Dr Joshi’s Holistic Detox – One month on

Dr Joshi's Book

Dr Joshi’s Book.

Back in January I decided to do something crazy being the new year and all and deprive myself of a good portion of almost everything I normally eat for 21 days. It was all in the name of detox Dr Joshi’s alkalising body detox to be exact.

Dr Joshi and I don’t actually know each other but as this is not my first run around his deprivation course I feel like we are old friends. I have actually kept a few of his little detox eating habits from the first time we hung out so I was really interested to see what my take homes would be from this time around. I thought one month after the end would be a good time to check out what has stuck and what hasn’t.

The Goal

While my goal was obviously to give the body a good cleanse, I also wanted to attempt to shift some really stubborn eczema and was at the point where I’d try any crazy damn thing. I was going to start with a good old fashioned dairy elimination but then it was suggested I should also cut gluten and something else and something else and I just thought For crying out loud, I’ll cut the lot. And there we were.

The detox is simple enough to follow and does actually include a reasonable selection food that enables you to come up with a variety of meal options. You don’t see that at first glance but it’s true. I did weekly food diaries if you are keen to try the detox  but feel you need suggestions.

What I thought at the end of the detox

By the end of the detox I was actually starting to feel really great. Dr Joshi claims that the alkalising diet will even change your taste buds and you won’t even crave bad foods anymore. I was skeptical but by the end of week 3 I was actually feeling that way. I think this has more to do with consistent healthy eating than anything else.

It was an interesting transition. I ate a lot of carrot sticks for snacks and I remember by the end of week 2 being dead sick of eating carrot sticks but by week 3 I’d passed through the pain and was actually enjoying it. I was also a bit sick of chicken and fish by the end of the program. We had a few vego options on the menu too but I did miss the odd bit of meat. I also really missed tomato.

By the end of the detox my eczema had improved but was not yet gone. As it continued to improve though I took it as a positive sign and decided to continue leaving gluten and dairy out of my diet. For some reason I felt rather strongly that little to no gluten was actually really positive for me so I just decided to go with what I feel.

Reintroduction of Foods

The first thing I reintroduced was fruit. I did it across the board and there was no issue.

I also started adding tomato to salads to spice things up a bit. Again, all was great.

In week 2 post detox I made a tomato based sauce for gluten free gnocci. I included zucchini and capsicum so it was a nightshade vegetable feast. My skin reacted that night. The eczema flared right up. It calmed quickly but I put it down to either tomato or nightshade vegetables in general. I’ve avoided having them in large quantities since and that seems to be fine.

During the detox I felt that I reacted to eggs on more than one occasion. Rather than eliminate them all together I have simply reduced the number and that seems to be working fine.

I haven’t permanently reintroduced the Dairy or Gluten to test which one is causing the reaction. Mainly because I am happy with the substitutes and I feel good without them so I see no point. Maybe I’ll test it out one day but right now I’m happy with how things are.

What’s happening one month on

Well it turns out that I really did develop a fondness for raw carrot. One month later I continue to snack on carrot sticks on a regular basis. I love crunchy things and the taste out of the fridge is so fresh. I love it.  The bonus? Monkey gets into them too.

I now only make my own hummus and pesto rather than buying it. My food processor gets so much more use!

I have remained gluten and dairy free 95% of the time. I say 95% as if I go out and it is challenging to find something (and sometimes it is – things seem to be either GF or DF as opposed to both) then I just choose the best I can and let whatever else it is slide through. Or sometimes I’m having a craving or something is too good to refuse. At home, where I prepare all the food though, my meals are constantly GF and DF. I am loving my Cut Out the Crap (DF, GF and preservative free cooking) recipe books for ideas. They were well worth the purchase.

The big WIN is that my eczema is virtually all gone. I have small spots of it here and there that sort of comes and goes but that is nothing compared to where I was at and probably more  to do with the fact that I cheat with my diet sometimes than anything else.

The big take home message for me with this? TIME. You need to give it time. If you have a skin issue and suspect diet then a one week elimination or a partial elimination is not going to tell you the full story. If you cut dairy for a short period of time and see any sign of improvement AT ALL (initially mine just became less inflamed, still there but less inflamed. I saw that as an improvement) then I urge you to continue and see what it can really do for your body. Give it the go it deserves and not some half arsed attempt that leaves you to conclude it doesn’t work.

The Verdict

All in all I really enjoyed the detox. Is it better than other similar detoxes (you know, the food ones, not the juice ones)? I don’t know. I think they all do similar things, particularly they help us to pay attention to what we are eating and get back to cooking with good whole foods.

It was easier to eat this way this time around because the internet is amazing and robust and full of great vegan recipes that already eliminate dairy. Also the gluten free substitutes for bread and pasta have greatly improved in the last 10 years. I actually enjoy the replacements I use now. I don’t feel I suffer for my choices at all.

Give it a go. Give your body the kickstart to healthy it needs. It was so worth it for me. People keep telling me I look radiant. Radiant! Without makeup! And despite the fact that I didn’t calorie count the whole time and I haven’t since (although I am strict about portion sizes), I have lost or maintained weight on a continued basis while eating this way.  I chalk that up to a win.


35 thoughts on “Dr Joshi’s Holistic Detox – One month on

  1. Very interesting by the sound of it. I am not on a detox but eating with Clean Eating which is similar to cutting out rubbish. It is GF and diary free too but like you, when I go out I do the best I can. Great to hear how it worked out. Well done!! Tess x

  2. Great results, good on you! You did mention earlier you would gradually introduce some of the foods back into your diet, did you notice anything there (e.g. are you eating tomatoes now? What was the effect on you?)? And have you for a while tried just GF or DF food just to see the effects of each on you? Or just feeling so well that you want to stick what you are doing now?

