There is been a big deal about ‘detox diets’ and cleanses lately on the health news front. I took extra interest in this because I just returned from vacation in Puerto Rico. The food fell into the ‘traveling/hotel’ quality category, so – weather issues aside – I was looking forward to getting back to my normal eating routine. Between sugary drinks, bready foods/snacks and an excess of red wine each evening on the balcony, I was feeling a bit toxic by the end of five days. More on that later….
For me, one of the most enjoyable pastimes during vacation is people watching. Here are a few observations from ‘The All Star Island’ of Puerto Rico.
- The people overall were quite fit. The streets were full of joggers and the vast majority of employees at the hotel were also in good shape; an encouraging sign. Usually I come home from vacation depressed. Convinced we are all doomed to a life of elastic waist bands.
- I never knew there were so many ways to cook plantains…you know, the wanna-be banana.
- The local population could not have been friendlier. This was a nice change from the Northeast where this winter has crushed manners under 8 feet of snow; entombed there until the temperature gets above 60 again…in July.
- And although I HATE the practice, I am the guy who gets up before anyone else and reserves the absolute best seats at poolside for me and my family…yeah, I’m that guy. It’s 7:30am and I am lying there reading my book half asleep. Other guests are here to sunbathe but I got up at 6:30 just to be sure I could hide under this umbrella and not let the sun touch my pasty Irish skin. My kids are not going to wake up and join me for about two and half hours, but don’t even think about moving my towels lady…I own this entire row.
As I pondered all of the above and gloated in the shade, I wondered what it would take to remove other sources of toxins from my daily routine. I decided to look into it.
I believe I have mentioned this before in earlier posts, but there are groups of chemicals we are exposed to every day called ‘endocrine disruptors’. As the name implies, they mess with our hormones. This is a partial explanation for the significant decrease in male testosterone levels over the past couple of decades. In fact, the largest study shows male testosterone levels dropped a whopping 17% in just 20 years. This is largely explained by exposure to chemicals in our environment.
I, for one, kinda like having testosterone in my system.
Anyway, I am going to start eliminating toxins from the outside first. Here is how I plan to do this:
- Topical products: Shampoo, soaps and lotions. There are now plenty of brands using only all natural products. I do have an unfair advantage here. Since I have virtually no hair, I don’t have to worry about whether or not my shampoo actually cleans my hair or not – I really don’t care.
NOTE: Hair is overrated anyway…
- Food: Trying to eat all organic will be tough. Price and convenience are the two largest roadblocks to widespread acceptance of organics. I’ll let you know how this goes…It will require a bit of forethought and planning.
Note: Try to eat food with only one word on the ingredients list.
By the way, all those news reports on cleanses and detox diets are saying there is no scientific evidence they work at all.
What does this mean? Just cut out the toxins in your food – especially processed wheat products and go from there. This will provide a quick way to get weight loss results and reduce your ‘toxic load’ – the total amount of toxins you are exposed to daily.
Let me know how you do!