It’s been awhile but I’m finally back with a new blog post- my life has been a series of transitions for the last few months but I’m hoping as things settle down, I’m able to spend more time writing more posts about intuitive eating, eating disorder recovery, and Health at Every Size (among others). I’m also hoping to share some snippets of my personal life as well because some of you have expressed interest and also that’s personally what I enjoy reading on other people’s blogs. I’d love to hear your thoughts!
my post-vacation detox plan
Similar to my last post, this one is inspired by a recent trip I took. At first, I thought how odd it is that they both inspired me to write something here considering I really don’t travel very often- then I realized it’s really not that odd given all the bullshit diet culture ideas I harbored around food and travel, all the articles I used to read about how to “stay on track” while traveling and the best way to detox and reset our bodies when we get home.
So I wanted to share a little bit about how I’m detoxing this week after a weeklong vacation. If you follow me, it will come as no surprise that I find most detoxes and cleanses to be bullshit, forcing you to pay hundreds of dollars for something your liver and kidneys are perfectly capable of doing (even if you do have any issues with renal/liver function, a week of $300 juices is not going to be your cure). There’s no need to cleanse or detox- your body is very well-equipped to rid itself of toxins and absorb nutrients when you eat something. No lemon cayenne fire water is going to make that process any more efficient.
Yet there is a remarkable number of people and companies eager to tell you how to “reset” your body after any sort of indulgence as if we need to rid ourselves of the positive and joyous eating experiences we have after vacations, holidays, or social events. Here’s the thing: I don’t want to reset. I very much want to remember eating full Irish breakfasts, eating fish & chips at a pub in Galway, and drinking a pint of Guinness in Dublin. I don’t want to rid my body of food and drink I had while I was enjoying myself; rather, I want to make sure that food nourishes every part of me. And that’s the same whether it’s a weeklong vacation in another country, a meal with people I love, a holiday celebration, or any other meaningful eating occasion. I don’t need or want to rid myself of it. The nourishment it provides (mental, physical, emotional, spiritual) can hang around for as long as it wants, as far as I’m concerned. I’m not hoping to forget about it any time soon.
So my detox this week - and my hope for you next time you feel like you have “overindulged” - is ridding myself of the notion that food, joy, or pleasure ever needs to be compensated for. Letting go of the idea that I need to eat salad and drink charcoal rather than tuning in and listening to what my body needs (last night, that meant a salad; today it was mac and cheese and roasted veggies). Cleansing myself of the perception I held for years that I have to strap on my running shoes and “make up” for my vacation with a few extra miles. I’m also letting go of the idea that I can only check out of social media/obsessively checking emails on my phone because I’m on vacation and finding ways to carry that in my everyday life. I’m cleansing myself of the notion that adequate sleep and leisurely walks can only happen outside of my day-to-day routine. I’m letting go of any idea that pleasure is just for special occasions and life is something to slog through otherwise.
And that, my friends, is a pill much easier to swallow than any shady detox nonsense I paid half my salary for.