If you’ve had a good Christmas and New Year, the chances are your thoughts have now turned to detox, or perhaps just buying some extra stretchy yoga pants (hey, whatever works for you, we’re not judging!). The good news is yoga and detox are a partnership made in cleansing heaven. So it’s out with the mince pies and sherry (although you’ll be forgiven for hanging onto the gin) and in with the green juices and spinal twists. Here’s our simple and easy as 123, yoga guide to detox this New Year!
The hibernation mode of winter, combined with inevitable Christmas indulgence means that come January, we’re always ready for our greens. Detoxing certainly doesn’t mean starving yourself, so why not try this liver cleansing broccoli soup (from The Awesome Green) that is as tasty and hearty as it is healthy!
- 2 cups broccoli
- 2 celery stalks, finely diced
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 cup greens (kale, spinach, etc.)
- 1 parsnip, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 cups water or vegetable stock
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ lemon, juice only
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- Toasted mixed seeds and nuts
- 1 teaspoon coconut milk, to garnish
- Heat the coconut oil, add the onion, garlic, carrot, parsnip, celery sticks and broccoli, and cook over low heat for five minutes.
- Add water or vegetable broth, bring to a boil, then cover and let simmer for 5-7 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
- Stir in the greens, then blend adding the chia seeds and lemon.
- Top with toasted seeds.
2. Cleansing Yoga
Whether you’ve been dedicated to your practice over the festive period or it’s been a while since your rolled out your yoga mat, plenty of spinal twists and muscle stretching is just what the detox doctor ordered this January! Here’s some of our faves:
- Get some fresh blood flowing and stimulate the thyroid glands (which can help improve your metabolism, stimulate the nervous and digestive systems, as well as better release toxins) with a headstand. If you’re new to headstand, it’s a great New Year challenge to practice!
- Perhaps known as the king of all detox asanas, the reclined spinal twist will give you energy, stimulate the lowers torso and help relax tension from the spine.
- We love the addition of a little belly massage to the classic forward fold from Do You Yoga. That way, as well as the usual benefits of stretching the legs, releasing the spine and activating abdominal muscles, you’re also giving your tummy an extra bit of love and attention.
3. Focusing the mind
Chances are that all that Christmas telly, lively family time and frantic sales shopping may have left your mind feeling a little bit frazzled. Your January detox shouldn’t just be for your body. Give some TLC chill out for the mind too. Adding just 5-10 minutes of breathing exercises to your morning routine can help bring back the focus that will help you get down to business and into your regular routine after the holidays. To get the energy flowing in your body try the fire breathing Kapalbhati pranayama or for relaxation and balance then the trusty Single nasal breathing works wonders.