Indulge yourself in weekend cleansing programme
Every now and then, ideally once every four to six weeks, it is a good idea to
devote a whole weekend to yourself. Tell partners and friends that you are
otherwise engaged, or ask your husband or a friend to look after the children.
If you feel you cannot spare a whole weekend, at least try to get a full day.
Giving time to yourself should be an empowering experience, but it may feel
strange at first.
The aim of this programme is to enable you to take stock of your body. You could
use the weekend to lose
a little weight, to
detoxify your body of
needless substances, or simply to re-establish a
balance in your life.
Don’t expect to feel totally different after one weekend; this is just one small
If you suffer from any medical conditions such as
cancer or regularly take any medication, you should check with your doctor
before you engage on a
programme, as you may need to modify it slightly to accommodate your specific
Planning Your Time
BOOK A BEAUTY TREATMENT
The first stage, a week or two ahead, is to book a
either at a local
if possible, by a beautician who will visit your house. In some areas there are
companies who will come to your home and give you a ‘health farm’ –style
However, if you are not used to it, you will probably find that one pampering
treatment is enough. You may like to consider asking a friend to join you,
either for your
treatments or for the day, but make sure she is someone you can
Stock up with new magazines, one or two books and your favourite music, so that
you can lie back in the comfort of your own home and completely indulge
yourself. Treat yourself to some new beauty products: for the bath or shower,
for your hair,
skin. If you
are going to try the natural
don’t forget to shop for the ingredients beforehand.
The day before, go to the shops or markets and buy plenty of fresh vegetables
and fruits. Make sure that your refrigerator and cupboards are well stocked, so
that you can easily prepare food that is both appetizing and healthy, such as a
fruit shake or vegetable soup. I suggest you buy bunches of fresh
herbs and plenty of limes and lemons, as these will help to make your salads
and cooked vegetable dishes even more delicious. Also make sure you have a good-quality
virgin olive oil, mustard, salt and pepper to make dressings for your
EXERCISE IS OPTIONAL
Some of you may like to combine the cleansing weekend with visits to your local
gym. This would
be excellent, but is not essential as the aim of this programme is to get you to
feel energized by food.
Even though you will be eating different types of
food during this weekend, it
is important for you to
eat regularly. This will help to protect your gut from
stomach acids and keep a steady flow of food through your bowel muscles. Also,
if you let yourself get too hungry, you are likely to give in to a
something less healthy.
PREPARE DELICIOUS FOOD
Devoting time to making something delicious for only yourself to enjoy should be
a major priority. This weekend there is no need to worry about other people’s
needs, but many women feel that it is not worth the effort of preparing
something special just for themselves. This shouldn’t be so – you’re worth a
lot. Think of
cooking or preparing delicious vegetable and fruit dishes as an
ENJOY YOUR MEALS
Think about the presentation of the
meals and take time to enjoy them. In the
winter you might like to take your food outside and sit in the garden under the
sun. In summer, make sure the house is warm enough for you to relax without
having to have lots of clothes on.
AVOID HIGH-PROTEIN FOODS AND CARBOHYDRATE
Just for two days, try to keep off
protein-rich foods such as meat, game,
chicken, fish, shellfish, eggs, cheese, dried beans and lentils and nuts
(although a few nuts will not hurt), and
carbohydrate foods such as bread,
potatoes, rice and pasta. Of course they have their place in a
but two days of not eating these foods will not harm you. You will be amazed how
well you feel after two days of eating just fruits and vegetables – flavoured
with honey or sugar, and delicious oils and vinegars.
Caffeine prevents your body from absorbing many
fruits and vegetables you will be eating. Since the aim of this weekend is to
boost your health and energy, it would be better to avoid tea, coffee, hot
chocolate and cola-based drinks. If you have been a heavy caffeine drinker you
may suffer from a mild headache for a couple of hours when you stop drinking it.
It is not recommended that you drink decaffeinated tea or coffee as these
frequently contain chemicals, which not only make the drink taste strange, but
their effect in the body is not fully known. Instead drink plenty of water, herb
teas, fresh fruit or vegetable
Alcohol isn’t bad for you, but in a weekend where we are trying to get you to
feel full of energy, try to avoid it. This will give your liver a rest as well
as enable your body to regain its natural energy balance.
It is fine to use alcohol to poach fruits, or to splash into vegetable soups, as
long as it boils for at least a minute or two: the alcohol evaporates off,
leaving its lovely flavours in the food.
MAKE A HEALTH PLAN
Take this opportunity to plan how you can keep the next few weeks healthy and
less stressed. Making lists of things to do, blocking out time for yourself and
shopping so your cupboards are stocked with good foods, can all
help keep you on the straight and narrow.
Remember to examine your body regularly. Get advice on how to examine your
breasts and do this at least once a week. Don’t just rely on your doctor to pick
up problems: you know your body better than anyone, so keep in contact
and you will notice if things are changing. Report any changes or worries to