When the housewives of the world start eating tofu scramble dusted with nutritional yeast, you can blame Oprah Winfrey. Over the past few weeks, Oprah has endured a 21-day cleanse inspired by Kathy Freston’s book Quantum Wellness: A Practical and Spiritual Guide to Health and Happiness. While on this pretty strict diet, she avoided caffeine, sugar, alcohol, gluten, and all animal products. Seems like a pretty joyless endeavor, but the diet is meant to “eliminate sources of toxins and allergens, giving the digestive system a break from working overtime to process the substances that inhibit optimum performance the most.”

This was also an exercise in eating locally. Chef Tal Ronnen prepared Oprah’s meals, and all the ingredients he used—except olive oil—were harvested from her garden. Oprah writes in her blog:

Yes, I’m growing potatoes this year, as well as beets and corn. I got a real kick out of that. I was raised by a grandmother who grew and harvested everything. Going to the garden was something I took for granted…now it thrills me to see the baskets of lettuce, fava beans, and herbs, fresh picked.

It’s highly unlikely that Oprah was digging up her own potatoes or personally shucking her fava beans, but apparently, this cleanse has made her “a more cautious and conscious eater.” Over on Slashfood, people are discussing the results of their own cleansing diets. Commenter Jason White said that his cleanse helped him identify food allergies and lose weight, while commenter Julie said hers helped her feel “less tired with a little more energy.”

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