Six tips for detoxing from junk food

Ahhh, People.

It’s been approximately 11 days since I returned from Fitbloggin and found what was once my child.

A former shell of her Tornado-self wrapped in Lunchables quick meal things, slathered in Skittles unnamed candy treats and filled to the HILT with rootbearD.**

(I’ll let that sink in since I like to imagine you, as I, are stunned by the mere thought let alone the in-person experience.)

I wont lie to you either.

Even this my glass is over-flowing may I pour some in yours optimist had a moment of OH HELL NO!! Seriously?!

Until I stepped back a moment thought yay I was looking for blogpost fodder and this could be it!! and realized the challenge of detoxing her just might be something I could learn from.

And learn I did.

And Im sharing with you.

My Six Tips for Detoxing (you or) Your Child From Junk Food

  • Ply the child’s pie-hole with water. Whether your little one has root-beer flowing through her veins or not, the first step to getting ’em back on track is hydration.  Talk (at their age-level) about the importance of water for our bodies to function.  At 5 the Tornado fascinated by water making up more than half our body weight and the fact water can be found in foods, too. (I have no shame. I started her off with bubble water. No flavors–but bubbles allthesame)
  • Get em on a schedule/back on schedule. Traveling (if yours is riding the sugar-pony due to vacation) can throw meals out of whack.  The day after I returned from Fitbloggin (where I thought I was in-whack the entire time!) I saw flashes of light around one of my eyes (!).  I panicked.  I called my doctor.  He instructed me to eat and, if the flashes remained, come in immediately.  As soon as I ate the flashes disappeared. Because I never allow my bloodsugar to get low—I’d never experienced that before.  I needed to get back on an eating schedule and so did the detoxing Tornado.  Not only did it make her intake more balanced—she was less blood-sugar dropping CRANKY.
  • Plan healthy meals and snacks….and let your child(ren) help. Not only will they learn about the importance of planning and healthy foods though *you*—-they will feel empowered as they they choose/make the meals.
  • Create meals/snacks with an abundance of FIBER (even if it means a modicum of sneakage ala Jessica Seinfeld).  The bottom line (pun intended) is our bodies were created to detox quite naturally when given enough water & fiber and nothing clogs us (the royal) up like fiberFREE junk food.  Design meals and snacks around fibrous foods your child enjoys. Here’s a list if you need some ideas—I know I did.
  • Practice what you preach—-and RESIST the urge to preach. For the first time wanting to preach was a struggle for me. I longed to preach at Ren Man.  I composed veritable sermons in my head for the Tornado.  I came thisclose to shouting, “REALLY? YOURE ASKING ME FOR ___?! DO YOU NOT GET THAT’S mom is out of town VACATION FOOD?!”  I bit my tongue.  Quite literally.  I may or may not, however, have announced repeatedly how fantastic!I!felt! which brings me to…
  • Remind your child, when detoxed, how she felt before versus how she feels now. Of course the Tornado adored the candy.  Hell to the YES she preferred root bearD to plain, bubble-filled tap water.  That said, she also grasped on her five year old level how outta whack she felt when I returned & how much she did NOT enjoy spending time in her room trying to calm herself down.  I focused on not talking about this in an negative fashion but in an “it’s all information and arent our bodies interesting!” way. I truly believe these talks are a gift to her and a first step toward learning to be an intuitive ADULT eater (Poor sentence construction.  I dont want her to eat adults).
  • Remember & remind your child that diet (food intake) is all cumulative. Around here the motto is All things are fine in moderation. From television to turkey slices.  Around here a detox means a cleanse of sugar-sorts but not forever-banishment.  I worked to remind the Tornado wordlessly that our “diet” is the sum total of our day—not any one particular meal or snack.

Short version? Fast food and junk food compromises a child’s (or adult’s. grown-up specific tips coming monday!) overall diet because it takes the place of better options.  It’s as simple as that.

Do you have some sugar-detox tips to share?

What has worked for YOU or YOUR children in the past?

Please to help a misfit out…




**Important diZclaimer: This junkification was not all Ren Man’s doing.  Upon hearing of my departure various & sundry folks dropped by & plied the Tornado with treats.

**Please to read diZclaimer above as I enjoy being married.

**Did I mention we are coming up on our 15 year anniversary and 18 years together?


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  1. Eve says

    I needed this MizFit as my twins are going to my parents to visit this weekend and return sugar fiends!!

  2. Jana says

    I can not wait for Monday as I am the one who needs to detox LOL!
    Love the tip about reminding myself how I feel when I am not all on the sugar.


  3. says

    Ok Mizzy.

    I need to know if the Tornado resisted?

    Was there fighting involved? :)

    I want to do this with my son.