  3. This was good to read for me because my older son has eczema. It’s not too, too bad and it doesn’t seem to be itchy too often for him, but he does eat quite a lot of dairy (milk, yogurt, peanut butter sandwiches, etc) and I’ve been toying around with the idea of cutting out his dairy for a month and seeing what happens. He’s so incredibly picky thought that I worry about what he WILL be willing to eat if I do….guess I’ll have to do some research. Thanks for posting:)

    • My son also has eczema and I made him dairy free from 1 yr old and it eliminated it completely. Every now and then I let him have some to test it out (as they can grown out of it) and if it goes on for more than a few days he breaks out. As soon as I cut it 100% again it clears so there is no question in my mind for him. Honestly, it feels hard at first but once you find some staple recipes and learn good snacks etc you forget what it was like to have it as it becomes easy. Plus there are good replacement iptions out there. If you are incorporating lots of dairy I’d suggest working on replacing on thing at a time. My dr said to get a real idea you need to eliminate for 3 weeks though and that means everything (ie many crackers etc have dairy, you need to be thorough) . If I can help in any way at all please don’t hesitate to contact me via email. Good luck!

  4. Fantastic! Such great results and a testament to your willpower (I’ve eaten takeaways all week as am feeling so crap, ha! Like that’s gonna help…). I’m feeling all inspired reading this – i really need to get back to proper, healthy meals.

    • I’ve eaten my fair share of crap this week too fiven my circumstances. One thi g I’ve noticed is that with consistent good eating the amount of crap required when I’m having a moment is less so I’m ablw to bring it back on track more easily. In saying all that, I’d be eating a bunch of crap if I was having your week too. Xx

  5. I could do with a detox, I think. After J was born we cut out processed foods and went organic, and to this day, it’s stuck. Mostly. We’re all much healthier, but I need to do something more to get my weight down. I gained 100 lbs with J– after he was born I would walk past mirrors and wonder who the fat lady was. Sigh. So sad.
    I’m glad it worked for you.

    • Oh hon that must make you frustrated. The things we do for our babies. I find cutting portion sizes has worked a lot for me. When I buy my meat I weigh it and freeze it in portions. Makes it harder to overeat then. Good on you for going totally organic and having no processed foods. That is so much healthier!!! As I write this I am craving a chocolate bar though lol

  6. This was so much fun to read after having gone through it all too! I like your opinion on how so many of these programs are similar. I think so, too. Mostly the reminder to stick to honest to goodness foods for many is key. I just know I feel better that way for sure. But I can’t do eggs much really at all. I’d like to be able to do a little egg. I’m glad your eczema is better! Yippee!

    • Yeah I think if we all just cut put processed foods then most people would probably feel pretty awesome all of the time. I’m so stoked about the eczema as was starting to panic part way through. It really did just need some time. So glad I hung in there!! That’s such a bummer about eggs 😦 They are so handy. I have used chia seeds as egg replacer in cooking before and it hasn’t been too bad. I’m sure you have your own little tricks!

      • I’ve read the Autoimmune Paleo protocol, and some people in there do report that it takes a few months–just like you mention! (I like to tuck these little anecdotes away in my brain.)

        Occasionally my daughter will make me chocolate chia pancakes. 🙂 Yummy and she is a good one! Since the kids can do eggs, I don’t play around too much with it much for myself. Not worth the effort.

        I like reading your updates and reports. Because I just appreciate gathering information on if nutritional intervention really does help and what it really does help. I see what I’m up against (if I ever practice again) when I visit friends and family–and the more conviction and evidence I have on board, the better I can navigate the waters. Most people aren’t ready to admit they need to change food, medicine doesn’t support them in their change. So anyhow, the more I have seen and heard, the better I use this nutrition stuff.

        Hope you’re doing well. Running? Monkey?

      • I think if you ever practice again you’ll take the right approach though. Chip away at people, a bit at a time. My holistic GP I’ve just started seeing is on at me about presoaking all my grains and nuts for better absorption. *sigh* It annoys me but at the same time I look at the positive – look how far I’ve come that the best she can do to help me improve my diet is to tell me to pre-soak stuff. That’s pretty awesome.

        I’m great! Just started training to do 10k…ran 7.2kms yesterday. That’s the furthest I’ve run in my whole life!! Monkey is great. We are toilet training right now so it’s fun times around here. He is actually doing really great with wees, can’t seem to get poos. But we’ll get there. 🙂

  7. Props to you for having the will power. I am pretty sure I can benefit from this but my goodness, I did a little research (Meaning Googled) and it mentioned omitting bread and pasta and all things wonderful. Where will I find the strength? 🙂

    • Haha don’t know what it’s like in the Philippines but in AUS our gluten free replacements for pasta, bread amd cheese are getting really good so that’s what I meant when I said I didn’t suffer for my choices. It wouldn’t be so easy if the replacements weren’t so good!!

    • I have the strength! The strength to go back to the search engine and look up a pasta recipe, because that is never going to happen. Way to go Mummy, however, for having the willpower to do it. On a related note, I did change over to organic pasta, which has nothing in it but extruded wheat. I call it a win sort of.

  8. I eat very clean but didn’t detox before switching my diet. I’ve decided detox next weekend. This will be the first time, it’s going to be through juicing. I am both nervous and excited.

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