Nothing out of the ordinary with this week’s assignment: just steamed baby spinach with olive oil and grated lemon zest, seasoned with salt and pepper. I left out the salt and pepper because I ate this for dinner during my “fruits and vegetables only” week of my 3-week cleanse. (Sidenote: During the cleanse, I was ingesting natural Himalayan crystal salt in water four times a day.) Oh, and I didn’t have a steamer basket, so I just stuck the baby spinach in the microwave with a bit of water for 1 minute. Tasty!
Speaking of the cleanse, I’ve completed it, and I will say that it was worth the 21-day effort. Many bloggers have asked what cleanse I did, and it was the Ultimate Beachbody Reset. It’s broken down into three weeks. The first included limited healthy proteins (chicken/salmon/unsweetened low-fat yogurt), healthy grains, beans, fruits and veggies. The second week cut out all meat and dairy, and the third week eliminated all beans and grains. This meant that every meal in the third week consisted only of fruits or veggies. Additionally, thirty minutes before each meal, a different combination of vitamins and supplements were taken with plenty of water, with week two incorporating a mild colon cleanse (think lemon-flavored Metamucil).
Pros: I kicked my Diet Coke/caffeine habit; I slept more soundly; I woke up feeling refreshed (after the first five days of caffeine withdrawal); I felt more alert and productive at work and home; I curbed my craving for sweets; I feel lighter and my stomach appears flatter; my clothes feel looser; I saved a lot of money by not buying soda and processed foods; and I seem to be more satisfied by the smell of my food more than the taste. I don’t know how I feel about that last one really.
Cons: I had the WORST caffeine withdrawal ever (think: waking up, going about the day, and going to sleep with severe migraines) for the first five days; I was craving protein throughout the cleanse because I had already started a vegan smoothie regime before the cleanse started and thus had no healthy proteins that first week; my dining out was extremely limited (read: non-existent) because the cleanse really encourages home-prepared food, so I had to reschedule a lot of dinner plans; and I go to the bathroom so much that I feel like there’s something wrong with my kidneys. However, overall, the cleanse is definitely worth it in the end.
This lemon-steamed spinach was made as a part of French Fridays with Dorie, a group of bloggers who are cooking their way through Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours.