7/8/2013 – 8/4/2013.
From Week 7 to Week 10 I drastically switched my diet plan from raw-food-based to cooked-food-based. This drastic shift caused different negative effects in my body. I have learned my lesson and summarized some lessons learned from the past month. Also I will come up with a blog this Sunday about my reflection of this entire journey started from “Beauty Detox Diet Plan Journal – Week 1“. Stay tuned! (Update: I posted my diet plan journey summary on the following Monday instead;-))
Photo by Bala Sivakumar
This post came in late because I want to bring to you my entire experience of what I have been through for the past month. And I would like to share a complete list of lessons learned from the past four weeks here – all at one post. I have learned from the mistake and blogged about them here, so that you do not have to reiterate the same path!
Experience That I Went Through
In Week 2 of Beauty Detox Diet Journal, I mentioned that I would like to start a six-week experiment using the philosophies behind The Beauty Detox Solution. I was strict with myself for six weeks and saw that things were not only working for my skin and my body, but benefited me emotionally and mentally as well. I was even “determined” to carry this diet routine to a longer period of time and explore other healthy eating methodologies.
However, my determination started to wane, as my husband’s parents came to town and lived with us for a week. Why so? How could staying with parents influence my diet plans? Well, it is not because I cannot resist the temptation of delicious foods of all kinds made by his mom, but because staying with them means we would be sharing meals together (According to Chinese dining culture, we make dishes and share foods together). As much as I would like to maintain my current diet routines, I also wanted to respect what they eat. Imagining sitting at a table of four and having my own dish (while three others are sharing dishes) does not make me feel comfortable. Therefore, I made a decision that I could go back to my diet plans after they left. “It’ll only be a week. No big deal.” I thought to myself.
Chinese cuisines are mostly cooked dishes. A traditional southern-China cuisine oftentimes includes white rice, noodles, soup (made from vegetables and bones), a mixture of vegetables and all kinds of meat for lunch and dinner. My daily menus suddenly changed from plant-based diets with mostly raw foods (ever since Week 1 till Week 7) to cooked food only with all kinds of meat: fish, beef and chicken (Week 8)!
What happened afterwards definitely caught me off guard: as soon as I switched diet plans, I immediately experienced breakouts, constipation and bloating. My stomach had been stuffed with undigested food, so full that I often skipped breakfast or just had a grapefruit in the morning. My guess is that: the toxins from the red meat could not be expelled in time; and the order with which I consumed the foods was against Ms. Kimberly Snyder’s recommendation (the author of The Beauty Detox Solution). Worse still, I did not have much luck in relieving my stomach by taking digestive enzymes and probiotics, even though I thought they may be able to help. The worst part of all was that I felt heavy, guilty, irritated, regretful and frustrated. As a believer of how I feel determines how I present myself to the public, negative emotions are definitely a dragger in reflecting my positive energy.
What I Did Afterwards?
After my husband’s parents left in Week 9, I slowly switched back to my previous diet plans, re-introducing smoothies, salads and non-red meat. After two weeks’ efforts, breakouts were in better control; and constipation were relieved. Meanwhile, thanks to the lessons learned in Week 3 of Beauty Detox Diet Journal, I dry-brushed and did foot baths with Epsom salt five times out of a week to relieve detox symptoms, stimulate my lymphatic system, and boost my metabolism.
What Lessons I Learned?
Nothing is more precious than reflection, as it forces us to think and grow. Below are three lessons learned from the past month and a secret recipe I discovered for better skin.
Do not go drastically from a clean diet plan to a 100% cooked meal plan
This is the biggest lesson learned from the past month. We should always remember it is not recommended that an individual switch to a 100% raw diet from a Traditional American Diet in a short amount of time, or vice versa. Radical changes can cause negative effects on our body, as you can see in my case. What I learned from my research on dealing with detox symptoms is that we can introduce a transitional period from one stage to another. This gives our body enough time to gradually adjust to changes in the external environment, so that it does not feel overwhelmed all of a sudden.
The cost of avoiding a problem is lower than the cost of solving a problem
Week 8 was when I began my diet plan change and started experiencing various kinds of negative effects in my body. Detox symptoms like breakouts happened one or two days right after the radical switch of my diet plan. Yet, it took me two weeks’ to deal with breakouts and discomfort. If I had introduced a transitional stage during my diet change, or, as the better solution, if I had been honest enough to communicate with my husband’s parents about my current diet routine without getting into a cooked meal plan, I could have stayed away from experiencing discomfort and negative emotions for three weeks!
I should learn to say no and communicate up front so that others can understand my situation
My statement above inspires me that perhaps I should not assume my husband’s parents would get offended if I did not have the same meal with them. All I need is to communicate with them, let them know about my current diet plans and be brave enough to ask for their understanding. It is easier to say yes to follow and please others than to say no and be different. But true respect comes from two-way communication. I guess I should view saying no as a way to seeking understanding from others.
Foot baths can remove acne marks
Despite all the lessons learned, there is one surprise that I discovered for better skin – taking a foot bath. For the past few weeks, I have been having foot baths at least five nights out of a week for half an hour before I go to bed. ¼ cup of Epsom salt that goes into a 14 inch plastic basin filled with warm water. That is all you need before you enjoy a relaxing foot bath. Then the first thing I see in the morning is that my skin is cleared up after I do a foot bath the night before. This makes sense to me, as taking a foot bath increase circulation and metabolism, which helps with detoxification in the skin.
That’s all for now. Stay tuned for my another post this Sunday where I will summarize the entire journey I have been though since Week 1’s diet plan!