This Is Not What I Expected From The Detox Program
This is a special guest post by Joe Fino
I’ve been working with Dr. Rao for the last few years, but not as a patient, as a business consultant. I work for SocialRedDog, the company that does the web design, social media, and digital marketing for Shakthi Health & Wellness. I’ve seen the impact she’s had on many people’s lives and witnessed her help them change habits and get healthy. I’ve read all of the testimonials on the website and in social media, and I’ve talked to patients first-hand.
I mentioned to Dr. Rao a few years ago that I’d like to try the detox program, because I thought it could really help me turn a few things around. But I always had an excuse not to do it. I was busy with work, busy with the kids, lived too far away to make regular visits easy. You know, it’s the common excuses we all find easier than change.
The truth is that I knew it was going to be hard and I wasn’t mentally or physically prepared. Thankfully, Dr. Rao is persistent, and she never gave up on me. Every few times we’d get together she’d mention it. She wasn’t pushy but she never gave up.
After learning I had high cholesterol, borderline high sugar, and having been through a recent surgery on my meniscus to repair a tear, it all clicked for me and I caved in and said yes. It’s probably worth mentioning I’m turning 50 this year. That weighing on my min and I realize I can’t keep treating myself like I have been.
Whatever the reason, I was ready to give it a try, but I still wasn’t prepared for how much change I was about to experience.
The Start Of My Journey
I discussed everything with Dr. Rao before getting started, and I sat down with Eleni, the nutritionist at Shakthi, to come up with a plan. The Detox program is designed to eliminate toxins from your body, it mostly helps with lowering blood sugar and cholesterol. The program is completely supervised by Dr. Rao over a 6-week time period.
So there I was, I had the 7-day Core Restore Kit for the first week, the Anti-inflammatory Diet sheet, and the Ultra-Clear Renew Powder for my smoothies beyond week one. My head was spinning with information, but before I left the office I took some time to relax and gather my thoughts while enjoying the infrared biomat. When I left, I was all set to start fresh on Monday morning.
In The Beginning
I was nervous and had questions because I didn’t know if I was going to be able to do it, and had no idea what changes I would see, but most of all I was excited. I knew this was going to be good for me and it was going to give me a jump-start into a healthier lifestyle at least that’s what I was hoping. (It is what happened, but more on that later.)
On Monday morning, I carefully unpacked the box and got started. I even made a Facebook live video for the Shakthi feed for everyone to follow along [link]. Day one and two are by far the hardest days of the program. The only thing you are eating is a smoothie for breakfast and a smoothie for dinner. Now if you’re like me, you may have some bad eating habits and this might seem crazy. Well, have no fear. Eleni said I could supplement with some raw fruits and vegetables to help me through the day or for lunch if I needed more than just my two smoothies.
It worked perfectly. I had a couple of pieces of fruit at lunchtime and after the shake at dinner to hold me over, and I was fine. I repeated the routine on day two and was getting used to it.
Tip: you should wean yourself off of your morning coffee ritual before starting this program. If you go cold turkey like I did, you may end up with headaches and that’s no fun.
Getting Used To It and Feeling Better
By mid-week I was adding solid food back in by following the booklet that is provided with the Core Restore Kit. On day three I was able to include fruit in my breakfast smoothie. Tip: use a good blender! At the start of my detox journey I was using a cheap run-of-the-mill blender and it was struggling with my fruit and ice. I was following Eleni’s green smoothie recipe for the most part so I was adding frozen fruit, ice, and vegetables along with the protein powder from the kit. Knowing I was going to continue to make smoothies for the rest of the program and beyond, I did myself a favor invested in a nice Blendtec, which I found at a reasonable price on Amazon.
As the first week continued, I began feeling like I had taken control of my health. I even started to shed pounds, and I could feel an increase of energy. I had a new focus and wanted more!
It Really Works!
After being on the program for a week I started to see some real benefits. About 6 months before I started this detox program, I needed surgery on my meniscus to repair a tear. During one of my consultations, the surgeon told me there was some arthritis in both of my knees, and he scrapped some from the one he operated on. Well, after being off of dairy for a week it dawned on me that the pain I regularly felt in my knees was gone. I also started exercising again and instead of feeling fatigued when it was over I still had energy to tackle the rest of my day.
During the course of the detox program I would visit Eleni and Dr. Rao regularly, and continued to enjoy the benefits of the infrared sauna and biomat. The sauna made me feel relaxed and as if toxins were pouring out of me, and the biomat helped me relax and sleep better.
How I Went All-In On A Plant-Based Diet
After a few weeks, the pounds were really coming off; I was more energized and was feeling great, so I decided it was time to switch to a plant-based diet. You see, for a long time I had the movie, What The Health, in my Netflix watch list. I had put off watching it because friends had told me that it might change my views about what I eat, something I didn’t want to really consider earlier. Now, though, I figured I was already in the middle of upending my old eating habits and it couldn’t hurt. After watching that’s when I decided that I was going plant-based.
It started with a long conversation with Dr. Rao about transitioning to a plant-based diet. She was so helpful! I have to say that after I saw the movie I was swearing up and down that I was going completely vegan and never looking back. I was really going off the deep end all at once!
That’s when Dr. Rao talked me off the ledge and helped me realize that a plant-based approach is smart, but trying to go 100% vegan, especially all at once, would be difficult. She talked some sense into me and I figured if I’m even 80-90% plant-fueled and have meat or dairy from time to time, I would be just fine. So that’s the approach I have taken. When I’m preparing food at home it’s quite easy to cook a satisfying vegan meal and on the occasion that I’m out and find it difficult, I choose the healthiest options and don’t feel guilty about it. It’s been great for me and I’m so glad I made the change.
The Results Are In
In the first month of detox I ended up losing 20 pounds. While these aren’t typical results, you can expect to lose weight, develop better liver function, reduce cholesterol, and lower your blood sugar. It’s been a couple of weeks since the end of detox for me, and I’ve continued with my plant-based diet and exercise. The pounds aren’t falling off at the same pace they were, which is a good thing, and I have continued to lose weight more gradually.
Most importantly, I feel great and I’m totally convinced that this is the best thing for my health. I have yet to get re-tested but before starting this detox program I had high cholesterol, and while my blood sugar wasn’t deemed to be pre-diabetic, it was close. With the diet and exercise I have no doubt that all of my numbers are now lower and I’m not looking back. After I get my post-detox blood work completed I will update to this article so you can see the results.
You Can Do This Too
Trust me, if I can do this, you can too! Before committing to this new healthy lifestyle I was eating junk. There was too much protein, too much sugar, and too much fat in my diet. there was just too much everything along with bad habits and not enough exercise. I would even have a snack of cheese every day! It was so good and addicting but it wasn’t doing me any favors. I wanted to feel better and be around longer for my family and you can do it too.
If you or someone you know is struggling with weight, high blood sugar, or cholesterol and would like more information about the detox program or nutrition, please contact Shakthi Health & Wellness for a consultation and start down the road to a healthier you!