I ADORE food. I love to cook. I’m not much of a baker, but sweets are definitely my weakness. For me, food represents more than just fuel for my body; it seems to play a significant role in my life. Not only do I eat when I’m hungry, I eat when I’m stressed, I eat when I’m sad. I reward myself with food after a long day. Sometimes food soothes me, while other times it fills me with a tremendous sense of guilt. I’ve gained a bit of insight into my relationship with food over the past two years as I have struggled with infertility. In a lot of ways, food has been my coping mechanism; chocolate peanut butter ice cream has gotten me through some of my darkest days. Food has comforted me, has distracted me, has cured my boredom.
But after I’ve put on about 20 lbs of emotional weight over the past two years, I feel I can no longer ignore this somewhat toxic relationship that I have developed with food.
So I’ve decided to do a 28-day detox. I know it sounds trendy and maybe even a little hokey. My husband let out a heavy sigh when I told him of my plan. A few friends rolled their eyes in skepticism. But there is something about this detox that is very appealing to me. I’m not gonna lie, I am hoping to shed a few pounds and am crossing my fingers that my jeans will fit a little better. But at a deeper level, my long-term goal is to try to break free of this dependency that I seem to have developed.
My hope is that this cleanse will help me understand who I am without food and will force me to deal with my emotions as opposed to turning to food as a means of numbing or avoiding my feelings.
Here’s the deal; for the next 28 days I will eliminate caffeine, refined sugar, gluten, alcohol, dairy, soy and corn. I will have a protein shake for breakfast and lunch, two healthy snacks and a sensible dinner. That’s the plan. This plan scares the crap out of me.
First off, I am a caffeine-addict. Starbucks is my heroine. That first sip of coffee in the morning literally sends shivers down my spine. I know this sounds crazy, but coffee makes me happy. It is an integral part of my routine. I know I can do it, but cutting out caffeine is going to be a major challenge, like saying goodbye to a dear friend.
My second concern has to do with feeling hungry. I hate this feeling. I’ve noticed that I ALWAYS eat until I am busting. For whatever reason, feeling full feels good to me. The idea of really paying attention to my body, to when I am truly hungry and when I actually feel satiated is totally foreign to me. This is going to be interesting…..
I am expecting the next 28 days will probably be difficult for an emotional eater like myself. But I am looking forward to reaping the benefits that seem to come along with this detox and am ready to challenge myself mentally. Stay tuned next month to read about what this 28-day detox was really like! Now I am off to indulge in my last piece of delicious cheesecake before I actually do this thing…..wish me luck!!!!