When most people first hear the term “cleanse” when it relates to food, images of sipping on lemon and cayenne water for a week likely fill their heads. But it doesn’t have to be that way thanks to The Conscious Cleanse.

One of the most appealing aspects of The Conscious Cleanse, which lasts for 14 days, is that it’s about eating good, healthy foods and eliminating big allergens from my diet. And that’s why I signed up for it. I can actually eat FOOD!

I like to think that I eat well: I love fruits and veggies, and don’t eat much meat (my husband is a vegetarian). And I am always on the lookout for new, healthy, tasty, creative recipes. Luckily, there are a plethora to choose from through this cleanse.

So how does it work? The cleanse starts off with a few days of purification where you slowly ease certain things out of your diet, such as sugar, alcohol and caffeine and add in more fruits and veggies. I must confess that I was drinking wine up until the night before the cleanse started!

Jo Schaalman, Julia Pelaez and their team of experts provide a detailed manual to all participants with sample menu plans and recipes, along with a wealth of other information and resources. I spent the weekend before starting the cleanse poring through the pages, noting my intention—to lose a little weight and have more energy—highlighting recipes I’d like to try and getting my shopping list together.

Sunday night I started prepping some things for the week ahead: zucchini hummus, almond energy balls, balsamic vinegar dressing and cooked brown rice, to name a few. I really enjoy cooking, particularly when I have time, so it was fun to spend a chunk of time in the kitchen and start filling my fridge with yumminess.

All this said, cleansing is not an easy thing. I’m on Day 3 and visions of frosted cupcakes fill my head, but I am doing my best to stick to the plan. Luckily, I have the fabulous support network of regular calls with the nutrition team, anytime email with questions to the team, and a group Facebook page where participants can share their challenges—and the tasty foods and smoothies they’re prepping.

zucchini hummus

Yummy zucchini hummus!

I’ve been sharing some photos, including this one of zucchini hummus. And I’ll be sharing more! Stay tuned for more on how my cleanse is going.