At this time of year, the buzzword seems to be ‘detox’, but did you know that the body detox’s itself all of the time? So rather than jumping on the bandwagon and paying a lot for the latest detox supplement or health programme, I thought I share some tips to help you stay healthy and support your body to detox all year round. After all detoxing is just removing waste and toxins from the body. There are five major organs involved in the elimination of waste from the body; the lungs, the skin, the colon, the kidneys and the liver.
The body cleans itself naturally, but only if it is given the chance to do so. The key to detoxing the body is to be kind to it- you really are what you eat. If you put in healthy nutritious food, your body will be able to process the foods quickly and easily, enabling you to use what you need and remove what you don’t. Personally, I try to follow an 80:20 rule; after all, no one can be perfect all of the time.
I love fresh juices and smoothies so I try to have one a day, however one or two a week is perfectly fine. It needs to fit into your lifestyle and not be a chore. The key to a healthy juice is to make sure that you don’t have too much fruit in it to avoid a sugar high followed by a low. I use mostly vegetables and add a piece of fruit to sweeten, along with an avocado to make it super creamy and packed full of essential fatty acids.
We often hear about antioxidants and the latest ‘super food’, in my opinion the key is to ensure that you eat a balanced diet by having a colourful plate of food at every meal. Carotenoids are powerful phytochemicals that act as antioxidants and have strong anticancer properties. There are over 600 carotenoids, about 50 of them can be found in edible fruit and vegetables. Carotenoids are one type of antioxidant so it is unlikely that any one ‘super food’ will be able to provide you with the wide variety of antioxidants your body requires.
Exercise is important to help the blood circulation, stimulate the lymphatic system and remove toxins from the muscles and fatty tissues. Exercise has to fit into your daily routine otherwise you will always be putting it off. You don’t have to spend hours on a treadmill or do hundreds of sit ups, little and often works well too. Rather than spending hundreds of pounds on a gym membership that you never use, why not take some time this January to explore what you like to do and find time to fit it in? Can you park further away from work and then take the stairs instead of the lift? How about going for a walk at lunchtime, the exercise will not only improve your circulation but the fresh air will also help to clear your head making you more productive in the afternoon. Personally I love yoga, I’ve found that not only has it improved my health and fitness but it has helped to calm me down and reduce my stress levels. I started doing 10 minutes every morning and really noticed the difference. Now that I’m a yoga teacher, I do longer sessions every morning and I do find that one of the best things to do is to build in breathing and stretches into my day.
If you would like to find out more about how to support your body to detox throughout the year, I am running a one day well-being and detox yoga retreat on the 17th January 2015, the day includes 2 yoga sessions, a nutrition workshop and a stress management workshop. For more information on the retreat and healthy recipes visit my website www.active-eat.co.uk.
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