I first tried a juice cleanse back in May, and I think I said I wouldn’t do another. Well, this week I am
eating drinking my words.
My motivation for doing another three day juice fast is trying to get my health under control and figure out what’s causing these really obnoxious, insanely itchy rashes that seem to have taken up permanent residence on my hands. I thought gluten (specifically, dermatitis herpetiformis, or DH) was the problem, since when I stopped eating it, the perfectly symmetrical rashes on my neck and inner arms went away, and my hands got noticeably better. I was also experiencing other symptoms (bruising, fatigue, tooth enamel issues) and knowing that my family has a history of autoimmune diseases (colitis, raynaud’s, psoriasis), removing gluten from my diet seemed like a good place to start.
I’ve had minor slip-ups with gluten over the last few months which (maybe?) has made the rashes flare, but my hands are still not great. So now I’m wondering if it’s a) not gluten or b) gluten and other foods. I don’t think it’s my dish soap, shampoo, lotion, etc, but it’s so hard to tell. The juice cleanse is really just a way for me to try to reset my system.
I was thinking about purchasing a cleanse, but I wanted to be able to control the ingredients so I can eliminate the most allergenic fruits and vegetables, like citrus (I removed this after day one, when my hands got even worse) and nightshades. I’m on day three today, loosely following the Reboot with Joe program, and I gotta say – this cleanse is going so much better than the last one. I one hundred percent attribute this to not attempting it during a busy workweek, which is no longer a problem for me because I quit my job! Just typing that still gives me a happy rush. I’m able to take it easy, juice on schedule, and nap if I need to (admittedly, I am a terrible napper, but I like having the option). I feel tired, but not terrible.
After today, I will be attempting a Few Foods Elimination Diet for ten days, which basically means I will be eating very, very few foods (probably around ten total), and really trying to eliminate cross-contamination. This is far from a nutritionally complete way to eat, but unfortunately, I don’t think a more inclusive elimination diet that removes one food group will give me the insight I need. And hopefully, my rashes will subside and then I can start challenging one food at a time to figure out exactly what’s causing me so much trouble.
My recipe posts will likely be kind of sparse in the near future…unless you would like to see a meal that includes two ingredients? Who knows, maybe I will discover something magical about combining quinoa and pears. After juicing for three days, that actually sounds pretty amazing.
As always, if you have any suggestions or food allergy words of wisdom, please share! This is definitely a learning process for me and I can use all the help I can get.