The new year is a great time to begin lifestyle changes for a healthier you! Starting the new year with a detox is a great way to kick things off. However, detoxing doesn’t mean you have to starve yourself, which can lead to headaches, fatigue and an incomplete detox. In fact, there are 5 ways to detox without starving. It’s a healthier way to clear those pesky toxins from your body.

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Avoid Meat: While eating meat — especially red meat — can ensure you are getting enough iron and protein, digesting meat actually takes more energy than plant-based foods. Eliminating them during your detox helps you to get more out of the other foods you are eating. It also helps with digestion and increases your energy! Having this abundance of extra energy will allow you to exercise more frequently and for a longer duration. Exercise is key in a detox because sweating helps eliminate toxins by getting them out of the body.

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Bring on the Plants: Doing a detox by fasting or only drinking liquids is sure to cause fatigue, headaches, irritability and various vitamin deficiencies that have a set of negative symptoms all on their own. It is important that you replace meats and processed foods with fruits and vegetables. Some of the best choices in this department include artichokes, dandelion greens, spinach, apples, pears, bananas, buckwheat, quinoa, peppers, potatoes, chard and carrots. It is best to eat vegetables either raw or steamed when detoxing.

Add Fiber: Fasting and colon cleansers are not the most effective way to detox as these methods can cause irregularity and damage to the intestines. By simply increasing your fiber intake, your body is better able to keep foods moving quickly through your system and remove any toxins that have built up in the intestinal tract.

Detox Cocktail: Drinking a cocktail of lemon juice, water and cayenne pepper might not be quite the one you had in mind but this combination is a powerful one. Lemon juice helps the liver boost amino acid production which helps drive out toxins. Cayenne pepper can help the body clean itself by breaking up mucus that can accumulate and clog up the body. Be sure to have some tissues nearby! Mix the ingredients in hot water or even green tea for the best results.

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Relax: When detoxing it is important not to neglect your mind and emotional well-being, as stress can cause toxins to accumulate or make it harder to expel them. Take up the practice of deep, mindful breathing, stress relieving yoga or meditation. You might also try getting a relaxing massage or deep tissue massage, which also helps in the detox process of the whole body.