Tuesday, November 19, 2013

158. Healthy Living - I CAN CAN Cleanse... and So Can You! (LA: Arts District)

As an avid food blogger, or a food lover in general, we do our best to try new dishes and eat at different restaurants consistently, but do we put in the same effort when it comes to taking care of our health? Hitting the weights, visiting the yoga studio, or running up a sweat can check your health momentarily, but what gives our bodies a true restart?

Teresa Piro believes that her innovative CAN CAN Cleanse is the routine maintenance that your body needs.  This isn't just another juice cleanse or any other liquid diet that supposedly helps you shed the pounds.  The CAN CAN Cleanse is designed to provide the physical clarity and psychological empowerment to help make a change toward a healthier lifestyle.  It includes hot tea, nut milks, and savory soups along with the vegetable and fruit juices as part of the one, three, or five day program.  Teresa put me on the three-day program with the line of fall cleanses.  This is my experience.


In preparation for the actual cleanse, Teresa suggests that you should eliminate or reduce the following items in your diet about three days prior: caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, dairy, red meat, flour, sugar, salt, bread, pasta, pastries, cookies, ice cream, and other processed foods.  You should also increase your consumption of water, herbal tea, and raw vegetables during this time.  You are definitely not supposed to binge on beer or force feed French fries prior to beginning the cleanse.  Don't forget... you will be able to eat these foods again! It's just the start of a healthier lifestyle.

DAY ONE / The Beginning

9:00 a.m.  (#1) Lemon ginger juice.  It is somewhat of a rude awakening to start with this in the morning, especially when I am expecting my morning routine of juice and coffee.  The cleanse has truly begun.  It's a little tough for me to take down, so I nurse the lemon ginger juice for almost an hour.  I am determined to finish it though.

10:00 a.m.  (#2) Green juice.  This stuff is refreshing in relative comparison to the lemon ginger juice.  It almost soothes my stomach.  It tastes lighter and less chunky than the other green juices out there.

11:30 a.m.  (#3) Rosemary nettle tea.  I'm very cranky without solid food, so I am not looking forward to the next bottle.  I completely overlook the label that suggests to "enjoy hot!" so I drink it straight out of the fridge.  The tea is cold, and my attitude becomes equally as cold.

12:30 p.m.  (#4) Celery root sage soup.  I definitely remember to heat up the soup this time, and while the soup warms up, my mood lightens as well.  I like the soup.  A lot.  I like that it is both hot and savory.  It provides just sufficient sustenance for me to continue on.

2:00 p.m.  (#5) Purple grape juice.  Just when I thought I needed some sugar, the grape juice is there to give me what I want.  I sit with someone during their lunch break, and it is painful to watch them eat a very appetizing Mediterranean meal.  I sneak two tiny bits of chicken, just one olive, one cherry tomato, a slice of cucumber, and a good spoonful of hummus off that person's plate.  Teresa said that if I feel the need to cheat, which I do, there is a list of Permissible Eats that I can use as a guideline. 

4:30 p.m.  More cheating.  A hard boiled egg, a small piece of chocolate with almonds, 25 pine nuts.

5:00 p.m.  (#6) Green juice.  After hunkering down to get some work done, I completely forget that I am hungry until I get home.  Out of habit, it is dinner time, so my digestive juices are flowing again.  The green juice holds me over for a second time.

6:00 p.m.  (#7) Hazelnut almond milk.  I love this.  I doesn't make me think that I am on a cleanse.  It's sweeter than soy milk and not as thick as almond milk.  The cinnamon and nutmeg in it are in the perfect ratio.  I wish this was sold in stores. 

7:00 p.m.  Cheat food.  An apple and two cocktail cucumbers.  Just enough to hold me.

8:00 p.m.  (#8) Rooibos tea.  This hot tea is not as fragrant as the rosemary nettle tea, but this is how I like my tea.  It is sort of cleanses my palate and clears my head for the evening.

Day One was pretty tough, and all I could think about what not having any food.  However, I reminded myself that there are so many people around the world that feel hungry on a daily basis.  To cleanse your body because you have eaten too much for too long is an experience that undoubtedly reminds me of how good we have it here... in America... to use food as entertainment rather than sustenance... to use food as a hobby... to be able to choose what we put into our bodies rather than eating simply to continue living.  Way profound of a thought... but yes, it happened on Day One.

