Summer Cleansing

Being that I am doing a group juice cleanse this week, I figured it was appropriate to discuss the importance of cleansing at the start of every season.

The start of a new season brings about feelings of change, renewal, adventure, and a refocus on you.  It can be a time where we start a new project, change careers, move to a new city, or refocus on what it is we want in life.  When refocusing, it is important to have mental clarity and a positive outlook on whatever life decides to throw at us.

How do we make sure our minds are in the right place so we can make decisions that will lead us down a path of health and happiness?  There are a lot of ways this can be done--by surrounding yourself with the right people, having a spiritual practice, seeking mentors, getting out of our comfort zone--but I'd like to focus on one way and that is by removing toxins from our lives.  Removing toxins from our bodies, more specifically, plays an important role in how we feel.  How we feel directly affects our thoughts, words, and actions.

Ever eat a meal and feel tired and sluggish afterwards?  Ever eat a meal and feel happy and content?  This is because different foods trigger different areas in our brain.  Take sugar, for example.  Sugar has a similar effect on the brain as drugs--which is scary but true.  This is why we feel satisfied after eating sugary foods and why some of us may crash or continue to eat more.  If you are finding it difficult to eliminate processed foods or if you are having trouble with cravings, bloating or fatigue it may be a good idea to kick off the summer season with a cleanse.

Don't let the word "cleanse" scare you.  There are many ways you can about cleansing your body.  If you are new to this, you may want to start with something small such as slowly eliminating processed foods.  Start with small changes and see how you feel after a week of cleaning up your diet.  Here are a few simple steps to follow:

1.  Add more fresh fruit and vegetables

2.  Eat more lean proteins such as chicken, turkey, and fish

3.  Snack on raw nuts and/or seeds

4.  Drink more water

5.  Drink more green tea and cut back on your caffeine intake

If you already eat mainly whole foods or want to try something more intense, maybe a juice cleanse is the right way to go.  Juice cleanses give your body a break from digesting food and clears out toxins.  The most days I've juice cleansed are 3 and that is what I would recommend to anyone who has cleansed before.  If you are new to juice cleansing, I would recommend starting out with a 1 day cleanse to see how you feel.

Here are some quick tips to remember when completing a juice cleanse:

1.  Do not binge on junk food prior to your cleanse.  Start eating mainly whole foods a few days before your cleanse so you body can ease into it.

2.  Follow the juice guide provided to you.  The juices are listed in a certain order for a reason.

3.  Take it one day at a time--the first day is always the hardest.

4.  Drink (lots) of water!

5.  Drink herbal teas.

6.  Get plenty of rest!

7.  When your cleanse is over, slowly introduce foods back into your body.  You may want to hold off on wheat and dairy foods until 2 or 3 days after your cleanse.  Focus on fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.

It all depends on what you feel comfortable with and what your body needs.  Do something good for your body this summer.  Try a cleanse, eat more whole foods, kick the caffeine habit.  As you fuel your body with the proper nutrients, your outlook on life and the actions you take will be more in line with you are are meant to be.

With love and peace,