Have a great day - eat something healthy.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Support Group

Hey, Gang - Suzie sent me this note last night and I'd like to share it with all of you. Everyone experiences this cleanse differently, but Suzie isn't seeing as many positive changes as most of us are. I hope you have some insights that you can offer to make it easier and more enjoyable for her. Looking forward to hearing your comments. Thanks!

Hello, Ivy ...I am dealing with the loss of my fuel--the caffeine. My daily intake was huge--- 2-3 times /day triple Venti at Starbuck's. This kept me wired and of course, a little manic. I thought it was energy.
 The food is not a big problem except that I am not a cook. I pick-up fresh produce at Whole Foods and make gigantic salads or brown rice and oven grilled veggies. I don't do recipes. I do miss chicken and fish. I haven't had meat in 2 years. And, my morning is the shake with the powders, banana, berries, green tea and almond milk. I snack on nuts. I'm not really hungry but definitely missing "good" food--turkey burgers, sushi, occasional pizza, etc. Normally eat out 3-4 days per week.It has been too hard to do this during the cleanse. This staying home is a change in my normal routine and a little depressing.
 Eliminating alcohol--yikes. It was the thing I reached for to relax my busy brain or prep me for social occasions. I don't enjoy going out without my vodka in-hand.

I have only missed one day of exercise since September 7th. I do feel lighter. I vowed not to weigh-in until day #22.
 So, bottom-line. When the cleanse is over---then what? I don't see going back but, I don't see this deprivation going on forever. Wondering what results I should expect and if when it's over if I will just resume my old ways. Have I done this for weight loss and not a lifestyle change?

I don't mind you sharing any of the above with the group. Their insight has been enjoyable and valuable.

Warmest regards,


  1. Suzie, I wonder if your low energy might be due to a protein deficiency. I mentioned that to Maggie when she was going through her caffeine withdrawal as well. It's worth taking a look at; upping your protein intake might help you feel stronger and more grounded. And I know what you mean about keeping yourself sequestered while you cleanse - I did that the first time I cleansed too. It wasn't until Day 18 that I went out - I didn't trust myself enough until then. I thought I'd want to order a drink or that I wouldn't be able to resist the bread or find anything on the menu. Going into familiar environments with entirely new behaviors is a tremendous challenge! But it can be done. And it gets easier each time you do it.

    I've got a post on alcohol that might help a bit. I'll post it again. And I hope our cleanse friends will chime in with their suggestions. Hang in there, Suzie. You're not alone and you're right - this is really hard. It flies in the face of everything we're accustomed to. So be proud of yourself for making it this far - you have to be really strong to do that! Let us know how we can help!

  2. Suzie, I could relate to a many of the things you wrote. I have done the cleanse many times and each time it gets so much easier. I stayed away from caffeine for a long time after my first cleanse because it was such a tough withdrawal but now I have a cup occassionally. I have grown to enjoy decaf. green tea with soy milk. After each cleanse I've done I learn a little more and try to make changes in my usual diet. I don't eat a lot of red meat, I try to not eat too many Hot Tamales (my favorite candy) and I eat more vegetables and fruit. Before I started cleansing I had the worst diet and each time I do it my eating choices improve.
    Congrats on all your exercising! Just 6 days left. We can do it!!!!
    p.s. My brother did the last cleanse with us and still hasn't had any sugar. He says the cleanse changed his life.

  3. Letting go of habits and addictions has been very difficult for me. They were always predicitable. I knew that with alcohol it was going to be bad but I knew it was going to be bad and for me if I know how it will turn out then I'm safe. My addiction to sugar and caffiene is different because I had no consequences to pay other than feeling like crap. That was easily fixed with more sugar and caffiene. I now know that I'm an active participant in my life and I'm the only change I can make. Today I'm willing to take that risk. I like the poor choices to be my experience not my reality even if it hurts for a little while. I know that I can walk through it

  4. Wonderful thoughts, Kathleen and Trish. Thanks for your input. And, Suzie, I hope this helps a bit. Sleep well, all!

  5. Hey Suzie,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us! I'm impressed you're so willing to put it all out there.

