Support a Healthy Gut
Your gut houses about 60% of your immune system. It is responsible for making melatonin (a hormone that regulates sleep) and serotonin (a neurotransmitter that boosts mood) as well as serving as a critical part of the digestive process. If your gut is not healthy, you are not healthy. Our gut is also home to about 3-5 pounds of bacteria, some healthy and some not-so-healthy.
The balance (or lack of balance!) between the good and bad bacteria in our gut affects our metabolism, psychological well-being, and immunity. I mentioned earlier several external factors that can compromise and damage our gut. Abdominal (visceral) fat is one of the direct effects of increased gut permeability. Much like your hormones, your gut health can be restored over time with the proper changes to nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle.
Support Immune System and Minimize Inflammation
We have already talked about sources of inflammation and the effects of chronic inflammation in the body. However, I want to mention one more thing about our immune system. If our immune system is always working and never gets a break, it has a hard time doing its main job of fighting off acute inflammation. This means that our immune system may not be able to effectively fight off that flu that is going around, heal stubborn tendonitis, or keep your arteries clear of plaque.
Every 35 days your skin replaces itself, your liver takes about a month, your body makes these new cells from the food you eat.
What you eat literally becomes you.
- Eat wisely
Grains: This includes wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, white rice, millet, bulgur, sorghum, amaranth, buckwheat, and sprouted grains.
Sugar: No maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, Splenda, Equal, Nutrasweet, xylitol, etc. You must read labels because food manufacturers will sneak sugar into products with names you may not recognize such as brown rice syrup or evaporated cane juice. Also, products that claim to be sugar-free often still contain artificial sugars which can have a negative effect on the body in the short-term and the long-term.
Alcohol: No beer, wine, hard alcohol, etc. Not even for cooking!
Tobacco: Eliminate any tobacco products from your day-to-day routine.
Caffeine: No coffee, but you can and should have tea! I suggest green tea but try out different herbal teas too. Tea can be a great alternative for habitual coffee drinkers.
Legumes: This includes beans of all kinds including black, red, pinto, navy, white, kidney, lima, fava, peas, chickpeas, and lentils. Beans are starchy and can significantly raise blood sugar. Also, no peanuts or peanut butter, but almond butter is acceptable. Finally, no forms of soy are included in the detox program which includes soy protein, soy sauce, miso, tofu, tempeh, edamame, and soy lecithin.
Dairy: This includes cow, goat, or sheep milk products such as cheese, kefir, yogurt, ice cream, butter, cream cheese, half & half, and sour cream. The exception is ghee (clarified butter).
Food Additives: Avoid foods that contain carrageenan, MSG, nitrites, or sulfites.
You don't have to be a wreck. You don't have to be sick.
One's aim in life should be to die in good health. Just like
a candle that burns out.
- Jeanne Moreau
Brown Rice, Quinoa, Sweet Potatoes:
These three foods will be the bulk of your complex carbohydrates during your detox program. Brown rice will give sustained energy, aid in elimination of waste, and keep you feeling full after a meal. It is also rare for someone to have an allergy to brown rice.
Quinoa is a high-protein seed (not a grain) that is a powerhouse energy source, and sweet potatoes aredelicious, nutritious, and fun to prepare!
Vegetables: Aim for at least 6-8 servings per day (1 serving= ½
cup cooked, or 1 cup raw) This includes (but is not limited to!) asparagus, broccoli, bok choy, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, bell peppers, carrots, celery, cucumber, tomatoes, spinach, romaine lettuce, zucchini, sweet potatoes, snap
peas, green beans, yellow beans, string beans, eggplant, jicama, pumpkin, water chestnuts, and onions. THIS DOES NOT INCLUDE WHITE POTATOES, CORN, AND PEAS (all of which are considered starchy vegetables).
Fruit: Aim for 2-3 servings per day (1 serving= 0.5-1 cup or, for example, 1 small apple) This includes (but is not limited to!) apples, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, clementines, cranberries, grapefruit, grapes, honeydew melon, kiwis, lemons, limes, oranges, papayas, peaches, pears, pomegranates, plums, raspberries, strawberries, and watermelon. Note that tropical fruits such as pineapples, bananas, and papaya have a naturally higher sugar content so be mindful of portion size.
Fat: Learn to love good fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, avocados, nuts & seeds, nut butters, ground flaxseed, almonds, hazelnuts, olives, ghee, coconut butter/manna, coconut milk, coconut meat and coconut flakes.
Lean Protein: Seafood (including but not limited to salmon, shrimp, scallops, cod, and crab), grass-fed beef, bison, lamb, elk, venison, eggs, chicken, turkey, duck, pheasant, and bone broth.
NOTE 1 - The first 3-7 days you can decide to go completely without animal protein. This part is optional but recommended for best results.
NOTE 2 - Another option is to do a 3-day juice fast cleanse to start your detox. We don’t go into juicing into detail here because it’s not for everybody. A great resource for juicing is Chef V, who can deliver straight to your door!
The foundation of success in life is good health: that is the substratum fortune;
it is also the basis of happiness. A person cannot accumulate a fortune very well when he is sick.
- P. T. Barnum
Beverages: DRINK LOTS OF WATER! Consume at least half of your body weight (in ounces) in PLAIN water each day. Alkaline water is preferred! Also, hydrate with herbal tea, green tea, sparkling water, or even water infused with some lemon/lime wedges.
Seasonings: Prepare your food with fresh or dried, whole or ground herbs and spices! Use low-sodium organic chicken, beef, or vegetable broth to add flavor as well as some Himalayan sea salt and black or white pepper.
Condiments: Use fresh salsa, pico de gallo, pure organic ketchup, organic mustard, and hot sauces without added preservatives to add flavor to your meals.
Sweetener: Use Stevia which is a sweetener extracted from a naturally sweet herb.
Supplements: You may consider PhysX: Multivitamin, Essential Fatty Acids (EFA), Glutamine, BCAAs, Detox and Protein.)
* Please check with your doctor before adding any supplements to your regimen.
Pre-Workout: This is going to vary based on when you exercise and what your body can handle. It is ok to exercise without food in your stomach if your body can handle it, but most will do well with a pre-workout snack. A pre-workout snack can be consumed about 30 minutes before the workout.
Examples of a pre-workout “snack” would be:
- two hard-boiled eggs (with the yolk) and an orange
- some turkey or chicken with a sweet potato dollar (the slice of a baked sweet potato)
- few strips of beef jerky (can’t have added sugar; find the most “natural” beef jerky brand with no added preservatives) with trawberries, blueberries or blackberries
- handful of almonds (12) or walnuts (14) with a banana (1/2)
- almond or macadamia butter with an apple
- Protein smoothie - see below! (PhsyX brand recommended)
Post-Workout Shake: Consume this within 45 minutes post-training. Eat a normal meal 60-90 minutes after your post-workout shake.
PhsyX Protein (or VeggiePro) Shake: add 2 scoops of PhsyX protein and water then shake it up in a mixer cup
PhsyX Super-Smoothie: add 2 scoops of PhsyX protein, 1/2 tsp stevia, 1/2 cup blueberries,1/2 cup pineapple, handful of spinach, 1/2 fuji apple, 1 tbsp chia seeds, and water to desirable thickness. Pour over ice and enjoy! (makes 2 servings)
You only need a post-workout meal if you are performing high intensity interval training, strength training, or longer-duration cardiovascular exercise. If you are walking or doing gentle yoga, you don’t need to include a post-workout meal.
Note: The amount of carbohydrates to be consumed post-workout is going to depend on your fat loss goals. If you are new to exercising and eating healthy and have a lot of body fat to lose, just include protein in your post-workout meal.
Timing Your Meals and Your Snacks: The goal is to eat 3-4 meals a day. This obviously changes on the days you engage in high-intensity exercise with your pre- and post-workout meals. On these days, you should eat 4-5 times per day. You might also need to “break the rules” if you work exceptionally long days or have an exceptionally active metabolism. In that case you may end up eating 5-6 meals per day. In general, though, avoid over-snacking between meals as this can disrupt the normal functioning of leptin and insulin. Think about your “snacks” as your meals. It will take some time to gauge how much and what the right types of foods to eat at each meal are.
Timing Your Meals and Your Snacks: (continued) The main objective is to leave 3.5 to 4 hours in between meals to allow your digestive system to function properly as well as to normalize leptin levels. Each meal should be designed to hold you over until the next, taking away your desire to snack on “junk foods” and other foods not on the 21-Day Detox.
As your body starts to use more fat for energy, you will experience less between-meal cravings, energy slumps, and brain fogs. So, in the case that you didn’t eat enough at a particular meal or didn’t eat enough fat to keep you satisfied, have a snack that contains protein and fat...instead of letting yourself get hungry, tired, or cranky, which may lead to over-eating!
Evening Meal Tip: Avoid consuming carbs with your evening meal to accelerate fat loss! Stick with steamed or sautéed veggies and lean protein.
Snack Tip: Don’t just snack on veggies or fruits alone! Pair these with proteins and/or fats to keep yourself fuller longer! Examples would include: 2 hard-boiled eggs & veggies, celery & nut butter, or chicken/turkey and vegetables.
Carbohydrate Tip: Portioning carbohydrates is important to ensure they are being consumed in moderation.
Women should consume about 1/2 cup of carbs at each meal.
Men should consume 3/4 to 1 cup of carbs at each meal.
The evening meal is the exception, at which no carbs need be consumed. When portions are too large, it can be too much for our body to handle, especially for our pancreas to handle. Also, our preferred carbs in this program are natural sources of complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes, etc.
Exercise: Continue with your current exercise routine. You may also choose to add in a couple of short 10-minute walks each day or one 30-minute walk per day. Getting outside and connecting with nature and movement helps reduce stress and improve emotional well-being. This might also be a good time to add stretching or yoga into your current routine.
Team Training: This will help you accelerate fat loss! Continue (or begin) team training with Results during your 21-Day Detox. However, intensity is to be slightly lower than normal depending on each individual’s response to the detox process. Listen to your body and do what feels right. If you are not currently exercising, you may consider adding in a 30-minute walk each day accompanied by stretching and/or yoga. Strive to do something active each day!
Breathing: Most people hold a dysfunctional breathing pattern that gives only partial inhalation of oxygen and holds onto much of the carbon dioxide in the lungs.
This creates a toxic breathing exchange instead of a balanced exchange between oxygen and carbon dioxide. This creates more stress in the body and mind, a weakened energetic state, a cloudy mind and a host of other problems, including fat
storage from elevated cortisol levels.
- An important part of the 21-Day Detox is the Breathing Exercise explained below which should be performed 1-2 times/day from 3-5 mins each time:
- Draw the inhale softly and slowly in through the nose. Visualize a feather in front of your nose, and as you breathe in, try not to disturb the feather. Draw the breath all the way down to your stomach (abdomen). Your stomach should expand OUT when you breathe IN. Next, hold the breath for a pause, and try to really feel it in your body. Then breathe out through your mouth as you use your stomach muscles to squeeze out every bit of the breath. The trick here is to do a FULL EXHALE, not a partial exhale like we usually do.
This exercise will engage your diaphragm instead of just the primary respiratory muscles: the intercostal muscles (aka the muscles that lift/expand your ribcage). It’s a much more powerful form of breathing used by singers, martial artists, Olympic athletes, and meditation practitioners. To take this exercise to the next level, visualize and FEEL yourself drinking in new life, new energy as you inhale. Make it a physical, mental AND emotional breath - not just physical. As you breathe out, visualize any tension, anxiety, or stress that you have being expelled from the body. Just let everything go!
Gratitude: Cultivate an attitude of gratitude! Write a list of ten things in your life which you are grateful for and review it every morning. Alternately, upon rising every morning, write five things which you are grateful for at that moment. The things you are grateful for may be as profound as gratitude for the workings of the Universe, to gratitude for a single breath, and everything in between.
No matter how you choose to bring gratitude into your awareness in the morning, be sure that you take a moment to meditate on each thing you are grateful for and feel the gratitude in your heart. Think of the way it feels when someone gives you a gift that is exactly what you have always wanted, and try to feel that for a few moments for each item on your gratitude list.
Journaling: This may help you keep track of your progress during the detox. Journaling can be a powerful technique for identifying what is important to you and finding some inner guidance.
More often than not, you are stronger and smarter than you give yourself credit for. Studies have also shown that journaling reducesstress and inflammation and can have a profound impact on health.
Here are some examples of questions to ask yourself while journaling:
- What can I do today to take care of my body?
- What am I willing to let go of today that is no longer serving me?
- How do I feel today...physically? ...mentally? ...emotionally?
- What am I grateful for today?
- What is my life purpose and how does the health of my body and mind relate to that purpose?
You can't take good health for granted. - Jack Osbourne