    • Miz says

      You know, she did. She asked for the same crap, errr, stuff she had while I was off at Fitbloggin and I simply turned a deaf ear.

      For me I find that works far better than ranting at her about WHY we are no longer riding that sugar pony ever tho she adored aforementioned pony.

      when I rant? she ignores.

      So I just acted as though I didnt hear her and smiled and explained again why we were choosing to have, say, raw carrots and peanut butter and not ringdings or dingdongs.

  4. says

    I think for me the most helpful, important thing you said was “practice what you preach…and resist the urge to preach”!! I love to explain and preach sometimes until people’s ears bleed….oopsie!

    Thanks!!!!! <3

  5. says

    For the sugar-eating child in all of us!
    I think I’m still carrying around some stored sugar from 1972!
    Yep – there it is. It never left my side.

  6. Irene says

    I tend to forget the fiber (!!) and also I like how you give the Tornado lots of credit, Carla.

    I think I underestimate my kids’ ability to grasp how bad they feel when they eat junk.

  7. Miz says

    I think I might have as well, but all it took was asking her how she felt when she was stomping off to her room crying I CAIIINT KEEP IT TOGETHER to remind her of how she couldnt keep it together :)

  8. says

    As you know, this has been an issue for my daughter. One of the most effective ways of ending the sugar mania, and her preference for fried foods, is to talk to her about how it makes her feel. I hated seeing her suffer (vomiting every 20 minutes for 24 hours), but knew deep down that she was learning a valuable lesson in moderation and why it’s important to eat healthy food. Her system is pretty delicate & she has finally learned to listen to her body. At snack time, she’ll always take the path of least resistance, so I set aside a little time each week to prep fresh foods that she can grab instead of wanting something processed. Glad to hear that I’m not the only one who has struggled with this!

  9. Melanie says

    That blood sugar dip is scary and happens to me frequently.
    I need your Monday post like right now :)

    Have a great weekend.

  10. says

    I like your approach of “isn’t your body fabulous” approach. One way we keep from eating junk food around here is I always keep a bowl of fresh fruit on the island in our kitchen. If there’s an apple staring my 10-year-old in the face, she’s more likely to pick it up and eat eat.

  11. says

    You are such a good mommy :)
    I love the way you word things w/ the T (which I bet was quite the T when you got home).

  12. Runner Girl says

    Again you cause me to be less afraid of having a child.

    When you lay it all out like this it seems far less daunting.

    LOL at the disclaimers :)

  13. Ana says

    Why am I super surprised that happens where you live too LOL?

    I am afraid to travel these days….

  14. says

    Loved this! Grandparents can get us off track so easily! Well she can have juice for dinner…WHAT??? No one needs that much juice ….and it is ok to have dessert without eating anything else….aack! Perhaps I will refer them to Monday’s post!

  15. says

    Grapes. Dehydrated cherries. Apple chips. They seem like snack food, and I’ve found my kids love them as much as the junk food.

    When my eldest was young (about 4), we went to great grandma’s for Christmas one day. Great Grandma brought out her huge platter of homemade cookies and held it out in front of Ellen, and said, “take whatever you like!” After scanning the plate for a moment, Ellen said, “Do you have any bananas?”

    The novelty of sugar wears off when it’s not a constant in their lives. Sure, that first rush is great, but when the routine is re-established, it doesn’t take long for kids to get back into the mindset of healthy eating.

  16. says

    Handy list of fiber foods. I have occasionally jumped on the junk food express and gone for a helluva ride. It’s good to be reminded what to do afterward. Thanks. I feel so much better when I eat properly.

  17. says


    as Q gets older we talk more and more about food and its uses. Q will eat junk (like any kid) if its available but we have really been talking about all things being ok in moderation. I also had to talk to Q about the fact that she NEEDS to eat – food is fuel – she has always been one to get too busy or distracted to eat (I know, crazy right?!?) but we have been talking it through.

    not very helpful but I have noticed talking helps us!

    much love & big hugs!


  18. says

    1. GREAT TIPS!
    2. Glad you don’t encourage the eating of adults to the Tornado
    3. The Ren Man will appreciate the dizclaimer. He is a lawyer after all :)

  19. Mom to 3 says

    In all honesty I know my kidxs’ addiction is party because I do not want to stop my own sugar addition.

    Until Monday.

  20. says

    A) I loved your dizclaimers.
    B) I’m shocked that people would ply the Tornado with sugar the instant you are away. Seriously, what are they trying to teach her – to receive comfort from food? Argh! Can’t we have one generation who doesn’t instantly turn to food when emotions are heightened?
    C) I know you must have been supremely frustrated (and pissed).
    D) Nice job handling this. :)

  21. says

    I adore that last one. It’s not one slice of pie, it’s that you’ve eaten the whole pie. While all your points are true, I think more “diet”-ers need to really grasp that last one.

