These days, it seems like everyone is detoxing. They’re downing concoctions made with apple cider vinegar, turmeric, and coconut oil (or something along those lines; did I get that wrong?) or putting cut onions in their socks before going to bed to suck toxins out through their feet. I have friends who go on weeklong juice cleanses and fasts.
As for me, I don’t believe that one week of drinking nothing but kale juice is going to undo 51 weeks of overdoing it on pizza, chugging down beers, and snacking on chips all day. So I decided to start what I call a “common sense detox diet.” It’s something that’s reasonable enough that I can actually stick to it for more than a week – and it has me feeling more alert and energized than ever.
Common sense says that you’ll get out of your body what you put into it. So I focus on putting in the most high-quality fuel possible. Here are the rules I stick to as much as I possibly can:
Drink Moderately (or Not at All!)
After going on constant weekend benders with my buddies, this was the hardest one to stick to. Now I may have a beer or two on a Saturday night, but I don’t drink during the week at all.
No Caffeine (Just Kidding)
I recognize that some people can do a “no caffeine” detox, but I simply can’t. Instead, I limit myself to one cup of black coffee or unsweetened tea in the morning, two max. I drink no caffeine after noontime.
No Processed Foods
This one was also tough. As a bachelor used to living on a steady diet of chips and Hot Pockets, it was a shock to take inventory of all the preservative- and sodium-filled food I was eating. I made a commitment to start cooking for myself and freezing the leftovers and discovered that it’s not only healthier, but I’m actually saving money I was spending eating takeout.
Eat Plenty of Fruits and Veggies
When I cook or snack now, I consciously try to pack as much fruit and veg into every meal as I possibly can. Good quality fuel, remember?
Drink Lots of Water
I’ve also discovered that I was chronically dehydrated before. Now I carry one of those huge water bottles with me at all times. I like to put slices of lemon in it, which causes me to drink even more throughout the day.
These aren’t earth-shattering changes, but they did take some getting used to. With how great I’m starting to feel, I know they’re changes I’ll work into my life for the longterm, for sure!