, , , , , , ,

I saw so much life on my run today, wish I’d had my camera. Highlights included a yellow warbler and blue butterflies with black dots on the tips of their wings. We added on an extra 1.5 miles this morning to swing by the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, which is free Saturday mornings. The cherry blossoms are just beginning to blossom (Thanks, Japan!). Not many tulips yet, but the magnolia trees are full bloom and smell divine. I stuck my face in one of the blossoms not realizing it was already occupied by a bee. Luckily it didn’t sting me.

I’m now past the halfway mark in my 21-cleanse. It’s amazing how quickly the body adapts to big changes. My coffee cravings are gone and my herbal, green and white teas are actually becoming a highlight of the day. I carve out space in the morning and afternoon to enjoy it, so it’s not a beverage that I’m absentmindedly sipping while working. During tea I’ll read or look for birds out the window. Reading Bel Canto has me craving Opera so sometimes I’ll just pull some up on Pandora and listen.

This is my 3rd year doing a cleanse. The first year was all about the struggles both physical and not knowing how to spot the many many places gluten hides. I also didn’t know where to find affordable foods that I could eat and wound up always feeling hungry and cranky. Now I have pockets full of good recipes and I know where to find the best prices on produce. For flours, you can save a ton of money by hitting up Indian, Mexican and Brazilian groceries and other small markets that cater to populations that don’t rely solely on wheat. Here’s a few good ones to look for:

Sorghum flour – Jowar flour (Indian)

Chickpea flour – Besan flour (Indian)

Rice flour, Corn flour, Arrowroot flour (Indian and Mexican)

Tapioca flour – Cassava flour (Central & South American)

Millet flour – Ragi flour (Indian)

Going dairy free is much easier in my opinion. If you like to bake you can replace regular eggs with flax eggs (1 egg = 1 Tbsp ground flax meal: 3 Tbsp warm water, shake and let for 3 mins). I’m not a big fan of the dairy free cheeses, but I adore coconut and almond milk. The dairy free butters go on sale quite often in health stores that do a high volume. Most of these items are off the table during my cleanse, but anyone considering decreasing dairy from their diets should know it’s not as challenging or pricey as it at first may seem!

The timing is funny this year. My boyfriend is on deadline to deliver a handful of dairy-based recipes to a magazine. Our fridge is packed with whey, gallons of milk, cheesy concoctions and … my produce. Guess whose side is considered the good time side?