Brown Rice Cleanse

I keep happening across articles and books encouraging a simplified, healthy lifestyle. For example, the DIY book that I purchased for my kindle that I thought was about DIY-ing things around the house, spent its entire first section talking about DIY fixing your eating habits (weird right?). So between the books/articles and my mom checking in to make sure I’m getting enough fruits/vegetables in my meals, I decided to take that as a sign that I should do something good for me.

Mike can attest, I’ve tried various eating habits in my day (I choose not to call them diets, because my goal is always to overhaul how I eat to eat better). And while detoxes and cleanses are a great way to kick off new eating habits, I never get more than a day or two into them before calling it quits. Usually it’s because I’m trying a juice cleanse and I really don’t care for vegetable juice (bleh, carrot juice) – so it ends up being a lot of sugar and money – 100% juice is not cheap.

The DIY book talked about a simple cleanse called the Brown Rice cleanse. The concept made sense enough to me: you eat fruits, vegetables and brown rice for 3-7 days and it gives your body a break from everything else. I did a little extra research on it and found that unsalted almonds, unsalted walnuts, chickpeas, spices and quinoa are also okay, so is a little olive oil for cooking. But no bananas, oranges, corn (oh darn… haha) and mushrooms. The theory is that with the fiber from the brown rice and fruits/vegetables, it’s acting  like a pipe cleaner, clearing your digestive system of many existing toxins from the everyday foods that we eat. I figured that as an added bonus, it would force me to integrate more fruits and vegetables into my eating habits and I’d get to try a few new things along the way (like my first peach on Sunday morning – no joke!)

Since I had decided to take some vacation time after the 4th of July day off work, I figured that was the perfect time to do a 4-day version of the cleanse. I’m nearing the end of day 4 and I must say, this was relatively simple. The food that you’re allowed to eat really fills you up. I will admit, that I did have the occasional glass of white wine over the past 4 days since I’ve had company over a few nights, but otherwise I’ve really stuck to the plan.

Breakfasts have included blueberry/blackberry/ice ‘smoothie’, blueberry/strawberry/ice ‘smoothie’, apples, and peaches. For lunches I’ve heated up a brown/black/red rice medley from Trader Joes (delicious!). Dinners have been brown rice with vegetables, a little olive oil and some oregano (or other fun kitchen spices). I’ve been snacking on fruits and sliced almonds and drinking plenty of water.

Key learnings/things I noticed:
• The things I read were correct, this cleanse really controlled my cravings, especially sugar.
• 10 minute brown rice is super quick/easy to make (quicker than pasta even!) and tastes great with olive oil and spices and vegetables. It’s also really filling.
• Fruit in the AM kept me full for the most part until an early lunch – perhaps mixed with some greek yogurt starting on Monday and I’ll be good to go on work days.

Looking ahead I’m planning on bringing a little dairy into my breakfasts with some fresh fruit and may continue to have rice and vegetables for lunch instead of my usual sandwich and salty snacks with apple sauce. A little bonus was dropping a few pesky pounds that were causing my clothing to fit poorly, but we’ll see if that’s only temporary once I start to bring dairy and meat back into my system. I’m going to do my best to keep as much processed food out of my eating habits as possible and to keep my fruits/vegetable counts up – hopefully this was the little food overhaul that I needed to adjust my daily eating habits since I feel really good (though don’t get me wrong, I’m still going to enjoy things like cheese burgers, cookies and french fries now and again, but they will be the exception instead of the rule.)

If you’re interested in some learning more about a Brown Rice cleanse, check out the links below. I read them all and then made my own plan based around what would work for me within as much of their guidelines as possible. As with anything involving your body, you should probably check with a doctor before starting – and remember I’m in no way a medical professional (I’m a graphic designer), so please don’t take my suggestions as anything official, I was just reporting what worked for me, but every body is different.

Dr. Zepp
Dr. Linda
Just Cleansing