrumbs you still retain a crispy coating – perfect for with a salad.
Weekend breakfasts have also been a treat – poached eggs, homemade guacamole made by mashing avocado, grated ginger, diced chilli with lime juice with sauteed mushrooms and spinach or salmon.
I have been drinking plenty of water, peppermint tea androoibos tea.
So it really hasnt been too difficult at all despite sitting in the pub with my friends on water whilst they enjoy beer and wine and walking to the market near work seeing the lovely falafal stall (which i love!) and being unable to eat it!
So far i have lost 1.5kg in weight and have not felt bloated at all. My skin and sleeping patterns arent great but I am putting that down to the stress of moving house and a restructure at work.
I will blog again once I have finished week 2 which I am excited about! I am making a vegetable curry today for Elix and I to have for dinner tomorrow in fact and look forward to sharing the recipe!