Greetings from Faiz Healing!
Within the Phoenix Teachings Newsletter you will find our seasonal reflections and offerings for how to align with healthy choices and create support for self-care in the body, heart, and mind.
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General Health Update:
Spring is here! The stirrings of our energy to be more productive beyond the sluggishness of winter and the stresses of the past few months, amid societal change and health concerns, create the perfect opportunity to cleanse and restore vitality before venturing into the season of summer. Spring is a great time to cleanse the body from the sweet and savory foods of winter and stretch the tendons with exercise to breathe fresh oxygen and nourishment into the blood.
The liver is responsible for cleansing and nourishing the blood in Western and Chinese Medicine and is an essential generator of energy to thrive in the changes of seasons. Offering the body attentiveness with dietary awareness, fasting, exercise, and breathing techniques, fortifies the restoration and connection of balance between our physical, mental, and emotional bodies. For many years, cleansing has been a persistent recommendation by health experts of all disciplines because of its beneficial effects. A cleanse is like an internal body massage, a reset, and a therapeutic tool to subdue or resolve inflammation in the body systems. When the physical body is stable and supported nutritionally, the mental and emotional bodies are more resilient also. Each individual may benefit from different cleanse regimens or exercises, specific to their body biome and stress load but a general cleanse can be put into practice easily as a housecleaning ritual for the body one time a month or one time a season.
Here is a basic cleanse that can be used as a 7 day or 14 day regimen depending on the commitment of each individual. An integral part of most cleanses includes smoothies or juicing as meal replacement. Specific foods may be adjusted for special dietary concerns or food sensitivities.
For the initial 3 days slowly decrease meal portions and frequency. Rely on fresh vegetables and fruits mostly. Protein may be eaten for 1 meal as (organic boneless, skinless) white chicken meat or wild caught white fish only.
Discontinue all nuts, beans, and heavy starches.
Substitute 1-2 (8oz) cups Coffee for Green Tea or discontinue caffeine completely.
If your body will allow, discontinue all supplements, vitamins, and protein powders during the cleanse.
*Stay away from all processed foods, grains, and red meat.
One of the best ways to keep your energy balanced and promote cleansing in the body is to substitute meals with smoothies and juices. These vital liquid nutrients help your body clear out toxins by lightening the load required to break down food fibers and promote healthy organ and cellular function. Choosing juices instead of smoothies is a higher level of cleansing that may be conducive for some, while others require the fiber of foods to promote adequate digestion and assimilation.
Smoothie/ Juice Blend Options:
1/2 cup Coconut Milk or Avocado
3 Fruits or Veggies of Choice
Basic blend Ideas: 1/2 apple 1/2 banana 1 cup strawberries
1 orange 1/2 mango 1 cup blueberries
1/2 banana 1/2 cup blackberries 1/2 cup blueberries
1 cup kale 1/2 cucumber 1 cup celery 1 Lime (or Lemon)
1 beet 1 cup carrot 1 cup mixed greens 1Tomato
1 Herb or Green
May include 1/3 cup Basil, 1/3 cup cilantro, 1/4 cup mint, 1 cup kale, or 1 cup spinach
Warmer additions include Cinnamon, Cardamom, Fennel, or Turmeric. (Add to taste)
1/2-1 cup water for Smoothies (to blend better)
*Be Advised: mixing vegetables and fruits can cause gas and bloating which is uncomfortable and decreases the cleansing action of the liver and gut.
If you prefer vegetable based smoothies or juices 1/2 apple or pear, and lime or lemon are the most gut harmonizing fruits to add for taste.
Day 3 and 4: One solid meal a day and 2 (16oz) smoothies/juices
Day 5 and 6: Smoothie or Juicing ONLY 3-4 times a day
Day 7: Re-introduce One solid meal with 2 smoothies Or see 14 Day Cleanse
Slowly build back in meal portions and substantial foods day by day.
You may want to continue having a juice or smoothie as a meal each day over the next 7 days.
