My mornings are a little different now, while I used to wake at 8:00am after a full 8-9 hours of sleep, refreshed and energised I am now woken by my little squidge Finley gurgling, chatting, pounding his legs on the mattress demanding a feed anytime from 5:30-7:00am. Refreshed and energised I am not, bleary eyed and exhausted, I am, but also happy and so excited to see my boy, especially when he beams at me from his cot.
Since I’m ‘up with the Lark’ my mornings are long, so I have decided to start them a little differently. I’ve basically incorporated a mini-detox into my morning routine, this wasn’t really intentional but more as a reaction to feeling so dehydrated (I’m breastfeeding and for some reason do not drink any water at night) and tired. I needed to find something in the morning to make me feel revitalised…and I have found a winning combination. Many of you may actually be doing a ‘proper’ detox program or have finished off from the no sugar,/no booze craze that is now January. My mini detoxy things can be incorporated into a traditional detox or for those just trying to be a little healthier these are also very useful additions. You can mix and match them (you definitely don’t have to do all three). You could also have these throughout the day not just in the morning.
Step 1: Raw organic apple cider vinegar and fresh ginger drink
I have already extolled the merits of raw organic apple cider vinegar (My Top 5 Store Cupboard Essentials) but I had pretty much stopped using it. Now it’s back in my routine with a bang. Every morning the kettle goes on, the ginger and cider vinegar go into my big mug and the hot water follows. I realise this drink may sound pretty odd to some but I find it amazingly refreshing and I really enjoy it. If you find the quantity of vinegar I use is too much you can start with a smaller amount and work your way up. Give it a go, you may be pleasantly surprised.
- 1 chunk of fresh root ginger (2 inches), peeled and chopped.
- 1 tablespoon of raw organic apple cider vinegar (increase or decrease this amount depending on your preference).
- Approximately 450 ml of boiling water (I like to make a big mug, again you can vary this amount).
Bung all of this into a mug (I also add a little cool water so I can start drinking it straight away).
Raw organic apple cider vinegar
- Rich in vitamins A and E and minerals potassium, magnesium, iron, and calcium.
- Beneficial for your digestion and helps to prevent indigestion.
- Energising, contains a range of amino acids and B vitamins that support your energy production systems.
- Has alkalising properties, which help to maintain proper pH levels in the body (a diet high in coffee, alcohol and sugar creates more of an acid, disease forming environment).
- Helps to regular blood pressure and reduce bad cholesterol.
- Contains malice acid which has anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties.
- Helps to break down fats so your body can use them rather then store them making it useful for weight loss.
Fresh root ginger
- Great for the digestion, has carminative properties which means it helps to get rid of intestinal gas. It also helps to relax and sooth the digestive tract. Combine this with the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties as well as helping to reduce nausea and you’ve got an amazing digestive aid. I think anyone suffering from digestive complaints (and those not) can benefit from adding more ginger into their lives.
- It contains powerful anti-inflammatory compounds called gingerols, these have been shown to work wonders for people with osteo- and rheumatoid arthritis (when consumed regularly).
- Immune boosting, yep this warming root has both antiviral and antibacterial properties.
Step 2: Green/Superfood drink
For me this means ProGreens by Nutricology, which is a blend of different green grasses, sea vegetables, algae, adaptogenic herbs, probiotics, antioxidants, fibres as well as a few more superfoods thrown in for good measure.
Blimey, where to start with the benefits of this concoction! Here goes…
- Cleansing, supports your major organs of detoxification (liver, kidneys, gut).
- Immune strengthening.
- Great for clearing the skin and helping it to look bright and radiant.
- Alkalising (which helps to restore the balance of acidity and alkalinity in the body – often it can be too acid which is linked to a variety of different ailments and poor diet choices).
- Supports digestion and helps to improve regularity of bowel movements.
- Helps to reduce inflammation in the body.
….and many many more good things. It’s quite pricey so if you’re on a budget you can skip this part of the process but I do notice a difference to my general health and appearance when I have been taking it for a few weeks.
Step 3: Green or White Tea
I either make myself a big mug of this or a pot (depending on whether I’m going to work or staying at home) and usually chuck in a chunk of ginger.
- Both teas have high levels of antioxidants (catechins) shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers, heart disease and diabetes….another bonus is they are great for the skin.
- They contain caffeine (though white tea has less) so will give you a bit of a buzz, this is why I don’t drink it after 5:00pm.
- These have a cleansing effect as the antioxidants support liver function.
- These antioxidants are also great for the immune system.
If you do all this you’ll feel hydrated (you’ll be popping to the loo on a very regular basis, there’s a lot of liquid here!) and on the road to cleansedom. As I mentioned at the beginning don’t feel you need to do all three steps, even if you can get in just one of these in the morning it will help to make you feel a little more spritely and cleansed.