Spring will soon be upon us and if you are like me, you have spent this winter hibernating. Perhaps eating and drinking a little too much. It is common to spring clean our homes, so why not our bodies? There are hundreds of detox plans floating around these days, but if you have not tried a detox before, this is one which can ease you gently into detoxing.
This detox should take 14 days. It is a good idea to choose a two week period in which you don’t have any food or drink related events planned. I like starting it when I have a day or two off just in case I experience headaches. (Do not be deterred by this side effect. Headaches usually go away after a day or two. It your body’s natural reaction to not having stimulates like caffeine or Yerba Mate, as well as, a side effect of toxins being released).
Days 1 to 14: You’ll eat only vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes. You will drink only spring water and non-caffeinated herbal teas. Try to eat mostly, if not all, organic foods.
You will be eating every 3 hours (five times per day), so that you blood sugar levels remain constant. While each meal should be relatively small, you can eat until you feel satisfied. You should not feel terribly hungry during the cleanse.
You can eat almost any fruit or vegetables during the detox. To maximize detoxification, consume plenty of brightly coloured vegetables and dark, leafy greens. For lunch and dinner, at least half of your plate should contain vegetables.
It is important to avoid eating the foods that most commonly cause sensitivity reactions in people. These are…
- cow’s dairy
- nightshade vegetables (tomatoes, potatoes, bell peppers)
- peanuts and pistachios
- citrus (except lemons and limes)
When cooking, it is best to steam, water stir-fry, poach or broil foods. Do not eat any fried foods. Be mindful when eating. Try to eat without distractions, such as television or reading. Chew all food well. Aim for 20 times per mouthful. Avoid drinking during meals. Drink liquids half an hour before and 1 hour after a meal.
Drink 3-4 liters of fluids, preferably spring water, each day. Drink lemon water, especially in the mornings, to help alkalize your body.
It is also important to focus on your mind, as well as, your body during this period. Take time to mediate, relax and or write in a journal. Spend time getting exercise and vitamin D from the sun. Spend time near beaches, or in parks. Getting gentle exercise will help you body with the detoxification process. You can also try dry brushing. (http://www.shape.com/lifestyle/beauty-style/dirt-dry-brushing). Also, considering treating yourself to a massage or reflexology.
Detoxing is an important process for your health and a great way to invigorate yourself and mark the emergence of spring.