    I've had similar feelings this past week. I hadn't really craved sugar at all, until some mild cravings yesterday and the day before. I think it's because we're getting closer to the end of the cleanse, and also because I'm used to the flavors, and I miss them. I know Dr. Fuhrman has some really good recipes in his books for desserts that are within the guidelines of the cleanse. I'm going to make one for dessert tomorrow night.

    On the coffee - of course you're down after going cold turkey on it! It totally makes sense. Maybe you could do some reading on what caffeine does to your body, to allow you to see that you're not depriving yourself, you're giving your body a break from the havoc caffeine causes. I pulled the below info off of a google search (it's sort of long...forgive me)

    Since caffeine is a stimulant, it acts as a diuretic, which means that a person tends to urinate more frequently when it is consumed in excess. This reduces water content in the body, which can lead to dehydration.
    It increases blood sugar level, blood pressure level (BP) and body temperature. Patients with diabetes or high BP problems should reduce their intake of caffeine, though they may not necessarily eliminate it from their diet.
    Heart patients are more seriously affected by caffeine, as it can cause cardiac arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats) in some people.
    Consumption of caffeine at night can cause insomnia.
    Kids and young adults often complain of bad headaches, since most of them drink sodas and energy drinks. This can be a link to attention deficit disorders.
    A person's body can suffer from calcium deficiency, when he/she takes too much caffeine, since a lot of it is lost in urine and stools. With time, bone density reduces and leads to osteoporosis (a disease where bones break easily or are even fractured). Such drinkers are advised to substitute their caffeine products with milk, low fat yogurt, and other high-calcium foods or calcium supplements.
    Absorption of the chemical magnesium, which is significant to maintain healthy bowel levels, is also obstructed due to caffeine consumption.
    Intake of caffeine should be limited to one cup a day, by patients suffering from Crohn's disease, ulcers and gastro-intestinal reflux, since it increases the secretion of acids and pepsin in the stomach.
    Studies have revealed that intake of more than six cups of coffee in a day by pregnant women can lead to increased miscarriage risks or low-birth weight babies.
    Caffeine can also cause fibrocystic breast disease and increase breast tenderness.

    I wanted to let you know that this isn't easy for me either. I like my coffee and my sugar and my cheese a lot. But the more I find out reasons to abstain, the better I feel about this cleanse. I have started to question what I'm going to do afterwards. I don't know if I can live without GASCAP in the long term, and I have an addictive personality, so it's challenging for me to moderate.

    Just know we are all here with you to help!!! You can post four times a day and someone will respond. :) Thanks for your honesty. Take it one day at a time, sister!


  6. To everone who posted, thank you for your generosity, concern and kindness. And Suzie, I hope you are finding some comfort, support and good solid information in their words and wisdom. Like Maggie said - we're all here to help!

  7. Suggestion: you said you don't cook, but take a day or afternoon or something and make 2-3 of Ivy's recipes and put them in the fridge/freezer. That way you have something other than the "diet" food you seem to be eating. There are plenty of delicious foods we can have on this cleanse! To have given up all that you have and then be on a "diet" on top of that...well who wouldn't be depressed?

  8. Great suggestion, Jeannie. I cooked like crazy the first time I cleansed, just for something to DO! And not only did it help me pass the time; it helped me realize that there are some really terrific dishes out there that don't contain a bunch of crap. I experimented, became a better cook, and got in touch with my food, which is a hugely spiritual component of eating. Karyn Calabrese's kitchen staff at Karyn's Raw in Chicago joins hands every morning and says a prayer before they begin cooking (or raw-ing, as it were); the love and kindness of that prayer is transmitted through the food - I truly believe that. I've seen your gorgeous kitchen, Suzie - it's a cook's wet dream! Why not stir up some fun there?! Wish I were in Chicago - I'd offer to come over and cook with you!