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New Year, New You

Ring in the New Year with a Weight Loss and Detoxification Program

After the last few months of holiday festivities, overindulgence in the form of food, alcohol, and stress can be at the forefront of our minds.  With the New Year upon us, many people vow to change their lives and lose weight, drink less, and meditate more.  One avenue that most people do not consider after a period of overindulgence is detoxification to rid the body from the chemicals and impurities that accumulated over the holiday season.

Detoxification is defined as the metabolic process by which toxins are changed into less toxic or more readily excretable substances.  It can be compared to the “junk drawer” that most people have in their home.  Over time, more items collect in the junk drawer until it cannot even be opened anymore.  Your body collects junk in the same way with the food you eat, the water you drink, and the air you breathe.  This junk consists of pesticides, pollutants, preservatives, heavy metals, chemicals and caffeine.

The liver, kidneys, gastrointestinal system, and lymphatic system are all in charge of the handling and excreting of toxins from the body.  If these organs are overburdened, they can become inefficient just like a clogged air filter might.  Signs of toxicity include weight gain, fatigue, poor digestion, difficulty sleeping, food cravings, mental fog, dark circles under the eyes, moodiness, and low libido, just to name a few.

Many detoxification programs exist.  Here are a few key steps to follow when choosing the right program for you:

  • Always check with a licensed healthcare professional before you begin a detoxification program because people with certain diseases like diabetes, need to be monitored especially well while detoxifying.
  • Make sure that the program is made from food and is free of preservatives, chemicals, and artificial sweeteners and ingredients.
  • It is usually better to perform a detoxification program that is gentler on your body, so choose one that lasts for more than a day or two.
  • Buddy up…When you complete a detoxification program with a friend or family member it helps to stay focused and the results are usually more significant.

After the completion of a detoxification program, most people experience increased energy, improved health, weight reduction, improved digestion, clearer thinking, and removal of food addictions.  With all of these improvements the New Year can definitely begin the start of a New You!

Did you know that Dr Stephanie has created her own online detox program?  Her comprehensive step by step system will walk you through a 28 Day Hormone Reset Detox – Want to find out if it’s right for you?  Check out the program link here.

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Healthy Back to School Lunches

Happy Fall!  It’s that time of year when summer festivities are winding down and we all regain a more routine schedule even if we do not have children that are heading back to school.  Your nervous system as well as your brain requires whole food fuel – specifically fat and B vitamins in order to thrive.  If fatigue, memory, or mood are issues for you or your child, be sure to check out my easy tips to improve your health and probably your grades too!

  • Avoid refined sugar, genetically modified grains, poor quality dairy products and other highly processed foods like poor quality lunch meat. The foods on this list will have an array of negative health effects ranging from brain fog, fatigue and inflammation from sugary or processed GMO grains, to digestive upset from dairy products or poorly processed meat. To make sandwiches, replace your store bought bread with better ingredients like Bob’s Red Mill flours or make a lettuce wrap instead! Replace your lunch meats with a healthy meat like grilled chicken or a nitrate and preservative free brand. Buy and cook your own meat from a market or local farm where animals are raised in healthy and grass fed or pasture raised conditions. Cook your roast or breast and then slice it thin for your own, healthy lunch style meat.

  • Eat foods for function! Foods that help sharpen your focus include a side of celery, sliced peppers, or carrots. These great veggies provide your body with Luteolin which helps to reduce inflammation and improve memory.

  • Don’t forget your B vitamins! Packing a side of steamed broccoli and cauliflower, eating eggs for breakfast, and packing a healthy meat can all provide a healthy source of Choline which can assist with brain development, boost cognitive function and improve learning and memory! Eggs, beef, and fish will also give your brain a B12 boost and help with memory!

  • Blueberries are a good option for fun finger fruits. Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals that improve learning, thinking and memory. If you or your child are a “hand-to-mouth snacker” – eating blueberries, one at a time, and thoroughly enjoying them may be a good side for your lunch! Add almonds for additional vitamin B and an enjoyable crunch!

  • Walnuts and pumpkin seeds provide an easily packed snack that is high in Omega 3’s which are good for the brain and memory.

  • Get to BED! No one will function well, have clear memory, feel energized, or be in a good mood if he/she is lacking the proper rest. Be sure that everyone in your household gets the appropriate number of sleep hours each night. Infants are recommended to have 16 hours; teenagers are recommended to have 9 hours; and adults are recommended to have 7 to 8 hours.

  • Finally, remember that vitamin D is important for the brain function and to combat stress. Ask your practitioner if you are consuming adequate vitamin D or if it needs to be supplemented throughout the winter. Vitamin D has also been linked to stronger immune systems which is always helpful with back to school!  Cod Liver Oil is one of my favorite and efficient ways to obtain Vitamin D for the body!

Dr. Stephanie Zgraggen, DC, MS, CCN, CNS is a licensed chiropractic physician, certified clinical nutritionist, and owner of Lime and Lotus, LLC.  Dr. Zgraggen has developed a successful method for determining the root causes of many of her patient’s health concerns, and she uses a combination of whole food and herbal protocols to restore health.

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What Should I Eat?

I am asked at least on a weekly basis, “What should I eat to maintain or improve my health?”  Although the answer to this question can be very specific for each individual’s needs, there is definitely an underlying theme for all of us in order to eat for health and wellness. 

The first and most obvious answer is EAT! The harder follow up question is WHAT DO I EAT?  To put it simply, we need to eat REAL FOOD, meaning foods that are free of preservatives, artificial flavors, dyes, colors, sweeteners, etc.  Many of these preservatives and additives have been shown to have undesirable effects on us like hyperactivity, increased heart beats, decreased energy, and much more.  Unadulterated foods like fruits, vegetables, pure dairy, butter, meat, fish, are all great places to start.

The beautiful thing about Charleston, South Carolina is that we have many outlets for us to enjoy where we can purchase unadulterated foods.  These include farmer’s markets, health foods stores, CSA’s (community supported agriculture), and even most big chain grocery stores are now carrying local and/or organic food choices.  There are also many chemical free farms in the area that you can drop by and even pick your own fruits and veggies.  For example, I love going blueberry picking at the beginning of summer.  I freeze them and use them throughout the year; this is a great way for me to support local business as well as receiving a high quality product at a reasonable price!

When shopping the grocery stores, I also suggest shopping around the perimeter of the store; meaning that you do not purchase anything that is in the aisles as these are where most grocery stores keep all of the processed foods.  By shopping the perimeter, you will find fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, meats, seafood, dairy, and eggs.

So to reiterate, get out of your house this summer and travel to one of the many local farmers markets in your area, or take a family outing to visit a local farm and pick your own fruits and vegetables.  You will see a difference not only in taste, but also in your bank account and most importantly, your health.

Dr. Stephanie Zgraggen, DC, MS, CCN, CNS is a licensed chiropractic physician, certified clinical nutritionist, and owner of Lime and Lotus, LLC.  Dr. Zgraggen has developed a successful method for determining the root causes of many of her patient’s health concerns, and she uses a combination of whole food and herbal protocols to restore health.