We’re almost through the season of indulgence – all those holiday meals and parties and bowl games with unlimited noshing. All of which lead to a mostly grim determination to restore balance by ‘going on a diet’. Am I right? Hands up everyone out there who is going to make losing weight a New Year’s resolution.
It makes sense, after a month of eating things we normally deny ourselves because ‘sugar/fat/wheat/[insert here] is bad for me’, that we seek to rectify by going to the other extreme and really cracking down on ourselves.
May I suggest a little moderation here?
I’d like to see us not swing the pendulum too far the other way, because that’s not going to produce lasting benefits. Take a deep breath, and begin like this:
Pick a start date, say January 2, and commit yourself to one week of gentle detoxing. Wait, just wait, this is going to be so do-able, really. No colon cleansing, no fasting. Just this:
- Increase the amount of water you drink to 64 ounces a day. Drink whatever else you like, but try to get those 8 glasses of water in.
- Add a nice detox tea. Ginger, dandelion, turmeric, something like that, 2 cups a day. Or start your day with the juice of one lemon in one of your glasses of water.
- Buy a plant to put at your workstation, or in your bedroom. Really. Plants produce oxygen, and eliminate volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) like xylene from computer screens. English ivy and ficus are good. Maybe a friend can give you a cutting.
- Make a commitment to walk 20 minutes a day, at least. Make sure that you stop to notice the wonders of your neighborhood during the walk.
- Practice breathing deep into your belly 10 times at least once a day.
That’s not so hard, is it? Make sure to notice which one of these things makes you feel the best, and keep doing it in the weeks ahead. (Okay, maybe not the plant buying, unless you like living in a greenhouse!)
Notice there’s no talk here about radically changing your diet. Your pendulum has swung way far one way with holiday stuff. If you rebound by putting yourself on a strict give-up-everything diet, you’re going to frustrate yourself beyond reason. Try being easy on yourself. For this week, just try to moderate things a bit. You probably won’t have as much exposure to holiday foods, so this, too should be easy.
This is just the beginning, and so easy, as it’s meant to be. I’m going to do it. How about you? I’d love to hear your experiences.
ps For the next few posts, I’m going to be drawing heavily on a lovely little book called Secrets of Longevity, by Dr. Mao Shing Ni. You might be interested in getting a copy for yourself.