What is cleansing?

Cleansing is a way of getting rid of toxins in your body in order to alleviate issues such as: fatigue, headaches, gas and bloating, aches and pains, dry and itchy skin, blemishes, body odour, skin irritations, sleeplessness, indigestion, nausea and mood swings to name but a few. In cleaning out your body you will improve your: energy, sleep patterns, digestion, bowel function, clarity in your skin, mood and feelings of overall wellbeing.

There are many different cleanses or detox programs and the results will vary depending on each individual.

Cleanses are important even if we keep our health in check. Toxins can build up in our system from the use of hormones, chemical fertilizers, antibiotics, insecticides and antifungal agents used in farming. There are pollutants in the air we breathe and a sedentary lifestyle can add to the toxin accumulation.

If you are thinking about a cleanse here are some tips:

1. Make sure your family and friends are aware of what you are doing so that they can support you.
2. Start at the beginning of the week so you can get all the groceries you need on the weekend prior. This way you can be prepared by cooking a few meals or snacks ahead of time or cutting up fruits and vegetables. This will help to take a little stress off your already busy week.
3. Decide on a time line for your cleanse: a week? 10 days? 1 month? This all depends on you and what are you trying to accomplish. You may find that as you get through the week or 10 days your symptoms have not yet cleared. So, you might want to continue on for another week. Generally speaking 10 days is a good start.
4. When you are finished the cleanse, pay close attention to your body and how you feel after eating certain foods. Your body will always let you know if the foods you chose are right for you or not.

You have decided to do a cleanse….now what? Here are a few guidelines to help you:

1. Eliminating all the “whites” – sugar, flour, potatoes, as well as, refined or processed foods, coffee, tea, alcohol, and dairy products.
2. Drink plenty of water (divide your body weight in pounds by 2. This will give you the number of ounces of water to consume daily)
3. Consume lots of green leafy vegetables, fresh fruits, lean meats, fish, whole grains (such as quinoa, millet, buckwheat, brown rice, amaranth) and essential fatty acids (omega 3 and 6)
4. Go easy on the exercise. Try to stay away from weight liftng and high intensity workouts. Allow your body to heal as it gets rid of toxins. Daily walks are great when cleansing.

Here are a few recipes to try during your cleanse:

Avocado Smoothie

1 ripe avocado
1 cup no-sugar-added pear nectar, plus more as needed
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup ice cubes

Puree ingredients in a blender until smooth. If too thick, add more nectar or water to adjust consistency.

Spiced Butternut Squash soup

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 chopped onion
2 chopped garlic cloves
1-inch grated fresh ginger (2 Tbsp)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cardamom
Dash ground cloves
2 peeled and chopped carrots
1 peeled, quartered, and chopped tart apple
4 cups chopped butternut squash
3 cups water
Coarse salt and pepper

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add carrots, apple, squash, and water. Bring to a boil; cover partially and reduce to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook until vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes. Let cool slightly.

Working in batches, puree until smooth in a blender. Adjust seasoning, if necessary.

Red Lentil and Sweet Potatoe Stew

2 Tbsp coconut or extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 Tbsp curry powder
1 diced large onion
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 minced cloves garlic
2 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
2 peeled and diced sweet potatoes
1 diced (stemmed, seeded) red bell pepper
1 1/2 cups rinsed red lentils
6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
Chopped fresh cilantro

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook cumin, turmeric and curry powder until fragrant, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add onion with a few pinches salt, and cook, stirring, until tender, about 6 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, until tender, about 2 minutes. Add sweet potatoes and bell pepper and cook 1 minute.

Add lentils and broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Top with cilantro before serving.

If you are interested in a more in depth health analysis, along with step by step suggestions on how to make healthy changes in your life, and on going support to help you meet your goals, please contact Krista to book your initial consultation.

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