Alkaline Diet Detox : What I Ate

reading time: 4 min




Ever since introducing wheat back into my diet this spring, I have been ill three times already (during summer time), and as much as I love being able to eat vegan without having to check for gluten-free ingredients as well, I feel like I need a break.

I don't believe in bikini body detoxing to lose weight as fast as possible, nor do I believe in fruit juice cleanses (they are too high in sugar and are lacking fiber) or water fasting (starvation and yo-yo effect), but I do believe in the balance of alkalinity and acidity in our body, and I do believe that my increased consumption of glutinous grains has caused an increase of acid in my body. Which is why I decided to balance out my system with an alkaline "fast" for a week after returning from my trip to Portugal. The great thing about this is, you will:

- Cleanse your body from excess acids
- Increase your energy
- Shed excess weight
- Clear your mind
- Boost your immune system
- And consume a lot of nutrients, a lot of calories and a lot of food in general! This is not a starvation diet. Eat as much as you care for. 

Here's what I ate on my 10 Day Alkaline Diet Detox, and how I felt afterwards!

source: Natural Healtch Zone
→ What Is An Alkaline Diet?

The human body has a natural pH level around 7.4 - this value is slightly alkaline (7.0 is considered neutral) -, and your diet plays a big role in maintaining this pH level. Every food produces either an acid or an alkaline residue after it is digested - the main staples of the standard diet are acid producing (meat, dairy, grains, nuts), whereas only those "healthy" foods like fresh fruit, seeds, vegetables and particularly leafy greens are alkaline producing. This classification is not based on whether they taste acidic (e.g. lemons) or alkaline (e.g. milk); rather, it is related to the type of minerals that a particular food contains. In fact, citrus fruits actually leave an alkaline trace, whereas dairy is highly acidic! Too much acid in your body can cause severe health issues: lack of energy, excessive mucus, congestion, frequent illness, nervousness, headaches, irritability, weight gain, to name a few.

You may not realize it, but we are taking toxins into our body each and every day. Processed foods contain toxins in the form of artificial additives and preservatives (pesticides tend to be acid-forming, so choose organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible); beauty products contain toxins in the form of chemicals and hormones; even the air you breathe may contain toxins like pesticide residue and pollution. 

So in order to counterbalance the acid overload and rid your body of waste, your daily diet should consist of at least 70-80 % alkalising food, and a maximum of 20 % acidic food (or avoid altogether). Balancing your body pH will allow your body fat to be released - your system has encapsulated much of the toxins (acid overload) in your body in fat deposits to protect the rest of your body from a more immediate breakdown.

source: Natural Health Zone

My Alkaline Week Plan 

An alkaline detox should last between 3 to 10 days (you can also include a 3 day juice cleanse on a weekend to nourish and flush your body - but only with juiced vegetables, not with juiced fruits!), and can be repeated after 6 months or more. In order to avoid the listed acidic foods, it is very helpful to plan a weekly menu of alkaline meals before starting this detox. Print out your own alkaline menu plan and put it on your fridge or kitchen cupboard!

The general rule is: avoid processed foods, meat, dairy, eggs, fish, sugar, grains, alcohol and caffeine. Instead, eat natural, wholesome foods, the majority being vegetables.

Here are some ideas:

- Day 1 -

Breakfast

- Buckwheat muesli (buckwheat, shredded coconut, flaxseed, raisins, handful of fresh dates, 1 banana, 1 peach)
 
Lunch

- Leftover broccoli potato soup from the day before (alkaline except for kidney beans)

Dinner

- Moroccan Lentil Stew for me and my boyfriend (twice the amount with red lentils, 1 can of tomatoes, 1 green bell pepper and 1 cup of mint-infused basmati rice)




- Day 2 -

Breakfast

- Leftover Moroccan lentil stew 

Lunch

- Fruits and some sweet potato and veggie mix at my mum's

Dinner

- Linseed Pizza with homemade tomato sauce for me and my boyfriend (topping: one half with tomato, red bell pepper, olives and caramelized onions; the other half with spinach and roasted onions) with a salad



- Day 3 -

Breakfast

Buckwheat muesli (buckwheat, shredded coconut, oats, 1 banana, 1 peach, 1 kiwi, handful of almonds)


Lunch

- Leftover linseed pizza and salad

Dinner

- Carrot Potato Soup for me and my boyfriend



- Day 4 -

Breakfast

- Granola Fruit Parfait (Rawnola: 1/2 cup buckwheat groats + 3/4 cups dates; sugar-free soy yoghurt, 1 banana, 1 fresh fig, shredded coconut, crushed almonds), and yes, I ate both portions :)



Lunch

- leftover carrot potato soup
 
Dinner (on the way to a festival)

- Baked Potato Falafel for me and my boyfriend (using cooked potatoes and cooked chickpeas)


 - Day 5 (at the festival) -

Breakfast

- Muesli mix (buckwheat, shredded coconut, oats, almonds, turmeric, 1 banana)

Snack

- 1 vegan lemon sugar cookie + 1 vegan dark chocolate nut truffle (both acidic, but I couldn't resist)

Lunch


- Millet salad for me and my boyfriend (millet, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, red bell pepper, carrot) 

Dinner

- Leftover millet salad


- Day 6 -

Breakfast (at the festival)

- Muesli mix (buckwheat, shredded coconut, oats, almonds, turmeric, 1 banana)

Snack (on the way home)

