Gabby Bernstein’s Detoxifying Cleanse

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Here’s the deal: While I’ve written nine self-help books and have a deeply devoted spiritual and personal growth practice, I still fall into old habits that don’t serve me, especially in times of stress. 

In March 2020, when we went into lockdown, I noticed some funky old eating habits resurface. I started looking for more starchy foods, eating later than usual, and even obsessing about my meals. All of this was an attempt to try to exert control when the world felt so scary and out of control. Does any of that sound familiar? 

Maybe you drank a little more than you normally would, picked up the bag of chips or the ice cream carton to cope with stress, or laid around more than you’d like to admit. With all that’s going on in the world, it is totally understandable to feel anxious and out of control. 

Acceptance is the first step to putting 2020 behind us. Take a moment to honor yourself for all that you’ve been through. Honor yourself even for relying on old habits or coping mechanisms just to get by. Those habits may have greatly served you for a period of time last year. But now, with 2020 behind us, we can create some powerful change and start fresh.

I needed a reboot, both physically and mentally. Here’s what I’ve been doing to detoxify, shift my energy, and move forward stronger than before. I hope this serves you! 

MY CLEANSE PLAN

Before I conceived my son, I concentrated on a high-fat, high-protein meal plan. It supported my gut and healed a condition that I struggled with called SIBO. This felt like the right kind of food plan for me to do again. 

As before, this is a high-fat, high-protein diet. I stay away from sugar, gluten, and alcohol (obviously, as I’ve been sober for 15 years). And I focus on detoxification through weekly saunas, daily exercise, and dry brushing. I also try to drink 60 ounces of water a day, with added electrolytes, the key ingredient for hydration. 

It’s important to note that while this is the plan that works for me, everyone is different. Always consult with your physician before starting any new detox, diet, or health program. 

Here are some of the ways I set up my detoxifying cleanse.

INTERMITTENT FASTING 

Since January 1, I’ve been starting my day with (modified) intermittent fasting. That means eating only within an 8-to-10-hour window. So my first meal is at 11 AM and I stop eating at
7 PM. It’s healthier for women to do this type of fast for a few days in a row (or every other day) and then take a break. It’s not recommended as a daily practice.

In addition to weight loss (if that’s your goal), the benefits of intermittent fasting include heart and brain health, reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, reducing inflammation in the body, and cell rejuvenation. 

What I love most about intermittent fasting is that I have tons of energy!

One way to make your fast a lot easier is to put butter in your morning coffee (yes, butter!). If you’re into wellness trends then you likely know about my friend Dave Aspery’s Bulletproof Coffee. You blend together coffee, MCT oil and grass-fed butter or ghee. This mixture is full of antioxidants and quality fats to keep you full until you break your fast. 

“Grass-fed butter and MCT oil contain slow-absorbing saturated fatty acids that have an incredibly powerful way of satiating hunger and turning off food cravings,” Dave says. 

WHAT MY DAY LOOKS LIKE

BREAKFAST

At 11 AM I break my fast with the following meal:

  • 16-ounce bottle of water with electrolytes to make sure I’m super hydrated. 
  • 8 ounces of green juice with cucumber, lemon and ginger. 
  • Superfood bowl of organic yogurt, chia seeds, goji berries, blueberries and protein powder. This superfood bowl is filled with antioxidants and protein to keep me going throughout the day. I top it off with Brazil nuts, which are highest in selenium, so they’re great for hair growth and balanced hormones.

When I was getting started with this diet, I also called my friend Jess Krux, Certified Nutrition Specialist and founder of Organic Earth Kitchen. She hooked me up with some delicious recipes to mix in throughout my detox journey. Below are the recipes for you to try! 

IMMUNE BOOST SMOOTHIE RECIPE

“When doing any type of detox it’s smart to also actively try to boost the body’s immunity,” Jess explains. In the jar of the blender add 12 to 15 ounces of water first. Then add: 

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries 
  • 1 cup frozen blackberries 
  • ½ cup raw oats 
  • ½ raw beet
  • 3 prunes 
  • 2 dates 
  • ½ banana
  • Dash of cinnamon 

Blend well, add more water if needed. Save in the fridge. Will yield 2 to 3 servings.

OPTIMIZE JUICE RECIPE

“Juicing is a great way to increase alkalinity in the body—a goal while detoxing and for general optimal health,” Jess says. 

