Monday, April 8, 2013

Smoothie Challenge Favorite: Berry Cherry Jubilee

Berry Cherry Jubilee, from the lades over at
Longing for a change of pace, I decided to check out the recipes is offering as part of the April 30-Day Smoothie Challenge.

The Berry Cherry Jubilee piqued by interested, and just happened to include ingredients I already had on hand: berries, cherries, banana, spinach, chia seeds and water. It's sweet and refreshing, perfect for spring as the weather begins to turn warmer.

This was a family favorite with Lily rapidly slurping hers down. If you're looking for a sweet treat with your daily dose of greens, head on over to Simple Green Smoothies and check out this recipe and sign up for the challenge yourself.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Knowing What I Don't Know

I learned an important lesson today -- not knowing what you don't know can be dangerous.

After a week of detox, I thought I had a handle on what would and wouldn't be safe to eat and we ventured out to an organic restaurant loved by our whole family.

I drank water, enjoyed soup, salad and a vegan dish that consisted of sauteed veggies in an ultra-thin gluten-free wrap. After a week of no salt, I could barely handle the dish -- the saltiness burned my tongue. Thankfully, that prevented me from eating much of it. And I'm thankful because I had no way to predict what was to come.

Two hours later, I was doubled over with intestinal pain and we had to cut our day trip short to get me home. It took more than an hour for the pain to subside, but once it did, I was barely conscious. It was as if the intense pain took every ounce of energy from my body.

I passed out in bed and was dead to the world for over four hours. When I awoke, I was groggy and sore but at least the pain was gone. Still, the residual pain is acute enough to make feel like I need to skip yoga tomorrow and take it easy. It also makes me realize that detoxing is something I shouldn't treat lightly and as much as I love being a do-it-yourselfer, I think it's something that requires support.

I'm relieved to discover a local detox program supported by a local naturopath that will be taking place this month. I've decided to take it easy this week, eating foods that I know are easy on my body. It won't be much different from my detox but will focus on soups and teas that are soothing and calming to my digestive system. I don't consider this a failure. I've learned a lot over the course of this week while detoxing. I have learned that juices and smoothies in the morning give me incredible energy throughout the day. I have also learned that I sleep better when I save my heavier meals for the evening. Good things to know and remember.

Friday, April 5, 2013

'Zoodles': Detox Dinner of Champions

Detox Delight: Chunky red pepper & mushroom marinara over "zoodles" with steamed asparagus.

 Earlier this week, I wasn't sure I was going to even make it to the weekend on this detox. Though I'm battling some intense sugar cravings at the moment, that wasn't what had me feeling weak. It was general boredom with my food. Eating a salad every day was getting old quickly and no salt and no sugar even made my favorite sweet potatoes not such a favorite.

That's when I had a brainstorm. This detox doesn't have to be dreadful. With the ability to eat almost anything from the plant kingdom, my options for meals are endless. I was the one limiting my options with my limited thinking.

Enter "zoodles," spaghetti-style zucchini shreds that can be used in place of pasta for a vegetarian, grain-free entree or side dish. Making zoodles is easy. All you need is a julienne vegetable peeler (I picked mine up for $5 at the grocery store) and some washed zucchini. Use the julienne peeler to peel strips of zucchini from top to bottom, stopping when you get to the seeds. I save the middle part and slice it up to add to the dish. To prepare them, heat a skillet to medium heat and give them a quick saute just until they get flexible (the heat of your sauce will cook them further). It's much faster than making pasta.
"Zoodles" only need a quick saute in a dry pan.
I topped my zoodles with a chunky sauce made of onion, red bell pepper, mushrooms, diced tomatoes, fresh thyme, oregano and dried chile flakes for a little zing without salt. I served some spears of steamed asparagus on the side. The best part of this recipe is that it's family friendly and gave me the opportunity to eat with my family instead of sitting in the corner with my detox food glaring while they noshed on their own yummy dinner -- which is exactly what I was doing every night before. To round out the meal for Lily and Brian, I added some broiled polenta slices and fresh cherry tomatoes.

The sauce was a little spicy for Lily but that didn't stop her from asking for seconds.
Brian gave me the best possible compliment on this meal. He said it didn't feel like it was missing anything. Not only was it yummy, but it felt complete to him. He wasn't missing meat, pasta or dairy. A man of few words, Brian doesn't compliment often or effusively. I went to bed feeling pretty proud of myself.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Detox: Day 2

I've survived my first 24 hours of detox! It hasn't been easy, but I wouldn't say it's hard either. My biggest challenge was when preparing food Lily last night. I desperately wanted to chow down on the bread she was eating. But I managed to overcome the temptation.

Planning is definitely key for me. I have an hour set aside each night for me to prepare/pack my lunch and snacks for work the next day and also to prep my smoothie/juice ingredients. This saves a ton of time in the morning and prevents me from feeling like I don't have time to give my body the nutrients it needs.


