3 Day Detox

Now that this turkey holiday is over, we all feel terrible about ourselves. Despite what all those magazines told you (that part about filling your plate up with greens first and skipping dessert and not drinking while eating) you still over-stuffed yourself at Thanksgiving. You’re back at home, the family is gone, you are vaguely in the holiday spirit but you aren’t exactly glowing. Too much turkey and mashed potatoes and spiced cider.

Well don’t worry your pretty little head, I’ve got a three day detox for you to get you back in shape till Christmas.

I’m a fan of detoxes, mostly because of the way they make me feel. It takes an incredible amount of will power and dedication to complete one and it’s really hard not to cheat. And trust me, once you do…it’s all over.

Last year I did a 7 Day Detox which was amazing. Seriously, try it…your complexion, arteries and brain will thank you. You’ll also learn that I’m a fan of Gwyneth Paltrow’s detox since she combines juices and fresh vegetables to keep up the vitamin uptake while also giving your body a rest from processed foods, sugar and fat.

What follows is an abbreviated 3 day version to get you BACK in the saddle for that last push of stress, parties and merry making before we call 2012 quits.

It’s only 3 days, so do yourself a favor and stick to it.

The 3 Day Detox Rules (which are exactly the same as the 7 day detox rules)

1.       No sugar, salt, carbs, caffeine, alcohol. Stick to the meal plan EXACTLY or a close variation of it. Trust me I know life is unpredictable, but for a few days, be predictable. The basic principal is to eat mostly vegetables during the day and some protein for dinner or lunch. I’ve found that having protein for lunch makes getting through the day a lot easier.

2.       Do not cheat. Once you cheat, it’s all over.

3.       Try making your own fresh juices in a juicer if you have it, but also remember you can buy these all over the place. I guarantee that if you live or work in Manhattan or Brooklyn, somewhere near you is a place that will sell you delicious, fresh squeezed vegetable and fruit juice for about 5 dollars a glass. If not, there are those horrible Odwalla alternatives…but no cheating remember.

4.      On that note, experience the genius that is Trader Joe’s. I couldn’t have made it without their individually packaged raw almonds or beet and carrot juice. For cheap staples, you’ve got to go to TJ’s. This whole endeavour would have been a lot more expensive without it.

5.       Buy lot’s of yummy herbal teas. Since you will not be eating sweets or salty things of any kind, you need something to look forward to. I rely heavily upon my 3:30 snack of pretzels or sour patch kids or potato chips on a particularly slow day, but during this detox all you have is TEA. Try to vary it: I like lemon, chamomile, peppermint and ginger. Remember, no caffeine! Drink as much tea as you want and bring tea bags with you wherever you go.

6.       No caffeine. Okay, that is just completely absurd. I literally cannot function without it, so I allowed myself green tea. I’m one of those people that gets insane migraines and extreme cranky spells when I don’t have my cup of coffee. I also dappled in some black tea, but green tea just feels greener and more detox-y. My favorite kind of green tea is Genmaicha which is green tea with toasted brown rice.

7.       This relates to #4, but…buy a bag of unsalted almonds (or better yet…those individual packs at Trader Joe’s which are only $5.00 for fifteen or something.) You are going to be hungry and almonds are very satisfying and crunchy. But don’t eat too many, Almonds contain arsenic. Avocados with lemon are also a great filling snack.

8.       Plan your meals ahead (like days ahead) and do all the shopping beforehand. You don’t want to encounter the delicious things in the grocery store once you have started.

9.       You can eat meat! This is not a fast. It’s designed to make your stomach and intestines work a little harder and leave you a bit peckish…not starve you to death. You should  stick with chicken and fish because steak doesn’t exactly scream detox and hey…have a burger to celebrate when you’re done.

10. Black pepper and ginger are your BFFs!!! Detoxing is all about eliminating salt, sugar and preservatives. Obviously you need a little flavor and pepper and ginger are in my opinion, the best sources of this.

Happy Detoxing.

I’m also happy to answer any questions about the recipes or detoxing in general. Comment below or email me! 

Carrot Ginger Dressing

Your menu:

Day 1

Upon rising: 1 glass of water with lemon

Breakfast: Blueberry and almond milk smoothie

Mid-morning: herbal tea

Lunch: Salad with carrot ginger dressing

Afternoon: 1 handful of unsalted almonds

Dinner: Salmon and kabocha squash with soba sensation sauce

Day 2 

Upon rising: 1 glass of water with lemon

Breakfast: Greens juice and miso soup with water cress

Mid-morning: herbal tea

Lunch: Salad with soba sensation dressing

Afternoon: 1/2 pint blueberries

Dinner: Brocoli arugula soup and paprika swordfish

Day 3

Upon rising: 1 glass of water with lemon

Breakfast: Blueberry and almond milk smoothie

Mid-morning: herbal tea

Lunch: Paprika swordfish and miso soup with watercress

Afternoon: 1 handfull of almonds

Dinner: Salad with carrot ginger dressing

And now, the recipes. Note: all recipes make 1 serving, double as needed.


