It’s very easy in today’s world to lose your sense of wellbeing. With most people under constant pressure to get things done, and with what seems like a limited amount of time to do it in, many people rely on quick-fix methods to keep up with their fast-paced environment. This means taking short-cuts when it comes to nutrition, exercise and health, and, while they may help in the short-term, these soon add up to create adverse long-term effects. One example, and the one most likely to have an impact, is the everyday consumption of ready-made meals and takeaway. Rather than take the time out of a busy schedule to organise and prepare a nutritious home-cooked meal, many people opt for a faster and easier option, which often contains lots of empty calories, few nutrients and, more than likely, high levels of fat and sugar. Over time, these meals can leave you feeling bloated, tired and generally unhealthy, as your body starts to crave what it is missing out on. This is where a short detox can be beneficial.
Catherine Proctor, a freelance writer and editor who specialises in health and cookery books, has published this handy little guide to help people detox their bodies, minds and lives, and reintroduce a comfortable balance. Only 80 pages long, this book gives you all the information you need to complete a simple 7-day detox, and hopefully get you back onto the path of a healthy lifestyle. After a short introduction and explanation on what toxins are, she gives a short quiz so you can determine exactly whether you are in need of a detox. She then lays out a simple plan for detox eating- listing the foods that will be beneficial to your diet, and those to avoid (both for the detox week and regularly). While her detox plan cuts out meat, most dairy, and gluten, she insists that these can be reintroduced back into your diet once the detox week is over (albeit at a more moderate level) which convinces me that she is not a total food Nazi when it comes to eating and living a healthy lifestyle. She understands that most people are not vegan or coeliacs, and doesn’t try to force her ‘healthy eating’ beliefs on her readers, like some writers are wont to do. She also introduces other wellbeing exercises, like meditation, natural cleaning remedies (that use products like bicarbonate soda and vinegar rather than harmful chemicals) and even suggests several ideas to keep your motivation on track. The back of the book contains two lists, both in categories and alphabetised, of foods to embrace, eat moderately or avoid to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
This is a very simple guide, as is evident by the physical size and number of pages, but it is handy if you want a quick reference guide when starting out your detox. The food reference pages at the back are quite useful, if not common sense, and the language is easy to understand, making this the perfect introduction to a happier, healthier, and ultimately more energised you.
I'm always pretty dubious of anyone who uses the word "detox" with regard to food (my liver handles the detoxing, thanks) or tells people who aren't gluten intollerant not to eat gluten, but at least this author sounds less extreme than many of the self styled food and lifestyle gurus out there.