Do you need a Detox?
Weekend indulgences or hoilday parties got you thinking about a detox to "reset" or get back on track? Hold the lemon water and broth....read on before you mix up any magical potions!
Detox diets are all the rage right now, but is important to understand a few things before you make the decision to detox! Most detox diets involve limiting or completely removing certain foods (or even entire food groups) from your diet, fasting, and or liquid only diets for specific periods of time. This may result in a desirable outcome of quick weight loss, but since the plan can not be sustained, the weight loss is typically only water weight (hello dehydration...) and short lived. Also, while on a strict detox you could be at risk for increased fatigue, and deficiencies in certain vitamins, minerals, and protein. Luckily, our bodies- particularly our liver and kidneys are experts at removing toxins on their own, regardless of our diet.
There are a handful of scenarios in which a detox, or more appropriately named “elimination diet” can serve a useful purpose when carefully planned and managed with the help of a qualified nutritionist or doctor. Some of these include identifying food intolerances or sensitivities, and targeting gut issues like bacterial overgrowths or imbalances between “good” and “bad” bacteria.
So while a strict “detox” is not typically necessary for general health, or “getting back on track” after a weekend binge or holiday indulgence, a simple “clean eating plan” can help to improve overall health and energy levels, and jumpstart weight loss if that is a goal.
Replacing sugary or fatty processed foods (think anything that comes in a box or package...crackers, cookies, snack foods with long ingredient lists) with whole foods in their natural form like fruits, vegetables, lean meats, nuts, seeds, and eggs will give your body the nutrients it needs to look and feel its best. Aiming for 600 grams of fruits and veggies a day is an awesome way to make sure you're getting enough micronutrient powerhouses to combat inflammation associated with poor food/drink choices. Also, being sure to crush half your bodyweight in ounces of water/day will help keep you hydrated and boost your body's natural cleansing abilities. Don't skimp on sleep either- remember we do most of our recovering and rebuilding overnight. Our body can work harder when we rest better!
So if you’re debating a detox, always remember to discuss it with your doc/nutrition coach first, and don’t discount the huge benefits a simple “whole food, clean eating” plan can bring! If you need help on how to get started with a balanced nutrition program, or think you may need to learn more about elimination diet protocols, leave a comment, DM me, or leave me an email at email@example.com