Taking the time to detox your body can help you feel better after overeating and, if done in a healthy, intentional way, can also help you make healthier long-term decisions. The truth is, it can be a tough transition to navigate after the holidays, a weekend of pampering, or basically any event. Especially at this time of year when your body may crave heavy, rich foods and sweets.
While there’s no such thing as a one-day miracle cure for overeating—detox diets are a scam—it can help to hit the reset button every once in a while.
Here are 10 ways to help you get your diet and health back on track and get your diet and health back on track that you can put into practice immediately.
Start your day with lemon water
Start your day by waking up with a glass of warm or cold lemon water. The lemon’s pectin aids in digestion, making lemon a phenomenal detoxifying food. Water with lemon also helps curb your appetite and increases satiety.
Stimulating your digestive tract sounds like a great way to start the day, right? The bonus is the little slice of lemon floating in your cup, reminding your brain, “Hey, I’m making healthy choices today!”
Eat a healthy breakfast
Feed yourself after water with food. Eating breakfast benefits your metabolism after a night’s sleep. Plus, it’s a great way to build confidence in yourself when it comes to your health. The only way to prove to yourself that you’re ready and willing to take care of yourself is to, well, really take care of yourself.
When I do a mini cleanse, the advice I give my clients is to skip the bread, cereal, or any version of those at breakfast, because they cause your body to retain more water, and instead your focus on proteins, which will provide satiety. . An egg and salmon scramble is a perfect combination of protein and omega-3 fatty acids that boost metabolism to start the day. Or if you’re on the go, opt for an easy gut-healthy smoothie.
Clean up your diet
Be sure to eat breakfast, lunch, dinner, and at least one snack — absolutely no skipping meals! — and make sure they consist only of whole, real foods. Eating consistently throughout the day will help you lay the foundation for lasting healthy eating. I’m talking lots and lots of veggies, lean proteins like grass-fed steak, chicken, fish, eggs, and healthy fats from nuts, seeds, or olives, avocado, or coconut.
Ditch the packaged, processed foods today — even the “healthy” versions. This ensures that you cut excess sodium, artificial ingredients and sugar from your diet. Also ditch the salt shaker and instead just use herbs and spices to flavor your food. You will find that this can make a big difference in how you look and feel, even after just one day!
If it feels hard not to snack on over-processed packaged foods or to forego sweets, try to remember that you don’t have to do it forever. Start with a day. If you can handle an entire day without the promise of Cheez-Its, take it one meal at a time. Tell yourself that you will only eat one healthy meal and then try to repeat that when it’s dinner time again.
Planning and preparing meals in advance – it’s easier than you think! – can help you resist temptation at the last minute. After all, it’s a lot harder to wait in the fast-food drive-thru when you’ve already made a gorgeous and delicious salad.
Enjoy a cup of tea
Drink a cup of dandelion root tea with your afternoon snack. Trust me, this one is important. Dandelion can help improve digestion, and being well hydrated has been linked to everything from a healthy metabolism to energy and good skin health. If dandelion isn’t your thing, try green tea for an antioxidant and metabolic boost.
Try not to rush to make or drink tea. You don’t have to fancy it, but try to make room for the extra few seconds it takes to pick out a teacup you love and savor the scent and flavor. Tea time is a ritual in many cultures, and making room for personal self-care rituals is a great way to clear out some mental and emotional cobwebs.
Move your body
Increasing your heart rate means an increase in blood flow. This, in turn, will help your body flush out toxins all on its own. You don’t even have to go to a gym to work up a sweat, here’s a quickie I do almost everywhere. The takeaway here is to get your heart rate up, work up a sweat, and get into a better mindset to kick it up a notch tomorrow.
Try spinning to relieve tension – and aid digestion
Most Americans spend a lot of time hunched over. We hold our phones in front of our faces and reach forward towards steering wheels and computers. In short, we don’t run much in our daily lives. And since our spines are made to twist, the result can be tension in the spinal muscles — and slow digestion.
You may be wondering what twisting your spine has to do with digestion. Well, many of the organs we use to digest food are in the abdomen – such as the intestines – and twisting motions help them work efficiently. Basically, twisting can literally help move things through the intestinal tract. So if you want what you ate to pass out of your body efficiently, twists are a good place to start.
Do some breathing exercises
Feeling too full — or like you haven’t treated your body the way you’d like — can be stressful. One of the fastest ways to relax is through breathing exercises. A recent study followed participants of a breathing workshop. What they found was that learning calming breathing techniques helped people immediately reduce feelings of anxiety. Not only that, but those same participants reported feeling more socially connected after 3 months. That’s a lot of benefit for something you do anyway!
We’ve got some cool guided breathing instructions, but if you want to go it alone, that’s totally fine. You are definitely a breath expert!
An easy way to use your breath to calm your mind and body is to simply slow it down. You can also pause between breaths and, for maximum benefit, make your exhale last longer than your inhale. Counting your breaths — either the time of the inhales and exhales or each breath cycle — is also a great way to give your mind something to focus on that isn’t your misery.
End your shower with a jet of cold water
While it may not sound very comfortable, ending your shower with a spray of cold water is an instant way to feel energized. Not only that, but cold water can reduce inflammation and some experts think it can boost the immune system.
In a recent study, people who showered in cold water for 30, 60 or 90 seconds were 29% less sick than those who didn’t. It’s hard to say whether those individuals were actually less sick than their hot shower counterparts, or if they just didn’t feel sick enough to call, but either way, the evidence suggests that people who take cold showers feel healthier than those who don’t.
Turn off your phone
Most of us are inundated with constant notifications. All those beeps and buzzes have an immediate impact. your mental and emotional state and a long-term effect on your health. A study that has been running since 2015 – the Do Not Disturb Challenge – asks participants to turn off their phones for 24 hours. What they found is that many participants immediately notice that they feel less stressed when their phone is off. So much so that two-thirds of the participants decided to turn off their phones regularly and were less prone to distractions and stress after two years.
Why not challenge yourself to 24 hours without your phone? If that feels too difficult, you can start by turning off your notifications. Another recent study shows that just hearing your phone buzz immediately hurts your productivity. If you want to detox your body and mind, you can start by trying to focus on what really matters to you instead of your phone.
There is no such thing as a single panacea for all your ailments, but meditation seems to come as close as you can get. The benefits of meditation range from reduced anxiety to reduced symptoms of everything from IBS to PTSD.
See, meditating for a few minutes won’t make all your problems go away, but it can help you feel good about yourself. If meditation seems intimidating, try sitting still for a minute with your eyes closed. A minute can be the first step to a lifelong meditation practice or it can be nothing. It doesn’t matter, it’s just one minute.
This article was originally published on TODAY.com