In a juicer add:

  • 1 head celery
  • 1 cucumber
  • ½ green apple 
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro
  • 1 bunch fresh mint 
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 1 lime, peeled
  • 1 thumbnail of ginger root or raw turmeric

Juice completely. Will yield 12 to 16 ounces. Drink immediately for the most benefits. 

LUNCH

I have a huge salad for lunch, including:

  • Dark leafy greens. 
  • Some kind of protein, like chicken or salmon
  • Whatever veggies I have in the fridge; I love to add probiotic veggies like asparagus, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower

One meal I’m really enjoying is Jess’s Midday Mediterranean salad. The ingredients in this recipe have great detox properties alone and synergistically,” Jess says. “This recipe is a nice way to get high-quality nutrients while being gentle on the digestive system.”

RECIPE

  • 4 to 5 kalamata olives, chopped 
  • 1 celery stalk, sliced thin
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved 
  • 1 medium cucumber, diced
  • Handful of raw shiitake mushrooms, diced 
  • A medley of fresh parsley and mint, chopped 
  • Fresh lemon juice 

Arrange everything in a bowl or large plate and squeeze the lemon juice over the top. To make it look really pretty, organize it in a rainbow pattern. Then, in a small jar or bowl, add equal parts extra-virgin olive oil and apple cider vinegar, the juice from half a lemon, and a dash of sea salt. Shake well or stir. Pour evenly over your chopped salad, chew slowly, and enjoy. 

SNACK 

Mid-afternoon I have a snack such as a handful of nuts, an apple with almond butter, or even a green smoothie. 

DINNER

My final meal of the day consists of more protein and more veggies. Prepping meals in advance makes things super easy. On Sundays I prepare a ton of roasted veggies, proteins, and even cut up lettuce so that I can just grab them from the fridge and quickly put together a healthy meal. 

Try this Sweet Pea Hemp Seed Pesto recipe, too! 

 

START EACH DAY WITH A MENTAL CLEANSE

The morning is when you can set yourself up to win for the day. I make sure to meditate each morning. I go up to my office, get comfortable on my sofa and practice Transcendental Meditation (TM) for 20 minutes.

There are countless studies on the benefits of meditating. Meditation calms your nervous system, helps you manage stress, increases self-awareness, and even boosts creativity, patience and focus. A recent study from Georgetown University Department of Psychiatry found meditation is a proven method to help people with anxiety. The study found people who meditate daily had lower blood levels of epinephrine, norepinephrine and cortisol (the stress hormone!). Meditation also lowers the respiration and heart rate—so you’re able to focus and feel less stressed.

One of my favorite meditations is my positive affirmation meditation. Try it out tomorrow morning! 




TAKE TIME TO SWEAT

Sweating is one of the best ways to cleanse and the body’s healthiest and most effective way to eliminate toxins. It’s a crucial part of detoxification. In the afternoon (around 4 PM) I take an hour to exercise in a way that makes me feel good. I mix it up—yoga, pilates, sculpting, a long walk. I just make sure to move in some way each day. 

I also love a sauna. Studies have shown that saunas remove solvents, organic chemicals, PCBs (a chlorine compound), pharmaceuticals and heavy metal toxins from our bodies. When I’m in the sauna I’m sure to make hydration a high priority (more on that below, with a special offer, too!). 

I recognize that getting into a sauna isn’t something that most people can do regularly, especially during the pandemic, But you can still get the toxins out through movement, and taking a steam shower or a hot bath (which I’ll get to later!). You can also check out my blog about sauna therapy and ways you can affordably sweat at home. 

REPLENISH YOUR BODY

When embarking on a cleanse or diet of any kind, you may experience fatigue, crankiness or even brain fog. No one wants that! So every day I have a ritual of drinking half my body weight in ounces of water with electrolytes, because I need to replenish after I sweat. 

Staying hydrated is essential for many reasons. It helps prevent infections, keeps your joints lubricated, regulates your body temperature, improves sleep and even boosts your mood. 

As you know, I quit sugar years ago and a lot of the electrolyte drinks are loaded with it (like more than 36 grams of sugar!). If you’re looking for a clean (sugar-free) product, I’m a big fan of LMNT. They’ve done their research and just made a clean, sugar-free way to help you stay hydrated. 

