Now the celebrations are over it is time to take care of your body again. After a whopping average of 7000 calories consumed on Christmas Day – plus all the other lovely excesses of December – many of us are feeling sluggish and bloated, so now is a great time for a lifestyle overhaul following the festive period.
Let’s realign your body- temple…
Juicing, fasting, and skipping meals, however tempting, are generally unsuccessful, and leave you feeling drained, irritable, and hungry.
Re-committing to good health, will be your focus over January
1. Commit to your Detox.
All those sugary foods, alcohol general excess have left your liver overworked and not in the best condition. Your digestive system is sluggish and your energy levels low.
It is time to flush out your liver and give your system a rest with a break from food additives and other hard to digest elements.
2. Portion Control.
It’s time to take control of your food intake. Use a small plate. That way, you won’t stretch your stomach with masses of food.
3. Eat Protein.
It is vital to make sure that you eat enough protein throughout your detox. If your diet is lacking in sufficient protein, your body starts to draw on the protein in your liver. Just include white meat, fish, eggs, beans and pulses in your diet and you’ll be on track.
4. Drink Water.
If you’re not drinking water, you’re not on a detox. Two litres or eight glasses a day will cleanse your system and brighten your mood. It works to flush away toxins and can even improve brain functionality.
Excess sugar in the body leads to dehydration, so try having a glass of water when you feel hungry. If you are still hungry afterwards then it’s time to eat.
5. Know Your Carbs.
Try to avoid ‘white carbs’ such as bread and pasta, opting for complex carbohydrates instead (sweet potatoes, rye and wholegrain cereals are good sources). These foods contain vital fibre, vitamins and minerals and breakdown slowly in the body, preventing hunger pangs and helping to maintain steady blood sugar levels.
6. Reduce Salt.
Everyone knows that too much salt can lead to high blood pressure, so limit your intake from the salt cellar, and watch out for it hidden in processed foods. Salt also impairs your body’s ability to flush out water, leaving you bloated.
7. Eat Regularly.
You should aim to eat at least three small meals and two snacks a day, eating every few hours. This will help to reduce cravings, making sure you don’t reach for the chocolate! Try not to eat late at night or go to bed before your meal is fully digested.
Purplish red and bright green foods including tomatoes, grapes, avocado, pomegranates, broccoli, beetroot and all sorts of berries – are often high in antioxidants, because of the ingredient sulforaphane, which help to renew cells and fight cancer. They also help flush out food and environmental toxins and restore your auto-immune system to its healthiest best.
9. Go Herbal.
If you develop a headache when you miss your regular coffee, your body is addicted to the stimulant caffeine. Cut the caffeine from your diet to restore your energy balance. Lemon and ginger tea is perfect for detoxing as it is caffeine free and is great for assisting in digestive issues, while green or white tea is high in flavonoids and antioxidants to promote brain function and heart health.
10. Eat 5-a-Day.
Increase your intake of fruits and vegetables. These have an alkalising effect on the body, which helps to maintain balance and provide you with the necessary vitamins and minerals. Purists can go raw for maximum vitamin uptake, and preparing a smoothie is an easy and delicious way to increase your 5-a-day total.
To re-alkalise your system try adding in a super-green powder to your morning routine.
These super-greens are a mixture of plant algae’s, which help your body detoxify quickly and safely and have the added bonus of increasing your energy levels.
Start your day with hot water and add fresh lemon and ginger to flush your system then get those super-greens in you to fight the fatigue.
12. Start Moving
You don’t have to be a gym bunny to move. If the gym is not your thing then purchase a pedometer and try to hit a target of 10,000 steps a day.
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