Detox Jello + my successes (and failures) so far…

I’m in the midst of a post-vacation detox of the mind + body + spirit. My enthusiasm for this big “cleanse” was derailed by unexpectedly AWFUL jeg lag… It hit us HARD! I didn’t realize how screwed up our systems would be after a full day of traveling and the difference in timezones… A 9 hour shift forward is rough. So strange to essentially “lose” half a day. Time is just weird.

So without further ado, here is my detox plan. I intend to keep it up for the remainder of this week:

  • No alcohol
  • No sugar
  • Limit baked goods (even grain-free baked goods) and focus on fruits, vegetables, eggs, meat, and fish.
  • Take a family walk after dinner EVERY NIGHT to instill in my son an appreciation for DAILY movement and fitness.
  • Limit “work” to “work hours” (i.e. no computer work at night… Anything I do related to my business and my blogging must be done between 8-5).
  • Every night before bed, meditate on the FEELING of attaining my goals. Feel as if everything I want has already happened — that it already IS. This is from Wishes Fulfilled, by Dr. Wayne Dyer. 
  • Every morning when I wake up, force my facial muscles to SMILE. Even if it’s at nobody/nothing. This never fails to bring me positive energy for the day ahead.

Let’s be positive. First, my successes!

I have done a great job SMILING every morning. I just love this little trick. Have you tried it? It truly makes a difference and can set your day spinning in a HAPPY direction!

I have also been consistent with my pre-bed meditation, although it can be difficult to tear my mind away from ruminating on negative aspects of the day… Things that “could have” been done differently, or that “should have” been accomplished… For some reason my mind just LOVES to roll around in negativity. I have to forcibly pull it out of the mud and switch gears to positivity… I have been trying — and succeeding, for the most part.

I have been *pretty* good about limiting sugar. My “detox Jello” has been a good stand-in when the 3PM sugar monster strikes… See my recipe below.

We have been faithful about our family walks after dinner. It’s a fun way to connect as a family… I love it. We are going to keep this practice going post-detox for sure.

Now for my failures…

Alcohol… Oh, how I love thee. In moderation, of course. I truly don’t enjoy the feeling of over-indulging, but an evening cocktail is so nice… Especially when I’m exhausted post-vacation. I think it’s really true what “they” say — that you need a vacation AFTER your vacation! We have had so much unpacking to do, two months of bills and mail to sort through, piles of laundry, broken jars of almond butter to unpack (from one of the many packages we sent home from our American shopping extravaganzas)… A festive little cocktail is such a nice way to “wind down” (and a hard habit to break).

Baked goods… My other weakness. I just love starting off the day with a little slice of bread, or a muffin, or SOMETHING baked and grain-like! I have been eating grain-free breads and muffins in the morning ever since going Paleo (it’s been well over 6 months now), which has been fine… But the problem is that one slice leads to two, or one muffin leads to two, and pretty soon I’ve ingested a helluva lot of almond flour (and other grain-free baking ingredients) into my system. I wish I could get my mind + body to enjoy light fare in the morning… But I just prefer dense and filling. Eggs and grain free toast, please. I just don’t think this is going to change for me! (Perhaps I’ll just knock this item off of my detox plan!)

Lastly, keeping computer time contained to 8-5 is not happening (yet). I think this will be easier when my son enters full-time kindergarten this Fall, but at the moment, I have to fit things in when I get the time. Which — at the moment — is 9:17 at night. Oops.

Overall, I think I’m doing pretty well. My system is still sluggish (if you know what I mean), which always happens to me with a change in environment, but I’m sure things will be back on track soon.

Here’s my recipe for “Detox Jello.” I’m actually going to call it “Detox Gelatin Dessert” because the folks at Jell-O might have a fit if I call it “Jello.” It’s cool, refreshing, delightfully jiggly, full of electrolytes (from the coconut water), and great for my skin and digestion (from the gelatin). See this article if you’re interested in reading more about the health benefits of including gelatin in your diet!

