My Crazy Self-Inflicted Eating Plan for January

Every time I explain to people my eating plan for this month (yes, I like resolutions, yes I set them, they are goals and intentions, not something I say I am going to do and then avoid even trying to accomplish), I find myself having to preface my conversation with, “I never do things like this…I don’t recommend extreme eating plans,” because, really, I don’t.

When I work with clients, I always educate them on finding balance, eating real, whole foods that are both nourishing AND enjoyable. There’s a time and place for eating a few things here and there that aren’t quite as nutritionally dense as we would like them to be, and we eat them because we enjoy them (like, maybe, perhaps, Trader Joe’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups? Maybe?) However, if these foods make us sick and fat, what on earth is the point?

I don’t usually push a detox or cleanse or even a “diet,” (I mean, who uses that word anymore, anyway?) but I encourage replacing toxic or hard to digest foods with those that are better for our bodies and more healing.

This month, I needed to give my body a break. I was finding that not only was I struggling with some digestive distress that needed healing, but that I was really addicted to certain foods and I wanted a clean break. Now, it’s only day 4, so I may be coming to you in a week totally cranky and freaking out in “need” of some type of cheese or chocolate, but at the moment, I’m doing alright.

I realized that I was really craving sugar and chocolate. I wanted a little taste of organic dark chocolate almost after every meal or when I needed a little lift. I looked forward to my cup of coffee (with sugar) every morning SO MUCH that I was ignoring my body’s signals to avoid it like when I would get a headache, increased heart rate, or when I would crash after lunch after having caffeine that morning.

I counted on my daily glass of red wine around dinner (or while preparing dinner) so much that it would distract me on the days I tried to cut back. I would literally spend time debating in my head whether or not I could justify another glass or another day of the week with wine. Sometimes it interrupted my sleep, give me headaches or affect my mood and focus, but I still did it. That’s not cool, dude.

Is there anything wrong with a daily cup of coffee, a little organic dark chocolate, or even having one glass or red wine every day? Many experts would tell you no, especially if you’re not trying to lose weight. And I’m not. So it’s easy to think I can eat whatever I want. The point is not that I want to deprive myself or lose weight, but that I was actually becoming focused more on whether or not I could or should have something that wasn’t great for me, and I knew those things were affecting my health.

I also have added in some new herbal supplements that are helping me find balance and healing in all of my bodily systems, and I wanted to create some space for them to do their work. They are now a part of my practice and I offer them up with or without my counseling packages, so ask me if you want to learn about them.

I won’t be eating like this forever, but for about 4 weeks, I’m avoiding dairy, gluten, sugar and alcohol, with the exception of 6 glasses of wine the entire month (and a little bit of lentil pasta or nut crackers here or there). I’ll be keeping you updated on my progress!