It’s all fun and games until your jeans don’t fit! Anyone else with me on this?
If you’re like me, I did whatever I could to get through this never ending winter. Comfort food, wine and lots of hibernating. It worked while it worked, but now that the spring weather is approaching I know I need to clean up my act. And my insides too! In other words, it’s detox time!
While our bodies come equipped with mechanisms to eliminate toxins – eating an excess of sugar, caffeine, alcohol and processed foods can hinder our bodies natural ability to detoxify and rid itself of built up waste. How do you know your body is not working the way it should? For me it shows up in my skin, sleep and energy. I feel sluggish, depleted of energy by 6pm, and I either can’t get enough sleep or I awake frequently throughout the night. Not relating? How about bloating, headaches, fogginess (decrease in mental clarity), weight gain, irritability or mood changes, dry skin/hair…the list goes on.
I’m not a nutritionist and don’t claim to be a specialist, but I do have a fair bit of knowledge about the human body and it’s systems through my Kinesiology degree, and what I do know is that our bodies need to be given optimal environments if they are going to function the way they need to in order to keep us healthy.
I’m the first to admit that I get off track, overindulge and stress my body out. Luckily I’m a big believer that there’s always room for a do-over, tomorrow’s another day, and it’s never too late to start. And the good news is, it’s true!
For the last week, I’ve been prepping my body for a 10 day spring detox. I’ve been reducing my sugar, caffeine and alcohol and adding fresh juices to my diet. Why do I prep vs dive right in? Because I would probably end up with sick with digestives issues and migraine headaches, so I opt for the gentler route. Many people have asked me what exactly I do during my detox, so here it is:
3 TIPS TO STARTING A DETOX FOR SPRING
1. Eat whole, real foods and increase your water intake: The first step is to eliminate foods that come in a can or box and select fresh foods instead. Because you are eliminating toxins from your body, you need extra water to help facilitate this process. (I’m not a big water drinker. I find that adding fresh orange, lemon, or mint to my water makes it more appealing.)
2. Eliminate sugar, caffeine and alcohol as well as any other food that you know generally doesn’t sit well with you. Some usual culprits might be wheat, gluten, eggs, dairy, red meat…to name a few. . This is the hard one for me. I love my wine. Something about a nice dinner and a glass of wine after a long day at work…. *sigh*.
3. Lots of vegetables, fruits, greens, grains, legumes, and beans. Preferably organic if you can. (This is the easiest one for me as I love vegetables. Especially my greens!) Green veggies such as kale, swiss chard, wheatgrass and collards all have chlorophyll in their leaves, which is essentially plant blood. By incorporating chlorophyll rich foods into your diet you are assisting your bodys’ capability of eliminating waste while also nourishing your cells. (Perfect for glowing skin and hair!) If you find your having difficulty getting enough fruits and vegetables into your diet, try juicing! Visit www.juicerecipes.com or stop by your local Booster Juice and have them make one for you.
For me, the key is to gradually ease into the detox as well as set up strategies to ensure I stick with it and get the full benefits. I will flavour my water, drink herbal tea instead of coffee, go for a walk when I have a craving or my favorite, buddy up. It makes it easier when someone else is doing it with you. You hold each other accountable and keep each other motivated. And lastly, build in a reward. For me getting my clothes to fit properly is reward enough, but finding something to reward yourself with will give you something to look forward to when it’s all done.