Continuing on to a 14 Day Cleanse from Day 7
Day 7 and 8: Water ONLY. Complete Fast (only juicing if needed to maintain energy and electrolyte balance)
Day 9 and 10: Smoothies/ Juicing Only 3-4 times a day
Day 11 and 12: One solid meal with smoothie/juice as desired.
Day 13 and 14: Eat as many vegetables and fruits as desired with 1-2 solid meals. Light Protein in one meal only
After Day 14 gradually increase starches, carbohydrates, and proteins in the diet day by day and consider continuation of smoothie/juice as a meal 1-2 times a day for next 7 days.
Fresh Spring Water is essential in a cleanse! Water is the greatest nutrient and electrolytes in living water help support your body through a cleanse and fast. Drink 10-12 (16oz) glasses of water minimum during a cleanse daily and add a dash of salt if electrolyte balance becomes unstable.
Electrolyte imbalances can result in fatigue, dizziness, headache, increased hunger, anxiousness, and loss of concentration.
Listen to your body and when to shift the cleanse regimen based on your individual needs. It is common in the first 3-4 days of cleansing to have some symptoms in a mild presentation. They should resolve and your body should begin to adapt by Day 3 or 4. If you have any concerns or worsening of symptoms stop the cleanse and consult a physician if symptoms do not resolve with the return to your individual routine to rule out any underlying concerns.
Disclaimer: These recommendations are not intended to treat or cure illness. If you have any concerns or are pregnant or breast feeding consult a physician.
Deep Breathing calls in the energy of life. It is an affirmation of receptivity and an act of intentional decompression for stress in the physical, mental, emotional bodies. Taking time to focus on 7-10 deep breaths frequently throughout the day is a gentle practice of self care that is especially beneficial to cleansing the body.
As you focus on your breath, Count 5 seconds for the duration of each inhale and exhale. Do this 7-10 times in sequence, imaging the tendons of your body growing and stretching down into gravity and up, outward into the space around you. Like the branches of a tree feel that breath entering each cell and enlivening the tissues as leaves unfurl in the Spring air with joy and vigor. This joy and vigor may feel big and expansive or calming and replenishing. Explore the sensation of life breath in your body in this moment with total presence beyond all distraction.
#1 Recycling Resourceful Nourishment
Thinking of starting a garden this season? Consider recycling your egg shells and coffee grinds beyond waste to food and soil amendments for your plants. Old egg shells can make great seed pods for plant starts and be inserted directly into the garden pot or box once sprouted. They will break down over the season with watering and growth of the plant and nurture simultaneously as they compost. Forget about spending money on specialized seeding pellets and upgrade your gardening sense by recycling everyday resources!
Old coffee grounds are also excellent to add to watering times throughout the season. Not only do they bring an increase of potassium and nitrogen to fertilize, they also change soil composition and texture that creates a great environment for helpful soil bacteria and root growth distribution. Many other natural fertilizers are also effective for different plant species but coffee grinds are a nice basic way to offer a bump in soil nutrients for that daily or weekly watering time! Just add 1Tbsp per 2quarts of water.
#2 Creating Alerts for Self Care
Strategizing mindful moments for self care is an important part of feeling whole and decreasing stress in your day to day. Positive habituation can be hard to implement with all the distractions and striving in life. A simple way to increase awareness of self needs is a time out, or rather, a time in! Consider setting a timer or alert on your watch, fit-bit, or phone or even leave sticky notes in key places of your home or car that remind you to think about and take these simple moments in between the duties of the day. Key times or places include when driving in the car, going to the restroom, using the restroom, before bed or on waking, and when bathing. These moments may be 2-10 minutes or more. Look at your day and pick a few times that may work for you. Then build from there with what you feel inclined to give yourself. These self care moments may include Mantras, Breathing Techniques, Stretches or Aerobic Movement to check in with heart, mind, and body.
Self-Care at Home:
Breathing Techniques with visualization and Qi Gong energy medicine are powerful ways to bring consciousness to your body and your organs. Different movements and stretches activate meridians in the body associated to the organs physically and metaphysically. The following exercises are a perfect addition to a Spring Cleanse or daily routine to expand the sides of the body and move lymph fluid for detoxification. Revitalize your body and your spirit together and align with the inspiring balance of nature.