Thursday, January 9, 2014

Detoxing 101 (aka: The No Detox Detox)






I'm detoxing today. In fact, most days I detox. My detox is called The Eating Healthy Food Pretty Much Every Day Detox. You see, our society is super-intrigued by dramatic, suffering-inducing challenges that cause us to feel as if we have earned the right to be . . . healthier, skinnier, faster, better - you name it. If we haven't suffered for it, surely we don't deserve any of the benefits of it.

The suffering is often public . . . otherwise, why bother? Why go through deprivation and denial if it can't be worn like a badge of honor? "You'll have to pardon my grouchy behavior, I'm not eating today." Or "GET THAT PIZZA AWAY FROM ME, I'M ON A DETOX!!!" Or, "WHEW! I'm so dizzy today. It's day 9 of my juicing diet!"

Of course, after suffering for something, we must reward ourselves, so following a period of self-imposed deprivation, torture or flagellation we treat ourselves to something super-indulgent - often one (or a dozen) of the "bad" foods that we've been avoiding (while fantasizing about it/them) - that makes us feel that the whole endeavor was worth it because of the glorious prize that we've earned . . . (?)

Instead, why not try something that you can keep up for the rest of your life? Why not begin to healthy-up your food choices throughout the day, every day? Developing habits that you can incorporate into a regular daily routine may not seem dramatic or attention-getting (heck, it actually sounds pretty boring), but THEY are the ones that can DRAMATICALLY improve your health and the length of your life. A great first step is to become more mindful about how the foods you eat make you feel. After eating a meal or snack, observe how you feel while you're eating and immediately afterward. Check back in with yourself an hour later. Make note of physical, mental and emotional feelings during these times.

  • Are you actually feeling hungry when you reach for that particular food? 
  • Do you really want that particular food, or are you on auto-pilot, eating something just because it's there, or because it's a habit? 
  • Do you feel guilt or shame? 
  • Does the food taste good? 
  • Does the texture feel good in your mouth? 
  • Do you enjoy how the food looks, or are you eating it without even looking at it? 
  • Do you feel energized or bloated/lethargic after eating it? 

By mindfully connecting with what you eat, when you eat it, you can develop an understanding of your appetite that a diet rarely allows for.

Skip the detox-drama. Instead, practice more tender loving care toward yourself.

Elly Haddad is a certified holistic health coach specializing in helping people understand the strong influence that diet & lifestyle have on health, happiness and overall wellbeing. For information about her services, visit Elemental Fit's website or contact her via email.


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