The Goddess Speaks
Now that the Halloween loot is eaten ...
Whenever girlfriends of mine would fast, I would call them silly hippies in between mouthfuls of M&M's. I was horrified by their 10-day "Master Cleanses" involving drinking cayenne pepper-laced lemonade, saltwater intestinal flushes and laxative teas. I didn't buy into the glories of short-term starvation.
But after seeing one girlfriend on day 10 of her "Master Cleanse," I marveled that not only was she still alive/under the delusion of life/whatever, but that she was glowing. I was further convinced after my boyfriend, who only consumes things that moo, squawk, oink and whatever noise Spam makes, told me that even he had gone on juice fasts to detox.
I knew that if Mr. Anti-Preservation himself could put down the dead flesh and survive off freshly squeezed celery, I could put down the M&M's. And fast. Wait, one more M&M. OK. I'm ready now.
The hardest part was the night before my cleanse began, as I obsessed until 4:30 a.m. about how hungry I was going to be in the morning. Turns out I wasn't unbearably hungry even once ... until about 2 a.m. on day five when I was once again unable to sleep due to fantasies involving guacamole.
Throughout my cleanse, I would go through phases of mild hunger, to slight headaches, to feeling perfectly normal. I did develop incredibly cool, vampirelike senses. If my boyfriend was crunching on chips in the next room, I could feel the salty oil slipping up my nose and into my brain.
The best result was ending my addiction to caffeine. It is amazing to wake up and feel alive, as opposed to waking up and not feeling alive until I drank coffee, and then feeling like death a few hours later until I had some extra-black, black tea, and then feeling like death again until I could find a clean vein and inject myself with pure caffeine extract. Who knew a person could function without caffeine? After this major paradigm shift, I now believe I could function without sarcasm. Or oxygen!
When it was over, I was manic, refreshed and ready to carpe the ol' diem. Even though Beyoncé infamously used the "Master Cleanse" to drop weight quickly, I wouldn't recommend it as a long-term weight-loss mechanism because, you know, eventually you have to start eating again.
But it can be psychologically useful to feel as though you've gotten a fresh start with your body -- why clog it up again with heaping plates of trans fat du jour? I now feel totally in control of my food choices. Everyone in the room could be dipping Krispy Kreme donuts in chocolate, fondue style, as I'm ravishing a freshly washed carrot stick, savoring each orange morsel of ... oh my God ... is my boyfriend having a peanut butter and M&M sandwich?
References on cleansing include www.therawfoodsite.com and the books "The New Detox Diet," by Elson Haas, and "The Master Cleanser," by Stanley Burroughs.
Jennifer Meleana Hee is a freelance writer and former Peace Corps volunteer. Visit her blog at www.jennmeleana.com.
The Goddess Speaks is a feature column by and about women. If you have something to say, write "The Goddess Speaks," 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210,
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