This post goes out to all the attendees of Vida Vegan Con that ate too much Voo Doo Donuts, Coconut Bliss, Upton's Naturals and Sizzle Pie. I know if I had been there I likely would have temporarily kicked my gluten and soy-free diet to the curb and indulged, no matter how sick it made me! And like everyone else, I would have needed to cleanse when I returned - so here's how I would have done it in that hypothetical situation I so wish was a reality. : )
 
There are many ways to cleanse, and it really depends on 3 things:
  1. How long you want to do it for
  2. How easy you want it to be
  3. How much money you want to spend
The Easy But Pricey Way:
Buy a cleanse off the shelf at your favorite health food store. There are many options, some in powder form, some in pill form, all with different lengths of time involved. However, my experience with cleanse kits has been with small companies that aren't available in stores (yet), but are easily found online. I recommend:
The Inexpensive Yet Questionably Healthy Way:
I've done the Master Cleanse about 3 times, mainly as a challenge - as someone who loves food, it's really hard to fast on lemonade for 10 days! Each time I've really loved the experience and felt physically and emotionally cleansed and lost some weight, but most people can't make it past a few days or suffer from side effects like headaches and weakness. It doesn't cost much to do this cleanse because it involves living off water, maple syrup, lemon, and cayenne pepper. However, though it is popular, it's hard on your system and loading up on sugary syrup all day isn't so great for you. Ultimately, it's OK to do occasionally and for short periods of time if you're in good health overall, but there are much better options.
 
The Professional and Pricey Way
If you really want to do a cleanse with long term benefits and are willing to invest time and money, consult a professional - this is probably the most effective way to detox. My top recommendation is Rachel Avalon - she's based in Los Angeles but does phone consultations, and she is outstanding. This beautiful woman knows her stuff and has a gentle yet effective approach - she will customize the cleanse to your lifestyle and give you tips to last a lifetime. Three 60 minute consultations with her costs $350 total (and well worth it!).
 
A less expensive way to get professional help is to buy books. Though they won't be customized to your life specifically, you'll find lots of great advice. My favorite book right now is Crazy Sexy Diet - for $15 it's a no brainer.

The Natural Way
Ultimately I believe the best way to cleanse is to eat healthier. The time and price involved ranges from the quality of food you eat, where you get it from, and whether you make it yourself or buy it prepared. The length of time you do it for really depends on how quickly your body responds - you may even decide to adapt this way of eating permanently!
  • If you ate too much sugar, drastically cut back on it or go without it (I've gone 2 months without any form of sugar, including fruit!). 
  • If you ate too many processed foods and empty carbs, go gluten-free and focus on whole foods. Maybe even try going raw, or mostly raw. 
  • If you ate too much fried food, take a break from salty and oily foods. Salads are great of course, but you can also whip up some incredible salt-free and oil-free dishes with ingredients like rice, beans, quinoa, and cooked vegetables. 
  • If you drank too much coffee, incorporate naturally energizing foods into your diet and have some herbal tea or Teeccino instead.
  • Drink more water!
  • Have more naturally detoxing foods, like coconut kefir, wheat grass, sea vegetables, garlic, ginger, etc.
A really natural way to cleanse is to do a juice fast - drink nothing but vegetable and fruit juice for at least a few days. Make sure you incorporate a wide variety of produce so you get lots of nutrients - this is my favorite green juice recipe. This can be relatively inexpensive if you do it yourself, and if you don't have a juicer already it's a great excuse to get one. You can also go to juice bars several times a day, but that will get expensive and you'll go through a lot of plastic cups. 

Of course it's important to incorporate some exercise into your life at all times, especially when you've indulged in yummy junk food. Here are my favorite ways to work out:
  • Hiking
  • Long walks with my canine companion
  • Biking
  • Roller blading
  • Yoga
  • Strength training (if you're in LA, you must check out The Studio (MDR) - they will get you into incredible shape!)
  • For a great vegan resource, check out Robert Cheeke's book Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness
 
What method of cleansing/detoxing have you found most effective? Share with me in a comment below
Published in Health Food

Notes from Vida Vegan Con's Budgeting & Meal Planning panel with Lidiana Cruz and Mo Martin, via Twitter feed.
 
Published in How To
image via @monkandmao

Reporting from San Francisco, it's another summary of the best things I'm hearing about Vida Vegan Con from Twitter and blogs! Before you read this, make sure to check out yesterday's Ultimate Guide and other posts from VVC - very exciting stuff! I'll be updating this throughout the day, so check back often for updates.
Published in Events


On my Vida Vegan Con roundup I started collecting all the vegan blogging tips from attendees who are at the panels, but there was so much great advice I figured I'd make a separate post! Thanks to all the amazing "tweeple" who shared all this great info! This will be updated until the end of the conference (Sunday night)

Published in Work and Business

Unfortunately, I couldn't make it out to Vida Vegan Con (click here to find out why) so I'm living vicariously through all the tweets and blogs posts, which are actually making me feel like I'm there (check out these 9 ways to enjoy it without being there). Twitter is such a fantastic way to connect with people and have conversations, and all the vegan bloggers and tweeters there are doing a great job at posting every detail!First of all, you must check out these live interviews NOW (but don't worry, they're all being recorded):




Interviews from the Live Stream - My Favorites:
Here are some great vegan tips via twitter and blog posts from today (this will likely be updated several times before the end of the day, so check back in often):

Tips from Twitter:
Tweets - My Favorites:
  • @sweeton New #vidavegancon hashtag suggestion: #wwcpgd What would Colleen @PatrickGoudreau do?
  • @bookie85: A fig is a flower. Who knew?
  • @SuperVegan: Can bloggers at #vidavegancon help spread word that pet-related #Hurricane #Irene news can be found via #IrenePets hashtag?
  • @carrieonvegan: I love being #vegan! (It just had to be said). #vidavegancon
  • @lonestarplate: definition of #vidavegancon: when vegans explore the limits of how much food can be eaten in three days
People I "Met" on Twitter Today:
Vegan Companies I Found Via Twitter:
Blog Posts - My Favorites:
Vegan Bodybuilder Robert Cheeke (my pal!) Dancing at the Galarama (via @vegan_kitten)



Pictures from Twitter and Blogs:
 
from @IsaChandra
from @LeChouSauvage
via @TheVerdantLife 
from @Brit_on_Twit 
from @jchenwriter

from @sam_metal

image from @terryhope
 
image from @loveoffoodblog
 
from @snarkyvegan
 
from @ElisaC
 
from @LeChouSauvage
from @LeChouSauvage
from @LaziestVegans
Published in Events
image by @lechousauvage
It's funny that I couldn't afford to go to Vida Vegan Con, the 1st vegan blogger conference, because I quit my job to focus on this blog and have been living paycheck to paycheck for about a year and a half. Certainly not complaining - I love my flexible freelance life, but it's really a bummer when I have to miss out on things outside my budget. However, I'm looking on the bright side as always and figure I'm not alone - there are plenty of people who aren't going because of the cost, location (Portland, OR), or because it sold out really fast. So here are some ways to enjoy the conference without being there.
Published in Events