You know what? I think everyone needs to detox. But I don't think that means taking shots of lemon juice, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper and nibbling on leaves. What I do think that means is getting rid of all the toxins in our lives and making them as healthy as possible. Here's my detox plan. Personally, I think it beats the hell out of anything that comes in a box (or out of a hose).
|Um... no thanks!|
1) STOP EATING TOXINS. Clean up your diet. If you've been reading my blog, you know how important this is. Posts like this make it easy: http://melodyschoenfeld.blogspot.com/2010/12/yes-list.html What it comes down to, basically, is this:
-Stop putting processed crap in your body. White flour, white rice, cookies, crackers, processed meats, fake "meats," 99.999% of breakfast cereals, sodas, fast food... just stop it. This stuff is slowly poisoning you, and, if nothing else, it's making you fat, slow, and weak. So get rid of it.
-Cut out sugar as much as possible. Reasons: see above. More reasons: it's more addictive than cocaine, says one study: http://www.plosone.org/article/fetchArticle.action?articleURI=info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0000698 (and I can speak from experience how horribly addictive sugar can be: http://melodyschoenfeld.blogspot.com/2011/03/how-i-quit-sugar-or-holy-crap-i-never.html ).
-Buy locally-grown, seasonal, and organic/pesticide-free whenever possible. This food tends to be fresher, more nutritious, often cheaper (especially if purchased at a farmer's market), and doesn't have any mysterious poisons on it.
-Eat lots and lots and lots and looooots of veggies. Especially green ones. They are very low in calories, nutrient-dense, high in antioxidants, and some veggies like spinach are even able to "arrest" toxins in the body and prevent them from being absorbed.
-Don't be afraid of healthy fats. Healthy dietary fats (think nuts and seeds, avocados, extra-virgin olive oil, coconut oil) are probably not what is making you fat and giving you heart disease. Simple sugars/carbohydrates are. I have touched on this in other entries, but this will be spoken about in more detail in future blog posts. Promise. For now, just trust me. Or do your own research. Either way, healthy fats are good for you and may even-- gasp-- help you lose weight and improve your heart health.
-Drink lots and lots and lots and loooooots of water. http://melodyschoenfeld.blogspot.com/2011/01/its-time-to-develop-drinking-habit.html
2) GET RID OF TOXIC HABITS.
-Overdoing it. If you're like me, you tend to burn 300 candles at 800 ends. And if you're like me, you're eventually going to get burnt out or make yourself ill. Having just come off a few days recovering from a fairly high fever, I learned this the hard way. My body forced me to take a break, so now I need to listen. While I know it's not feasible for me to change or drop anything from my schedule at the moment, I do know I can back off my training a bit (I've been training hard 5 days per week lately; I can and should make this 3 or 4 days) and work on getting longer and higher-quality sleep (I've been going to bed too late for the time I have to wake up). I am taking steps to make this happen. One of my favorite quotes (which I didn't come up with, but I don't know who did) is: "You're never going to look back on your life and wish you'd spent more time at work." Figure out what you can change in your schedule to prevent burning out, and make good on it. Make some "you" time, make some time for your loved ones, and get more sleep. Find a way to destress regularly-- stress is a killer. You'll be far healthier and happier in the long run.
-Underdoing it. Are you sedentary for no physical reason? Have you left your dreams by the wayside because it was too hard to pursue them? Are you languishing at a job you hate just because it's easier than looking for a new one? Get up. Move. Dream big (no one says you have to make a living doing it-- just find a way to incorporate it into your life. This is why I sing in a band in my free time). Start searching for a career that makes you happy (if you're going to spend 8+ hours a day there, you might as well love what you do during those hours). But never, never settle just because doing something else is "too hard." Another quote I love is this: