If the festive season usually weighs you down, and you spend December indulging and January in culinary exile – there’s a better alternative. This pre-holiday season cleanse from Expert Natropath, Herbalist, and Author, Anthia Koullouros, can help you to prep your body for the end of year celebrations and keep you energised and sustained well into the new year.
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The cleanse is for 7 -10 days, depending on your festive social calendar, and has only two steps – eliminate the ingredients that are devoid of nutrition and choose foods that nourish your body. I’ve also included some detoxifying recipes to help you through!
Step 1: Eliminate
Sometimes, my clients can feel quite deflated when they hear the word ‘eliminate’. Rather than focusing on ‘giving things up’ focus on what you gain – an abundance of energy, clarity and balance and a light and lean body. The following foods are devoid of nutrition, hard to digest, fattening and can be very addictive.
Sugar – simply because the more you eat the more you want and it is often accompanied with other processed ingredients
Grains – found in ready to eat breakfast cereals, bars, cakes, biscuits, pasta and other flour products.
Processed dairy – you can keep cultured butter, ghee and sheep and goat milk: cheese and yoghurt
Artificial additives – number, colours, flavours and preservatives
Step 2: Choose Food
The following food is nutritionally dense, highly digestible and absorbable and will gently cleanse and nourish your body.
Organic seasonal fruit and vegetables.
Eat chopped fresh fruit with yoghurt, in a smoothie (see recipe below) or in a berry omelet (see recipe below). For a delicious and healthy treat, arrange fruit on a platter sprinkled with Cinnamon or Vanilla bean powder and a splash of rosewater.
Arrange fresh lettuce leaves such as cos, iceberg, radicchio, purslane, with steamed vegetables and fresh herbs such a basil, mint, coriander, parsley, oregano or thyme leaves on a plate. Serve with a dressing made from equal parts of olive oil, lemon juice and apple cider vinegar. Season with natural salt, pepper and dried herbs such as chilli or cumin seeds.
Another aromatic dressing can be made from equal parts of coconut oil and lime juice. Season with natural salt, pepper, finely sliced lemon grass and grated ginger root.
Note: fresh herbs offer extra chlorophyll, antioxidants, antiseptic and digestive calming properties.
Gently sauté vegetables in extra virgin and cold pressed coconut oil, olive oil, cultured butter or ghee.
Pastured or grass fed and/or organic meats – beef, chicken and lamb and wild fish such as Canadian Salmon.
Gently sauté in extra virgin and cold pressed coconut oil, olive oil, cultured butter or ghee or slow bake in the oven on a low temperature such as 120C for soft, tender and a nutritionally preserved meal.
Pastured, open range or organic eggs. Pastured eggs are from chooks that frolic on pasture, eat grub, bugs and shoots, exposed to lots of natural sunlight, fresh water and supplemented with some grain. They are richer in omega 3 and fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K2.
Sheep or goat milk yoghurt and cheese.
Well-prepared organic or biodynamic nuts and seeds. Activating or soaking is a preparation method that allows for better digestion and the release of anti nutrients such as phytic acids found in the hull or skin. Phytic acid binds to minerals.
Organic or biodynamic pseudo-cereals or non grains such as quinoa, amaranth or buckwheat.
Make a porridge (see recipe below) or add to salads.
Organic herbal teas:
Dandelion root, Dandelion leaf, Rooibos, St Mary’s thistle seed, Nettle leaf, and Calendula flower gently cleanse the bowels, liver and general systemic organs.
Pre-Holiday Cleanse Recipes
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1/4 teaspoon organic Green leaf stevia powder
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon vanilla bean powder
1/2 cup berries
1. Beat 2 eggs per person and add 1⁄4 teaspoon of each of organic Green leaf stevia powder, Cinnamon and Vanilla bean powder.
2. Pour into a well coconut oiled pan.
3. Swirl the pan so that the egg mixture covers the whole pan.
4. Add 1⁄2 a cup of berries to half the omelet and flip into half. Serve as a breakfast or dessert.
There are 3 parts to making my wholesome and delicious tasting smoothie.
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Part 1: Choose a coconut, almond or macadamia base:
Home made coconut milk made from a fresh young coconut:
1 young coconut, open, pour out water and scoop flesh and blend to make a milk base. Store in fridge in a jug and use 3/4 cup at one time.
Home made coconut milk made from organic dried coconut flakes or shredded coconut: 1 part dried coconut to 2 parts water and blend.
Homemade almond or macadamia milk:
5 blanched or activated almonds or macadamias and 3/4 of a cup of water.
Part 2: Add nutrition:
1 or 2 raw eggs (the natural protein and quality fats) or if you are sensitive or allergic to eggs
or want to save eggs for another meal add 1 tablespoon of Grass Fed Gelatin powder
1 tablespoon of cold pressed extra virgin coconut oil
Part 3: Add natural flavour and sweetness:
Papaya & Cinnamon: 1/4 cup of papaya and 1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon powder
Berry & Vanilla: 1/4 cup of frozen or fresh berries and 1/4 teaspoon of Vanilla powder
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½ cup roasted buckwheat (kasha or groats )
1 cup coconut milk or nut milk as above
1 tablespoon of yoghurt
1 cup water
1 teaspoon Vanilla, pinch Cinnamon and pinch of natural salt
1. Combine the buckwheat, milk, yoghurt, vanilla and cinnamon into a bowl.
2. Sit overnight in the fridge to allow buckwheat to soften.
3. Cook on the stove the next day with the 1 cup of water and extra milk if desired.
4. Serve with grated apple or pear. You can replace buckwheat with whole amaranth or quinoa.
Enacting these healthy principles before the silly season will help you look & feel incredible, and is easy to pick up again in the calm of the New Year.