Last night a small group of Napa community cleansers met at the Whole Foods. It was so much fun we’ve decided to meet up once a week with anyone who’s interested in grocery shopping together. “What do I do with this?” one of them asked and held up a parsnip. “Roast them with other root vegetables like sweet potatoes and beets tossed in a little olive oil and sea salt,” one of the ladies suggested. “You can also throw them into a bean and rice salad after they’re roasted,” another community cleanser offered.”
We also came up with many other great ideas around foods to eat on the cleanse that may feel more like “treats”; almond butter on “Wasa” crackers, stewed fruit baked into a “Vicolo” spelt and corn meal pizza crust, rice pudding made with brown rice, soy milk and raisins, popcorn drizzled with flax-seed oil and sea salt (never heat flax-seed oil).
The group found more of the initial investment to begin the cleanse in the costs of the condiments than in the actual food prices. Many of the cleansers needed to purchase different mustards, hot sauces, jams, nut butters, salsa, mayonnaise and salad dressings.
But the cost discussion had me contemplating my own financial situation while on The Community Cleanse. My estimated personal savings while cleansing are the following; $4.50 per day for my soy latte, on average $5 per day for lunches eaten out (I typically bring a lunch or eat in), and about $15 per night on eating out and having drinks out (I think I’m being unrealistically conservative on this one, but of course I don’t go out every night). My daily savings without alcohol, lattes and dining out is about $25. If I add $20 per week for wine opened at home (again maybe I should increase this?), my weekly savings without lattes, alcohol and eating out is going to be about $195. And I didn’t even include my expenditure on cheese.
I know healthier foods can seem more expensive and a lot of the time, they are! But most of us won’t even notice a difference in our pocket books at the end of the cleanse. We’re simply shifting money around. I don’t always buy organic – I try to as much as possible, but sometimes I just can’t bring myself to pay $5.99 per pound for organic asparagus. I always buy organic or free range, naturally farmed meats without antibiotics or pesticides and organic eggs. I don’t compromise on meat. I have found a couple of grocery stores to have better prices on the organic greens like kale, Swiss chard, dandelion greens and arugula as well as other organic fruits like apples, pears and frozen berries. Sometimes it pays to shop around!