Spring Detox — Mind, Kidneys and Bowels

Spring - a time to cleanse our external and internal environments. To shake out the dust and let a fresh breeze in. This May, I'm delighted to be offering a 21 Day Detox at Octopus Garden. Together, we will prepare our minds and bodies to shed baggage, to face our 'food demons', to eliminate toxins and to let nourishment in.
This week is all about preparation – Mind, Kidney and Bowels. 

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.
— Benjamin Franklin

Preparing the Mind 

  • Write down your goals (and be honest about them).
  • Record your current symptoms, (digestive, aches and pains, skin health, sleep), so you can look back at the end of your cleanse and see what's improved and what hasn't.
  • Assess your current psychological and emotional state – are you stressed? Run-down? What emotion do you tend to feel most often? 
  • Recognize and explore your 'food demons' – the foods you crave, run to when you're stressed or feel you can't live without. Start to observe when cravings arise, (does it happen when you are stressed, feeling bored, etc), and be mindful of how you feel when you give into the craving – does eating the food change your emotions or your situation?

By setting clear goals and recording current symptoms we have a way of assessing if our cleanse was beneficial for us.
By recognizing our psychological states and our emotional relationship to food, we can begin to use awareness and mindfulness to shift long-standing patterns that may be holding us back from meeting our health goals.

Preparing the Kidneys

  • Drink at least 2.5 liters of water (and/or herbal teas) daily. We need to open our kidney channel to help it flush water-soluble toxins out with our urine.
  • Begin to wean off and eventually eliminate caffeine. I know this can be a tough one, but caffeine dehydrates us and stresses our kidneys. Try green tea or invigorating herbal teas like ginseng or mint. 

Preparing the Bowels

  • Eat a minimum of 35 grams of fiber daily. Fiber adds bulk to our stool and moves fat-soluble toxins out of our body.
  • Eat a fermented food daily to to introduce beneficial gut bacteria that are vital to our digestive, immune and mental health.
  • Do a Transit Time Test – eat a large serving of beets and record the time, when you have a red-stained bowel movement, record the time. This should be within 18-24 hours. 

Detox Salad Recipe 
(makes 4 servings)

1/2 head of curly kale, remove stems and tear into bite-sized pieces
3/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, grated 
1 cucumber, chopped
2 avocados, chopped
1 large handful parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup hemp seeds

Dressing: Whisk together 2 Tbsp tahini, 3 Tbsp filtered water, 2 tsp apple cider vinegar, juice of half a lemon, 1 tsp maple syrup, pinch of sea salt and black pepper to taste. 

Add ripped kale and dressing to a large bowl. Mix well. Let this marinate for 15 minutes to soften the kale. Add chopped vegetables and parsley, stir. Top with hemp seeds.

Next week we'll support our lungs, lymph and skin – with simple and effective lifestyle tips and DIY recipes!