Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My Lemon Detox Experience - Day 1

I love food. That's a fact. I love good food. I am always trying out new recipes. My kitchen is a constant blur of baking flour and grilling meat. You would think a person like me would never willingly go without eating solid food for 10 days. Yes, 10 days. Okay, guess what? I am on a no-solid food journey for 10 days. It's called the lemon detox diet. Some people think it's an extreme and crazy thing to do... heck... I think it’s an extreme and crazy thing but also a necessary thing to do. ‘Seen people who lost as much as 20 pounds in 7 days. ‘Seen people who were on the diet for 15days. ‘Seen impressive before and after pictures. The point is, it is a test of will as much as it is a diet.

Let us establish that I am beginning to suspect that I may be vain, just a li’l bit. ‘May be vanity to some people but to me it is plain trying to hold off nature for as long as I can through means that do not involve scary surgical knives (for now) or extreme eating disorders. So I exercise quite some and go on diets that simply involve eating less every now and then. Oh, did I mention I climb on the scale slightly obsessively EVERY TIME I am in the bathroom, which would be every morning and night…? I started having this suspicion when I bought this straight-jacket-like contraption called “Body Magic” for a lot of money, though I don’t really have love handles but I kinda like the way it defines a woman’s figure. So maybe I am just conscious of my looks or vain depending on where you are standing, sitting or lying.

I just had a surgery and had to stay at home for 4 weeks. I wasn’t allowed to work-out, or even lift anything above 3kg. Like that wasn’t enough I was also anemic post-surgery and was implored by my doctor to eat a lot and drink a gazillion iron tablets. That was all the excuse I needed to go on a see-food diet. So here I am, 6 weeks post surgery, my weight up by 6kg and all my pants too tight. In fact, I have to leave my buttons open or they’ll pop open by themselves. Forget all those skinny jeans, right now they don’t see eye-to-eye with my thighs.
The lemon detox diet involves no eating, just drinking a mixture of something called Madal Bal Syrup (if you live in lagos you can buy this at Proflex gym for N15k/1000ml), water, the juice of lemon/ lime and some cayenne pepper. The idea is to detox your body of toxins piled up over a long time. You will definitely lose some weight on this diet if you stay true. I mean, you are NOT eating for a whole 10 days, not so?

The syrup is actually a mixture of organic maple syrup and some palm syrup and a few other exotic syrups, all organic of course. So you injest this concoction and it cleanses out your body but you still get critical nutrients your body needs from the syrup and loads of vitamin C from the lemon juice. You are not allowed to add sugar or any other processed ingredient. You are not allowed to add any toxins in your body until the detox is finished. If you wish you could drink herb tea (I use peppermint) without caffeine. You could also do a flush (sea salt water or laxative tea) to help your body get rid of the toxins quicker. The pepper helps stave off hunger pangs and also gives you a few vitamins. But you should go easy on the pepper or the drink will be too spicy to drink.
So background over, I have decided to document the 10 days of this diet on this blog. That way I know I have to be accountable and get to the end of the 10th day. Wish me luck now…


This morning I weighed in at 71kg. The heaviest I’ve been ever! (insert crying-and-tearing-out-my-hair emoticon here). I woke up and mixed the concoction. The mixture is about 125ml syrup, 1¾ litres water, one teaspoon pepper, and about ¾ cup juice of lemon. I use regular ground pepper oh. I am Nigerian and can handle the heat… (wink-wink). Remember you can substitute lime for lemon. The idea is to use fresh citrus, not canned juice because those contain preservatives. I think the detox still happens if you use bottled or canned lemon that is at least 99.9% lemon concentrate. Just read the pack. But that’s my opinion. This may be necessary if you have to travel to work like me (Lagos Mainland to Lagos Island) and don’t have 15mins to spend juicing lemons.

So I shake it all together and off to work. At work I display the bottles on my desk. Two of my colleagues have decided to do the cleanse with me so it was the topic of the early morning discussion in the pool.

I hate the taste of the syrup but some of my friends don’t mind it. They say it’s just like lemonade. Madal Bal syrup leaves a nasty taste somewhere at the back of my tongue. But then, I’ve never liked Maple Syrup. However, remember taste is subjective so…

Day 1 was really difficult. I have this splitting headache and not an ounce of energy. I am confused because it’s just the first day. I research a bit and find out that it is something to expect in the first three days which are purportedly the hardest. After three days your body stabilizes and you feel better. Right now it is your body releasing all the toxins you’ve piled up over the years (remember all that alcohol and caffeine?) into your bloodstream. So I am supposed to be out of whack and I am! I am ready to stop oh but when I remember my 15k, I know I will finish this diet sha.

I am also grouchy and when my driver bashes my car against a pillar after work I am too weak to yell at him, but Lord knows I wanted to grab him and squeeze his neck… and then eat him. lol.

So that was day1, HORROR of all HORRORS.

Weighed out at 70kg!!!!! I guess it is all the water that went out. I had to go the bathroom like a million times. I reckoned it was good exercise walking to and fro the bathroom.