Spring Detox: Week 3 Wrap Up and Discoveries

Quinoa, Kale, Edamame Saute with Cabbage
My 21-day Spring Detox has officially concluded! Whew! In case you missed it, check out my previous posts:

This week I added eggs and soy to my diet of vegetables, fruits, legumes, gluten-free grains, oils, and herbs. I refrained from caffeine, alcohol, chocolate, gluten, and dairy.

Last week, my creativity had been drowned in the rain and snow. This week, my creativity returned! I made homemade soba noodles (gluten-free) that tasted great! Although, they were quite difficult to work with. I will be making them again, but adding some gluten to make it easier. Once I get the recipe down, I'll definitely share both the gluten and gluten-free versions with you!

Soba noodles with tofu, edamame, cabbage in a spicy soy sauce
At the beginning of this journey, I had hoped to feel re-energized and healthy. I had hoped to re-focus my eating habits and cravings on healthy food choices. Now, at the end of the journey, I feel like these goals were accomplished.

I also learned more about my eating habits and cravings through this process.

I like sweets. Surprisingly, my tastebuds like fresh fruit and chocolate chip cookies equally. I can easily finish a meal with a mango as I can with a square of chocolate. While I'm going to eat chocolate again, I'm going to make it a rare treat instead of an every day staple.

I also learned that I like to eat the same thing every morning for breakfast and dislike eating the same thing every day for lunch and supper. I love having a green monster every morning. It makes me feel awake and ready for the day. I love having leftovers around, but I'm not going to want to eat them more than two or three times. I can't make a big pot of soup and expect to eat it for the rest of the week.

I crave simple vegetables. Many of my meals this week were simple salads. I always feel really great after eating the salads - even if I'm not excited about eating them to begin with. I ate out with some friends at a pizza place this week. The pizza looked and smelled so good! I was drooling on the table. Yet, the marinated veggie salad I ordered was delicious and left me feeling great and satisfied.

My favorite meal this week, hands down, was the spinach polenta with spicy black beans, guacamole, and marinara sauce. Martin raved about this too. It heats up well and is the perfect make-ahead dish. Yes - the recipe is coming in the next blog post! Stay tuned!

Spinach polenta with spicy black beans, guacamole, and marinara sauce
What's next?

I never intended to eliminate caffeine, alcohol, chocolate, gluten, and dairy from my diet permanently. While I'm excited to introduce these items back into my diet (my chai green tea this morning was divine!), I also want to keep the focus on fruits and vegetables. Eating at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day is tough! My plan is to try to include at least one serving of fruits and/or vegetables with every meal. This means that bread and cheese is not a meal on its own. An apple or a kale salad needs to go with it.

In two weeks my Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) boxes begin and so does my local farmer's market. Eating fruits and vegetables in the winter months - especially when winter lasts FOREVER - is tough. My CSA and farmer's market really help me remain excited about vegetables.

In case you are wondering, spring has sprung in Minnesota! The beginning of the week was cold and snowy again, but yesterday it was the most perfect weather - sunny and 70s. Yay! Today is supposed to be the same, so we have the first bike trip of the year planned for this afternoon along with a picnic lunch of bread, cheese, and fruit. This makes my heart sing so much!

Garlic Saffron Rice; Smoky Tempeh; Spanish Saute of Carrots and Green Beans
Week 3 Food Intake
Fruits, vegetables, lentils, nuts, seeds, oils, herbs, spices, gluten-free grains, legumes, eggs, soy

Day 15
Breakfast: Banana oat pancakes with strawberries, blackberries; fried egg; orange juice; peppermint tea
Lunch: Romaine lettuce salad with corn, black beans, tomatoes, oil and vinegar
Supper: Tofu veggie stir fry with brown rice; fruit salad
Snacks: Banana; apple; mixed nuts; brown rice
Day 16
Breakfast: Banana oat pancakes with honey, banana; orange; peppermint tea
Lunch: Brown rice with black beans, fried onions and peppers, lettuce, guacamole (Chipotle)
Supper: Apple with peanut butter; oat bar
Snacks: Raisins
Day 17
Breakfast: Green monster; ginger tea
Lunch: Soba noodles, cabbage, tofu in a spicy soy sauce
Supper: Quinoa, kale, edamame stir fry with cabbage and fried egg
Snacks: Oat bar; dried cranberries; apple; banana
Day 18
Breakfast: Green monster; buckwheat apple walnut muffin; ginger tea
Lunch: Soba noodles, cabbage, tofu in a spicy soy sauce
Supper: Corn tortilla tacos with refried beans, rice, lettuce, onions, guacamole (Pineda Tacos)
Snacks: Mango; apple; oat bar; muffin
Day 19
Breakfast: Green monster; buckwheat apple walnut muffin; ginger tea
Lunch: Quinoa cardamom porridge with dried fruit, almonds, almond milk, honey; muffin
Supper: Spinach polenta with spicy black beans, guacamole, marinara sauce
Snacks: Oat bar; banana with peanut butter
Day 20
Breakfast: Green monster; quinoa cardamom porridge
Lunch: Spinach polenta with spicy black beans, guacamole, marinara sauce
Supper: Marinated veggie salad (Pizza Nea)
Snacks: Walnuts; oat bar; ginger tea; popcorn
Day 21
Breakfast: Green monster; oat bar; ginger tea
Lunch: Spinach polenta with marinara sauce
Supper: Garlic saffron brown rice; smoky tempeh; carrot, green bean, red onion stir fry with roasted pumpkin seeds
Snacks: Apple cider vinegar soda water; mixed nuts; dried fruit; popcorn

Veggie Stir Fry with Tofu and Brown Rice