Jewish Journal

When it’s Time

by Michelle Azar

February 12, 2014 | 11:18 am

You know a detox is in store when:

Your one cup of coffee bleeds into 6. And you still feel sleepy.

Your irritation level supersedes your enjoyment level.

Your every event is tagged on to the next treat.

Before the holidays, we spoke about doing a cleanse together. I know some of you have heard me pontificate on the benefits of these practices, and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to determine that when any one thing becomes too compelling, the body’s dependency on it must be investigated. But the truth is, it can only be addressed when the time is right.

I woke up Sunday morning in Scottsdale after a fun filled celebratory weekend, and though tired, I felt I could not have another cup of coffee. I waited it out, thinking I would probably want one soon. But nothing, not even during or after an adventurous 8 hour drive home. No reaching for it the next day either , nor the next. Instead, I found myself at Whole Foods, buying over priced, cold pressed juices and the fermented Kombucha teas I like so well. Then I noticed the absence of the coffee led to an absence of the sugar, little that I may have had regularly, and an absence of the cravings for wheat. Suddenly, I found myself  juicing again. The act I used to engage in daily when I was sorely anemic then lost any steam for, was super easy and available again.

I am on day 4 and just listening to myself. Not making any major declarations or decisions. And I like it. I feel less entangled, more patient. Sweeter. And certainly that sweetness seeps into my every part of my day and night.

I am no stranger to this honeymoon feeling. I know that dark liquid lurks just around the corner waiting to toy with all this new light. I know the pretty treats that disguise all the fatigue and allergies  are not far away. But for today, life free of these dependencies feels so much sweeter.

If you are interested in cleansing, but it feels daunting, take one meal of your day and turn it into a liquid meal. Smoothies I think are the easier beginning, as it still feels thick and substantial. All you need is a blender, and the clean up is easier maybe. But if you can get a fresh juice in there a couple times a week, do. Buy a juice or two, doesn’t have to be expensive, you can start with the nice Evolution brand that sells at Starbucks even. Just read ingredients carefully. And limit the word BANANAS… Start with one, try a different kind, begin to build a repertoire. And then sip slowly and listen. Listen and feel as the days go on what your body tells you. You will know your level of addiction too by how difficult the first few days are.

Maybe we share a week of detox eating and yoga practice in March?  A good spring cleaning post this time of more free form personal investigation sounds ideal to me!

I offer you  some reading material as well: Gabrielle Bernstein, a former addict turned inspirational speaker and writer plus Elisa Goodman cancer survivior turned nutritionist.

Food for thought, I suppose. Liquid food if nothing else.

In peace, joy, and great freedom,



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Michelle fell in love with the practice of Ashtanga Yoga, the system of Hatha Yoga taught by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, some 13 years ago while doing a play in San Francisco. Having...

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