Clean: Week 2

Week 2 of our three-week cleanse = complete!

We're still surviving, haven't wasted away to nothing, and even benefited from some restored energy after the initial system-shocking Week 1. We also experienced decreased appetites and settled into a relatively comfortable routine with our liquid-solid-liquid meal plan. Like anything else, it takes two weeks to form a habit, so at this point, the decreased amount of food we're eating every day feels pretty normal. Even NS didn't complain as much about being ravenous this week, although he claimed he didn't get enough protein, so I'm looking to boost his meat intake next week. More on that in the next post.

Here's a look at what we ate this week:
[click image to enlarge]

Notes on the recipes listed above:
(1) See full recipe on the Clean Program website here.
(2) See full recipe on the Clean Program website here.
(3) Recipe taken from Clean, Alejandro Junger, M.D. (2009)
(4) See full recipe on the Clean Blog here.
(5) See full recipe on the Iowa Girl Eats blog here.
(6) See full recipe on the Me, Redone blog here.
(7) See full recipe on the Clean Blog here.
(8) See full recipe on the Clean Blog here.
(9) Recipe obtained from my good friend MO. I loved it.
(10) See full recipe on the Me, Redone blog here.
(11) See full recipe on the Clean Blog here.
(12) See full recipe on The Garden of Eden blog here.

I've color coded the chart as follows:
  • Dark green cells are the ones he raved about
  • Light green cells are the ones he liked
  • Light blue cells are the ones he felt neutral about
  • Yellow cells are the ones he tolerated
  • Red cells are the ones he ranted about
  • I liked almost everything (again)
I managed to find some recipes that fit into the dark green category this week, although you'll notice that it was very difficult to hit a home run on breakfast. The problem is that a lot of the smoothies involve almond milk and/or avocado, both of which NS tolerates but doesn't love. I think if we had a juicer, I'd be able to make some juice creations for breakfast that he'd enjoy more, since he really likes the daily juices he's been receiving from Drink Fresh Juice. I'm pretty sure a juicer is in our future, but the selection on island is pretty dismal. The book (Clean, by Alejandro Junger, M.D.) does say that the detoxification process is more intense with juices than with the semi-liquid shakes and soups, but we're doing the best that we can with what we've got.

Tuesday's Avocado Cucumber Soup, featuring local basil.
In an upcoming post, I'll talk about where I like to get the best
local and/or organic produce in Grand Cayman.

I gave you photos of "rave" recipes last week. Now for the photos of a "rant" recipe.

It involved beets.

Because of their distinctive taste, beets seem to be a love/hate sort of food. I naively thought we'd land on the "love" side because of a positive experience with beetroot soup at MO's Wigilia party a couple years ago.

The colorful results of slicing raw beets.
Another plus: This recipe involved not only beets but also coconut milk. I absolutely love coconut milk. It adds a hint of sweet while making a dish so creamy and rich. Plus it's easy to digest, high in the all-important omegas, helps to reduce inflammation, and provides potassium, which lowers blood pressure (source).

So between the beetroot soup memories and my love for coconut milk, I figured this soup would be a sure bet.

After boiling the beets with shallots and adding them to a blender with the coconut milk and a few other ingredients, I had the most beautiful soup in fun little mason jars for the next day's dinner.

But... although the soup was indeed quite creamy (and pretty), it was also very beety, if you know what I mean. And if you don't enjoy the taste of beets, well, you won't enjoy this soup. I think N returned home that night with most of his beety dinner untouched.

Something else you'll notice is that we had a liquid lunch on Wednesday. This is because we had dinner guests Wednesday night, and so as to not violate the two-liquid-meals-per-day plan, we waited until the evening to have our solid meal.

I can't blame our dinner guests for being a bit wary of what the menu might contain, since N hasn't exactly been singing the praises of the likes of hemp energy shakes and avocado-based soups. But we didn't want to scare anybody off, so I stuck with recipes that I knew were crowd-pleasers. Shown above, I made the Iowa Girl Eats Kiwi-Mango Salsa (leaving out the forbidden jalepeños) as a topping for sauteed chicken breasts.

Getting help in the kitchen is a love language all in itself.
On the side, I served Pineapple & Avocado Gazpacho, which is an avocado dish that will make even N request seconds.

This chilled soup is sweet, tart, and smooth all at once.

For a vegetable, N sauteed these locally-grown Asian long beans. (I know, it sounds like an oxymoron.) Aren't they gorgeous?! I wanted to serve them full-length, but as you can see, even my largest pan wasn't up to this culinary challenge.

The purple ones taste just like the green ones, and they do say to add color to your diet!

Fortunately, most seasonings are allowed. Flavor it up!
[Yes, I'm using a loaf pan as a serving dish. Don't judge.]

It was nice to prove to ourselves that even on a cleanse, we could entertain friends and feel social, all while staying within the confines of nutritious, digestible, non-allergenic foods.

I will admit that, as predicted in the book, I felt extra irritable this week. Supposedly it has to do with the release of toxicity and bodily changes in general. Even N might have been a shade less "understanding" this week. It's okay. We made it. 

We've also discovered the reason they recommend not to do any demanding exercise while cleansing. On Saturday, I ran a 2-mile fun run (the first of three in the 2012 Fidelity Fun Run series). This was my first race since the half marathon. Although I intended to make it a very casual run, once the race started, adrenaline kicked in and... well, I didn't PR or anything, but I did run it two minutes faster than I planned to, resulting in a complete loss of energy for the rest of the day. Also on Saturday, N played basketball with a group of guys (a totally normal activity) and had the most winded, sluggish session he's had in a very long time. All of this is temporary, of course, because at the moment, we're not getting the same number of calories that we're used to, and our bodies are supposed to be in detox mode, not anaerobic exercise mode. But it's not like us to just sit around detoxing when there are races to win (I use that term very loosely) and three-pointers to nail. Still, before Race 2 next Saturday, I may allow myself some healthy carbs to get ready for the race.

Now for Week 3. The end is truly in sight, especially since we plan to end the cleanse this Saturday - one day shy of the full three weeks. It's only fitting; someone is about to have a birthday. 

N & L sent back sweets from Australia to our church community group - thanks guys!
NS enjoys a whiff of chocolate mint.

Prediction: The end-of-cleanse food situation will be very interesting.


  1. I love beets! Too bad your soup wasn't as good as it sounded. It looks really pretty though! You are quite the cook and quite the photographer! ;)