By Jackie Rainford Corcoran EBS Health Columnist
Spring is the perfect time to remove accumulated toxins from the body and mind. As the days become longer and warmer, you will feel healthier by moving from heavy winter meals to lighter seasonal foods. In preparation for an energized and active summer, consider the following seven-day mind/body detox.
This simple and sustainable detox can recalibrate your cravings, as well as sleep and thought patterns, and help you build healthier long-term eating and hydration habits.
Let’s start with cleansing the body. The basic premise is to use whole foods to “crowd out” the empty calories of refined and processed foods.
1. Eat only whole foods for seven straight days. For example, at breakfast prepare eggs – if your body digests eggs well – with chopped veggies and black beans instead of toast with jam or cereal; snack on nuts rather than chips; have a salad instead of a sandwich for lunch; and eat steak and greens in place of a cheeseburger and fries for dinner.
2. Replace sweetened drinks such as fruit juice, sports drinks, sodas and lemonade with water, or fizzy water if preferred. Add lemons or cucumbers for flavor.
3. Remove alcohol to give your liver a rest.
4. Be prepared: Make a seven-day meal plan using whole foods that you and your family enjoy. Create a shopping list and have your food on hand – sorry, there are no quick fixes here. Remember that regularly eating “convenience foods” causes weight gain, premature aging, lethargy and disease. Ultimately, they are the opposite of convenient.
And now, just as importantly, let’s move on to detoxing the mind.
1. Take a broadcast news fast. For seven days, skip television, radio or Internet streaming news. Much of the mainstream news is filled with stressful and depressing information and if anything really important happens, you will find out about it. If this truly is not possible for you, then at least try to take a break while you’re eating.
2. Meditate everyday for a minimum of five minutes. This simple exercise is grounding, reduces stress and helps focus the mind. Not sure how to meditate? Search YouTube for “Simple guided meditation for beginners” to get started.
3. Take a complaining fast. We are all dealing with stress throughout the day –whether it’s in the moment, or worry about the past or future. Complaining creates stress in your own body and spreads it to the consciousness of others.
4. De-clutter. If you have spaces at home or work that are stressing you out, clean them out and organize them. This simple act will do wonders for your mind.
My clients often tell me that when they “can’t eat whatever they want” – which is different for everyone but often means empty calorie junk foods – they feel deprived and even resentful. This is faulty programming of the mind. Here is a mind hack to help you shift these negative thoughts if they occur: repeat to yourself, “Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.”
The body and mind are one. Detox them together this spring with this simple and sustainable seven-day mind/body detox. Decide on a start date, invite an accountability partner to join you and enjoy the process.
Jackie Rainford Corcoran is an IIN Certified Holistic Health Coach and Consultant, a public speaker and health activist. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.