Because I really do love it, we are working with LMNT to bring you a killer deal. You can purchase an LMNT sample pack for just the cost of shipping! So that’s only $5 and you get to try all the flavors (citrus, raspberry, orange and unflavored). Click here to try it out

TAKE A DETOXIFYING BATH

I’m a bath junkie! Especially when I’m detoxing. I like to make the water really hot and add in a ton of Epsom salt. I actually sweat in the bath—a great way to detox. 

The salt bath is great for detoxifying because Epsom salt contains magnesium sulfate, which is a combination of magnesium, sulfur and oxygen. When you combine the two minerals, they help remove harmful toxins, help with sore muscles, soften skin and of course, help you relax

(If you have any underlying conditions, please consult with your physician before detoxing.) 

DRY BRUSH 

Every night after my bath I dry brush. It’s pretty much what it sounds like: You take a body brush—something with firm natural bristles—and use it to gently massage your body.

Doing this will help your body release toxins. Studies have shown that dry brushing boosts blood circulation, unclogs pores and also can stimulate your nervous system. So it’s like a jolt of energy … and who doesn’t want that? 

If you’re new to this, just make sure your body is completely dry when you do it. Start at your ankles and brush in circular motions toward your heart. Then, work your way up. Dermatologists recommend doing this once or twice a week. (Sensitive skin? Once every couple of weeks.) Finish with your favorite moisturizer.

FUN FACT: The reason you want to do those long strokes in the direction of the heart is because you’re working with your lymphatic system (which removes waste from the body, aka detoxifies) and trying to push up lymph fluid. 

HAVE FUN

Cleansing and detoxing can be hard, and it requires commitment. But if you think of it as a chore then it’s only going to be harder. Instead, focus on the fun—the delicious recipes you’re whipping up, the fun workouts, the energized way your body is responding, the inspiration you feel after your morning meditation. 

When you make fun your priority, you attract what you want into your life. But most importantly, the fun you have along the way puts you into an energy inspiration. When you’re inspired, it brings you closer to achieving your goal and attracts support from the Universe!

Remember, detoxing and cleansing isn’t for everyone, so make sure to talk to your doctor first, before starting any new health regime. 

And don’t forget to hydrate! When I told LMNT that I was doing this blog they wanted to hook you up with a special offer to get a LMNT Sample Pack for the cost of shipping ($5 for US orders)!

Stay hydrated with your special offer from LMNT electrolytes here

Want even more info about intermittent cleansing? Check out my interview with Dave Asprey!




Note: I’ve partnered with LMNT because I truly use their products every day and also because hydration is really important to my exercise routine (and life!).

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  1. Gabby,
    I admire you and love how selfless you are!
    Thank you for sharing your favourite personal products and routines w/us all.
    It’s people like you who make the World a better place.

    In light & laughter,
    Jayme Knox ox

  2. Thank you for sharing in a simple easy to follow format. I have looked at intermittent fasting before as I am a BC survivor and there have been studies it is beneficial( and my Dr is comfortable with it. ) Some of the other materials made it sound more complicated(or I got distracted with too much reading )But this sounds like something I can follow.

    1. Great question, Linda. Adding butter and/or MCT oil to your coffee not only provides the body with nutrients and antioxidants, but it also slows down digestion which results in more, longer-lasting energy, and helps us feel fuller longer. These are just some of the benefits. xoxo

  3. Can you please share the source of “natural flavors” in the electrolyte packets? Thanks for this amazing and thorough post!

  4. Hi Gabby it’s a pleasure read your newsletter. Pretty how much water do you drink?. More or less.
    I have a hard time drinking water. I am struggling to realize, observe, and give myself what I need. Step by Step.

  5. Thank you so much for sharing
    I love intermittent fasting too.
    My only question is, if you have a bulletproof coffe before breakfast you break the fast? Or you take the coffee at 11?
    ❤️❤️

    1. Great question, Natalie. I have my bulletproof coffee before breaking my fast to help me stay full and energized until 11:00 AM.
      xoxo

  6. Sounds wonderful! I also see that you have a LOT of snow so can I suggest winter-bathing to your sauna sessions? Just love how the body responds with circulation and boosting the immune system. I feel so healthy after 30 sec immersing in cold water!! At least 1 time a week here in Stockholm Sweden where we have lots of water (and ice) around the city. Stay cool! /Anna

  7. I have SIBO … so glad you got cleared up on this protein veggi detox.. any other tips for SIBO to share?? I’m on a 3 week off sugar, dairy, grains except forbidden rice.. thank you for sharing!! Easier to do it with others!!

