Your Best Self in 2015
The holidays are officially over. You’ve enjoyed all the treats of the season while spending quality time with your friends and family. As you come down from the month long sugar rush you may find that you don’t quite feel like your normal self. Maybe you added a few pounds to your waistline, or perhaps your energy is dragging throughout the day. The New Year is the perfect time to get your health back on track. I suggest that you join the doctors and staff at NaturoMedica as we ring in 2015 with a gentle yet highly effective cleanse. Here is a 14 day rejuvenating cleanse that will help you make 2015 the best year ever. For a detoxification plan specifically tailored to your individual health needs and goals, schedule a consult with your NaturoMedica physician.
What to Eat:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Nuts and seeds
- Beans and legumes
- Gluten free whole grains (limit to ½ cup cooked whole grains per day): brown rice, quinoa, millet, gluten free oats, amaranth, buckwheat
- Organic lean meats (limit to 6 ounces per day): chicken, turkey, wild caught fish, bison, pork loin
- Healthy fats: avocado, cold pressed olive oil, flax oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds
- Detoxification shakes: These are two great options for protein powders that contain extra nutrients and herbs to support your detoxification pathways.
What to Drink:
- Filtered water: Drink at least half your weight in ounces of water daily with a maximum of 100 ounces per day.
- Herbal teas
- Coffee/caffeinated tea are optional (limit to 2 cups/day)
What to Eliminate:
- Sugar substitutes
- Processed foods (foods with additives, preservatives and colorings)
- For those of you that want a deeper cleanse, consider eliminating caffeine from your diet. This is best done by gradually tapering off your normal intake. Try reducing your normal intake by ½ cup a day until you have eliminated caffeine entirely. Another option is to start drinking ½ decaf and ½ caffeinated coffee, and slowly increase the decaf while decreasing the caffeinated coffee to go caffeine free in a gentle way.
How to Support your Cleanse with Supplements:
Love Your Liver:
Your liver is one of the most important organs for detoxification. The liver acts as a filter for the blood and processes toxic substances that are not needed by the body. After the liver processes toxins they are then excreted by one of the organs of elimination—skin, lungs, kidneys and bowels. The liver also helps to process hormones and plays an important role in blood sugar regulation. The liver works hard to keep your body working optimally. Specific herbs and nutrients offer extra support and help restore optimal liver function. A great natural product that supports liver detoxification is:
- Vital Nutrients: Liver Support Take 2 capsules twice a day
Keep it Moving:
Once the liver filters the blood of toxins, they are ready to be eliminated from the body. These toxins can be removed along with bile through the colon. They also can be detoxified by the kidneys in the form of urine. During your cleanse it is very important that the colon is working optimally. This means that you need to be having one or more complete bowel movements a day. If the colon gets backed up, instead of being released from the body, toxins will be reabsorbed into your system. To help stay regular, I recommend adding 2 tablespoons a day of ground flax seed or chia seeds to your diet. Make sure that you are drinking ample amount of filtered water and getting daily exercise to improve your digestive system function. I also recommend taking a fiber supplement twice a day throughout your cleanse. Two of my favorites are:
- Integrative Therapeutics: Blue Heron Take 3 capsules twice a day with 8 oz water
- Medifood: Ultra Fiber Plus Take 1 scoop in 8 oz water twice a day
Feed the Good Bugs:
Probiotics are the “good” bacteria that populate our digestive tracts. They play an important role in keeping our digestion functioning optimally. Probiotics are key for keeping our immune systems strong. Recent research also shows that having an optimal balance of probiotics in our digestive tracts should be supportive of weight loss and weight management.
- Pharmax: HLC High Potency Probiotics This is a great daily probiotic to support optimal digestive tract function. Take 1 capsule per day with food.
- Integrative Therapeutics: Enterogenic Intensive Probiotics This is a more potent probiotic, great for people with digestive issues and a history of antibiotic use. Take 1 capsule per day with food
Get Your Sweat On:
Skin is also an organ of elimination. Sweating is a great way to promote detoxification. I recommend 30-60 minutes of aerobic exercise 5 days a week during your cleanse. Hot yoga is an excellent way to work up a healthy sweat while improving your flexibility and promoting relaxation. A sauna or Epsom salt bath is another great way to promote detoxification through the skin. Try 20 minutes in the sauna post workout or take a nice relaxing Epsom salt bath. Dissolve 4 cups of Epsom salts (available at your local pharmacy) in a tub full of hot water. Soak for 20 minutes. Finish your soak by rinsing off. Epsom salts are rich in magnesium, a mineral that is necessary for proper detoxification.
Now is the perfect time of year to commit to improving your health. This two week detoxification will give your body a much needed rest and chance to restore itself on a deep level. At the end of two weeks you will feel lighter, more energetic and ready to take on the New Year!