- Energy balls (dates, buckwheat, almonds, tahini, cinnamon) coated in shredded coconut, cacao powder, turmeric and barley grass powder - I prepared them at home before we took off to the festival (even the monkey is enjoying them, see ;))


Lunch

- Protein Pancakes (buckwheat flour, buckwheat groats, oats, shredded coconut, raisins, almonds, soy milk, cinnamon)


Dinner

- One-Pot Ratatouille Spaghetti for me and my boyfriend (with corn pasta)

 

- Day 7 -

Breakfast

- Leftover corn pasta with soy milk, turmeric, banana, shredded coconut, soy yoghurt and fresh fig


Lunch

- Leftover Ratatouille Spaghetti with chickpeas

Dinner

- Red Lentil Chili for me and my boyfriend (red lentils, corn, chopped tomatoes, red bell pepper, eggplant, onion, garlic, chili powder, vegetable stock, salt & pepper)



- Day 8 -

Breakfast

- Oriental millet porridge (millet, water, chai tea, cinnamon, cardamom, sugar-free soy yoghurt, coconut blossom sugar, raisins, shredded coconut, fresh dates, fresh figs, tahini)


Lunch

- Leftover red lentil chili

Snack

- Berry smoothie at my tutoring student's

Dinner

- Broccoli salad (raw broccoli, red bell pepper, apple, tofu, cooked chickpeas, almonds, olive oil, vinegar, salt & pepper) with potatoes and sugar-free soy yoghurt with herbs for me and my boyfriend



- Day 9 -

Breakfast

- Buckwheat muesli (buckwheat, shredded coconut, oats, turmeric, cinnamon, almond milk, 1 banana, 1 kiwi, handful of almonds)

Snack

- Dates stuffed with almonds



Lunch

- Leftover broccoli salad with potatoes

Dinner

- Summer salad at a friend's (lettuce, corn, cherry tomatoes, bell pepper, avocado, fresh figs, physalis, roasted sunflower seeds, salt, pepper, vinegar)

- Day 10 -

Breakfast

- Ayurvedic porridge (60g oats, 1 mashed banana, 1 chopped apple, handful of almonds, handful of raisins, 1 tsp cinnamon, 3 cardamom seeds, 1 tbsp orange oil, 1 grated thumb-size piece of fresh ginger, shredded coconut, water and soy milk)
 


Lunch

- Polenta slices with a leek-spinach-onion-garlic mixture


Dinner

- Broccoli "Stir-Fry" with roasted almonds and leftover polenta slices



In terms of drinking, stick to clean water, herbal teas, ginger tea and warm lemon water. Aim for a high water intake (2-4 litres per day) to flush out unwanted toxins, flush fat cells and get your system flowing.

When it comes to working out, don't over-exert yourself, as your body is in a state of detoxifying and healing. Instead, do moderate exercise such as aerobic training, walking, light jogging, yoga or rebounding.

Speaking of recovery, a good night's rest is also absolutely essential for detoxifying and your overall well-being, as it will allow your body to heal while eliminating inflammation and toxins in your body.

As for supplements, the great thing about this "diet" is that you don't need to take any supplements - except for vitamin B12 of course because that is only naturally found in animal products. I also decided to intensify my detoxification with three chlorella pills each day (chlorella is a green algae high in protein, vitamins and essential nutrients that is claimed to contribute to weight control, cancer prevention and immune system support). This is completely optional though.


Conclusion

All in all, I would say this diet change didn't feel as challenging as expected. I think the big change for me was that I couldn't snack on anything other than fruit and nuts (that's the worst, really) and that I couldn't have oatmeal for breakfast for a whole week. I ate something different for breakfast nearly every day, in order to find out what's best instead of oatmeal. What I found worked best as a substitute, is buckwheat groats mixed with other nutrient-rich pseudo-grains such as amaranth, as well as shredded coconut and almonds for some nutty protein. Each muesli, I tried to enrich with as many fresh fruits as possible.

Besides breakfast, the change wasn't too big really. We ate a lot of potatoes and polenta, gluten-free pasta once, basmati rice once, and heaps of vegetables. Overall, I'd say we definitely ate more veggies than we used to do - which is great! We also ate more fat than usual (almonds, flaxseed, coconut, olive oil), but still, the both of us felt that we weren't satisfied as long as normally, when we'd have more grains and beans. I was hungry more often, so instead of having a meal three times a day, I ate five times (I either snacked, as documented, or just ate some of my lunch portion in-between).

Energy-wise, I have to say, I felt very energised and - surprisingly - was super motivated to do killer workouts!! Since it is recommended to stick to moderate exercise during a detox, it was actually kind of hard for me to hold my horses and not do any crazy workout like the ones from FitnessBlender. Instead, I did two intense yoga sessions with my boyfriend that also got me sweating and feeling super satisfied afterwards.

Favourite meal
The carrot potato soup & the red lentil chili. So scrumptious!

Least favourite meal:
The broccoli salad. Cause I don't really like raw broccoli.

This alkaline diet detox definitely inspired me to eat more vegetables again! And fill up my breakfast bowl with not only oats and banana, but also other fresh fruit (berries, apples, grapes, kiwis, peaches...), as well as some healthy fats such as almonds or shredded coconut. My boyfriend also agrees that we've been eating way too much grains (and especially wheat) over the past few months, and we are both determined to reduce our gluten intake to once a week (and to whole-grain spelt flour only).

I hope this was of some help. If you decide to give this "detox" a try, I'd love for you to tell me how it works out for you.

Good luck and have a yummy day!



Maisy



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