New Beginnings - cleanse your body

At this time of year and after the excesses of Christmas we often feel that our bodies need a cleanse. On the yoga blog we are looking at ways in which yoga can help with this process. 

Here we are thinking about how we can purify our bodies through diet and in another post I will be talking about juicing. Please see the link

Why cleanse your body at this time of year?

Over the holiday we may have overindulged on fats, sugars and even alcohol all of which are detrimental to health.  See  and Please don't beat yourself up about this, its often a social thing and friends are every bit as important to your wellbeing as sticking to a 'good' diet.  

However now is the time to put things right.  Returning to a 'good' diet will give your body chance to rid itself of toxins from food and  environmental pollutants which, if allowed to build impair your immune system, your digestion, and even your mental health.  Long term they may result in degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular disease and even cancer.  

A healthy diet will provide antioxidants which neutralise free radicals in your body generated through a less than healthy diet, environmental pollutants and even normal metabolism.  These free radicals, left unchecked lead to degenerative diseases and aging.  Your may notice  your skin and hair improving when you reduce free radicals.  Also as digestion improves, you will absorb more health enhancing nutrients leading to wellbeing in your body and greater clarity in mind.

Returning to a healthy diet you should notice that your sleep quality and energy levels improve and you may even lose some weight as toxins affect your metabolism.  Any inflammation in your body will be reduced and your liver, your major organ of detoxification will thank you!

Your cleansing diet should be based on fruits and vegetables and wholegrains.  As we tend to eat too much wheat, it would be as well to eliminate this from your diet for a few weeks. Include bulgar wheat,oats,brown rice and quinoa.  Quinoa is a source of protein and essential fatty acid.  In terms of fruit and vegetables 'eat a rainbow' that is a variety of different colours to provide many different nutrients.  
Include beans, lentils, chickpeas, organic soy protein and tofu for protein.  If you are not already a vegan, cut out dairy for the duration of the cleanse as well as red meat.  You can replace milk with alternatives such as soya milk, rice, oat or almond milks.  If you are not a vegetarian/vegan eat small portions of poultry and oily fish such as wild salmon. 
Probitic and prebiotic foods are a good addition.  See  
Include nuts and seeds for your omega 3s.  
Reduce salt, caffeine in tea, coffee etc (herbal teas are fine especially dandelion and nettle) and alcohol.  Herbs and spices will make your food more flavoursome without the use of salt.
Eat organic wherever possible.  The exception to this is organic salmon.  See

Another ways to lower your toxic load include using natural cleaners for your home.  Either make your own or use ‘green’ brands.  Store cupboard ingredients make wonderful cleaners.  For instance white wine vinegar can be diluted one part vinegar to one part water to clean sinks, worktops, toilets etc (the vinegar smell disappears once it is dry).  Do not use it on marble however.  Lemon juice is a natural bleach and can be used to make a furniture polish.  Add one teaspoon to a pint of oil, mix and decant into a spray bottle. Baking soda is an abrasive and so can be used to clean pans, ovens etc. 
Reducing your toxic load by choosing toiletries and cosmetics carefully will be the subject of another post

Article Copyright © 2015 40plusandalliswell

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