  22. Mom to 3 says

    I’m rereading and noticed you mention TV.

    All junk is not food. Great point!

  23. says

    Ha! My partner needs this bad. he’s a kickboxer and because he has to work out so hard all the time he doesn’t show it but he’s a sugar and junk food fiend! Eating burgers and pizza and jelly snakes all.the.time. He also doesn’t (or at least claims not to) feel the difference between when he’s been eating crap or not. It took a sports nutritionist to get through to him that skim milk is NOT the devil. Can’t wait for the monday blog.

  24. Becky says

    It is so nice to read others face this as well. My kids are returning soon from a week with their grandparents so I know there will be detox and retraining in our future :)

  25. says

    LOL! Love the dizclaimer. I came home to pretty much the same thing. My littlest two were at my parents’ while I was gone. So, it was homemade chocolate chip cookies (in mass quantities I’m sure), and homemade comfort food (I do feel a teeny bit better it was homemade). And I believe there may have been soda involved too. They were an over-tired-sugar-strung-out mess when I got home.
    I do talk about foods that are good for their bodies and help it grow and be strong and ones that are not so great for us and we should have only once in a while. I don’t call them ‘treats’. Funny how certain food words are different for people.

  26. Miz says

    such a great point too kerri. I probably do refer to them as treats, but in the same way movies and waterparks and new hula hoops etc are treats as well!

  27. says

    This is such an important topic! I think a lot of parents get roped into the well…this is what my child will eat /likes to eat so lets just keep going with it. Another post for me to file away for after the peanut is into solid foods!

  28. Tarah says

    I am starting this over the weeknd at our house.
    Wish me luck and see you Monday!

  29. says

    I wondered if maybe lil T spent some time with friends because I really had a hard time believing RenMan would let her have all that! I don’t think any of us thought RenMan was the evildoer here, but I like it that you included the dizclaimer anyway! :)

  30. says

    Oh geeeeeez – so frustrating! Of course I regularly fed my kid crap. But if I didn’t – I’d be mad if someone else did! Wait. I didn’t always feed him sweets but I so noticed when others did.

    Cool! I’m not as horrible as I thought.

    LOL Water and Fiber? Yes… probably the core of anyone’s detox 😉

  31. Wendie says

    Ply the pie-hole with water?
    A good tip for us adults too.

    I need Monday’s post. Is there any way we can convince you to post it, like, NOW? :)

  32. says

    If you are able, and your kid wants to, let the kid(s) help grow a veggie garden and add the veggies to the meals themselves. This is a more long term solution, of course, but it’s amazing how fast they will consume something they grew more readily than something mom bought at the store.

    Also, juicing fresh fruits and veggies, like a nice apple and carrot juice with a little celery or spinach snuck in can help curb sugar cravings.

  33. Miz says

    and yes. indeed. I am giggling this is running on NATIONAL DONUT Day…

    I love the growing the veggies tip messymimi!

  34. says

    So, does this mean the ringdings are all gone? ‘Cause if not, I know where you could ship them! :)

    Seriously, I don’t have kids, but I know from godchildren and other assorted hangers on that getting them involved in the process of preparing their own snacks and meals really helps calm the complaints. Plus, the “okay, maybe later if we’re still hungry” excuse works wonders. Oh wait, that one worked for me, not the kids.

  35. says

    Oh how I wish I had done a detox years ago with mine. I’ve shared on my blog that I would go back and change how I fed my kids if I could. Now they are both legally adults and it’s just too late. Yep, I sit at dinner with them and model veggie eating:) Oh well.

  36. says

    This is so great. It’s hard enough when *I* sugar detox, I can’t imagine doing that with a 5 year old, but it’s true, if you give it enough time, you realize that yes indeed you feel better. (at least I do).

    BTW since you asked… back keeps going in cycles. Something takes it out of whack, chiro fixes it, it gets better in about a week, I’m fine, and then I pick up something wrong or clean for a billion hours all in a row and BAM, it’s back again. I’m trying to work on strength training so its more stabilized, though right now it seems that I’m more susceptible to retweaking it when I’m doing strength. It’s a fun process realizing that you are indeed a mortal and not superwoman.

    Lots of ice, stretching, tennis balls, and cursing is getting me through. At least this time it only derailed me for a day or 2, not a week or 2!

