“On Fire” Photographed by Mario Sorrenti, styled by Camilla Nickerson. W Magazine, March 2008
You didn't want to have that third helping of stuffing, but you did. And it's okay! A post-Thanksgiving detox can do wonders. You just have to find the right one for you.
Here, 9 health gurus--from a Victoria's Secret trainer to a celebrity facialist--reveal their best tips for how to detox from a holiday meal.
Pratima, founder of Pratima Ayurvedic Spa in SoHo
For a quick kick-start to your metabolism, I highly recommend a ginger tea regimen. Take 1 teaspoon of organic ginger powder (or 1 tablespoon freshly grated organic ginger) with 5 cups of water, boil, cool, and every time you are hungry or thirsty, drink a cup of it. This is a form of fasting that most people can manage comfortably for a full 24 hours with great results; some people will be able to do 3 days, but be careful not to overdo it or cause stress in the mind or body, and that is definitely not the goal! I've used this ancient detox secret at important times when I've whenever I've needed it in my adult life. It comes to us by way of Ayurvedic textbooks and explains that whenever you feel sluggish or weighed down, it means your agni, or digestive fire (enzymes), are low - this could be for a number of different reasons. A ginger tea protocol for 1-3 days is a wonderful way to help bulk up your digestive enzymes, break down the excess food or toxins in the body and ignite your metabolism. Depending on your digestion and what’s right for you, this can be done 1 day a week, at the change of the seasons three times a year, or after special events and holidays to get you back to feeling like yourself quickly.
Stephen Pasterino, Victoria’s Secret model trainer and founder of P.VOLVE Fitness
I make a special blended tonic composed of fresh cut ginger, water, 1 tablespoon turmeric, and ice, which I strain through a cheese cloth. Ginger is known for aiding in digestion and helping to reduce inflammation. It’s ideal to have pre-meal because it helps boost nutrient absorption, which will help your body absorb all the great nutrients from our food. It also helps good bacteria grow in our digestive tract. Ginger is also effective in boosting our immune system, getting our skin to glow, and helping muscles recover. I add in the turmeric just to give some extra antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. It helps fight inflammation and helps our body with digestion.
Before a big meal, I’ll take one down in a shot form to keep my body running in top form. The key is to make sure it is spicy--really, really spicy, almost undrinkable. You can make multiple glasses worth at a time and sip on it throughout the day. Try drinking this before heading out to a holiday dinner or a big meal, this drink will help digest the food better.
Taryn Toomey, celebrity trainer and founder of The Class with Taryn Toomey
I am a straight up warm water with lemon girl, and many morning rounds uddiyana bandha kind of gal. I try to practice both daily, but when my intention is to cleanse my inners, it sets the tone for all my practices. Rather than one specific thing, it is a more holistic formula. Lots of face masks (AM when I meditate, PM when I am reading my last emails), and I also do the basics - clean eating, all veggies, cucumber juice, lots of water and some higher dose for an extra infrared detox session.
Ashley Lewis, senior director of wellness at GOOP
I take GOOP vitamin protocol called BALLS IN THE AIR. I first got excited about this late last year when we were working with autoimmune expert Dr. Amy Myers on developing it, because she was so focused on curating a vitamin regimen that was perfect for basically every woman I know. The regimen focuses on supporting the production of glutathione (the body’s master detoxifier) and is really a catch all for the woman who is busy, stressed, needs support in the detox/immunity/stamina departments, and isn’t getting enough sleep. I take it every day to make sure that whether I’m in the middle of cold season or having a particularly crazy (read: sleepless) month at work, I still have a ton of energy and my body feels consistently strong, healthy and ready for whatever’s next.
Danielle Duboise, co-founder of SAKARA, organic meal delivery service
Greens! We find almost any excuse to get an abundance (~8cups) of greens every single day. It doesn't matter if we're making lasagna or pancakes, we'll add a handful of greens to the recipe. I've always had gut issues, and I discovered that greens secret when creating Sakara Life. I found that if I got enough of them every single day, my bloat went away, my skin glowed and my overall energy was higher and more constant (no 3 p.m. slumps). That's why almost every single meal in the Sakara program contains leafy greens and a lot of them. It's the single most important food in our diets, not just for detoxing BUT every day.
Jennifer Bandier, founder of BANDIER athletic store and Studio B Fitness
I have a few detox secrets that I swear by. Number one is making sure to allow for 12 hours between your dinner and your breakfast. This allows for proper digestion. For breakfast, I like to make a warm superfood tea. My recipe is matcha, coconut butter, reishi, tocos, powdered probiotic, hot water, and coconut milk. The matcha offers caffeine-free energy. The coconut butter and coconut milk are healthy fats. Reishi is a master healer. Tocos is an adaptogen, which is rich in Vitamins E and D (great for skin, muscle and tissue) and is also detoxifying. The powdered probiotic also optimizes your digestion. I created this recipe to be a warm drink because it's easier to digest than a cold beverage. I have always been into teas and potions, but I discovered this blend recently. As the weather got cooler, I was craving something healthy, filling and warm. During the holiday season, I'm often eating later and having larger dinners, so I substitute this drink for breakfast. This always aids my digestive process and de-bloats.
Cecilia Wong, celebrity facialist and founder of Cecilia Wong Skincare
There are several things that I do to detox, but my ultimate detox secret is something that I have been doing daily for the past four years. It’s working directly on my liver meridian with a tool called CEM technology. CEM technology is a Bio Feedback - Bio Corrector - Bio Recorder. It's “Electronic Homeopathy" and works by using millimeter waves that communicate with the cells (think of it as acupuncture but without needles). My colleague, a quantum physicist, is an expert in Matrix Health and introduced me to it, and it has helped to improve my health drastically. At 8:30 every night I start the process. It takes about 30-45 minutes total. After I'm done, I drink a glass of chlorophyll and get to bed by 10pm.
This method of detox really helps with cleansing, eliminating toxins from the liver, and stimulating liver chi (energy) from stress. This has helped boost my immune system, and improve my energy and focus.
Lina Hanson, founder of organic skincare line, Lina Hanson
Hot water and lemon in the morning. It’s very detoxifying for the body, I love the way my skin feels afterwards too. I used to have very bad headaches. After I started doing this in the morning, the headaches just stopped. It’s so simple. Whenever I travel I do my lemon water in the mornings. It’s a great way to flush the toxins out of your body. It’s something I’ve been sticking to in the morning. I squeeze a whole lemon, and put a lot of water in it. I also do it whenever I travel you can find lemons everywhere!
Tara Sowlaty, co-founder of wellness site @How You Glow.
For me it’s all about adding in potent and powerful liquids + probiotics to flush out my system in a supportive way. I start off with apple cider vinegar, 3 teaspoons first thing in the morning. Apple cider vinegar is an incredible gut-healer with powerful healing compounds including probiotics, enzymes, potassium, magnesium, and acetic acid (which managed blood glucose) — really great for detox. Then it’s spirulina infused water with a dash of cayenne pepper. Then tons of bone broth throughout the day, warmed with Himalayan pink sea salt and sesame seeds. I top off the bone broth with sauerkraut and avocado for some probiotic goodness and healthy fats good for digestion.
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