We Can Do This The Easy Way… Or The Hard Way

With the new year comes my annual ‘turning over a new leaf’ ritual: the beloved Wild Rose Cleanse. Ah, the joys of detox!

Some of my friends (make that many) have had a really rough time (heh) on the cleanse and have had to stop it part way into the 12-day ordeal. I, on the other hand, have never really had a big problem with this particular cleansing regimen before and have actually (and very geekily) delighted in the process… until now.

I started this year’s cleanse on Saturday and thus spent all weekend with a migraine, nausea, and a pervasive feeling of being feverish. The glands in my throat were tender and swollen, and I could barely stand up without a wave of dizziness cascading over me. I was cranky, my mouth was dry, and my breath reeked: in other words, I was very tempted to forgo the stupid Wild Rose cleanse and to nurse my throbbing headache with a nice, large, extra sweet latté. (Take that!!)

Why so gentle before and why so brutal this time around?

One crucial difference sets this year’s cleansing experience apart from my previous attempts (take note, cleansing neophytes):  In prior years, I took the time to follow just the eating recommendations for a few days (and up to a week) before I started using the actual cleansing supplements. In other words, I led up to the cleanse itself with some gentle adjustments to my food intake– less caffeine here, less sugar and flour there. No big deal. This year, in comparison, I sucked back more coffee than I ever have in a single day on Friday and then started both the supplements and the eating plan cold on Saturday morning— Big. Mistake.

It might seem agonizing to extend the cleansing process by a few days or even a week beforehand. After all, the cleansing tablets themselves last for 12 long days, and by most people’s standards, 12 days is plenty. However, take it from me: those 2 or 3 extra days, where you start cutting out all of the non-cleansing foods but don’t start taking the Laxaherb, etc. make all of the difference between a gut-wrenching, horrific cleansing experience and a moderate, ‘this isn’t so bad’ one. Sadly, I know this from personal experience now, but please let me learn this painful lesson so you don’t have to!

I am on Day 3 of 12 now, and the headache and nausea seem to have disappeared. However, this will also be my first day of cleansing back at work, so we’ll see how my body reacts to the fluorescent lights and the endless process of issuing out charitable tax receipts… wish me luck!

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