If the Christmas and festive season has left you feeling a little lack-lustre, you might be thinking that you need to detox. It’s something that lots of my patients have been asking me about over the last couple of weeks and while I’m not anti-detox (especially when it is done properly AND in an integrative fashion) most of the time, people need ‘re-nourishment’ as opposed to detoxing. Here are some of my top tips to help you renourish your body and get you glow on!

Add a teaspoon of chia seeds to your water each morning

Chia seeds are one of those things I think everyone should have in their cupboard! They are so versatile, packed full of good fats and fibre and are beautifully anti-inflammatory. These little seeds also have a rather unique property in that they produce a gel-like substance when mixed with water (you may have seen this if you added them to your smoothie and then waited a while to drink it!) This gel acts as prebiotic for the bugs in our digestive tracts, making sure that the good ones survive and the bad ones get cleared out. And speaking of ‘clearing out’, chia is around 37% fibre so is a useful way to promote regular and well-formed bowel movements. Optimising gut health is one of the most important things to ensure your body can work well, absorbing the nutrients we need and eliminating the toxins that we don’t. If these toxins aren’t processed and eliminated they go back into our blood stream, affecting the way our cells produce energy, regenerate and repair. As an added bonus, chia is also a great source of good fats which help give us healthy, radiant and glowing skin.

Invest in organic where ever you can

While you may not be able to eat organic everything all the time, try to select organic produce and foods as much as your food budget will allow you to. I generally advise people to ensure the more ‘fatty’ food sources like meats, poultry (including eggs), dairy, nuts, seeds and oils are organic. When toxins come into our body (or that of an animal or plant) our body tries to protect us by coating that toxin in a layer of fat to stabilise it. Unfortunately, this also means that ‘fats’ can also be loaded with toxins if you aren’t sourcing yours smartly.

The other plus with organic fruits and vegetables is that they have higher amounts of phytochemicals. These are specialised plant substances that give the plant it’s colour and help protect the plant from the ‘invasion’ of bugs or other plant predators. These phytochemicals directly affect the ways our cells communicate with each other. The more you get in of these, the better! The very popular ‘Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen’ is a list of fruits and vegetables that shows those that have been heavily sprayed and those that only have minimal. Try and always go organic or at least pesticide free with those things on the Dirty Dozen list.

Get juicing!

Or if you can’t juice yourself, have a look at cafes around your home or work where you can source a good, preferably cold-pressed juice. Cold-pressing is a specific way of juicing that helps retain more nutrients than the stand juicing process, one that create lots more heat and destroys many of the nutrients. Juices as opposed to smoothies are more concentrated when it comes to the nutrient content, mostly because much of the fibre has also been removed. Because of this, we also need to be mindful of the sugar content, which is why I advise people to choose a combination of at least 80% vegetables and only 20% (or less) of fruit. Nice combinations that also help you get your inner glow back include:

  • Beetroot, celery, carrot, mint and green apple
  • Celery, kale, cucumber, baby spinach, mint, ginger and pear
  • Carrot, cucumber, parsley, turmeric and orange
  • Carrot, beetroot, lemon and orange

Dry skin brushing

This is a wonderful way to stimulate your lymphatic system, one of the major ways we transport, process and eliminate toxins in our body. Our lymphatic system is located between our blood vessels and our skin and relies on muscular contraction and manual stimulation to move the lymphatic fluid along to our lymph nodes or ‘glands’. These are dense section of lymphatic tissue located all over our body helping us process the lymph (and the bits and pieces it is carrying) effectively.

A sluggish lymphatic system can result in toxins pooling in your body, many of which then get pushed out through the skin. If you haven’t tried dry skin brushing before, it’s super easy! You can either use a natural, soft fibred brush or (as I prefer) a pair of exfoliating gloves. Start at your extremities and work in towards your heart. Use small, short strokes in a direction towards the centre of your body. Start with your legs then do your abdomen and buttocks before you move on to your arms and then chest, neck and head.

Newsfeed cull!

We’ve all got people who we follow or are ‘friends’ with on social medial that make us do a slight eye roll from time to time…Ok, there are also people who make us do big eye roll lots of the time! Why do we keep subjecting ourselves to their nonsense and negativity? Social media can be a wonderful way of connecting with people and staying up to date with the people we care about or those who inspire us. If you are left feeling flat, insecure, annoyed, angry or not good enough by people cropping up in your newsfeed, it’s time for them to go. Try this as an exercise: Open up your friends/followers list. As you scroll through it, think about how you would feel if you were sitting opposite that person in a café or next to them on the bus. Would you be excited and happy to engage in conversation with them or would you look out the window and pretend you didn’t see them? Unless you would be willing to actively engage with them in the real world, there is no need to engage with them in the social media world.

Mindset master class

Our thoughts become our words. Our words become our reality. And our reality becomes the life that we either love, deal with or whine about. Choosing our thoughts is just as important for health and happiness as is eating well, getting enough sleep and being active. Tune in to your thoughts and words and how you choose and use them. So often, we phrase things in ways that run from the negative, but aren’t necessarily positive either. You may notice that you say things like ‘I’m not going to bed late anymore’ or ‘I’m going to stop eating processed foods’. While it’s great that you’re aware of this, they still don’t really focus on the essence of what you are trying to achieve. Now consider these statements: ‘I’m going to make an effort to get to bed earlier’ or ‘I’m going to increase my fresh fruit and vegetable content’. See the difference? Subtle, but also very powerful!

The New Year often brings with it fresh energy, excitement and truck-loads of possibility! Being mindful of your expectations, nourishing your body and soul and refuelling rather than depriving will help you feel energised and inspired so you leap forward with grace, vibrancy and happiness. I can’t wait to see what you make possible!