  37. says

    Oh man I love this post. I also love how I am exactly like Tornado when I’ve been derailed from healthy eating. Demanding things like chocolate! rootbeer! getitinmystomachRIGHTNOW! These are also all of my favorite ways to detox. You’re such a good mom – I love that. Really inspiring 😉 xoxoxo

  38. says

    i am the more healthy eater in our house, and i can usually get B-man to ‘comply’. when he occasionally asks me for gum or candy, i politely remind him that he has to ask his mom, or i just tell him no. i won’t buy it, i won’t eat it, i won’t provide it. or proffer it. 😉
    same with soda. nope.
    water, juice, milk, in that order, are my offerings. he eats well for a 5 yo, and, thankfully, loves brocoli and green beans!
    keep up the great work!!!!

  39. says

    Great advice. I actually think I need this advice! It’s hard to detox. I cut myself some slack over the long holiday weekend and found it super tough to get back on track.

  40. says

    Such an important post for moms with kids! Loved it!!! Heck, adults can follow as well! 😉

    Happy anniversary! I am way past that but it really says a lot when couples can stick it out no matter what! Congrats!

  41. says

    great tips! Similar to what I do when I get off track. I will be checking in from vacation on Monday because I have a feeling I might need a little help on this vacation!

  42. Stacy says

    Such an important post, Miz.

    I am going to print this out and post on my fridge to save me the preaching.

    Thank you!!!

  43. RG says

    Agreed about the water but also vitamins, healthy fats, and protein. It’s really easy to get back on track right now, when the summer fruits are arriving and the spring ones haven’t left yet – peaches, cherries, strawberries, blueberries. Start with favorite healthy meals or snacks, or something splurge-y like shrimp.

  44. Mitzi says

    Thanks for this Miz. We struggle at our house with the sugar and after reading this I think I need to do less sugar or the boys never will.
    I will be back for Monday.

  45. says

    Excellent list…it may even work with teenagers (who regularly OD on junk food, but who are more difficult to ply with reason).

    I will give it a shot!

  46. says

    I tried to install all of these tips as well. But one thing I still need to work on is to just practice what I preach and educate wisely rather than nag. It gets harder as my children get older and make more decisions for themselves. Even though we don’t have junk in our house, they get so much more of it now at other’s houses, special occasions, or school. I try to remind them of how all food is ok in moderation but overdoing on junk and sugar creates an unhealthy body. However, my boys are older and will now ask for more and more of the junk when it is presented. It is tough to just stand by and let them load themselves with cr*p but I know they need to be able to make decisions for themselves too.

  47. says

    Well, Carla, you made me (& my rebellious inner kiddie) sit up with this post! On Friday I thought I could buy a chocolate, you know, as long as I fully and thoroughly enjoyed it … and I did. And then promptly went out and bought and devoured three more (shudder! blush!) I was like a raving lunatic, long past any rational thought.

    And I felt horrible afterwards, physically and emotionally.

    Sigh. Please, PLEASE to post some tips on Monday for dealing with this! I can influence my real life kid better than I can influence my inner kiddie … she’s totally out of control, and I’m getting (argh!) desperate.

  48. says

    You have no idea how much I needed this post today!! I recently read Sugar Blues and it convinced me we need to purge the sugar from our diets (mine yes, but esp. that of my little growing folks) and it was a ROUGH weekend. Thanks for reminding me that it’s worth it and that it can be done!

  49. says

    Great tips on detoxing a child, of course they will want the convenience foods still but if you keep that to an “every now and then” it shouldn’t be that bad. I hope your detox goes well and that you can all get on board with lowering the amount of processed foods that your child is eating.

    Not only will she feel better but so will the whole household..

  50. says

    While discussing our food budget and meal plans for this summer (Ray will have the kids 50/50 vs. 60/40 during the school year) we realized that we are completely clueless on how to get these 3 picky eaters to eat more protein.

    If we’re lucky, we can get at least one of them to eat 1/2 a chicken breast. One of them refuses to eat anything ‘meat’ because she doesn’t like the texture (chicken, beef, fish). And the youngest would prefer if all of his protein were in the form of chicken nuggets. Which we can make homemade, but if he eats two of them it’s a good day.

    There is a lot of peanut butter and egg consumption.

    But when it comes to making an actual sit down dinner we can all enjoy, they leave the meat on their plates and eat up all the pasta or rice or potatoes. And then of course, are hungry an hour later and want a snack.

    I am obviously new to this whole parenting/feeding/worrying about kids thing. But I do worry they aren’t getting what they need in their diets. And their father who has embraced my healthier lifestyle with open arms, is at a loss when it comes to getting the kids to get on board.

    SO dear Miz…what do you suggest? Are their fun ways to make chicken seem less like boring old ‘gross’ and ‘nasty’ chicken?

    I’m not used to having to get other people to eat haha :)


  1. […] Six Tips For Detoxing From Junk Food from MizFit Online: She went away for a few days (a week?) and came back to her 5-year-old all junked up. These are the steps she took to detox her kid. Great post for anyone looking to feel better without fasting or lemon-and-cayenne drinks. […]