**I’m currently participating in the 21 Day Sugar Detox and I’m recording it here on my blog. I’ll be posting pictures of the food I’m eating, as well as reflections about what I’m experiencing. Enjoy**
The 21 Day Sugar Detox Book
I just wrapped up my second 21 day sugar detox on Sunday. My first one was back in January. Overall, I would say that this one was easier as far as food preparation goes, and a lot of that is thanks to The 21-Day Sugar Detox book. Having a ton of delicious, new recipes to try out made all the difference in the world for this detox. I didn’t really find myself missing any non-detox foods (except grapes. God, I love grapes). The treats kept me happy and satisfied – I haven’t even had a bite of a chocolate bar yet. I’m breaking down my experience into separate sections, so this is part book review, part recap of my 21DSD experience.
Here’s a list of the recipes I tried from The 21-Day Sugar Detox:
- Pumpkin pancakes (p 98)
- Tomato-basil quiche with bacon and spinach (p 104)
- Chicken with tri-color peppers (p 108)
- Hot & Sweet Ginger Garlic Chicken (p 116)
- Jalapeno bacon burgers (p 120)
- Italian style Stuffed Bell Peppers (p 124)
- Greek tomato and cucumber salad (p 175)
- Cocoa-chili roasted cauliflower (p 179)
- Simple Beef Jerky (p 184)
- Banana coconut ice cream (p 197)
- Lemon vanilla meltaways (p 202)
- Moo-less chocolate mousse (p 203)
- Sweetener free ketchup (p 214)
- Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing (p 218)
So, in 21 days, I tried fourteen different recipes, many of which were new-to-me. Talk about variety! And there’s still a lot of recipes that I plan on trying even after the detox.
I have to be honest, when I first heard about this book coming out, I thought “Do I really need to go spend money on this when I already have the eBook and Practical Paleo and listen to the Balanced Bites podcast every week? Won’t this all be stuff I already know?” I can tell you now, that after living with the book for the past three weeks, it was well worth the money. Yes, the text at the beginning was a review of a lot of things I had already read – but it’s good to be reminded of why I eat how I do. While I don’t use Levels 1 or 2, there’s a lot of good support for these two programs, and they’re a fantastic transition for someone who’s completely new to eating like this, since neither plan is strictly “Paleo”. And while I’m not a meal plan person so much, the provided meal plans are great for someone who needs more guidance.
For me personally, I would have bought the book for the recipes alone – they’re fabulous. Beautiful pictures, clear directions, and lots of them. As you saw if you followed my detox, they’re also very easy to modify. Have chicken and kale on hand? Throw that in your tomato basil quiche instead of bacon and spinach. Have a nut allergy? Stuff your chocolate cups with banana ice cream. One of my favorite parts of this detox was getting to experiment with all these different recipes. I even created a few of my own (detailed posts on 21DSD chocolate shake and coconut creamer coming soon).
The most important recipes for helping me through this detox: the ketchup and the moo-less mousse. I love ketchup on my eggs, and I really missed it during my first detox. This time, I made a jar of ketchup before the detox, and I still have some left. It made breakfast so much better. Meanwhile, the moo-less mousse was super easy to make and kept my chocolate cravings at bay. It allowed me to have a little treat with lunch while getting some healthy, filling fats in as well. Win-win.
(During the sugar detox, I also made recipes from Well Fed, Make it Paleo, and Practical Paleo.)
Products and Supplements
In addition to all the fabulous recipes, having certain products and supplements on hand (many of which were recommended by the book) made my detox go much smoother.
While looking back over my 21DSD posts, I find that I learned about a lot more than just food and how it affects my body.
Here’s the main things I feel I learned during the detox:
- Preparation is key: Have some lazy meals planned for days when you have no energy to cook. Always have protein on hand. Pack snacks and/or lunch if you’re going to be out for a few hours.
- Good sleep is essential: Sleep should be your main priority – it may even be more important than what you eat. Getting plenty of good, quality sleep makes eating healthy so much easier.
- Stress affects everything: I struggled with stress a lot during this detox. It wasn’t because of the food limitations. Work was extra crazy these last few weeks. My husband was finishing up a paper for his grad school class. And my cortisol levels were all over the place. I’ve learned that I don’t currently handle stress well. So I plan now to try out meditation, get in more relaxing walks, and generally just try to breathe more.
- Eat mindfully: Before the detox, I had a bad habit of multi-tasking while eating. I’d read a book or a magazine. I’d browse Facebook on my iPad. I’d watch television. I’d work on my computer at work. During the detox, I began cultivating the habit of mindful eating. I just focus on eating. I take small bites, put my fork down, and notice the flavors and textures of my food. I take deep breaths while eating. It really does make a difference, and this is something that I will continue long after the detox.
- Don’t make excuses: During my detox, I went to a family dinner, my cousin’s wedding, and an out of town conference. I worked full-time and stayed late for after work meetings some days. And I was able to stay on the detox the entire time. If you plan ahead and stay prepared, you can easily stay on the detox no matter where you go. I could have easily slipped at any one of those events by making excuses, but I didn’t.
Overall, this experience was definitely a positive one for me. I’m really looking forward to The 21-Day Sugar Detox Cookbook coming out, and I’ll probably participate in another detox in January using the new recipes.
Have you ever participated in the 21 Day Sugar Detox or a similar program? What was the main thing you took away from that experience?