Like I said in my last post, I decided to get back into hardcore-mode with a new detox. Sadly, it was not as good as the detox I did last spring, even though they were both from Whole Living. This one allowed for lean animal proteins, so it only eliminated sugar, gluten and dairy (plus alcohol and processed foods). I don’t know if it was the recipes I was making or the inclusion of meat but I just didn’t feel the same intense effects as I did last time. I think it was a combination of things, including the fact that I was in a much healthier starting place than I was the first time. The detox was still successful in its main goal, though, which was really to give my mental state a reboot so I could get back into my old health-conscious routine.
The other good thing about this “detox” was that it did open me up to some new recipes, some from the Internet and some of my own. My favorite detox-friendly recipe was Apple Spice Quinoa. A few weeks ago I tried this Coconut Breakfast Quinoa I found on Pinterest, and it was fantastic. Since then, I’ve been coming up with new ways to make sweet, fruity quinoa, and I think this newest one was my most successful to date.
In my experience, apples are the best food to eat while detoxing. They are filling, and there’s something about them that gives my body a really clean feeling. Plus they are delicious, which is something that cannot be said of everything on the detox diet, so it’s a plus. Thus, the other afternoon I got home from my latest in what seems like an infinite number of trips to home organization stores, getting ready to start the work day, and I realized I had pretty much burnt out on kale and smoothies. I wanted something more than just an apple though, and I was out of almond butter. So I looked in all the cupboards and the quinoa inspired me.
Quinoa has a nutty, earthy, robust sort of flavor, which I thought would go well with apples, since they both have an autumnal kind of vibe. I added some other ingredients that are crazy-healthy and detox-friendly, and was so pleased with the result.
Apple Spiced Quinoa
- 1 cup dry Quinoa (washed)
- 2 Apples, sliced (any kind will do, I like Galas because they are a little sweet)
- 1 1/4 cup Light Coconut Milk (I use 365 Organic. The would work with any kind of milk, though like almond or skim)
- 1 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons Shaved Almonds
- 1 tablespoon Chia Seeds
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon Ground Clove
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon Honey (OR you could use brown sugar)
In a medium saucepan mix together quinoa, apples, milk, water and spices (& salt). Bring to a rapid boil. Stir again, add in honey and almonds, stir again. Cover. Lower heat to medium-low and let simmer 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, add chia seeds, stir until seeds seem evenly mixed in and re-cover. Continue simmering another 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally so nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot. It’s done when the liquid is mostly evaporated, but the quinoa is a little gooey. When it looks done, remove from heat and let sit a couple of minutes to settle and cool.
Serve with apple slices. You can also add a little more sweetener (I added a teaspoon of honey), and/or more coconut milk (or whatever kind of milk) to make it more like a cereal.
FYI if you are really detoxing I am not positive that honey is detox-friendly (it probably isn’t). But by the end of my 4 days I wasn’t being too strict because I didn’t feel like my body was really getting a good cleanse, but the challenge had gotten me back into healthy mode anyway. I am trying to listen to the advice that moderation is key! I don’t want to get burnt out (again?).
I am feeling pretty good about being back on the heathy, clean living bandwagon. I definitely have more energy today than I did a week ago before I got started. This non-detoxifying detox was actually really helpful, because it served as a great reminder that what is really most important in this process is that I do what’s best for my body. I can’t starve myself, or completely and universally eliminate things I enjoy, or I will never be able to maintain the changes long term. Even though I don’t think the week’s meal plan was good for cleansing specifically, I do feel pretty great after a week of eating super healthy and being conscious of everything I put in my system. So I am still going to count it as a victory!