I'm going to update you every week for a month on my "Operation Detox", no holds barred, so you can hear how I'm getting on!
We had the lead water pipes replaced with PVC ones, so our water coming from the mains should be less dangerous than before, though it's still rife with fluoride and chlorine etc thanks to the Health Service. So we had a reverse osmosis filtration system fitted from EW Technologies (www.ewtechnologies.ie) in the kitchen. We're using the filtered water for drinking and cooking. I fill the kettle with the filtered water too, as I've read that boiling the water direct from the tap just concentrates the amount of fluoride and metals in it. There was an issue with our water pressure after a few days, the tank was taking forever to fill, so they kindly came out and installed an electric pump into the system. Now when we use water the pump refills the tank much quicker.
I'm not a lover of cold water anyway, I only tend to drink it in summer, so I've been making myself drink the odd glass every day just to help my body detox. The normal tap water smells really strongly of chlorine, so bad that I used to let it stand for about 20 minutes before drinking it. Now there is no bad smell, and the metallic taste is gone from the water completely. I've made lemonade with the filtered water, which is lovely, and a great way to get some vitamin C!
Our tea and coffee tastes a bit different, and it took a few days to get used to! I would drink a coffee in the morning, and maybe one cup of black tea in the day, with a cup of decaff tea in the evening. I've been hooked on coffee every morning, but I can feel the effects in my body, I'm needing it to wake me up and kick-start my brain every day, and my finger joints are hurting worse than ever. I've read that caffeine stops you absorbing other vitamins from your food, so I figure the joint pain is a result of this somehow. I'm going to read up on it a bit more and start cutting out aubergines (damn, I love them!) and tomato-based foods (double-damn!) which all make the joint pain worse. If any of you have ideas for suitable substitutes for tomatoes in curries/soups/stews please let me know!
I'm still using coconut oil for most of our cooking needs, instead of butter, and this will be a permanent change. Number one, it's cheaper, number two, I can't tell the difference, and number three, it's better for our health. I've been using coconut oil as a hand salve, my fingers are really chapped from all the cold weather and neglect! So I rub it on a couple of times a day (usually when cooking) and it helps a bit.
I've been adding cinnamon to our daily diet, usually in hot chocolate or pancakes / curries, and we're all cold-free (touch wood) for the last couple of weeks. I'm still adding linseeds to muffins and pancakes too, though Charlie doesn't like them.
My skin is looking ok, I'm not having acne breakouts or dry patches. I've been going really easy on the products I'm using, only wearing foundation every second or third day and using Vitamin E / coconut oil as a moisturiser. I need to find a good, simple SPF-filled moisturiser for the coming seasons too though, so if any of you know a good one please let me know.
We're constantly eating apples here, the boys have one or two a day each. It was mandarins in the winter, but they haven't been great in the shops recently, so I'm buying Pink Ladies and Gala apples every couple of days. Bananas are a real hit too, and pears / raw carrots.
I was talking to a friend yesterday, she follows a coeliac diet as she is very intolerant to wheat. When she described what wheat does to her body (abdominal cramps / wind / bloating etc) I really related to that. I'm going to start seeing where I can cut down on wheat-based foods. We already buy wholemeal bread and pasta, but I think I may start making my own bread again, as the shop-bought stuff is never as rich in fibre. I don't think I could cut out wheat altogether, but I will definitely try to substitute other flours in our pancakes and bread, I have gram flour in the cupboard which I'd forgotten about.
I'm taking B-complex vitamins about 3 times a week, and some flaxseed oil tablets too, though I hate swallowing both, they're huge! I'd much rather get all that nutrition from my diet, so I need to do a lot more research and see what foods I need to introduce more of.
Sugar is still featuring heavily, from breakfast to supper, we're going through jam, Nutella and honey at a rate of knots. I take sugar in my tea and coffee, and am eating sweets and chocolate almost every day. I have to cut this down, I know it's giving me highs and lows energy and mood-wise. And it's a trigger for joint pain too. The other day walking downstairs in the morning both my knees were creaking! Literally! And alcohol has crept in again, as it does when we are "on form" and celebrating the weekend etc. A beer with dinner here, a bottle of bubbly there, it's been a heavy week wine-wise for me, so no wonder I'm not feeling the best.
Exercise has featured a little, I'm glad to say. We've had some days out, and I even got out for (just one) a jog/walk around the block. I'd like to make that a daily habit, just to get a bit of head-space. I need to re-jig the late-to-bed, late-to-rise thing a bit to make that work though.
We're only one week in, I'd rate my efforts at "Operation Detox" at 3/10, could do a lot better. Let's see how I do in the next week!