Monday, 26 March 2012

What better way to get ready for the summer than a Detox, mine starts today

What better way to get ready for the summer than a Detox, mine starts today

In 4 weeks time my first Triathlon of the year starts so what better way to prepare than a thorough cleanse of the system. There are many ways to detox the body but why is detoxing important for your health.
Our bodies are bombarded by toxins every day, they are in our food, our water, and even the air we breathe. Toxins get into our body and accumulate over time. It takes a lot of work for your body to flush them out and as you get older more and more build up until the body just simply can't keep up. The result is that you gradually become lacking in energy and are more susceptible to illness and disease.
There are quite a few ways to detox the body and some include complicated mixtures of herbs while others simply focus on fasting. If you are considering a herbal product, make sure you get one that detoxes all four areas. These detox programs can last anywhere from 1 week to a month.
Fasting has been a method of detoxifying for centuries and it can be very effective. The best way to start is to do a one to three day vegetable juice fast - you can fast for longer, but anything longer than three days you should do under medical supervision. What you want to do is get your body ready for the fast the day before by making your last meal consist of only fresh fruits and vegetables. On the three days of fasting, prepare your own fresh vegetable juices in a juicer and drink them as often as you want. Juicing your own fresh vegetables as opposed to buying juices from the store will ensure that all the enzymes which your body needs are present (store-bought juices are typically pasteurized which kills the enzymes).

You can make juices out of any vegetable you want, lettuce, greens, tomatoes, cucumbers. Experiment with recipes to see what you like best and be sure to drink the juice as soon as you make it. During your fasting days be sure that you get a lot of rest and relaxation and don't schedule any exercise for the three days.
The best way to keep your kidneys in good shape is to drink a lot of water. If your doing a juice fast you also want to include distilled water because distilled water is void of anything other than water. However, drinking distilled water all the time is not recommended as it can leach important minerals from your body.

Foods to include in the detox plan
Your diet should include:
                Fruits – your plan can include any fruit including fresh, frozen, dried or canned in natural fruit juice. This includes apples, bananas, pears, oranges, grapefruit, satsumas, sultanas, raisins, pineapple, mango, kiwi fruit, strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, nectarines, peaches, melons, star fruit etc 
                Fruit juice – either make homemade fruit juices or smoothies from fresh fruit, or drink ready-made juices. Make sure ready-made juices are labelled as being ‘pure’ or ‘unsweetened’. 
                Vegetables – eat any vegetables including fresh, frozen or canned in water (without salt added). This includes carrots, onions, turnip, swede, sprouts, cabbage, peppers, mushrooms, sweetcorn, peppers, leeks, courgettes, broccoli, cauliflower, salad, tomatoes, cucumber, spring onions etc 
                Beans and lentils – eat any beans, including those that have been dried or canned in water. This includes red kidney, haricot, cannellini, butter, black eye, pinto, red lentils, green lentils and brown lentils 
                Tofu and Quorn 
                Oats – sprinkle oats over fresh fruit or use to make porridge, sweetened with honey and fresh fruit 
                Potatoes, Brown rice and rice noodles, Rye crackers, rice cakes and oatcakes 
                Fresh fish – eat any fresh fish including cod, plaice, mackerel, salmon, lobster, crab, trout, haddock, tuna, prawns, Dover sole, red mullet, halibut, lemon sole, monkfish, swordfish etc. Canned fish in water is suitable too eg salmon or tuna
                Unsalted nuts – eat any including Brazil, peanuts, almonds, cashew, hazel nuts, macadamia, pecans, pine nuts, pistachio, walnuts etc 
                Unsalted seeds – eat any including sunflower and pumpkin
                Plain popcorn – without sugar or salt
                Live natural yoghurt
                Extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar
                Garlic, ginger and fresh herbs 
                Ground black pepper 
                Water – at least 2 litres a day. Tap or mineral water is fine.
                Herbal or fruit teas
Foods to avoid during your detox
                Red meat, chicken, turkey and any meat products like sausages, burgers, and pate
                Milk, cheese, eggs, cream
                Butter and margarine
                Any food that contains wheat including bread, croissants, cereals, cakes, biscuits, pies, pastry, quiche, battered or breadcrumbed foods, etc
                Crisps and savoury snacks including salted nuts
                Chocolate, sweets, jam and sugar
                Processed foods, ready meals, ready-made sauces and takeaways
                Coffee and tea
                Sauces, pickles, shop bought salad dressing, mayonnaise
                Fizzy drinks and squashes, including diet versions
Detox Plan Breakfasts
                Banana porridgePorridge made with water and topped with natural yoghurt, banana, raisins and sweetened with honey.
                Fruit salad with yoghurt and oatsFresh fruit salad with natural yoghurt and a sprinkling of oats.
                Fresh fruit smoothieFruit smoothie made from fresh fruit, natural yoghurt and honey to sweeten if needed.
                Muesli and yoghurtHomemade muesli made from oats, seeds, nuts and dried fruit served with natural yoghurt.
                Fresh fruit and yoghurtFresh fruit and a pot of natural yoghurt sweetened with honey.
Detox Plan Lunches
                Vegetable soup and oatcakesLarge bowl of vegetable or lentil soup (either homemade or supermarket ‘fresh’) with oatcakes.
                Tuna and sweetcorn jacket potato and saladJacket potato topped with tuna (canned in water) mixed with sweetcorn and natural yoghurt and served with salad.
                Mediterranean salad with rice cakesRice cakes served with rocket, avocado, tomatoes, fresh basil and black pepper. Plus a handful of unsalted nuts.
                Guacamole with cruditésHomemade guacamole made from avocado, lemon juice, fresh chilli, tomato and garlic served with vegetable crudités and oatcakes.
                Avocado and prawn saladFresh avocado served with prawns, salad, balsamic vinegar and lemon juice.
                Jacket potato with grilled cod Grilled cod fillet served with jacket potatoes and lightly steamed vegetables.
Detox Plan Dinners
                Chinese vegetable stir fryStir fry a selection of vegetables such as bok choi, spring onions, mushrooms, bamboo shoots and beansprouts in a little olive oil with garlic and ginger. Serve with brown rice.
                Baked salmon with jacket potatoBake a salmon fillet and serve with a jacket potato and steamed vegetables.
                Tuna and prawns with noodlesGently fry a selection of vegetables such as onions, mushrooms, peppers, courgette and leek in a little olive oil. When lightly browned, add a handful of prawns. Cook for a few minutes, then add canned tomatoes, tomato puree, black pepper and tuna canned in water. Bring to the boil and simmer until the sauce thickens. Serve with rice noodles.
                Sweet and sour stir fry with riceGently fry a selection of chopped vegetables such as onions, peppers, baby sweetcorn and mushrooms. Add canned pineapple (in fruit juice), canned tomatoes, tomato purée, white wine vinegar and honey. Bring to the boil and simmer until the sauce has thickened. Serve with brown rice.
                Potato and bean casseroleGently fry a selection of typical casserole vegetables such as onion, carrots and parsnip in a little olive oil with garlic. When browned, add diced potato and fry for a few minutes. Add fresh vegetable stock, black pepper and your favourite beans. Bring to the boil and simmer until the casserole thickens.

Detox Plan Snacks
                Fresh fruit or fresh fruit salad
                Natural yoghurt mixed with honey
                Plain popcorn
                Handful of unsalted nuts or seeds
                Mine starts today for the next seven days so im ready for the first Triathlon of the year, good luck with yours.

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