Normally, I’m not the kind of person who worries too much about what she eats. I cook from scratch, eat real food and when I have treats, they’re the homemade kind, ya know – with real butter, lard, all the good stuff. I’ve never been a twig, but I’ve always had a healthy body weight without sweating it too much.
However, since the baby came, my body and my appetite have rebelled. I didn’t gain as much weight during pregnancy as some of my friends, but it didn’t exactly fall off after baby came, either. Breastfeeding made me ravenous for calorie-dense food and that quickly became a habit.
So now, here I am, 15 months later, only 15 pounds lighter than I was with my kid in my belly. Yikes.
I work from home and am blessed with a hubby who loves me unconditionally, so I don’t have a ton of pressure to be a supermodel. Ha. Ok. Most days find me in Lulu’s and no makeup. I’m a mum. What can I say.
That said, coming from a place of sane health goals, it’s time to unload a few pounds before I pack ’em on again with a second pregnancy.
The plan? A system re-boot.
I’m one of those people who believes in the adage – Everything in moderation, including moderation.
I wasn’t looking to go hard core or eat only what my paleolithic ancestors ate. Way too complicated and I’m way too lazy. I’m working on a common-sense, simple cleanse to get some weight off and reset my system.
(Common sense disclaimer: I’m not a doctor or a nutritionist. This is my story, not medical advice and shouldn’t be treated as such.)
Lazy Lady’s Cleanse
- any processed foods
- dairy (I am eating a small amount of natural, unsweetened yogurt to help my digestion.)
- red meat
- whole grains (brown rice, quinoa, barley etc.)
- heaps and heaps of fresh fruit and veg
- water, water, water, water.
I’m also limiting my calories, but realistically, it’s pretty hard to eat too many veggies. Basically my goal is to short circuit my addictions, particularly to sugar.
In addition to diet, I’m taking a green supplement three times a day to get that extra boost of fibre as well as milk thistle for my liver.
So far so good . . . It’s been a week and I’m holding strong, despite crazy cravings. The second day brought a killer headache, but lots of water is keeping the worst at bay. I’ve lost 6 pounds already . . . hopefully there’s more to come.
Cleanse Menu Ideas:
I start every morning with a cup of warm water with a slice of lemon.
Cleanse Breakfast Smoothie :
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
- 1/2 cup of pineapple
- 1/2 cup of fresh or frozen raspberries
- 1/3 cup of natural, whole milk yogurt
- 2 tbsp ground chia seeds or ground flax seeds
- Handful of finely minced parsley
- 1 to 2 teaspoons of minced ginger (use a rasp)
- Enough pure pomegranate juice to loosen everything up, about 1/2 a cup
It’s a smoothie, not rocket science. Put what you want in it. My goal is to get lots of fibre, vitamins and digestive aids in at the start of the day. Amazingly, with the yogurt and all the fibre from the chia seeds, this actually holds me over until lunch.
Lunch is a huge bowl of mixed greens, blueberries, dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and pecans with a small amount of grilled chicken.
Make life easy for yourself – cook a whack of chicken at the beginning of the week. Slice it up and keep it in the fridge for lunches and to keep yourself from falling off the wagon. A big glass of water and a slice of chicken gets me through the worst sugar fits.
Baked Chicken Breasts
Marinate chicken breasts in a small amount of canola oil, 2 to 3 cloves minced garlic, a tablespoon or two of lemon juice, one tablespoon of dijon mustard mustard and a small handful of herbs (oregano, basil) salt and pepper for an hour or over night.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put chicken in a baking dish and cover with foil. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in the centre. Let cool, slice up into strips and refrigerate.
Salmon with Lemon
This couldn’t be easier. I’m not the most confident cooking fish, but its hard to screw this up.
Cook a whole side or even an entire fish this way – it makes lovely left overs. You can do this either on the BBQ by wrapping the entire thing in foil, or in a foil-covered baking dish in the oven. Just don’t over cook it, salmon is best just a bit tender.
- Fresh, wild salmon if you can get it (leave the skin on)
- 1/4 to 1 large onion, sliced
- 1 lemon, sliced with rind on
- a drizzle of olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
If you are cooking a whole fish, have your fishmonger clean it for you. Tuck the lemon inside, season with salt and pepper and lay the fish on top of the sliced onions. If you are using half a fish or a fillet, lay the onions in the dish with the salmon skin side down and place the lemon slices on top.
Wrap fish either completely in foil, or cover the baking dish with foil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish.
If you haven’t had quinoa before, you’re missing out. It has a ton of protein and a nice nutty bite. It can be made into burgers, eaten instead of rice or pasta, or made into lovely salads. If you’re not concerned about eating dairy, this is fabulous with diced feta cheese.
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- a pint of tomatoes, diced (I like cherry but you can use whatever you have)
- half a cucumber, diced
- 2 green onions, minced
- half a small red onion, finely chopped
- 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 to 2 tablespoons cumin
- 1 to 2 teaspoons tumeric
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- lots and lots of fresh minced oregano
- small handful fresh mint, finely minced
- 1/4 cup good quality olive oil, or other tasty oil
- 1/3 cup of lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
Rinse the quinoa well in a fine strainer before you begin. Put the quinoa in a pot with water to cover and bring to a boil. Cook until quinoa is the same texture as al dente pasta. Rinse again with cold water. Drain well.
Once the quinoa is cooled, combine with the remaining ingredients. Feel free to adjust the seasoning to your own taste. It should taste light and bright. You can add beans, chick peas or cheese to this if you feel so inclined.