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My First Time…Cleansing

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My First Time…Cleansing

When I first thought about doing a green juice detox cleanse three years ago, my first thought was “No way in hell.”  After all, I’m a total foodie, I like my wine, and giving up food flashed me back to a decade of deprivation during medical school and residency, when I was lucky to get one meal a day because I was too busy working my ass off to eat.

Having ditched the unhealthy medical student lifestyle, I had adopted a new unhealthy regimen. As a great chef and wine aficionado living in the San Francisco Bay area, which is foodie and wine heaven, I was indulging in gourmet yumminess almost every night. Even though I was a physician preaching healthy living while practicing in an integrative medicine practice, I was going home to eat braised short ribs, potatoes au gratin, and goat cheese pizza, while downing a couple yummy glasses of nearby Napa Valley pinot noir.

Not to mention that, after giving birth to my daughter, I had gained pudgy belly weight I wanted to lose. Plus, I have high blood pressure that was diagnosed when I was a medical student in my twenties, and I was requiring three medications to barely control my blood pressure. I was also taking three medications for severe allergies.

I felt like a total f*cking hypocrite.

But heck, I deserved it after all those years of deprivation.

But the integrative medicine practice offered a monthly green juice cleanse, led by cleanse expert, Tricia Barrett, who every day came into my office with absolutely no judgment and loads of love, as she handed me a shot of wheat grass I gulped down daily after plugging my nose.

I had heard Tricia speak about the benefits of detoxing. I knew that our bodies are exposed to toxins every day, not just in what we eat and drink, but in the environmental toxins, pesticides, plastics, and other substances that disrupt the body’s self-healing mechanisms. I knew that cleaning my cells so they could do their job would be good for me.

But honestly, that didn’t sound like fun. And I was tired of doing things just because I should.

Then one day, a little voice – I call it my Inner Pilot Light – whispered, “Do the cleanse.” And for some reason, I decided to listen. But not without listening to the racket from my Gremlins.

I worried, not only that I would suffer from the deprivation of foods and drinks I loved, but that I would experience icky detox symptoms that would remind me how unhealthy I had truly become and keep me from doing my job at work.

Plus, what if I couldn’t do it? What if I wound up cheating? Then, on top of failing to cleanse, I would be a total self-sabotaging loser who can’t keep a promise to herself.

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Read more: Diet & Nutrition, Drinks, Eating for Health, Food, General Health, Health, Raw, Vegetarian, , , , , , , , ,

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Lissa Rankin

Lissa Rankin, MD is a mind-body medicine physician, founder of the Whole Health Medicine Institute training program for physicians and other health care providers, and the New York Times bestselling author of Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof That You Can Heal Yourself.  She is on a grassroots mission to heal health care, while empowering you to heal yourself.  Lissa blogs at and also created two online communities - and She is also the author of two other books, a professional artist, an amateur ski bum, and an avid hiker. Lissa lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her husband and daughter.


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9:09PM PDT on Mar 19, 2012

A great testimonial for the practice of detoxing.

9:08AM PST on Feb 13, 2012

Adopting a vegan/raw food diet was the best decision I have ever made. I have never felt so healthy in my entire life.

9:47PM PST on Jan 28, 2012


12:14AM PST on Jan 24, 2012 coments, though I like the white mask....

1:37AM PST on Jan 17, 2012

Sounds good, but what a bad advertising video.

7:19AM PST on Jan 16, 2012

Thanks for the info.

8:09PM PST on Jan 15, 2012

The first cleanse is always an eyeopener. Glad this is an MD and that she had such a great experience.

1:13PM PST on Jan 15, 2012

Great info, but I agree--just an Ad for a large purchase?? This easily replicated cleanse can be found on the internet if you do some research, for free. Good info & guidance, though.

12:29PM PST on Jan 15, 2012

Thank you for the information.

12:14AM PST on Jan 15, 2012

Thanks for the info

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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