How to do a Spring detoxForget new year, Spring is the perfect time to support your body's detoxification pathways
Just imagine waking up tomorrow excited to see your little one, bursting with energy and ready to take on the challenges of parenting and embrace life! Changing the way you fuel your body can make that difference and this time of year you want to be doing a Spring detox.
As parents it’s really easy to get caught up in the never ending to-do list and we forget to look after ourselves properly. I understand that completely, our babies always come first. But, our children need us to be strong and healthy. By prioritising you and feeding your body well you will be giving your loved ones the best version of you.
Springtime is the perfect time for a cleanse or Spring Detox
Why? The weather is warming up, our energy levels are increasing and we are more open to eating to more raw foods. And some of the most powerful detoxifying plants and herbs are in abundance this time of year.
Detox diets have become a bit of a fad now and most of the juice cleanses that you see to ‘detox’ your body probably don’t do you much good. Having said that, there are some amazing benefits to doing a little spring cleaning and supporting your body’s natural detoxification pathways, not least the added energy that will help you through the day with little people! A detox can support weight loss and help with a range of tummy troubles like bloating, indigestion and heart burn, it’ll give you clearer skin and better sleep too.
What is detoxification?
There are a lot of myths around detox and firstly I wanted to clear up exactly what it is. Here’s what you need to know:
Toxins are chemicals, pesticides, hormones, drugs and medications that enter our body via the air we breathe, the food we eat and the products we put on our skin. We also create toxins internally, our own hormones can become toxic if we don’t eliminate them effectively.
When our natural detoxification pathway is overworked and under-nourished it becomes less effective at clearing out these toxins. This toxic load keeps us overweight, foggy headed and can disrupt our sleep.
To understand how to support our natural detox pathways, it’s helpful to know a bit about the process itself. The liver is our key detox organ, it’s role is to turn the toxins into something that can be eliminated by the body. This is a two phase process. In phase 1, the liver actually turns the toxins into an even more harmful compound. It is really very important that you are supporting your body through this phase with high levels of antioxidants, found in fruit, veg and whole grains to protect your body.
Phase 2 is when the liver makes these toxic compounds safe. To do this, your body needs a huge amount of good fuel, most importantly good quality protein and again, a huge dose of fruit and vegetable nutrition. By nourishing your body with protein and lots of fruit and veg you are supplying your body with key amino acids and nutrients. This allows the liver to join the toxins with another molecule which makes them safe, quickly and effectively.
Once the liver has worked it’s magic you need to eliminate the toxins from your body via urine, faeces, sweat and breathing.
How to support your body through detox
You can support your body through this process, without following a crazy ‘detox’ diet.
Start with adding in plenty of high quality proteins, fats and vegetables:
- Choosing organic foods will reduce the number of toxins entering your body through the food you eat and research consistently shows they are higher in antioxidants.
- Add in lots of cruciferous veggies – broccoli, cabbage, kale, spinach, Dandelion leaves (yes you really can just harvest them from your garden and eat them!)
- The common kitchen herbs coriander and parsley are also great to add in to your diet. They are heavy metal chelators, which means they help your body get rid of metals like mercury. Breastfeeding mums should keep these herbs to a minimum though, parsley is known for reducing milk supply and coriander is a powerful detox agent.
- Easy to digest plant-based proteins – soy, hemp seeds, chia seeds, beans, peas and legumes are the perfect fuel for your detox. You must consume protein through your detox plan! You can have meat protein, but know that it has a higher toxic load than plants so choose high quality organic meat. If you are on a tight budget, experiment with plant-based proteins.
- Be sure to consume enough fibre. Flaxseeds are a great source of fibre to keep you regular, as are most fruits and veggies.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Reduce your intake of the addictive white powders – flour and sugar!
- Reduce (or cut out if you can) tea and coffee. There are two reasons for this. Firstly, taking a break from the caffeine will support your adrenal glands. Secondly, tea contains tannins, consuming too many tannins will start to reduce your ability to absorb the nutrients from all the amazing fruits and veggies you are adding in.
The final stage of detox is to actually eliminate the toxins.
Urine and faeces – yes, I talk about this stuff with my clients all the time! There’s nothing to be embarrassed about. We all do it! We must aim to ‘go’ to the toilet at least once a day, ideally after every meal. Make sure you have a regular toilet routine, drink plenty of water and follow the dietary guidelines above to stay regular.
Sweat – Exercise to break a sweat. This can be more tricky if you have mobility issues or you are currently pregnant. Always consult a professional before starting a new exercise regime. Other ways you can sweat are to use a sauna, steam room or even a hot, relaxing, epsom salt bath to help draw toxins out through your skin.
Breath – This is probably my favourite and most relaxing part of a detox plan. I encourage all of my clients to try meditation, yoga and practice deep breathing every day.
If you have stubborn weight that you cannot shift, hormonal acne, or simply struggle with having enough energy to get you through the day it could be a sign of toxic overload. I help the mums I work with to clear these symptoms with yummy meals and nourishing, whole food, not through starvation and deprivation diets.
Do you need help? Let’s talk
This is a long article and detox is a huge topic. If it’s overwhelming and you don’t know where to start, or worry you wouldn’t know what to eat, don’t panic! I can help!
I personally support Mums through detox programmes with recipes and whole food supplements to ensure you are well nourished and supporting your body in the best way possible. I can tailor a package to suit you so let’s talk. Click here to book a free quick Q&A session with me. Packages start from just £41/month and are available in your local currency, in over 20 different countries worldwide.