The grimy buildup of the pandemic and the election was weighing me down.
News of more climate deniers and all the isms bubbling up around me made me feel physically and emotionally dirty. I desperately needed to feel clean again.
I have a friend, Dipika, who lives in Australia and is an Ayurvedic doctor. She recommended a seven-day cleanse which she created. She calls it the Seven-Day Diamond Radiance Cleanse. She told me that this cleanse mobilizes, eliminates, declutters, removes interference, anchors, and recalibrates.
Her wise words rang in my ears as she said, “When you cleanse you can nourish. When you nourish you can love. And, when you love you can serve.” Count me in!
Our world is heavily polluted. There are toxins in our environment and in the foods we eat. We live with preservatives, pesticides, chemicals, fossil fuels, and electromagnetic pollutants.
We’re constantly plugged in to news and social media. Toxic propaganda and hatred are rampant. I learned from Dipika that everything we see, hear, smell, touch, and sense creates a cumulative buildup, a metabolic sludge that we hold in our cells. If we don’t cleanse ourselves of this buildup, it manifests in allergies, sensitivities, and illness. We become dull and fatigued.
For seven days I drank a cup of hot water with ghee each morning and ate only a simple recipe of mung bean soup for every meal. I drank a cup of ginger tea on occasion. That was it. There was an option to eat a few recommended vegetables separately or add them to the soup beginning on the fourth day. I chose to stick with just the purity of the mung soup.
When I started the cleanse, I wondered if I would feel hungry or deprived. My regular diet is vegan, and I’ve learned to cook delicious meals that I love. I’m a hearty eater. I love food. I also have a sweet tooth—maybe a vegan cookie or a piece of chocolate here and there. Oh, and what about my nut butters or those scrumptious Medjool dates I love to eat in the afternoon?
As it turned out, I was surprised at how satisfied and soothed I felt eating my hot, little bowl of soup several times a day. I was amazed at the realization that I was experiencing no cravings. I found that my happy little bowl of soup was quite enough.
My daily routine now looked like this:
Wake up. Put the soup ingredients (onion, ginger, ghee, mung beans, turmeric, cumin, coriander, fennel, asafoetida, bay leaf, salt, and water) in the Instant Pot, set for 40 minutes. Go to yoga room to meditate. Journal. Make my morning drink of hot water with one teaspoon of ghee. Eat soup. Live my life. Eat more soup. Live my life. Eat more soup. Go to bed. Wake up and repeat.
After the cleanse, for the first few days:
I was taught that it’s important to be mindful of the way you come off the cleanse. Ease back in. Introduce foods back in moderation. A little oatmeal, rice and vegetables, a few almonds or fresh fruit. Light soups.
I finished my cleanse about a month ago. I had some great results, which are still with me.
I dropped eight pounds. I’m pretty tall—even with this extra eight pounds I look slender. I guess I needed to lose the weight though, because it simply fell off then stabilized.
I felt an energy boost. No more feeling sluggish or craving a nap in the afternoons. Now that my energy was no longer being spent on digesting heavier foods, I had energy to spare.
My mental clarity seems better. I had been feeling a sort of brain fog. It’s gone now. My mind feels quite clear.
My joint stiffness is gone. I’ve been a mountain biker for a number of years. I’ve had too many crashes to count. These crashes, along with my age, have settled into my joints in the form of arthritis. All the stiffness and discomfort I was experiencing is now gone.
No more cravings. This was pretty amazing to me. My sweet cravings just disappeared. My desire to overeat—just cause it tastes so good—is gone. Even after a month, I’m not having any cravings for “the naughty foods.”
I’m experiencing an emotional lightness of being. Even though my diet was pretty clean, I still had a habit of occasionally numbing myself with food. This cleanse reprogrammed that habit. I feel like I’m now “feeling all the feels” instead of suppressing them. This has left me feeling light and joyous much of the time.
I’ve decided that I’ll do this cleanse a few times a year. Dipika says that each time you do it, the cleansing effects go deeper. And as she teaches:
“When you cleanse you can nourish. When you nourish you can love. And, when you love you can serve.”
I want to serve.