A winter cleanse can reduce our toxic burden and leave us feeling fabulous! Below are guidelines for a happy detox. They include;
- Pick the right winter cleanse program
- What to avoid
- What to include
- Troubleshooting tips
Here we go!
Pick the right winter cleanse:
Is it right for the climate? Unless you are sunbathing on vacation, stick to a warming approach –> teas, soups and broths, cooked veggies.
Why: Foods from different climates have nutrients that trigger different physiological responses. Cleansing with tropical juices in the dark of winter may be unwise. Therefore, too many banana smoothies might result in an unshakeable feeling of cold and even weakening of intestinal valves leading to hard-to-treat yeasts growing in the upper G.I. tract!
Is it extreme? Avoid aggressive diets that deplete nutrients or colon cleanses that use harsh laxatives.
Why: At best these can require time off from activities. At worst they mobilize stored toxins faster than they can be removed, resulting in fatigue, headaches, nausea, acne breakouts, or rashes. They may also disturb peristalsis and wipe out probiotics, causing cramping and allowing pathogens to grow easily.
What to avoid:
Limit plastics, sleep deprivation, and toxic personal care products in your life.
In terms of food, pick a level that suits you, but offers a small challenge. Then, avoid anything that is not real food! Aim to completely avoid the items listed.
Level 1 – Harder than you think! All alcohol, candy, sweetened drinks, heat processed/bleached/refined flours, or sugars or fats.
Level 2 – Requires preparation! Level 1, plus gluten, coffee, canned food, farmed fish, shellfish, pork, conventional beef, poultry and dairy, and convenience foods (this includes commercial milks!).
Level 3 – For the committed! Level 1 & 2, plus avoid any caffeine, all grains, no tropical fruit, limit starchy veggies, avoid large types of fish, and ensure everything is organic.
Winter cleansing – What to include:
Colorful fresh fruits and veggies, especially green or purple, citrus fruit, high fiber whole grains like quinoa and oats, plant-based oils, and pastured meat and wild fish, maybe also organic whey or fermented dairy foods. Use mostly warming recipes—soups, warm drinks, stews, roast veggies.
Basic building blocks for a Winter Detox Plan:
• Breakfast: Stewed fruit with fresh nuts, oats and flax oil, poached eggs
• Lunch: A soup with salad
• Dinner: A stew or hearty soup
If you prefer to make a few recipes over and over, that’s ok—just try to include a variety of colors in your diet.
Flora has an easy-to-use Flor-Essence 7-Day Purification Kit (US/CA) with a meal plan booklet to help guide you. Try using the journal to make notes about your experience. The 10 fabulous recipes in the kit are a great resource, as are the warming winter cleanse recipes on the FloraHealthy blog!
To reduce detoxification reactions:
Drink green tea (US/CA) and grapefruit juice, eat berries and turmeric, and if necessary, lower your dose of Flor-Essence and add back starchy veggies like squash or yam, or gluten-free grains like quinoa. Drink water and rest. Take milk thistle. Avoid constipation—take bitters or a fiber drink if necessary!
To speed up removal of wastes:
More water and Flor-Essence, fiber, and healthy oils (US/CA). DO include a rainbow of colorful seasonal veggies, broccoli, MSM, vitamins A, B, C, D, Brazil nuts, and hormone- & antibiotic-free grass-fed broth/eggs or wild fish.
Holistic Nutritionist, Dana Green Remedios, RHN, RNCP has a passion for helping others break through their blocks to greater health, wealth, and happiness, working with transformational mind-body tools. The Vancouver-based educator and coach answers your questions in English, French, and Spanish as a Specialist working in the Product Information Department at Flora, and is a regular contributor to the FloraHealthy blog.