Last week I was glutened. I have never experienced such severe pains, short of natural childbirth. I contemplated going to the hospital before somehow falling asleep. I wasn’t going to point fingers at the food that caused this, but honestly, I don’t see how it was anything else. Luna Lemon Zest bars are now being touted as “gluten-free!” on the front of their package. I don’t see how this could possibly be true. I bought them on Tuesday and felt sick after eating one on Wednesday, and then it culminated on Thursday where the abdominal pain hurt so bad I couldn’t even pull myself up to a sitting position for a solid hour.
I tell you this because it was like the final wake-up call of how I can’t rely on packaged foods. It doesn’t matter if they’re located in the organic, health, gluten-free section. They can’t be trusted like the food God created to grow from the earth.
Whenever I get glutened, find myself eating too much crap, or just feel blah, I need to re-set my system. Personally, I feel strongly against detox or cleansing diets as you can read here, but I do believe that sometimes you need to inch up that 80/20 closer to 100% clean eating for a short period of time to get your body back on track.
So here are my TOP 5 Ways to Re-Set Your System. Follow for 4-7 days before resuming a normal 80/20 eat clean lifestyle.
1. Go grain-free
This may just be a Celiac/gluten-intolerant/gluten-sensitivity thing, but as a carb lover, this is the number one way I can defeat bloat, insomnia, tiredness, mood swings, brain fog, and overall blahness. So yes, that’s basically how gluten affects me, but it seems some of those symptoms start to creep back a bit when I eat too many gluten-free bagels, cereal, bread, pretzels, chips, corn, and crackers. I believe that bread-type products can be an addiction and this will help break the bad cycle. I don’t even substitute with grain-free baked goods at this stage in the game. You’ll find that when you take some time to be grain-free, it’s much easier to be processed-food-free as a result, too!
This is something we should be practicing EVERY day, but something I often fail at. During a Re-Set Week though, I force myself to have water by my side at all times. I infuse it with limes, lemons, oranges, cucumber, strawberries, and/or fresh basil leaves.
In addition to water, be sure you’re having a green smoothie at least once per day. During this current Re-Set Week for me I’ve been making a morning one with 1 cup kale, 1/2 cup spinach, 4 strawberries, 5 grapes, 2T whole milk yogurt, 1T grass-fed gelatin, 1/2 cup almond milk or water.
2b. Detox Green Tea
Oooh did I debate using the word “detox” right there! I limit my coffee to 1 cup per day during my Re-Set Week (and only take it black with cinnamon and/or coconut oil) and focus on water and green tea instead. In my green tea, I add 1T apple cider vinegar and 1/2-1T of grass-fed gelatin. This is to fight inflammation and promote your body’s natural detoxification of the kidneys and liver.
3. No Alcohol
I will admit that sometimes I get too friendly with wine. Especially in the winter cozied up on the couch with a glass of red listening to Michael Buble or Frank Sinatra. It’s so dehydrating, negatively impacts sleep, and just adds to the blah of the following day. I’m a big proponent of 1-2 glasses of red wine a couple times a week, but when you find yourself drinking on weekdays or consuming more than 1 or 2, consider a Re-Set Week.
4. No Processed Foods
Many would argue that the ‘eat clean’ lifestyle should follow this rule anyway, but as someone who believes strongly in the 80/20 rule, I would say the one time it absolutely should jump to 100% is during your Re-Set Week. This means, no KIND bars, no Quest bars, no Luna bars, no chocolate (including dark!), etc. But as mentioned in Rule #1, when you go grain-free (and thus are giving up oats, rice, etc.) you’ve pretty much already sealed the fate of not eating these foods anyway. Ones that I give sort of leeway to is dairy and nut butters (assuming you’re eating the REAL kind that’s just nuts and a little bit of salt), but be sure to limit it to about 4T of dairy (yogurt, milk, cheese) and 1-2T of nut butter per day, if at all.
5. Oil Pulling
I can’t get on board with the oil pulling every day thing, but I think it’s important when you’re in a Re-Set Week. Particularly if you’re re-setting because you’ve been glutened, or ingested some other food that you’re sensitive or allergic to. This helps pull out all the yuckies. If you’re not sure what oil pulling is, read this!
Other tricks that can help:
- Taking a high-quality multi-vitamin
- Avoiding sugar (which should be easy if you’re following rules #1 & #4!)
- Exercising (even just a walk around the block)
- Going to bed early
- Having quiet time/praying/being in God’s Word
When you follow these top 5, you’ll automatically be upping your liquid intake, avoiding refined sugar, improving your sleep, and reducing bloat. It will also help you to make better food choices when your week is up. Push it to two weeks for weight loss, but start incorporating some brown rice, oats, and quinoa towards the end of the second week.
What are your tricks for having a Re-Set Week? What do you do after you’ve been glutened? Please let me know in your comments below!