The best way to avoid overindulging on Thanksgiving is to keep your own needs front and center throughout the holidays. That doesn’t just go for Thanksgiving either, but also all the holiday parties and celebrations to come.
When you have been working to restore your hormonal health and have committed to your goal of banishing your PMS, or managing your PCOS, or preventing your horrible period cramps each month, then a desire to overindulge, binge, or eat hormonally-toxic foods is less likely to come from within you, and more likely to be down to pressure from family and friends to do as they do and forgo your health for the sake of preserving tradition. It’s hard enough to turn away the mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes covered in marshmallow, the cookies, the cocktails, but it can be even harder when you’re a lone health ranger in your family.
There’s no need to hurt yourself with food. The holidays are about coming together and spending time with those you love. Be a good “host” to your body during this time. Don’t feel pressured to be a good guest or a good host to others by eating and drinking in a way you know will cause you suffering later.
As women we tend to be socialized to be people-pleasers. I’m here to say, you don’t need to make everyone happy at the expense of yourself. You deserve to put yourself and your health goals first, whether that’s your desire to conceive or your desire for clear skin - if it’s important enough to you that you’re here reading this, it’s important enough that your friends and family support it. It’s a great opportunity to practice holding firm healthy boundaries and compassionately sharing your new point of view with those willing to hear.
That said, I want you to feel good even if you have overindulged this Thanksgiving! So here’s how to detox from 3 of the most common holiday experiences.
You’ve eaten too much white bread, mashed potatoes, or pastry-heavy desserts. The gluten and the sugar are endocrine disruptive and you need to off-set your exposure if you want to avoid symptoms like an irregular cycle, missing period, acne, mood swings, cramps and more.
How to detox
Have a “Paleo day” post Thanksgiving to prevent a cycle of carb-cravings and limit the damage to your hormones. For breakfast, have eggs with coconut oil. For lunch, have some of that leftover turkey with avocados and greens. Have a cup of bone broth, too. Steer away from the grains and gluten-free carbs today and give your gut the break. Take a fiber supplement to sweep out the white flour residue. It’s always a good idea to take a brisk walk right after eating carbs - it’ll help your body use up the glucose for fuel.
Sugar causes hormonal havoc - mood swings, PMS, missing periods, infertility. There’s not much good I can say about the white stuff.
How to detox
Resist reaching for “the hair of the dog” sugar-wise and eating some dessert for breakfast. Sugar is highly addictive, so you’re best to turn to the “methadone-like” alternatives of sweet potatoes, butternut squash, parsnips, and yams to curtail your cravings and bring you down gently without the withdrawal anxiety, moodiness and stress. Interval training (fast walking followed by a slower pace) will help you today.
A glass of good red wine won’t hurt you, but 3 or 4, or even worse, hard alcohol cocktails, and your body’s hangover will continue way beyond the headache. Alcohol raises your estrogen levels, and makes liver function more sluggish, leading to estrogen dominance - the root cause of many hormonal health issues.
How to Detox
You’ll want to concentrate on detoxing your liver so it can go back to processing your hormones and avoiding build-up. Take a B vitamin supplement and a high-dose vitamin C supplement in the morning. Drink lots of coconut water throughout the day. You can also whizz up my liver detox juice: combine a handful of spinach, 4 stalks of cucumber, half a bunch of cilantro, one-third a bunch of parsley, half a lemon with rind, half a green apple, and a small carrot in a blender or juicer. A hatha yoga class will help you sweat it out.