A week without eating – what do you miss?

This post is for parents only – Gastrokids need not apply!

So there’s a reason why I haven’t posted anything for nearly 10 days – I didn’t eat anything for five days last week. Instead I followed the sage advice of my acupuncturist and decided to do a week-long fasting detox.

The fast is based on the Madal Bal (or Lemon Detox) Diet and it’s pretty simple. Instead of eating, all you ingest is a mixture of Madal Bal palm syrup, fresh lemons and fresh ground ginger all mixed into 2 liters of water. Add a mix of Chinese herbal detox remedies and I was up and running.

Okay, so, yes, I was hungry some of the time but for the most part it was a really interesting and rewarding week. Most of all the fast made me think hard about the food I eat and what I treasure in my culinary life.

Here’s what I didn’t miss:

1, Caffeine (after two days of major headaches that is)
2, Dairy
3, Red Meat

Caffeine I admit will creep back into my life – I just love the taste of good espresso too much to walk away. Red meat too is part of my life but in moderation. Dairy – well I know I like cheese but this was the one taste sensation that I didn’t miss one bit.

Still today, four days after returning to the land of the eating dairy holds little appeal. We’ll see how that one goes.

All of which is to say that while fasting certainly isn’t for everyone, taking a time out to re-evaluate what it is about food that you really appreciate and love seems a good thing to do every once in a while.

In the meantime, once I broke the fast, I made sure I put the leftover lemons to good use: they still make a great twist in a Martini!

- Matthew

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6 Responses to A week without eating – what do you miss?

  1. Why did you fast? How are you feeling afterwards? Lighter? Healthier? And my main question: How does a foodie dad go without actual food for a month?

  2. matthew says:

    Luckily it was only five days of fasting!
    I did it because I was curious about detoxing – I eat all sorts of food, like to drink wine and also drink coffee (not much but two cups a day). The idea of shaking up my food “comfort zone” appealed to me, as did the mental challenge of not eating for a week.
    Afterwards I felt great – great clarity of thought and a real sense of achievement. Oh, and yes I lost 8 pounds in those five days.
    It will become an annual rite from now on.

  3. Crumbs says:

    How do you deal with everyone else eating those first couple days? I’m curious to know what role your family played. If you dine out with your family regularly, did you forgo joining them that week? Was it difficult to prepare meals for your children?
    I’ve been trying to find a time to do this, but fear that I would be asking the family to make sacrifices too. Any advice?

  4. matthew says:

    Luckily my wife handled most of the cooking for the kids and herself and I pretty much stayed out of the kitchen……indeed it was the very smell of food that was the hardest part of the week.
    I have to say that I wasn’t grumpy/crabby while I was fasting – a little tired at some points but full of energy at other times. I did go to bed very early and slept a lot……so it wasn’t that hard on the rest of the family.
    If you wanted to do it you might consider preparing three main meals ahead of time for the family? That will take the pressure off you having to cook and fast at the same time.

  5. Crumbs says:

    Well, thanks for the motivation Matthew. This post was the final push I needed to plunge into a 5 day master cleanse. My husband joined me, so feeding our 3 year old was the only challenge – I found burning incense in the kitchen helped keep my mind off his food. I decided to kick caffeine the week prior (horrible week), but from day 1 of the lemonade, I felt great.
    We waved off the 3 day re-introduction to food, and dove into an appetizer portion of broiled salmon and brown rice this evening. It was divine.
    What did I miss the most? Prior I was sure I would say coffee, but now I realize I actually craved savory (I guess consuming nothing but sugar made me want the opposite).
    Anyhow – thanks again for the motivation.

  6. alexandra says:

    im 14 years old, and i feel im overweight, my friends and family say that im not, but i know they are just sugar coating the truth. i told, my friends that i wasn’t eating for a week and they freaked. this is my choice not theirs, is it not?

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