Don't feel bad. I did it too.

If you're like most Americans, odds are you overindulged this past weekend.  (Or this past week, or maybe even the past few weeks.) You might’ve woken up today feeling like a zombie thanks to all the extra sugar and alcohol you consumed (I know I did).  So how do you bounce back?

1. Don’t feel guilty

What’s the point? Feeling guilty will only make you feel worse about yourself and your decisions.  Chances are you had fun.  You enjoyed your time spent with family and friends, so focus on that instead.  I attended my annual Christmas celebration with my best friends on Friday evening.  Did I drink too much wine? Probably.  Did I eat too many cookies? Definitely.  Do I regret it? Nope! I had fun and spent quality time with those who mean the most to me and that’s what matters. 

2. Don’t go on a cleanse or fast

PLEASE don’t do a juice cleanse because you’re “SO bloated and disgusting and New Years Eve is six days away”.  Don’t mix lemon and cayenne and maple syrup in your water and starve yourself to lose the extra weight you may have gained.  There’s a good chance that extra weight is just a little inflammation.  Go back to your regular eating routine.  Consume real, whole foods with a focus on vegetables, high quality proteins and healthy fats, and some fruit, and drink your water.  Still tempted to starve yourself?  Here’s some science for you: detoxification is the removal of waste products of normal metabolism from the body as well as toxic substances and is mainly carried out by your liver.  There are two phases of liver detoxification: phase I and phase II. 

During phase I the body uses enzymes and nutrients to transform toxins and food additives (and other crap it wants out of the body) into water-soluble compounds that can be excreted.  Nutrients used during this phase include B vitamins, folic acid, fat-soluble vitamins A & D, anti-oxidants, vitamins C & E, milk thistle, calcium and glutathione.  So in other forms: fruits and root veggies.

During Phase II amino acids attach to the toxins to further neutralize and escort them out of the body.  During Phase II amino acids such as glycine, glutamine, taurine, cysteine, and sulfur are used.  Or in other forms: protein, especially in the form of bone broth, eggs, gelatin and fish.  So like I said above, just eat real food.

3. Don’t punish yourself with exercise

Don’t go to the gym and force yourself to do an hour of cardio or some other kind of torture you hate.  Just do what you normally would do.  Exercise isn’t a punishment it’s a privilege.  So be grateful for what your body is capable of doing and do what you enjoy.  And if you’re thinking “but I have to burn all these extra calories I ate to fit into this dress by NYE”, I’m sorry but it's too late.  Just wear something that makes you feel good instead.  As long as you feel confident, you’ll look great I promise.

Hopefully these tips help you to make healthier choices this week and feel better about the choices you already made.  Remember, you're only human and it was only a cookie (or five).  Don't let your past decisions derail the rest of your year and you'll be fine.