Join the SheSaid team and take a month off alcohol! “Biggest Loser” nutritionist Janella Purcell shows us how to successfully detox.

Join Febfast

It’s officially February which means it’s detox month. To help our bodies get rid of all the toxins we’ve been putting in it over the party season we’re joining FebFast and you should, too!

Did you know that a single glass of white wine contains up to 180 calories,
and that a schooner of Beer has about 150 calories? This means that for
every drink you consume, you would have to run for between 12-16 minutes to
burn those calories off. Ouch!

To raise much needed funds for Drug & Alcohol Awareness programs you can get your friends and family to sponsor you by registering at
www.febfast.com.au. Don’t worry if you have a big social engagement planned you can buy a ‘time-out’ pass for a day and then fast for the other 27 days.

Why detox?

Nutritionist Janella Purcell says, “Alcohol like anything in moderation isn’t harmful. The problem is that we Aussies have a little problem with a moderate consumption of alcohol (and junk food). Excessive consumption of alcohol really does have very negative affects on our health – both body and mind.

“Giving up alcohol for a month will give you better health, no mood swings or sugar cravings, weight loss, lovely skin, more energy, a cleaner house, clearer relationships, better sleep and you’ll start to concentrate more on your diet and how to eat and drink more healthily long term.”

FebFast is not about never having a drink again. It’s about avoiding it for a month then drinking in moderation. Use it as a good way to start to concentrate more on your diet and how to eat and drink more healthily. Once you experience the effects of a booze-free month, it’s more than likely you won’t go back to your old ways. Alcohol should be enjoyed, not used to sedate or escape.

How to detox

It takes about a week before you realise that you don’t miss alcohol. The first few days are the hardest, so plan those days well:

– Structure your days so you have no time to spare, so make sure you organise other activities to replace drinking.

– Exercise is great, so if you feel like a glass of wine, go for a walk instead!

– Avoid people and places that you associate with drinking

– Replace alcohol with a hobby or something you’ve wanted to do for ages or get those unfinished projects finished!

If you’re struggling, try a few remedies available from your local health food store: St. Mary’s Thistle and Dandelion Root – herbs that repair liver cells and reduce liver inflammation; Gymnema balances blood sugar thereby curbing cravings and B vitamins are good for the effects of too much alcohol – they’re helpful to the liver, digestive and nervous systems.

Other home remedies if you’re feeling the effects of withdrawal are the Kudzu Root: part of the arrowroot family available from health food stores. Traditionally used in China to sober up someone who has over-indulged, and for various side effects of too much alcohol, recent research shows it can dramatically reduce craving for alcohol. Miso Soup or Ginger tea are great for nausea.

Top Tip: Eat porridge for breakfast – oats are great for weaning off alcohol.

Janella Purcell, www.janellapurcell.com, is one of Australia’s leading naturopaths and nutritionists and the new face of the “Biggest Loser” 2010 and ambassador for FebFast.

For more great health tips click here!