Yep. It’s a new year, and yet again a chance for some refreshing resolution setting, particular those health goals right?
This is the year!
Lose weight. Get fit. Stop drinking. Eat less cheese?... You’ve got this!
Maybe one of those 2-week detoxes will fix me up? Yeah word to your mum… that will work for sure (wink).
You probably ate pretty good last year, and did the odd fitness class, and definitely swore to drink less from now on; after each of those Sunday come downs; not to forget the old Sunday afternoon’s, Monday anxiety. I call it “Mon-ziety”. Does this resonate?
What about your 2017 resolutions?
The year probably started great. All of your sparkly goals set… plate after plate of clean meals… a bag full of fresh active wear… and a tower of inspiring books that require more scaffolding than motivation to get through.
But shit got busy… stress crept back in… and all of those healthy intentions slowly got covered in a thick layer of dust.
And then there was the whole Christmas break binge. Eating a bit too much, opening your drinking door from weekends to weekdays, and making that no hesitation decision to accept the holiday rule of where 5pm “yep I can have a drink now” turns into the midday happy 10 hours.
How about a quick detox to cleanse the system?
“I'm already feeling better for just thinking about doing a detox” – said some lady in Byron.
Detox. Dee-tox. Dee-toxifying? Getting rid of toxins?
The old detox diet dogma promises to rid your body of the ‘toxins’ that have built up from poor eating and unhealthy lifestyle habits. They further claim to leave you feeling cleansed, help you lose weight and get that golden glow back.
The “I quit money” detox even claims to result in you putting all of your money into bitcoin.
Now don’t get me wrong, a lot of detox protocols do have some good advise. For example, avoiding processed foods, quitting smoking and cutting back on alcohol. These are all great evidence-based guidelines and it’s likely you will feel better, have more energy and lose weight if you follow them.
Weight loss from detox protocols is commonly a result of an overall calorie restriction/starvation.
What is a concern for a lot of the “profit making” detox diets out there is that some of the ‘bells and whistles’ of the protocol can potentially cause harm. Furthermore, they can cost you quite a bit of moolah, may be nutritionally inadequate and often incorporate unsustainable instructions.
You must take detox claims with a grain of salt, as a lot of claims out there are unsubstantiated.
What actually is a detox diet?
It’s a strict protocol that can last anywhere from a few days to many months. Most protocols often share similar themes, such as cutting out un-necessaries like alcohol and sugar, whilst increasing your intake of vegetables (yes, this is good advice). But often after these foundations they will go on to include some structured use of certain supplements or laxatives, or force you to restrict into starvation mode with a colorful and anal juicing protocol.
At this point in time…
There is no high-level evidence or strong science showing the benefits of short-term detox programs.
No one off ‘detox diet’ will counteract or fix those Christmas weeks of binge eating, alcohol excess and couch slothing.
Your body is pretty damn amazing.
All those gins, wine times, beer fests and ‘not wheat-grass’ shots you downed over your holiday break have already been dealt with; primarily by your liver.
“You’re a legend body, thank you”.
The human body is a complex miracle that can self-mend, and self-detoxify. Whether you’re on a bacardi bender or a green smoothie drinking marathon, your body will perform it’s detoxification duties. But this has a limit and just like an iphone it will slow down with out updates.
By no means am I saying, eat processed foods and drink a bucket of alcohol each night.
But I am informing you that a 2-week detox diet will not fix all of your unhealthy repents.
The crux of this article is that if you provide your body with the right lifestyle ingredients, on most days of the week, it can function at its optimum. A 2-week clease won’t fix all, but daily and basic healthy habits will help it detox like a mofo.
Eat more plants.
Drink more water.
Move your body daily.
And minimise alcohol and processed foods.