In yoga (and life) we say that “our body is our temple.” This is one fact that I’ve learned is incredibly true. No matter what I do, I know that how I feel directly correlates to what I put in my body…. for the most part anyways. Example: As many of you know, I love me some good wine, margaritas, bloody marys, etc etc. But, I also know too well that if I drink these excessively I will not be feeling too hot the next day. This may lead to be having the proverbial hangover, and maybe missing my practice or workout the next day which in turn makes me feel lazy and guilty and then I just feel lousy all over. How could I have avoided this?? Maybe one less drink would have done it.
The great thing is, we can apply these rules not just to what we drink, but with everything we put in our body on a regular basis. There are some simple tricks that I learned from my nutritionist Christa Orecchio at the Whole Journey in Encinitas, and they have literally changed my life in so many ways. What we have to remember is that cost (such as organic = more expensive) and sacrifice (one less drink) lead to less cost and health issues down the line, so its totally worth it!!
Here are my ten top foolproof tips for detoxing, feeling great, and having a healthier body, mind, and spirit!!
1. Start your day off with either a cup of hot water with the juice of 1/2 a lemon, or 16 ounces of room temperature water with 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar. I just started doing the apple cider vinegar, and man, it DOES NOT taste good. But it makes me feel great later! Doing this will create an alkaline environment in your body to prep you for any acid (coffee, etc) you may put in your body the rest of the day so you continue to have a level pH.
2. Drink the right kind of water. But isn’t all water, water?? No! Water has an essential amount of the minerals we need, and getting crappy water is not good! The best bottled water you can buy in the store to give you minerals is actually Crystal Geyser, yup, not expensive smart water, just the basics. If you want to go all out, you can order large 5 gallon jugs of water from Carlsbad Mineral Springs which are filled with tons of minerals, plus their water is naturally alkaline, adding to that healthy pH! (Alkaline environment = inability for cancer to grow in the body among other great things, but I wont get in to that here)
3. Eat Organic. I know I know, organic food is just so expensive! But, its totally worth it. With the growing population and our food system being subsidized and the growth of genetically modified crops, we just dont know what their putting on our food these days. Avoid the antibiotics, pesticides, and tons of other detrimental chemicals by buying organic food, especially produce. Also, organic food actually has more nutrients in it because it is grown in soil that is organic and has more nutrients (not leached out from monocrop after monocrop). I can’t say enough about organic so Ill stop here.
4. If you eat meat, stick to organic, free range chicken and grass fed beef. Seriously. Have you seen Food, Inc? If not, go buy it right now and watch it. The way our meat is processed these days is seriously DISGUSTING. Do yourself a favor and buy some quality meat here, you will be getting more protein, less fat, and no antibiotics or hormones.
5. Say no to Soy. I know, everyone thinks soy = yoga = healthy. Here’s the problem. Soy is a subsidized crop which means it is grown everywhere, genetically modified to handle pests, and is found in everything. I challenge you to go in your cupboard and see how many things secretly have “soy” in the ingredients list. Probably a lot. So avoid it when you can. Soy that is not fermented (only tempe, tamari, and miso is ok) actually is a protein inhibitor and keeps your thyroid from processing iodine to stimulate your metabolism. Plus it has estrogen which is a hormone most of us dont need any more of anyways.
6. Did I mention water? To be healthy, you need to drink a LOT of water. Here’s what I always learned- take your body weight (in pounds) divide it by 2, and thats how many ounces of water you should drink in a day. Staying hydrated will give you tons of energy and help you to lose weight too!
7. Avoid the microwave. I admit it, I’m hugely guilty of this. The microwave is a convenience that we’ve all gotten super used to. Just nuke those leftovers and theyre ready for lunch in a snap! The problem is, microwaving food instantly kills any enzymes and a lot of the nutrients in your food in the first place. If anything, avoid any frozen foods or those microwaveable meals that are “on the go.”
8. Get your greens. We are learning how important green (super)foods are for us. Wheatgrass, Chlorella, Spirulina, etc, are all anti-carcinogenic (anti-cancerous) and have tons of essential nutrients we need for our body. You can try wheatgrass shots, those green superfoods bars (I like Greens+, but there is soy lechtin in the chocolate 🙁 ), or you can buy vitamineral greens pills at jimbos and take those daily.
9. Healthy fats are good. More and more research is showing that we really cant get enough healthy fats. These are your omega 3, 6, and 9’s. Try these: almonds, flax, coconut oil (great for cooking at high heats too), avocado, salmon, chia, olives, etc etc. They are soo delicious and nutritious! My favorite breakfast is oatmeal with coconut milk, chia, ground flax, coconut oil, raw almonds, and agave syrup, yum!
10. Stay away from artificial sweeteners. Its so tempting to just put some splenda in that coffee or get something with sucralose that is “sugar-free,” but the negative impacts that these have on our bodies actually offset any weight loss benefits from the lack of sugar anyways. Try stevia, agave syrup, coconut sugar, honey or brown rice syrup, they are all delicious and low glycemic so they wont give you a blood sugar spike too!
11. Limit alcohol. Ok you get a bonus, ironically, I’m drinking a glass of wine as I write this. Try to limit your alcohol intake to one drink 2-3 times during the week and maybe 2 drinks on weekend nights. This will seriously help your mind, weight, and so many other things!
So, thats pretty much it. I hope this will help you to make a few positive changes in your life! Even if you can do one of these, you will still be making positive progress towards health and a happy body. Cheers!