4:30 a.m. -- Wake Up
4:45 a.m. -- Warm Water with Lemon
6 a.m. -- Morning Juice: Kale, Beet, Orange, Apple, Ginger, Celery
7 a.m. -- Office
8 a.m. -- Kim Snyder GGS: Lettuce, Spinach, Celery, Apple, Pear, Banana
Noon -- Lunch: Soup & Salad
3 p.m. -- Snack:
6 p.m. -- Dinner: Baked Sweet Potato Stuffed w/ veggies; Veggie Detox Soup
8 p.m. -- Herbal Tea
9 p.m. -- Bedtime

Side Effects/Reactions

I had some minor sweats/chills while sleeping last night and woke up with a painful headache. There's also a bad taste lingering in the back of my mouth. I attribute all of this to my body starting to shed its toxins. It's also a reminder to keep increasing my fluid intake to help flush my system.

Veggie Detox Soup

I'm a soup gal. Regardless of the time of year, I favor warm, soothing soups over anything cold and crunchy. I made up this recipe based on what I had on hand.

1 yellow onion, diced
1 cup celery, chopped
6 cloves garlic, peeled and diced
1-inch knuckle of ginger, peeled and diced
1 med. daikon root (4-5 inches long), peeled and sliced
1 cup rutabaga, cubed
6-8 tablespoons low-sodium vegetable broth powder (I use Frontier brand)
4-6 cups water
2 tablespoons miso paste

1. Saute onion in a stock pot with just enough water to prevent sticking. Cook until onion is translucent.
2. Add celery, ginger and garlic and cook a few minutes more.
3. Add all other ingredients except for miso paste and bring to a boil.
4. Simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
5. Turn off heat, stir in miso and serve.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Detox: Day 1

In an attempt to overcome my food coma from the holiday weekend, I started today bright and early with an intense workout. As far as first days go, today wasn't too bad. The only real temptation I faced was discovering leftover pizza and cookies in the office break room. I steered clear, though, and am glad to say my colleagues made sure that the leftovers didn't last long.

I have to brag on my amazing husband, though. Knowing that I have no willpower around sweets, he left work a tad early and tossed out the cookies and pie we had for Easter. So no more junk food to contend with at home. What a great guy!


4:30 a.m. -- Wake Up
4:45 a.m. -- Warm Water with Lemon
5:20-6:20 a.m. -- Exercise: Cycle & Weights
6:30 a.m. -- Morning Juice: Kale, Carrot, Beet, Orange, Apple, Ginger
8 a.m. -- Office
9 a.m. -- Kim Snyder GGS: Lettuce, Spinach, Celery, Apple, Pear, Banana
Noon -- Lunch: Spring Salad w/ Ginger Dressing
3 p.m. -- Snack: Banana
6 p.m. -- Dinner: Baked Sweet Potato Stuffed w/ veggies; Veggie Soup
8 p.m. -- Herbal Tea
9 p.m. -- Bedtime

Side Effects/Reactions

I haven't noticed any ill effects today. I was very hungry before lunch but the salad and banana kept me satisfied throughout the afternoon. Drinking water is definitely important. It helps with the cleansing process and also keeps me from grazing. I am aiming for 90 ounces of water every day. I had close to 100 today. Looking forward to keeping that up.

Ginger Dressing

Today's lunch was a hearty green salad of lettuce, red onion, apple, carrot, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds dressed with this tasty, tangy vinaigrette that I discovered in a recent issue of Yoga Journal.

1/2 cup apple juice 
2 tablespoons miso paste
2 tablespoons peeled and minced fresh ginger
2 large Medjool dates, pits removed
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1. Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Makes 2/3 cup. Will keep for about a week when refrigerated.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

One Last Binge

Knowing that I am starting a full-scale detox tomorrow, I gave myself permission to eat whatever I wanted all weekend. Having that kind of freedom on Easter weekend means eating a lot of cookies and candy. I honestly can say that I have had my fill. But to be brutally honest, I am surprised at myself.

There was once a time where a free eating pass would have had mean gorging on everything under the sun. Instead, I found myself still exercising some restraint -- even when it came to the King's Hawaiian rolls we had with Easter dinner. I had made my husband pick up an extra package on Friday because I was going to eat one all by myself. As of 9 p.m. tonight, I've eaten two. Not two packages, two rolls. It just wasn't as exciting as I had predicted.

That's my entire philosophy when it comes to this detox. Though I'm afraid I won't be able to make it the full 30 days, my guiding belief is that there is no food in the world that I can't stay away from for 30 days. And it if it's that miserable, I can always decide to eat it again at the end of my detox. I'm hoping to stick with the plan of doing a slow introduction to see what, if any, foods bother me. But we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Detox Prep: Cleaning the Kitchen

I've been cleaning my kitchen since the sun rose today in an effort to get ready for my detox. Even though the rest of the family isn't joining in, I think it's important to make room for the outrageous amount of produce I'll be bringing into the house and also to hide the foods that may tempt me to fall off the wagon.

Cleaning the kitchen also means making room for the juicer and blender on the counter so they are easy to access and hiding the coffee pot so I don't brew a pot in a moment of weakness. I wish I could say it's fun but it's not. I hate cleaning, but it's necessary. I'm sure I'll be content once it's all said and done.