Well, we're not exactly in quarantine. Still, we have been living with considerable restrictions and mainly at home for a few weeks now. For many it's an emotionally demanding time. Thus, my friends reacted quite surprised that I put myself under additional restrictions with a 10-day detox treatment.
My opinion? It's the best time to fast!
I’ve been wanting to try alkaline fasting for a long time, since it has been recommended to me by various health professionals. But I’ve always been reluctant to really do it, because for such a diet you need time (for cooking) and discipline – both would have been significantly much more difficult to come up with in normal, everyday life. Temptations would have lurked around every corner! Open air restaurants, sweets lying around at work, generally watching my colleagues eating. No, it is really easier to do while at home in isolation!
Our diet contains approximately 80% acidifying foods, which should be exactly the other way around.
I won't get into detail about the various reasons why fasting is good, if you are interested you can find enough information on the web. In short, alkaline fasting aims to remove excess acid and other harmful toxins from the body.
Our diet contains approximately 80% acidifying foods, which should be exactly the other way around. Add to that booze and coffee and there we have it :-).
What are alkaline foods? The answer to this question doesn't seem to be so clear. There are countless lists of it and none is exactly the same as the other. In principle, however, you can eat almost everything from two food categories when you do an alkaline fast: vegetables and fruits. In addition there are herbs, a few nuts and seeds – but that's it! I knew beforehand that this would be hard for me. My diet is almost exclusively vegan, which is why I had no problems with abstaining from animal products, at least. But I was afraid without a starchy side dish I would not be satiated. This turned out to be true during the beginning of the detox.
The terror of the first three days A little tip in advance: if you want to do this fast and you are a coffee addict like me, reduce your coffee intake a few days in advance. I didn’t and suffered from roaring headaches for the first three days (however, this is probably unavoidable as caffeine contracts the blood vessels in the brain which will then dilate during the detox). The headaches would've been one thing – but I also felt very tired, weak and hungry all the time at first. Without potatoes and avocado I would have been lost!
Smooth Sailing ahead? From day 4 onwards, I started to feel a lot better. The headaches were gone and I no longer felt so tired, but I didn't feel any energy boost either and until the end I felt that my body was lacking proteins and sufficient carbohydrates. All in all things went very well, although the recommendation to refrain from excessive sport during this time is probably appropriate. I also noticed that my body needed more sleep.
Detox is a great way to train yourself to abstain and use your will power.
The final stretch The longer the detox lasted and the better I felt, the more the cravings came back. I would have given anything for some pasta, a slice of bread or a cup of coffee. Even though 10 days is not a long time, it takes a lot of perseverance. That alone is reason enough for me to consider this a valuable experience: Detox is a great way to train yourself to abstain and use your will power.
Near the end I was definitely looking forward to the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm not a huge tea enthusiast and was slowly getting sick of both the detox teas and the herbal tincture. Also I wouldn't call myself an avid cook and during such an endeavour you are constantly in the kitchen. Also, certain foods like potatoes, which were in almost every meal, or lemons, which were used as a substitute for vinegar, started to get on nerves.
But: we don't do everything for fun, sometimes we have to push ourselves to achieve something in order to improve our well-being.
Our body is our loyal tool with which we experience this world. It's a part of us and correlates with our mind. For example, if you constantly feel tired, this can have various physical and psychological reasons – overacidification can be one of them. Listen deep inside yourself, whether a detox treatment would be beneficial for your body.
At a glance: My pros and cons of basic fasting
Valuable experience and training of discipline which is important in all aspects of life
Increases gratitude for all the food always available to us everyday
With the great menu ideas from Andrea*, you will get to know many new delicious dishes
Maybe you discover new vegetables and fruits that you didn't even know you liked (I did with Kiwi)
After a few days, you'll feel the cleansing of your body
At the end of the detox you feel energetic and healthy
You do some good for your body and relieve your detoxifying organs
If the current situation already negatively affects your mood, a detox might be too much for you now
You may suffer from headaches, fatigue and a decreased energy level – plan the detox alongside your professional commitments accordingly
Nutrition science doesn't seem to have any agreement in regard to alkaline foods or regarding the effect of this fasting. However, this is a perfect opportunity to listen to your gut :-)
* Would you like to try alkaline fasting? I recommend Andrea from Origin Massage, who has created a fantastic program and explains the procedure to you in detail. I am more than happy to provide psychological support or to help you to raise your energy during this time on another level :-).
This blog post does not contain paid advertising, but simply a personal recommendation.