Post Vacation “Detox”

Ever since our vacation posts we’ve been fielding a bunch of questions about ‘detoxing’. Ugh – first off, detoxification is an ugly, ugly word. The word ‘detox’ insinuates that there is something in your body that needs to be removed. This begs the question, how did that something get there in the first place?

massive cheat day

“I dunno, I just blacked out.”


Well if that something is drugs, alcohol, or processed foods I bet you know how they got inside of your body, don’t you? You put them there. It is now your responsibility to stop putting them in there. THAT in essence, is detoxification.

I’m going to tell you something you are not going to want to hear. Nearly every ‘detox’ product on the market today is total bullshit.

You may as well just throw your cash down the toilette along with all the supposed toxins you are ‘flushing’ out of your system.

cat detox

I’s take your money.

If you stop putting the poison into your body you don’t need more poison to counter act it. Simple.

We don’t detox… we just get back on track as soon as our feet touch the homeland. But that’s a bit easier for two people who are pretty seasoned at capping off the debauchery.

There are also some potentially hazardous detox products out there that can negatively alter your body chemistry; damage to intestinal flora by blasting the body’s natural pH, over-taxing the liver with odd supplementation, migraine inducing nitrates (seen with juice cleanses primarily), protein deficiencies, and metabolic stressors (including blood sugar swings that disrupt sleeping patterns).

I’m not saying there isn’t validity to herbs having certain medicinal properties, but MOST of the detox products on the market make claims that are scientifically unfounded, unregulated, and in many cases bold faced lies. And more often than not, what is claimed to be inside that pill, juice, or remedy is not actually what is inside of it.

We don’t detox, we just re-regulate. Getting back to a normal healthy regimen a.s.a.p. is the best way to alleviate the stresses put on the body’s systems during vacation.

The items listed below are things Eric and I do on a regular basis. Sometimes we add in more of these items pre or post vacation, during flu season, or just when we are feeling sluggish to help boost our body’s natural functions.

Lemon Water

water-with-lemon

Lemons stimulate liver function and are tasty way to get in more H20. Stimulating your liver is important so that it can do what it is naturally meant to do – detoxify your body. Lemons are a potent source of Vitamin C, which can aid in reducing inflammation of the liver often caused by irritants such as alcohol.

Do: wash, peel then slice lemons (I like meyer lemons) and add to a container of filtered water. Store in refrigerator. Lemon water should last 2-4 days. Toss when the mix becomes bitter and tastes of rind.

Don’t: store in anything but a BPA free or glass container as the acidity will leech chemicals into the water.

Green Tea

green-tea

I cannot say enough about the benefits of Green Tea. For the purpose of this particular article it is all about the antioxidants and polyphenols that help strengthen immunity. Green Tea also stimulates liver function.

NB: If you have a Th2 dominant immune disorder then Green Tea may not be right for you.

Do: buy a quality green tea. If any of your tea is coming from China or India (or doesn’t site a source) good chance it is high in a variety of toxins from arsenic to manganese. Based on what we know right now (2017) teas coming from these areas of the world are highly suspect – more on this in a new post on tea coming soon.

Don’t: brew or steep green tea in boiling water. Allow the water to cool slightly before adding the tea and steep for about 3 minutes to receive full green tea superpowers.

The ‘Green Drink’

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First, if you are eating a bunch of greens great job! If not, the Green Drink is a great way to help put more tasty veggies in your mouth. Either way, you may want to consider this Green Drink for the following reasons…

Greens come in all shapes and sizes and sometimes require specific preparations so that the body can absorb all the goodness in them.

Kale is a great example of this. Kale contains a phytonutrient called sulforaphane which has anti-microbial properties that are only released when the leaves are finely chopped or blended. Blended kale is also easier for your body to digest.

That being said, a quick and easy way to better overall health is to add this type of high octane ‘Green Drink’ to your diet. I often replace my breakfast/lunch meal with it. The following are the fundamentals of the recipe:

1 cup almond milk
2 handfuls of kale
1 banana
1 teaspoon of green tea matcha powder
1 serving of whey/casein protein powder (vanilla)

Optional tasty add-ins
3 tablespoons plain grass fed yogurt
1 tablespoon coconut flakes (unsweetened)
1 teaspoon coconut oil
2 handfuls of spinach instead of kale

Do: purchase these items often and regularly as your access to them will be the determining factor as to whether or not this can become a habit for you.

Don’t: get tooooooo creative with add-ons. Be careful of adding in high-calorie items or doubling up on ingredients such as bananas if you are on a weight loss plan. This drink is meant to be lean and mean. Just like you.

Ruffage Rotation

Ok, so we all know that veggies are good for us and that we should be eating no less than 1 cup (for women) and 2 cups (for men) at every meal right?

Vegetables provide many of the essential vitamins and minerals needed for optimal body function and are also jam packed with fiber to help keep you ‘regular’.

But here’s the thing. It can’t always be broccoli. You may love broccoli and if you can eat it every day for four months I will give you a medal.

love broccoli

Seriously, a medal.

Sometimes too much of a good thing can potentially cause problems. For example, eating too many cruciferous veggies too often can theoretically reduce thyroid function if, like most of us, you’re iodine intake isn’t high. However, those vegetables also have tons of great benefits you don’t want to miss out on. Avoiding any downside is as simple as eating a variety.

Rotating your vegetable consumption is similar to blending your kale. Different preparations, vegetable combinations and the widest variety possible has been shown to amp up the benefits of veggies enormously. Diversity is key. It’s also a great way to experiment with new foods. Get online and get cookin’.

Do: remember to try and buy organic as often as possible and WASH all produce before consumption.

Don’t: skip your veggies… mom has ALWAYS been right.

eat veggies

I remember this like it was yesterday.

Eating veggies at every meal will help you get in your daily vitamin and mineral needs as well as help keep you full for longer and aid in shedding those extra lbs you packed on during vacation.

Other Honorable Mentions:
Garlic, onions, ginger, cayenne and apple cider vinegar can also benefit liver function and help boost immunity.

Get back to the Gym

This one is a doozie. This is where I see most people ‘fall off the wagon’.

Healthy habits are the key to success. (Well, that and writing down your goals). It takes hard work and effort to get these healthy habits going and nirvana is truly only reached once those habits do not feel like habits any longer — they are simply a normal way of life.

For us, exercise is a part of our normal existence and we endeavor to keep it that way. This is why when we get home from a vacation right back to the gym we go! No negotiating. Just like you have to catch up on e-mails and scoop the cat poop after a weekend away, you also have to pick up your exercise regimen where you left off. Immediately.

vacation depression

Resist the temptation to allow yourself to “pick it up in a few days.” Trust me, a few days often turns into next week, next month, and then… a New Year’s resolution.

Once at the gym do your best to give it all you got. Don’t worry about PR’s or missing that last lift. The important part is that you did the work and reinforced a positive habit.

Welcome home and happy re-regulating!

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