Thursday, January 05, 2006

Detox Made Easy

I've started the new year on a detoxification regime. In a nutshell, this means that I stop putting various poisons into my body to give my organs a chance to clean out the gutters.

You can find a lot of information about detox on the web, and a lot of people who would like you to pay them for advice about detox. My program is a bastard version I invented myself. I just follow a simple mantra: no sugar, no wheat, no dairy, no meat. I also give up drugs*, but that doesn't fit nicely into the rhyme.

The first couple of times I did this, I had no idea what to eat, and it was pretty painful. It's amazing how many foods in the standard American diet are ruled out. But this time, I've been a vegetarian for almost a year, and I am much more comfortable with the kind of menus I can prepare. I just finished a bowl of chili so good that you don't even realize it's vegetarian, let alone detoxifying. My wife made cornbread that I can't eat because it's got wheat flour in it, but I figured out that I can sauté some slices of polenta and it's just as good as cornbread.

The other thing that's better this time around is that vegetarian and all-natural alternatives to many standard foods are more plentiful. I made Rick Bayless's Oaxacan Black Bean Soup, with onions, toasted avocado leaves, and chorizo. God bless you, Soyrizo! Since I won't be having any flour tortillas for a while, I bought a tortilla press, and learned how to make my own tortillas from fresh corn masa. This is the Genius of the And in action: My homemade corn tortillas are worlds better than anything I used to buy at the store. In the quest for healthier food, I'm getting better-tasting food to boot. Granted, the soup is a lot better with a mound of queso fresco crumbled on it, but that's why detox doesn't last forever. ;-)

In the past, I've been on detox for about 3 weeks. I'm planning to double it this time. I'll let you know how it goes.

* I'm talking about alcohol and caffeine. Jeez, people!

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