Just in case you were wondering, which people have asked... yes, I had a bowel movement today.  A normal, regular bowel movement.  But I visited the urinal many times... many, many, many times.

Total extra liquid consumed on Day One: 24 oz. of water

DAY TWO / The Trenches

I wake up later than usual.  I am very cranky knowing that I cannot have solid food today.  The ginger lemon juice is still not my favorite, but I take less time to drink it today.

The rosemary nettle tea tastes better warmed up... way better... and the celery sage soup is awesome.  It should be served on restaurant menus.

Right about when I think I'm going to crash from low blood sugar, purple grape juice becomes the saving grace of my day.  Teresa describes it as the much needed happy hour that we all look forward to at the end of a long day.

In the afternoon, I receive an e-mail from Teresa reminding me that tomorrow is the last day.  It is very cool that the owner of the CAN CAN Cleanse has checked in on me (as she does with all her customers) to motivate me to the finish line.  

No bowel movements today.  This is to be expected since all that is being put into your body is liquid.  Once again... many visits to the restroom though... many, many, many visits.  If you end up losing weight, it is this water weight that is being flushed out of your system.

Total cheat food consumed on Day Two: one slice of turkey, one hard boiled egg, three cocktail cucumbers, 25 pine nuts

Total extra liquid consumed on Day Two: 36 oz. water

DAY THREE / The Light at the End of the Dark Tunnel

Teresa designed the three-day cleanse to be long enough to work but short enough that you actually finish it.  I have heard of so many friends and acquaintances that begin an enduring two week program that includes harsh teas that cause frequent and uncomfortable trips to the restroom.  This is nowhere close to that.  I love that the timing is in tune with how your body feels.  You are also free to adjust and arrange the juices, teas, and soup to fit your schedule.

Another e-mail arrives from Teresa telling me I'm almost done.  It's great to hear from her again.  But you know what? Day Three is really not that bad.  This has become routine, and as I knock back each bottle, I feel more accomplished.

By the time the hazelnut almond milk is finished, I am walking around with a silly smile on my face knowing that I've challenged myself to something that I never thought I would ever do.  I have always told friends and family that juice cleanses and fad dieting is so ridiculous, but I enjoyed this experience because I felt the clearness in my head and the lightness in my walk.  I CAN CAN Cleanse.

Total cheat food consumed on Day Three: one hard boiled egg, two slices of deli turkey, 25 pine nuts

Total extra liquid consumed on Day Three: lots and lots of water

See what goes into making the hazelnut almond milk with the Tastemade video app for iOS here:

The ingredients that goes into the cleanses are made from organic, local, fresh, raw fruits and vegetables, purified water, seasonal spices.  Teresa also uses dates to naturally sweeten the beverage so that it does not contain sugar or other sweeteners.  The fruit fibers and nut sediments are strained for a smooth, soothing taste and texture. 

POST-CLEANSE / Cool-down

Although the first thing I want to do on the morning after is bite into a juicy Double Double, I actually headed cheerfully to yoga (something else I thought I would never do)... and continued to watch what I put into my body.  Yes, I caved in on the weekend when all I wanted was some dim sum, but I was more cognizant of the unnecessary carbohydrates, sodium level, and grease on my plate.  Overall, I have been better about portion control (something I desperately needed) and including more raw foods in my diet.  Quinoa? Never before.  Cauliflower? I would never.  But now I can safely say that the CAN CAN Cleanse helped me do a minor maintenance on my body... almost like the oil change your car needs every 5,000 miles.  Well, Teresa suggests to go through a cleanse seasonally to restart your body.  I am taking her up on this offer, and I can't wait to see what is included in the winter season cleanse.  This is something everyone should test out, especially after the holidays.

If you're wondering how much weight I lost, that is not quite the right perspective.  It's not about losing weight with the CAN CAN Cleanse... especially because what you are really losing is water weight.  But with proper diet and a scheduled exercise regimen (weights, yoga and running for me), I have shed 12 pounds in two weeks.

Happy early Thanksgiving, everyone.  Be mindful of all that holiday food going into your body.  Until next time, beware of getting S.O.F.A.T.

CAN CAN Cleanse
826 E. 3rd St.
Downtown, Arts District
Los Angeles, CA 90013

ML - 20131014-16

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