Greens Juice

You will need:

8 large stalks of organic kale

1 whole lemon, cut in wedges

1 cup spinach

2 celery stalks

1 pear or apple


1.Juice everything together (alternative kale stalks and lemon slices). Or, pick up a kale, lemon, spinach, apple juice from your juice stand.

Miso Soup with Watercress

You will need:

1/2 cup watercress leaves

1 Tablespoon white organic brown rice miso

2 cups hot water

1 Tablespoon dried seaweed (wakame)


1. Boil  water and add 2 Tablespoons of it to a bowl with the miso, whisk vigorously. Add the rest of the hot water to the bowl along with the seaweed.

2. Let is stand for 3 minutes, then add the watercress and enjoy.

Blueberry Almond Milk Smoothie

You will need:

1 cup fresh blueberries

1 cup organic almond milk

1 serving protein powder (I like Trader Joe’s vanilla version($11.00)- in that case it’s 2 scoops)


1. Blend the blueberries, almond milk and protein powder in a blender.


Salad with Carrot Ginger Dressing

Makes 1 1/2 cups

You will need:

8 baby carrots, roughly chopped

1 large shallot, peeled and roughly chopped

2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh ginger

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

1/4 cup roasted sesame seed oil

1/2 ripe avocado, sliced

1 cup butter lettuce or arugula


1. Mix the carrots, shallot and ginger in the bowl of a food processor. Chop until finely ground, then slowly add the liquids.

2. Add to a bowl with the avocado and lettuce.

Soba Sensation Sauce with Greens

makes about 3 cups

Adapted from The Angelica Home Kitchen book and modified for this detox

You will need:

2 cloves garlic

2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger

2 tablespoons dijon mustard

1/3 cup rice vinegar (not sweetened)

1/3 cup tamari or soy sauce

1/3 cup agave syrup

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

1 cup tahini

pinch of cayenne pepper

1/2 avocado, sliced

1 cup lettuce


1. Combine all ingredients with 1/2 cup hot water in a food procesor  or a good blender until smooth. Add more water if you don’t want it as thick and drizzle over avocado and lettuce.


Salmon and kabocha squash with soba sensation sauce

You will need:

1/3 lb piece of salmon

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 small kabocha squash (about 1 1/2 cups chopped)


1. Hopefully you can find already cut kabocha, but if not, pick out a small one and get your best knife and your strongest friend to slice it in half. Using a vegetable peeler, cut away the skin and slice into 1 inch cubes.  (alternately, you can bake the whole thing for 30 minutes at 350 and wait for it to cool before cutting – if you have all day).

2. Bring about 3 inches of water to boil in a pot with a steamer basket. Place the raw cut kabocha in the basket and steam for about 6 minutes, until cooked through.

3. Turn on the broiler of your oven. Sprinkle your salmon with pepper and broil for 7 minutes – it will be slightly pink and delicious inside.

4. Serve the salmon and kabocha with soba sensation sauce (recipe above).

Paprika Swordfish

You will need:

1/3 pound piece of FRESH swordfish

about 1/2 teaspoon paprika


1. Heat a non-stick pan over medium high heat. Don’t add any oil or butter to the pan (we’re detoxing remember).

2. Sprinkle paprika all over both sides of the fish. Gently place into the hot pan, cooking one side for 4 minutes without disturbing. Because you are using non-stick, the paprika should form a nice crust and you should be able to use a rubber spatula to flip it easily. Cook for another 2 minutes on the other side until cooked through.

Brocoli Arugula Soup

You will need:

1 slice of lemon

1 cup brocoli florets

1/2 cup arugula (I like baby arugula) – or watercress

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 garlic clove, chopped

1 1/2 cups water

1 teaspoon olive oil

salt and pepper


1. Heat the oil in a pan and cook the onions and garlic for about 5 minutes. Add the brocoli, salt, pepper and water and bring to a boil (about 8 minutes).

2. Using an emersion blender (or transfer the soup to your standing blender) blend the soup, adding the arugula a handful at a time. Serve with a slice of lemon.

2 thoughts on “3 Day Detox

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