Have you ever wanted to give you a body a good clean, but from the inside? It is rebooting your entire system. A bit like when you turn your laptop off and on again and then defrag the hard drive.
Twice a year, autumn in October and spring in March I will do a 13 day mini detox. This an exclusion detox, that you can see on the site www.livesthepresent.co.uk . In the thirteen days you progressively go from a full solid diet to three days of fluid and then back up to a full diet again.
Every few years I go on a 90 day clean out. This means no alcohol, no chocolate, no caffeine, no dairy, no meat. With the no dairy goes all the cakes and pastries. Does that sound hard? for many people this is normal.
When you have been eating a full western diet this may seem a difficult idea. Yet many people live their entire lives this way and, guess what, they are very healthy. When Fauja Singh ran the london marathon aged 102 he did it on a Punjabi farmers diet of mainly rice and lentils.
I will reduce my diet over a seven day period and have a day, or a few, on just Water with honey and lemon, often this will be warm. The lemon cleans, and the honey provides energy. Some people will have some withdrawal to begin with. So if your system is addicted to something like caffeine you may get headaches if you stop too quickly so it important to reduce things gradually.
People often fear that they will lack energy. Not true. You use between 35 and 50% of your energy just digesting the food that you would normally eat. On diets like this most people feel an increase in their energy level and even sleep better.
Flushing your system may sound odd, this is why I do it. The tube that runs from your mouth to your bottom, the alimentary canal, gut, processes all the food that you eat. It has done so from the moment of your birth and if you have never fasted or detoxed, without a break. Just like the skin on the outside of your body the lining of you gut will be sloughing cells, so that a proportion of what comes out of your bottom will actually be your dead cells from your gut lining.
However, because your poor old gut has been working, usually flat out 24/7, year after year not all the cells come away and you get a build up of old rubbish on the lining that reduces the efficiency of the gut wall to absorb the nutrients that your your body needs. Many people suggest that this buildup and the subsequent problems this creates lead to many diseases. By doing a few days on fluid, and that means quite a lot of fluid, so that you pee a lot, your gut gets the opportunity to flush and clean all this rubbish that would otherwise remain stuck to your gut wall. Having given the gut a clean you then have a chance to create a new diet that will serve you well.
Think about our origins as hunter gatherers. We would never have had the constant supply of food that we have now provided for us in the supermarkets. There would be days of plenty and day when the calories would have been reduced and some days when we only drank water. In these circumstances the gut had the opportunity to cleanse itself on a regular basis.
So what will I eat? Well pulses, beans, grains and nuts, plenty of protein their. Rice, potatoes and wholemeal pasta, plenty of carbs there. As much fruit and vegetable as I want, plenty of minerals and vitamins there. I make my own bread that can be moistened with good olive oil or nut butter. For breakfast a plain unsweetened muesli type mix with nut or soya milk.
Really it means flushing the system and rebooting onto unprocessed foods that are healthy and nutritious. My rule is no meat, no dairy, no alcohol, coffee, sugar and anything processed with a drastic reduction in sugar. I have to say that if you are going to try it you might need to talk with your doctor first especially if you are diabetic.
The resource for this podcast/blog is my thirteen day detox programme. This can be a good place to start, as I say twice a year. If that goes well and you enjoy it you may get to trying a thirty day and then gradually extend it to 90 days over a few years.
Game for a laugh? Have a go.