method to the madness…

those of you who’ve been reading my blog for a while, might have heard me mention the master cleanse.

it’s a 10 day lemon, cayenne pepper and maple syrup cleanse. yes, you drink only that concoction and water for 10 days. no, you do not eat any solid food. i’ve done it about 3 times for the full 10 days and a few more times for just a few days at a time. i thought it was fantastic when i first tried it, but i wouldn’t recommend it anymore because like any fast weight-loss program, unless you change your eating habits permanently, the weight will boomerang.

and i’m living proof.

ironically, when i finished survivor at the end of last year, i immediately employed a trainer because i didn’t want that extreme weight loss to come back triple fold. well, the irony was that i worked out harder than i ever have in my life, and got so much stronger, but i simply kept getting bigger and heavier. yes, a large part of it had to do with muscle, but also with the fact that i didn’t/couldn’t/refused to control my calorie intake.

so, much to my trainer’s annoyance, and mine, it was all in vain.

anyway, the point is that i have over the year slowly gotten so heavy that i got to weigh more than i ever have. the other thing is that i am currently filming a major story line during which my character, if she were me, would most certainly lose a fair amount of weight in a short time (even if only from the amount of crying she does!) and seeing that she’s using my body, i thought i should go method. you know, like when adrian brodie lost all that weight for “the pianist”, or robert de niro gained so much for ” raging bull”. or daniel day lewis insisted on being rolled around in a wheel-chair when he acted in “my left foot”.

so, much as i wouldn’t recommend it, today, monday, i started doing the master cleanse. i had a pre-cleanse day with only fruit, juice and salad yesterday and ironically the director this morning commented that it already looked like i’d lost weight.

anyway, i’ll keep you up to date on how it goes over the next while. i’m hoping that i’ll be able to make some kind of permanent change because i really need to. i feel like if i don’t change things now, i’m destined to be unfit and flabby for the rest of my life after being pretty fit for the first half, and beside the fact that a large part of my quite fabulous wardrobe no longer fits, that is just not an option.

LEMON DRINK for Master Cleanse

You’ll need:

2 TBsp lemon or lime juice (approx. 1/2 lemon)
2 TBsp genuine organic maple syrup, Grade B (the darker the better)
1/10 Tsp cayenne pepper, gradually increase (the more BTUs the better)
10-14 oz pure water

Combine juice, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper with water. Drink every 1 to 2 hours. Take no other food, but do drink lots of water in between lemonade drinks. *my modification is that i added psyllium husks to mine to add some roughage, but by day 5 i’d had enough*

Use fresh lemons or limes only, never canned or frozen lemon juice. Use organic and vine ripened when possible. Also, Mix your lemonade fresh just before drinking. Don’t mix it up in the morning for the whole day. You can, however, squeeze your lemons in the morning and measure out the 2 Tbls when needed.

Burroughs recommends a minimum of 10 days on this. You can do 40 days safely and more.

YL Clinic says you can use Agave instead of the maple syrup. Tom Woloshyn (who studied with Stanley Burroughs himself) disagrees. Clinic says if you have diabetes or hypoglycemia, use molasses. If you feel weak or have a sugar imbalance you can add a scoop of Power Meal. Or you can try Master Amino Acid Profile (MAP) for protein without any residuals or strain on the body more info here: http:/

NOTE: Be sure to drink plenty of purified water in addition to the lemon juice.


First Day: Start with 4 oz. fresh squeezed orange juice mixed with 4 oz. water. If it goes well, drink several more 8 oz. glasses of fresh orange juice during the day. Sip slowly. Dilute with water if needed.

Second Day: Drink several 8 oz. glasses of orange juice during the day — with extra water, if needed.

In the evening make a vegetable broth (no canned soup). Use seasonal leafy and root vegetables such as: beets and beet tops, turnips and turnip greens, kale, carrots, onions, parsley, celery, potatoes, okra, one or two kinds of legumes, squash, beans, a little salt, cayenne pepper and dehydrated vegetables or veg. powder may be added for flavor (no MSG or hydrolyzed protein).

Cook lightly. Drink the broth, eating only a few bites of the vegetables.

Third Day: Orange juice in the morning. At noon have some more soup with some of the vegetables. No meat, fish, eggs, bread, pastries, tea, milk, or coffee. For Dinner, have the vegetables in the soup.

Fourth Day: Orange juice or lemon and maple syrup in the morning. Fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts for lunch. Salad or fruit for dinner.

Fifth Day: Eat normally but no junk food, dairy, tea, coffee, white flour or white rice, heavy animal proteins. If, after eating is resumed, distress or gas occurs, go back to the lemonade diet for a few days until the system is ready for food.


Start each morning with 1 quart of water and 2 tsp. sea salt (NOT iodized salt). Mix well and chug down.

f$kken prawns!

ok, so this is very unusual for me, but today, just in time for a hot johannesburg weekend (ok, sorry for you if the sun’s decided to boycott where you live), in homage to my friend and author rachel resnick’s new blog, the art of boiling water, as well as to wikus, favorite souf effrican icon, i am sharing my favorite grilled chili prawn recipe.

i have never been in a great cook. in my previous life in l.a., i ate most of my meals in restaurants, with only the occasional pasta dish or steamed salmon being cooked in my kitchen. joni mitchell has a song with classic lyrics: i’m a  pretty good cook, i’m sitting on my groceries, come up to my kitchen, i’ll show you my best recipes…”  uhm, yeah.

anyway, since moving to johannesburg, i’ve had to start cooking, seeing that paying a restaurant for every meal was no longer an option – though i tend to make the same things over and over: chicken curry, ground chicken chili, beetroot, rocket and feta salad, ostrich goulash, in summer, the occasional braai snoek, etc. somewhere over the past few years, i stumbled upon this particular recipe. wish i could tell you where i found it, but i scrawled it down on a piece of paper  as a list of ingredients with n0 instructions other than to grill at 180 degrees… yet, everytime i make it, i have people licking their fingers as well as the bowl, which was the case at my friend deon’s birthday party a few weeks ago.

so if you’d like people vocalizing vociferously while licking their fingers and maybe even yours, try this. and do let me know if you do!

disclaimer: of course, if you’re allergic to shell-fish, i’d advise you to abstain. as awesome as this recipe is, anaphylactic shock is not so much fun.





5ML RED CHILI PEPPER FLAKES (i used 1TBSP AMINA’S  FISH AND PRAWN MASALA bought at seven seas fisheries on beyers naude)







MARINATE 1KG SHELL-ON, DE-VEINED QUEEN PRAWNS IN ABOVE MIX (for at least 1/2 hr, maybe even an hour. i mixed everything and shoved the tray into the cold oven to marinate)


as my friend rachel says, if i can cook, so can you.