Detox Gelatin Dessert

  • 11 oz cold coconut water (straight out of the refrigerator… Make sure that it’s super cold!)
  • 3 cups 100% fruit juice (no added sugars or sweeteners — look for something low in natural sugars — I use a blueberry/cranberry blend), heated to almost boiling
  • 4 Tablespoons gelatin (I love Vital Proteins brand)
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp cinnamon

Pour cold coconut water into 9×13 pan. Sprinkle gelatin over cold coconut water and let sit while you’re heating the juice to *almost* boiling. When juice is almost boiling, pour it over the coconut water + gelatin. Stir with a whisk until gelatin is completely dissolved — about 3-4 minutes. Add cinnamon (1/2 to 1 tsp, to taste) and stir well. Cover and place in refrigerator. Cut into squares (or use cookie cutter for shapes) when firm and completely set.

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  • August 9, 2012


    Hey Bri,

    Good luck with your jet lag! Yes, for some reason flying from the U.S. to Europe is always pretty hard for us, yet, no problem the other direction, and NO clue why; if you find out, let me know.

    I meant to comment earlier on your previous post (U.S. vs. Germany, etc) but was computer-less for a few weeks up until now (not a fan of typing on the phone:-)). Just wanted to say, I LOVED what you had to say there and agree with every single thing you said! Being an immigrant, I have found U.S. to truly be a land of incredible opportunities AS LONG as one is able to not get derailed by too much commercialism and convenience (and, well, get lazy and, ahem, big, a bit easy to do in the U.S.:-)). It took me a good 15 years to find that out:-)! SO glad you get to experience Europe and reflect on all “things relative,” it is a VERY healthy thing to do! You always SHINE, Bri, keep it going!

  • August 9, 2012


    Julia, I just love hearing from you.

    US to Europe… It’s awful! I think it’s the whole time-shift forward. Because not only have you “lost time” due to the extensive traveling, you’ve also lost hours due to the time shift. Europe to US we left on a Thursday afternoon and — after a nearly 11 hour flight — arrived on Thursday evening. It was like we GAINED time! But US to Europe we left on a Thursday afternoon and arrived Friday evening. We lost time… It felt like A LOT OF IT! It just messes up the system so much. YUK. We’ll definitely be limiting our long trips to the ESSENTIAL trips home!

    As for your experiences with immigrating to the US, you’ve done an excellent job sticking to many of your “native” values and traditions while still enjoying the ease and convenience of America. And, of course, I admire your PERFECT English! If only I could get there with my German… 😉

    Big hugs to you, Julia!

  • August 9, 2012

    jennifer Jones

    I can’t wait to try the jello. I am going to share some with my children too.

  • August 9, 2012


    Jennifer — they’ll love it! My son does. It’s much less sweet than Jell-O from a box, but it’s good to expose kids to more NATURAL (and subtle) flavors… And to prevent them from becoming accustomed to the Jell-O level of sweetness!

  • November 6, 2012


    Have you ever tried making these with agar agar for even more detoxing benefits?

  • November 7, 2012


    Zara — I haven’t! I don’t know much about agar agar (other than the fact that it’s a sea vegetable/seaweed). If you have more info to share about its health benefits, please do so!

  • November 7, 2012


    Really it is just high in iodine, which nourishes the thyroid. It can be used like gelatin (without worrying about what nasty chemicals may have been used to create commercial gelatin). It looks like there are “cleaner” versions of gelatin available if you look for them. A note of caution – the agar agar does have a bit of a “sea” flavor. My kids don’t mind, but they are used to very natural flavors. I personally think it tastes weird if I just make it with apple juice… so I was wondering if you had ever tried it in this recipe since there’s cinnamon and more complex flavors, it might work.

  • November 15, 2012


    I think the cranberry juice I used was too acidic or something – it didn’t gel :(. But yummy over vanilla ice cream 😉 !!!

  • November 15, 2012


    Zara — darn! How weird! I’ve made this recipe multiple times and it always firms up… I’m so sorry it didn’t work for you. Glad you were able to salvage it with ice cream, though! 🙂

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