  8. Thank you for sharing this – I have struggled with intermittent fasting and how to implement it without triggering my fears around not having enough food. Very helpful, thank you!

  9. Would love to try the LMTL hydration packs however they don’t ship to Canada sadly…boo! Are there any Canadian counterparts?

  10. Gabby,
    What a great push to the edge of what I have been avoiding since the Pandemic. Resetting my healthy habits, eliminating sugar, gluten and alcohol once and for all! It has been a struggle, but I know I can do it in this community. Thank you so much for your guidance and this loving space!

  11. This is great. Thank you for sharing with us your healthy habits. Wish I had a sauna at home I miss Bikram Yoga so much!!!

      1. Thank you Gabby! I love how you broke down and explained in details your detox regimen and easy to follow instructions/recipes. Wishing you best

  12. Love this Gabby! So many great tips and points. I’m looking forward to implementing. Thank you 🙂

    I’m definitely ordering the electrolytes.

    Oh… and I’m re-reading Super Attractor, off for my morning read and then I’ll do the meditation you shared above!

  13. This blog post in my email was sent to me in divine timing. The timing, seriously, could not be better! Taking this moment in, savoring it and am feeling so grateful♥️
    Gabby, having you and your influence in my life has made such a positive impact. Little shifts here and there that make life beautiful again, make me feel eager to be apart of it and get out there and share my message of eating REAL food and voting with your dollars. Because someone somewhere needs to hear my message, just like I needed to hear yours.
    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for changing my life ♥️ Sending all my love!

  14. WoW!! Thank You so much Gabby. I am doing a 28 day gut reset for the entire month of Feb. This is all very useful info.

  15. Totally loved this blog and the conversation with Dave Asprey. I have been struggling with feeling “fluffy” and just this morning I got the intuitive tap to try intermittent fasting but did not know the best approach to plan it into my life. Thank you Gabby & Dave for this great conversation I am heading over to fastthisway.com to order the book immediately.

  16. This is so helpful Gabby- thank you. I’ve had a few infections during this pandemic and am super healthy but have a really hard time drinking enough water. I’m motivated to get the electrolytes you’ve recommended and push toward that final step to feeling my best.
    XOXO

  17. Hi Gabby,
    I have SIBO (for many years) and so much gut inflammation. I’ve kind of given up on myself.
    I treated with antibiotics 3 years ago and the neomycin destroyed me. Made everything worse and I ended up with colitis. I did the high fat high protein diet after my antibiotic treatment 3 years ago and I lost too much weight. It wasn’t good for me.
    I can’t do these smoothies, or celery juice 🙁
    What is the cucumber, lemon and ginger drink? Can you share the recipe?
    If you have any advice or guidance for me please share,
    Thank you for all your beautiful work.
    Raquel

    1. Hi Raquel,
      First, I want you to know that I’m holding you in compassion right now. I know first-hand the challenges that SIBO presents. In addition to working with your doctor, here are some additional posts that you might find helpful:
      https://gabbybernstein.com/gut-health-gabby-bernstein-sibo-gerd-gut-inflammation/
      https://gabbybernstein.com/my-favorite-books-heal-body-mind-spirit/
      Sending you lots of love has you continue on your healing journey. xo

  18. I have entering my second year of Intermittent Fasting. My introduction was through Dr. Jason Fung and his books. My most important reference, The Obesity Code.
    Thank you for the opportunity to be a part of this Judgement Detox journey.
    I am currently reading you book, Judgement Detox.

  19. I’m curious as to why you dry brush after your bath? My initial thought was to do it before the bath, to open everything up and soak in the goodness of the bath.

  20. Thanks for this. I’m eating as clean as I can and only drinking water and green tea. I’m up early for an hour run every morning. When I’m fasting I do prayers and meditation or the tapping from the judgment detox course. This distracts me from food while fasting. As sometimes I eat out of boredom
    Will try the dry brushing soon. Not tried that before

    1. Right on, Lisa! It sounds like you’ve got a great self-care routine going. Glad you’re open to integrating some of these resources and suggestions. xoxo

  21. Thank you so much for sharing your cleanse Gabby! I also do a cleanse every year in January so set me up right for the year I love your cleansing plan and I will try your recipes! Just one question, what time do you have lunch, snacks and dinner?

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