Well it is that time of year when every other health article is focusing on detoxing, harnessing our guilty feelings of festive over indulgence in a bid to motivate or shame us into a radical change in our eating habits. Now that’s all well and good, change does at least propel us forward and is better than stagnating in indifference. However your detox MUST be tailored to suit your needs! It MUST fit with your family and work needs to create consistency. It MUST be tasty and fun to engage your sense of perseverance. When you think of a detox what springs to mind?
- Raw food
- Salads and steamed vegetables
- Low fat meat and fish
- Bland foods
If you have the will power of a Navy Seal this may seem like a walk in the park, however for the average Joe, it spells deprivation, hunger and unhappiness.
I am here to share with you that there is another way! As a Health & Nutrition Specialist I support individuals like you in naturally cleansing the body; restoring vitality, energy and that zest for life. In my role as a Nutrition chef I love creating delicious real food recipes that feed the soul just as much as they feed the body.
My Five Step – No Detox Food Detox!
1 – Ascertain if you actually need to go on a detox, take a look at these symptoms and mark off how many apply to you on a daily or weekly basis.
Signs and Symptoms: [dt_cell width=”1/3″]
- chronic tiredness
- poor sleep quality
- dark, strongly smelling urine
- bad breath
- body odour
- spots, boils, blackheads
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- skin rashes, dry patches
- itching skin
- fungal nail infections
- yeast genital infections
- dark rings under the eyes
- depressed / anxious
- mood swings
- addiction to sweet foods / processed carbohydrates
- no / low sex drive
[/dt_cell] That’s a pretty extensive list right? How many of the symptoms did you relate to? If you scored more than 2 or 3 I would suggest that a natural food detox could be very beneficial.
2 – Understand the basics of how your body works to detoxify unwanted waste from foods and fluids, environmental pollutants, household and cosmetic toxins. The body has 5 key detox pathways: the skin via sweat, the liver via blood filtration and fat to water molecule conversion, the large intestines / colon via faecal matter, the kidneys via urine and the lungs via breathing. If any one of these systems becomes overburdened and ineffective you will start to see the signs and symptoms we highlighted earlier.
[dt_quote type=”blockquote” font_size=”normal” animation=”none” background=”plain”]FACT: One of the most risky cleanses to carry out is a Liver detox. Did you know that the Liver has not 1 but 2 phases of detoxification and that most liver cleanses up regulate one but not the other? This causes additional toxins to become mobilized from the safety of fat cells creating more dis-ease in the body.[/dt_quote]
3 – Get clear which foods create the most toxic overload in the body, making us feel lethargic and depressed, looking overweight and tired. Paul Chek from the C.H.E.K institute highlights The 4 White Devils (listed below) as being some of the most problematic foods. They also happen to be the ones you are likely to be consuming the most, right? These are non foods meaning they taken more energy out of the body to process than the nutrition they provide! Many of them also cause inflammation which can result in digestive, joint, muscular, energy and mood issues.
- white flour (bread, pasta, cakes, cereals)
- white sugar (in baked goods, bread, cookies, sweets, drinks)
- white table salt (added at the table but also found in most pre-packaged foods)
- pasteurised dairy ( including milk, yogurt, cheese and butter)
4 – Stock up on real foods that promote the body’s own natural detox. Yes, raw is best as cooking and storage can denature vitamins, minerals and enzymes. This doesn’t mean you need to juice everything or only eat salads. You can throw in the delicate veggies and seasonings at the end of cooking to keep them vital. Be sure to opt for organic if you want to avoid chemical pollutants used in commercial farming. Eat seasonally and locally for high nutrient dense foods and opt for organic, grass fed meat to avoid antibiotic and growth hormone residues. [dt_cell width=”1/2″]
- Homemade bone broth
- Grass fed gelatin
- Coconut oil
- Walnuts, almonds
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- Cabbage, kale and broccoli
[/dt_cell] Ensure you are gaining adequate fat and protein each day, failure to do so can cause a stress response due to a perceived lack of nutrition, preventing the body from feeling safe enough to carry out additional detoxification processes. Broth, gelatin, organic coconut oil and ghee are great sources and will allow you to minimize heavy proteins should you so wish.<