Table of Contents:
- Clear out your cupboards
- Focus on how you eat
- Consider time restricted eating
- Keep your blood sugar balanced
- Maintain a good water intake
- Include healthy fats in your diet
- Eat a rainbow -every day
- Include prebiotic and probiotic foods
- Be active
- Sleep well
Making the decision to detox is a big one and the journey from the beginning of a detox to the end can bring many symptoms and emotions.
Once the detox is over there is often a desire to keep up the good work and continue with a healthy diet and lifestyle.
This may be challenging as it can be easy to slip into old habits and after a time motivation can diminish.
Stay on track following a detox with our 10 top tips:
- Clear out your cupboards - this is a good opportunity to start afresh, if it isn’t in the cupboard you are less likely to reach for it. Throw out anything that may be a temptation, particularly highly processed foods, containing sugar, and those with unnecessary ingredients like flavours, colours, artificial preservatives and sweeteners. Make it clear to the whole family that certain foods should not enter the house (or at least be in your sight). Instead, fill your cupboards and fridge with healthy, nutrient rich foods to support your body.
- Focus on how you eat - taking time to prepare and eat food mindfully not only stimulates digestive secretions but also allows the brain time to register when you are full. Chewing your food properly, siting up straight and eating in a relaxed manner all enhance digestion and maximise absorption of nutrients. Avoid situations that lead to mindless eating such as eating in a rush, under stress or at your desk.
- Consider time restricted eating - scheduling your meals around a specific eating window allows for periods of time where no food is eaten and so essentially you are fasting. Fasting is known to bring many health benefits including cleansing and repair for the body (1). Adopting time restricted eating can help to continue the good work following a detox. A typical pattern of eating may include an eating ‘window’ between 9am-5pm, such as in the 16:8 protocol.
- Keep your blood sugar balanced - fluctuations in blood sugar lead to cravings, usually for sweet foods, and can lead to overeating or reaching for the wrong types of foods. One of the best ways to keep blood sugar stable is to include good protein with each meal. This slows the process of digestion and therefore energy release from food is much more controlled. Good proteins include white fish, oily fish, poultry, eggs, beans, lentils, quinoa, nuts and seeds.
- Maintain a good water intake - no matter what type of detox you have undertaken there will no doubt have been a focus on ensuring a good water intake. The human body is made up of over 60% water and drinking at least 2 litres a day is vital to ensure the body and mind can function efficiently. If you find plain water uninspiring then flavour it with lemon or ginger, drink herbal tea or coffee substitutes like ground roasted chicory root. Take a BPA free water bottle wherever you go and keep it visible to remind you to drink.
- Include healthy fats in your diet - the essential fats, omega-3 and -6, have anti-inflammatory actions (2) and support cell health and energy. They are a rich source of energy and also help to keep you fuller for longer. Include flax seeds and oil, oily fish, chia seeds, walnuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds in your diet regularly.
- Eat a rainbow - every day - fruit and vegetables come in the most beautiful colours and each colour brings a variety of different nutrients and compounds that have protective effects on the body and also support the liver, immune system and the gut. Charts are available where you can tick off which colours you have eaten each day. Ensure more focus is on vegetables as these are higher in fibre and lower in natural sugars. Aim to eat 8-10 portions a day.
- Include prebiotic and probiotic foods - these help to support gut health which is important for elimination. Prebiotics provide food for the gut bacteria and include foods like Jerusalem artichokes, onions, leeks, garlic, bananas, chicory and asparagus. Probiotic foods are fermented foods containing their own bacteria - these include miso, tempeh, sauerkraut, kefir, live yoghurt, kombucha and kimchi. A probiotic supplement can sometimes be of use just to ensure a good balance.
- Be active - keeping moving and exercising not only helps with fitness levels and blood flow but also stimulates the bowel, ensuring elimination. It helps with mood and motivation (3) and can help you to feel more in control of sticking to your healthy diet and lifestyle.
- Sleep well - last but most certainly not least, sleep is a time for the body to repair, regenerate and rebalance. A lack of sleep is known to increase inflammation (4), reduce mood (5), deplete energy levels and make it harder for the body to cope with stressful events (6). Aim for a good 7-8 hours a night and follow the same bedtime routine each night. Avoid blue lights from smartphones, tablets, computers and TV at least two hours before bed as this affects sleep hormones.
Staying on track following a successful detox can be made easy with these simple tips.
You will find that after three weeks of incorporating these changes they will become a habit and easily form part of your day to day routine.
If you would like help planning or conducting a detox to assist your health, then guidance from a Personalised Health practitioner can put you in the right direction.
This doesn’t need to be the end of the article!
With your comments we’d love to continue the conversation.
Let us know your top tips to help stay on track after a detox.
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