My Husband the STRIPper!
No, not THAT kind of stripper! This is a 10-day cleanse called STRIP, developed by my friend and nutritionist, Julie Starr-Wood, of JSW Nutrition. We’ve all heard the word cleanse and it instills fear in many of us. Days upon days of liquid diets, endless juicing, fasting, not to mention bad breath and gassiness. Well, do not be weary of this cleanse, my hubby Amir made it through and this blog chronicles his journey. I tried to be a supportive wife and went along with many of the changes in Amir’s diet for these ten days, however I did not partake in abstaining from coffee and alcohol; I am reserving this form of torture for the days of pregnancy!
Some of the foods this cleanse prohibited were alcohol, refined sugar, caffeine, junk food, bread, pasta, white rice, meats (chicken could be introduced towards the latter portion of the cleanse), certain types of fish were permitted throughout the entire cleanse. A lot of veggies and some fruits were allowed, as well as some grains.
STRIP also consisted of drinking lots of fluids throughout the day, which Amir isn’t accustomed to. He commented about having to pee “ALL THE TIME”, I snickered and replied “welcome to my world”! For those of you who know me, know I rarely am seen without a bottle of water in hand!
So let’s start at Day 1 of the cleanse. Amir had just returned from a week of traveling abroad for work. Jetlagged and after a week of eating out while traveling, he was ready to start up the STRIP. He got on the scale and we recorded his weight as a baseline. He had the unfortunate timing of this first week of STRIPping coinciding with Restaurant Week and having dinner reservations almost every night of the week. That evening we hit up the grocery store with his list in hand and went at it!
Then it was home to the kitchen where he prepped A LOT of food that evening for the week ahead of his breakfasts and lunches. He whipped up a tray of quiche that he baked, added in eggs, spinach, bell peppers, basil, and mushrooms. No cheese, as cheese and all dairy products were not STRIP-approved. He had this for breakfast everyday with a side of black beans.
Some of the other delish meals we had at home included, our at-home STRIP-approved version of Legal Sea Food’s “Bang Bang Cauliflower”. We coated the cauliflower pieces in a little EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) and tossed them in a mixture of chia and flax seeds, which we then cooked in our wok. This was a “bang bang” of delectable in our mouths.
Once chicken was able to be integrated into STRIP towards the last few days of the cleanse, we whipped up a ginger chicken stir-fry which we served over brown rice. We cooked it in our wok (if you don’t have a wok, something is wrong with you, GET ONE), and used a ginger & garlic infused canola stir-fry oil which cheated a bit from the EVOO, but besides that this meal was fully STRIP-approved and fully AMAZING!
Salads. We ate a lot of salads. Most of our salads we would add grilled salmon on top of. These are two lunch salads, one had sweet potatoes added, both featured black beans.
The Friday night of the STRIP we went out to dinner and drinks with some of Amir’s college buddies (and more specifically, fraternity brothers). If ever there was a true STRIP test of willpower, THIS was it! I was so impressed, Amir only drank sparkling waters with a splash of cran and we both went with salads for our meals.
Recap, Recap, Recap
To recap, Amir never complained of feeling hungry, tired, or weak at any point throughout the cleanse. Nor did he have headaches or was gassy (at least no more gassy than normal!) He said he was getting a bit tired of eating salmon a lot. There were other fish types permitted but he likes the taste of salmon the most.
He stuck to the cleanse 95% of the time, along with working out regularly. He fell off the wagon one night during dinner at the Capital Grille with co-workers; while he did muster up enough will power to order salmon instead of filet, he was unable to resist the dessert tray and a glass of wine.
Besides this slip up, he was VERY dedicated! He said that he had more energy and felt great. He lost a total of 5lbs. He printed off the recipe packet that Julie provided him as part of the STRIP program, along with the allowed foods, and he plans to use them for future meals. He is sticking with his exercise routine so far (music to my trainer’ ears!), and eating more thoughtfully, making more healthy food choices and thinking more about portions. The first day after STRIP ended, he ate a larger lunch (and not that healthy) than he had been used to while STRIPping, and told me that evening that he felt “gross and bloated” from it.
As a close observer of someone following a cleanse, I can truthfully say that STRIP is a very practical, do-able cleanse that with the right food prep and dedication, anyone could follow and stick to. What I like about this cleanse is that you do not feel too deprived, nor do you feel starving and lacking in energy, because all the foods you are eating are filled with nutrients and “good” fuel for your body. It also helps you hone in on your dedication and willpower skills. Being dedicated helps you in so many facets of your life, bring dedication to the choices you make in the foods you put into your body, willpower to stick to your fitness routine, all of these help you to be a stronger person, mentally and physically!
You can contact Julie through her website JSW Nutrition if you are interested in STRIPping yourself!