Detox: We all know it's a good idea. We're sure we need it, but where do we begin? And can we really commit? The answer, dear friends, is YES! Below I will describe a cleanse that will brighten your health, body, and mind. We're all unique, so there is no one recipe that fits all; however, these tips will help you spring forward and experience a new perspective and better health.
Getting Started 1. Pick a REALISTIC amount of time to immerse yourself in the cleansing process. I'm recommending a cleanse that lasts only 3 to 5 days. 100% immersion for 3 days is of more value than a half-hearted attempt for a week. (Note: if you've completed 3 days, and you're feeling good, keep going!) 2. Go Organic! Use organic and uncooked produce for the majority of your cleanse. Think fresh, raw, alive. Real food equates to real energy. Avoid packaged, boxed, and refined products! Also, buy larger amounts of food than you're used to. Set yourself up for success! 3. Work synergistically from the four foundations of the "One of a Kind" cleanse provided below. All are vital and offer something unique to your cleansing process. Use these tools to build your meals, snacks, and activities for the duration of your cleanse. 4. Drink purified water or natural spring water all day every day. Aim for a gallon and replace caffeinated beverages with lemon water or green tea, add honey or maple syrup only if you must.
One of a Kind Cleanse
1. Sweet & Cleansing: What other cleanse features Sweetness? None! However, this little treat is not to be taken for granted. These foods are powerful healers and set you up for success. Pick the foods from this list that you will actually eat and buy lots of them so there are no excuses that you ran out! Reach for "sweet & cleansing" when you want something delicious to fill your belly, cleanse, soothe, and move your intestines. Apple: (raw, with peel) Let's put a fresh face on an old favorite- the temptation of the apple may have just been worth it. Numerous studies show that apples reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, asthma, and type II diabetes. Rich in phytochemicals like ellagic acid, chlorogenic acid, and quercetin, the apple calms and nourishes your whole being. High pectin (soluble fiber) also encourages healthy gut mobility and normalizes both diarrhea and constipation.
Melon (Cantaloupe, watermelon, honeydew, papaya) Lower in calories and nutrient dense, melons like Cantaloupe are high in vitamins C, folate, B3, B5, and B1 adenosine and are packed with live enzymes to help you break down food, wastes, and calm inflammation.
Bananas: Help regulate heart function, body fluids, and bloat with high levels of potassium, Vitamin C, biotin, magnesium, and riboflavin. Soothing to the digestive tract, bananas are rich in pectin, a soluble fiber that lowers cholesterol and normalizes bowel function. Because they are higher in calories, use bananas when you need a little extra energy to stick to your cleanse.
Avocado: This fruit is worth its weight in gold. It provides healthy fats and energy for your cleansing success. High in potassium, vitamins E, B, and fiber, avocados are satisfying, moisten the skin, and reduce cholesterol. Healthy fats are vital to a healthy body and endocrine system.
Berries (cherries, blueberries, black berries, raspberries) Cherries offer a unique aspect to this cleanse. High in flavonoids, perillyl alcohol, anthocyanidins, and proanthocyanidians, cherries are anti-inflammatory. You got it, nature's "Advil," but more effective and without clogging chemicals. These sweet little babies are delicious, antioxidant packed power-houses that ease pain, repair tissue, and can even help put you to sleep naturally thanks to their high content of melatonin.
2. Building & Cleansing: All of our tissues are built from proteins, so clean protein is a critical step in the building aspect of the cleanse--and so are the nourishing, unrefined fats listed below. We need healthy fats and protein to thrive, repair, and grow. Use this list for meals, snacking, and for feeling strong in the cleansing process. Reach for organic whenever you can.
- Wild Salmon
- Flax Oil
- Coconut Oil
3. Actively Cleansing: This category includes big hitters to clean blood, lymph, and liver and to give you energy. These plants should become your very inspiration for the cleanse and must be used in abundance to give you the results you want.
Greens (Kale, collards, chard, spinach, wheatgrass, seaweeds, dandelion) If it's green, then eat it. Greens are king for this cleanse. They should be a part of every meal eaten raw and cooked to give your body the nutritional diversity it craves. Eat greens in unlimited amounts.
Green supplements- This is a bonus and does not replace eating your greens. Green powders are so precious, nutritionally dense, and cleansing that they are considered the fuel of the gods. Use these powerful green supplements to take your cleanse, mind, and body to the next level.
Spirulina - Blue-green micro algae detoxifies the kidney and the liver and builds and enriches the blood. By cleansing the cardiovascular system, it enhances intestinal flora and prevents disease.
Chlorella - A nutritional algae high in nucleic acid, chlorella is used to promote growth, increase health and longevity, and strengthen the immune system. Blue-Green Algae - A cooling, energizing, anti-depressant, blue-green algae nourishes neural pathways, and helps cleanse the liver. Recommended: HealthforceVitamineral Greens, Garden of Life Perfect Food Raw Greens, Spirulina Supplements
Vegetables- This may be obvious, but we want to keep the cleanse manageable. It is recommend that you use only the veggies listed so you can stay on track. This includes artichokes, summer squash, cucumbers, celery, onion, garlic, shallot, leek, cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli.
Lemons- Lemons are antiseptic, cleansing, anti-microbial, and reduce mucus. Drink a large glass of purified water with ½ a fresh lemon every morning upon waking and again before bed.
4. Body/Mind Cleansing: Baths- Hot baths induce sweating, move lymph, cleanse cells, and support relaxation. Use a half-cup of baking soda (to alkalize, calm and deodorize) and 2 cups of Epsom salts to take your cleanse to the next level.
Exercising in Nature- Just 5 minutes of being in nature increases feelings of happiness and confidence, and those who exercise outside report feeling less tense, less tired, and more calm compared to those who exercised indoors.
Taking a wellness day- No work, no phone, just do it. Alone time, or undisturbed time with your loved ones, is an instant way to boost mood and fills you with a sense of purpose and thankfulness.
Emotional Cleansing - Journal & Meditate Daily This is one of the most critical steps that is often overlooked. Taking the time daily to meditate clears your mind and allows you to make better decisions. Journaling through the process of detox gives you a chance to see what is coming up for you, promotes self awareness, and increases your discipline. Use a journal to celebrate or despise your cleanse! Just write it down.
Sleep- The "One of a Kind" cleanse wouldn't be complete without REST, SLEEP, and RESTORATION. More than 8 hours of rest prevents disease and is a profound way to heal, release, and build a fresh new you. So get your approved cleansing foods, eat abundantly, walk, bathe, and dream your cleanse away. Use this time as one of introspection and rejuvenation and take a leap toward your greatness and make this the best Spring yet!
Written by Elizabeth Willis, Clinical Herbalist and Nutritionist For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.