Stay on Track
Continue with the detox meal plan, varying the grains, legumes, and veggies if you like. Exercise for a half-hour, and stick to the media detox.
Set aside 20 minutes to review your journal entries from the past five days. Which habits make sense? Which don't? Use a highlighter or a pen to circle the problems that resonate with you and that you'd like to fix.
Detox Foot Soak
Fill a plastic tub or bath tub with 8 inches of hot water; add 1/4 cup of Epsom salts and 2 drops of grapefruit essential oil. Soak for 10 minutes.
Skip Raw Foods
If you're tempted to eat a salad to get your veggies, think twice. Cooked foods are easier to digest and often yield more nutrients than raw foods, says Cathy Wong. Plus, this time of year your body especially needs warm, nourishing foods.
Some whole grains can take a while to cook, but resist the urge to sub in Uncle Ben's for brown rice. Fiber helps your body "grab onto" the toxins in your intestines, says Wong, so eating plenty of fiber-rich whole grains is important during a detox. In addition to brown rice, whole grains include foods like wild rice, quinoa, and barley.
Eat Your Beans
Alhough skipping animal proteins for a few days gives your digestion a rest, your liver needs protein to function properly, says Wong, so legumes (e.g., lentils, kidney beans, black beans, chickpeas) are an essential part of the plan. They also serve as an excellent source of fiber. Reconstituting dried legumes is ideal, says Wong; lentils and split peas are especially quick-cooking and easily digestible. For larger legumes, like white beans, soak them overnight. If you use canned beans, rinse off the liquid before cooking them. If you're not used to eating legumes, keep a ready supply of Beano on hand; it can help alleviate abdominal discomfort.
Find Sweet Substitutes
A lot of people find going without sugar difficult, says Wong. Try sipping teas that contain naturally sweet herbs, like cinnamon and licorice.
Tune In to Yourself
Throughout the cleanse, pay attention to how you feel. What foods do you miss? Do you feel better not eating certain foods? How does it feel not to watch the news every day? Maybe you're surprised that chai tea satisfies a morning craving for sweets. Perhaps you normally feel sluggish after lunch, but this week you feel fine. Maybe you feel calmer and thus sleep better now that you haven't browsed the web before bed.
© 2014 Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. All rights reserved.