Try: Delicious Detox
San Francisco–based company Cook! makes eating healthy easy by delivering prepackaged meals for an uncomplicated, delicious detox.
My body is always pretty straight with me when it’s time to rethink what I’ve been putting into it. After a few days of bloating and my stomach making noises that sounded like a ghost was trapped in my insides, I realized my diet of coffee, garlic fries, and weekend beers probably wasn’t cutting it.
But with the stress of the holidays and workouts on my lunch break, I didn’t have a lot of time to plan healthy meals, much less cook them. That’s where Delicious Detox comes in. I did a two-day trial of its program, which delivers healthy meals and snacks right to your door. Inside is everything from the meat and veggies to the broth you cook it in, making healthy eating a snap. I was ready…or so I thought.
7:30 a.m.: Started my first day with a strawberry smoothie and six or so almonds. Is that what a normal serving of nuts is? The smoothie is enjoyable and I take my time sipping it. I can’t say the same for the almonds. Maybe it was the fact that I woke up famished, or because I’m used to wolfing nuts by the handful, but 9:30 am comes and I am starving. One of my coworkers is definitely eating something with bacon on it. The treats at a nearby table and in the office kitchen don’t help matters either. I keep drinking water to try and convince my body it’s full. This feels frighteningly similar to my juice cleanse. On the plus side, I don’t feel the usual stomach pain and bloating I get from my morning latte.
10 a.m.: I decide I totally deserve the first of today’s snacks for not succumbing to the gingerbread men in the kitchen. I go for the celery sticks and herb bean dip. There are so many celery stalks, I feel rich with my bounty. The dip is delicious, and the snack gets bonus points for taking 30 minutes to eat. Downside is my coworkers have to deal with my loud crunching for just as long. Sorry guys!
11:15: Crap, I’m hungry again. Time for more water.
12:45: I have to run an errand and have no time for lunch beforehand. Time to dive into those sunflower seeds (my second snack). I love them, and devour them in my car ride. I’d probably get more enjoyment out of the snacks if I ate them mindfully, but I was mainly concerned about my hunger.
1:30ish: Lunch time! I am way too excited, but I knew this was going to be a substantial meal. It’s actually surprising how fresh and appetizing the arugula is. I dump the greens, bean salad, and chicken into the provided tray, and top with about half of the dressing. I love it. Also, since it takes me forever to eat in front of my desk, I get full around 2 p.m. and haven’t even finished the salad. Just to be careful, I fork down the last few bites. I already squandered my afternoon snack, so I need this meal to have more staying power. I have never been so happy to see beans in my life, and never felt so virtuous not using all of my dressing. Also, my stomach seems to be okay. No weird moans and grumbles from my internal ghost. I still give the stink eye to anyone eating a peppermint Jo Jo, but I no longer want to stab them with a fork. I also have yet to feel the mid-afternoon crash that usually has me yearning for more caffeine and sugar. Then again, it’s only 2:20.
2:45: my coworker’s tapping and whistling is driving me nuts. Not sure if it’s the cleanse or normal annoyance.
3:22: I am officially grouchy. And sleepy. But I think that’s due to my eyesight being worse. Note: get new glasses.
4:43: Oh crap. I’m hungry again. Why did I eat those sunflower seeds so early?!? Why are the peppermint Jo Jos beckoning me?!?
6 p.m.: I start making dinner right when I get home. I love that Delicious Detox gives you everything you need to prepare the meal, right down to the measured portion of olive oil and garlic for sautéing my greens. Despite having comparable calories to the other meals, dinner is infinitely more filling, and supremely easy to make. I’ve never poached salmon before, and love how quickly it, my sautéed chard, and a prepackaged bowl of mixed grains comes together. I’m finally starting to see what all the fuss is about.
Day one complete! I can’t lie, it was a lot tougher than I thought. As a person who normally aims to eat healthy and has just fallen of the wagon recently, I figured my body would welcome the detox, but it looks like it has become accustomed to gluten, sugar, and all sorts of yummy but bad for you stuff. Despite the omnipresent feeling of hunger, I’m impressed by how much better my body feels. No bloating; no unexplained grumbling noises. I definitely feel healthier.
9 a.m.: Surprisingly, I don't wake up famished. I also logged some of my best sleep hours in days. Side effect of the detox? I hope so. Since I'm working from home today, I get to wait a little longer to eat breakfast, and I take my time with it. The nut-topped millet bowl takes a while to finish, which makes me feel like I'm eating a hearty breakfast.
11:30: I eventually get around to eating the first of my snacks, some Cajun-spiced nuts. I think my body is finally adapting to the cleanse, as I'm no longer famished. The lack of temptations in my house also helps.
2pm: I don't know if it's the working from home, or a midday doctor's appointment, but I don't even realize I'm hungry until late afternoon. I think my body is getting used to this! The nicoise salad is flavorful and fillng. I wouldn't mind having these delivered everyday for lunch.
3:30: Still pretty full, due to the late lunch, and feeling really great. I'm surprised by the lack of headache from no coffee, since my body usually responds emphatically. I'm not huge soup person, so I skip my afternoon snack of zucchini soup. Instead, I have a handful of almonds. They may not be part of the detox, but the instructions tell me I'm allowed extra snacks as needed, as long as they're an approved food. I figured it would be worse to skip the calories altogether.
6pm: I finally get around to making dinner. Tonight's menu includes a stuffed chicken breast, sauteed spinach, and a container of mixed grains. All I have to do is pop the chicken breast into the oven, cook the spinach in the provided oil and top with sesame seeds, and nuke the grains in the microwave for a few minutes. Why aren't all my dinners this easy? It's a filling meal, and one I enjoy thoroughly while plopped on my couch. I could get used to this healthy eating thing, as long as someone else is doing all the work for me.
Final thoughts: The hardest part of the cleanse was breaking my body of my bad habits. The first day I went through a range of emotions and states, mainly hunger, confusion about why I couldn't have peppermint Jo Jos, and more hunger. But after I got through the initial trials on my willpower, I felt better than I had in months, and noticed I was sleeping more soundly and had more energy. Best of all, Delicious Detox made it easy to eat healthy. With everything included, I was able to whip up delicious and nutritious meals without the stress of meal planning or grocery shopping.
Details: You can sign up for a three-meal Essential Plan, which starts at $355 for seven days, or the snacks-included Comprehensive plan, which begins at $435. The detox starts on the first or second Saturday of each month. Or, try it out with a two-day trial. cooksf.com.