Do you dream in chocolate? Do you leave a basket of fruit on your table when the neighbors come and quickly swap it for the donut box when they go? Do you have a secret stash of Snickers bars under your bed? If this describes you, you may be a good candidate for a weekend detox. Now let’s get this straight. A weekend detox is not just for the nutritionally deprived. It is a more like going on a two-day health bender in which your diet and health habits are regulated with the goal of cleansing your system, restoring blood pressure, and getting your digestion and blood sugar back on track. Sound like a nutty adventure? Let’s take a closer look.
Why the Weekend?
One thing you should keep in mind is that there is a reason for it being called a weekend detox. Firstly, limiting your food intake in this way is definitely not the best way to stay focused in the office and should only be done for a short time period. Also, you need time to prepare your foods and might end up having to use the bathroom excessively because of the water, tea, and juices that constitute a good portion of most diets. Thus, a leisurely day with some degree of privacy may be best.
The Nutritional Component
The detox menu varies depending on the plan you follow. The most severe ones are limited to system flushing liquids and smoothies, but more of them incorporate a restricted list of foods. Here are the general rules of detox eating.
Eating brightly colored fruits and veggies, whole grains and beans get rid of harmful substances and make them water soluble, so your system can flush them more easily. Think spinach, kale, and cranberries.
Eat foods with Glutathione
What’s that? Glutathione is an antioxidant that is produced by your own body. It can be found in garlic, onions, eggs and foods rich in sulfuric compounds. It is useful in removing toxins, including mercury and arsenic, from the body.
Drink water and tea
There is no denying that elimination is one of the primary goals of detox. Water helps you with Number 1, Number 2, and perspiration. While detoxing, try to drink 8-12 glasses of water or decaffeinated tea.
You may also want to add some detox teas as a bonus. These generally contain dandelion which supports digestion and liver function, licorice which expels mucus, and ginger, which stimulates circulation and gets rid of toxins. Licorice tea, in particular, contains a compound that is 50 times sweeter than sugar, which may help to control a sweet tooth.
Remember, your goal is to eliminate food that contain the toxins you are trying to eliminate. Avoid processed goods including fast food, fried food, caffeine, dairy, alcohol, red meat, sugar and white flour.
Avoid eating after 7 PM and get eight hours of sleep. This will kick-start your system and help develop lasting healthy habits, or at least, help you get reacquainted with your fruit basket.