Today we're going to be talking about 5 Steps to detox your diet and environment to prevent the need for detox.
Many people detox because our body becomes less efficient when there's a build up of waste. That's why we go on crazy diets, eat crazy herbs and foods and do lots of movement programs. And sometimes we have to just get moving.
But really, we need to prevent the reason these toxins accumulate and build up, which leads to our topic today.
I am a huge fan of cleaning up diets. I'm a nutritionist. I've been working on my food for the last 15 years and I didn't start up perfectly. I started out with probably more cookie dough and brownies in my daily regimen than most people should ever be allowed.
Over my 10-15 year journey, I have finally figured out what healthy living really means for me and it's a very individual process.
We all find our own versions of our right diet, our right lifestyle, and everything in between.
But I think there's some really simple rules that we can live by to break it down for everyone, no matter what your food preferences are.
5 Steps to Detox your Diet and Environment
1. No Poison in your Food
We've all heard that you should buy organic produce, but have you heard of The Dirty Dozen? It's a list of the produce that gets sprayed the most with toxic chemicals.
Even if you can't afford everything organic, at least get these organic:
3. Kale, Collard, and Mustard greens
10. Bell and hot peppers
I also prefer to get organic meats and fats. If you can't afford grass-fed meat, try lean cuts of an organic meat and then buy grass-fed oils, butters, and lard.
Grass-fed oils are higher in Omega-3s, which are anti-inflammatory and help reduce the build up of toxins in the body, preventing our need to detox.
Also, avoid preservatives and chemicals. When you look at the ingredient lists on your food, can you read every ingredient on it?
If not, chances are it's not something you consider food and you shouldn't be putting it in your body.
2. No Food that is Poison
A lot of us forget that highly refined sugars, flours and other processed things are not actually food.
If you want to really clean out your cupboards and clean out your diet, don't keep processed food at home and stop buying it.
And because I know how prevalent these foods are, I always like to have a snack before I go shopping because the temptation will be there!
When I go grocery shopping, I like to walk around the periphery of the grocery store, where the produce, meats, breads and cheeses are kept. Almost everything in between is packaged, processed foods that I usually don't need.
3. Eat Local
Local, seasonal food is really important to consume because when we're eating things out of season, we're usually eating foods that have more sugar added.
Often, we're importing fruits and vegetables from halfway across the world.
Many of these products, even if they're organic, still must get sprayed to cross international borders.
While eating ultra-local food may not be possible for everyone, eating food grown in your country is a good improvement.
When it comes to produce, eating seasonally can help you appreciate your food more, because you don't eat it all the time, and fresh produce just tastes better.
It's not just the flavor either. The nutrient content is way richer in seasonal produce. Buying local also supports farmers and reduces carbon emissions.
When it comes to meat products, consider how the animals are treated and whether they're eating the right things.
If you have a Farmers Market, go to that, those are super awesome! If you don't know about a CSA box, or community supported agriculture box, Artemisia Academy actually did a blog post about that.
4. Use Less Plastics and Packaging
I have tried for years to work on my packaging intake and that's something that I still struggle with. One of the first big steps was eliminating single-use containers.
A really simple strategy is bringing your own coffee mug when you go to get coffee.
Avoid plastics as much as possible, because a lot of plastics also have very toxic chemicals in them. Use reusable materials, glass and metal Tupperware and silicone bags.
Silicone bags are heat proof and can be reused. They're super easy to wash and great for storing things in the freezer.
I like to consider the full lifecycle of products as much as I can. Just because it's recyclable doesn't mean that it's not using resources someplace to make and process.
And with landfills, we're never getting rid of our trash. We're just covering it up.
We need to be thinking about the long-term impact of the foods we eat. The trash we make is the trash that our food will eventually grow on.
5. Compost or Green Waste your Food Scraps
Every time that you put less trash and food scraps into the landfill, you're putting fewer toxins in your backyard and in your food.
If you don't know how to compost, you can look into putting your food scraps in a green bin and have that go towards your local composting program.
Cleaning up our diet is both personal and global. It all adds up: the better we treat the planet and our food, the more we're going to clean up our bodies.
Community Herbalist Program
Cleaning up our diet and environment is one of the main topics we talk about in our Community Herbalist Program. We take our students out on several camping trips around Southern California and look at first-hand environmental changes that are happening.
In this course, we grapple with how to make healthy changes with guidance every step of the way.
When I started my healing journey, it was so important for me that I didn't do it alone. I did it with a lot of help and I love doing it with other people, because I'm always more inspired by the people around me.
If you want to go deeper down the rabbit hole and learn a whole lot more, check out our Community Herbalist Program, where you'll be inspired by a community of amazing herbalists and learn how to take care of yourself and take care of our environment. All while continuing on your journey of training as an herbalist.