No student ever goes through their time at UC Santa Cruz without taking at least one class that talks about the environment.  For me, that class is ESLP.

It stands for the Education for Sustainable Living Program, and it’s chock-full of hippies and earth-lovers who never fail to amaze me with their passion and eccentric appeal.  Dreads and tie-dye prints abound among its students.

This week was the beginning of section, and the 15 of us classmates met on Stevenson Knoll to talk about nature and write poetry.  Since the TA was running late, we all decided to go around in a circle and introduce ourselves, and then say what our favorite food was for potluck every week.  When it came to be her turn, one of the girls surprised me by informing us all that she had not been eating for nine straight days, only drinking a nasty-looking concoction she held up for everyone to see.  It looked like a mixture of dirt water and urine.

Since most of us were curious, people started asking her questions.  Why did she start doing this?  What was in the drink that made her sustain herself for this long without food?  What was the benefit?

Turns out it is a pretty common detox-diet that people turn to when they want to cleanse their bodies of all the build-up and poison naturally accrued on a day-to-day basis.  The drink is made up of lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup, and you are supposed to drink eight to 12 8-ounce glasses of it before the day is over.   In addition, every morning you drink a quart of salt-water solution to “clean your colon,” or basically, to drain the poop-tube.

The health benefits are enormous.  All of the things that you eat every day have most likely been processed and reprocessed, as well as injected with multiple preservers and chemicals that we have become accustomed to and have adapted to our entire lives.  By following this diet, you are decontaminating every part of your digestive body.

There is also a dangerous side to this diet that you have to watch out for.  Many people take it on as a quick way to lose weight, and it is effective in that regard. But if you don’t make sure to safely transition back into solid foods, it can seriously damage your health.  Make sure to follow the diet exactly, and after your 10 days only eat things like fruit and vegetables, and then slowly take on the harder-to-digest problem foods.  Try also to avoid things that have not come straight out of the earth.  They most likely contain the chemicals and poisons that your body has been getting rid of and won’t jive well with the new purified you!

If you can do that, then not only will you be making a healthy choice and clearing out your body (and colon), but you also don’t have to pay for food for over a week!  For us college students, this diet can always come in handy in a pinch.

To learn more about this diet, visit: