If your Thanksgiving meal was mostly "white" (as in, heavy on simple carbohydrates) this simple combination of ingredients is a great way to gently nourish your digestion and clean your system. In Chinese Medicine, we almost never recommend a “detox” because it is too harsh on your body and can actually knock your body out of balance in the opposite direction. Rather, we like a more gentle, measured approach. These simple ingredients accomplish that.
Moreover, Chinese Medicine theory shies away from cold and raw foods except for maybe in the summer time. To that point, consider drinking this room temperature or add a little hot water to your infused water. This will keep your "middle burner" warm and help with digestion.
I like starting this on Monday after the long weekend, because most likely after Thanksgiving you have slowly started to go back to eating your normal diet. By waiting a few days, this is not quite as much of a shock to the system.
An Acupuncturist Approved Post-Thanksgiving Digestive Juice
- 2 lemons
- 1/2 cucumber
- 10 mint leaves or 1 drop of peppermint essential oil*
- 3 quarts of warm water
Slice the lemons and cucumber and drop into the warm water. Add mint and gently muddle the leaves to release the essential oils. Let the mixture sit so ingredients can infuse the water overnight. Drink first thing upon waking and before breakfast. This helps to bring your body into an alkaline state and revs up digestion.
Care Considerations & Perspectives
In Chinese dietary therapy, peppermint is considered a cooling herb so if you tend to run cold, you might considered leaving the peppermint out or switching with some fresh grated ginger, which is a warming herb.
Also, it goes without saying that you might experience a few extra trips to the bathroom, and you might also find that you crave drinking more water this way. Finally, if you are a nursing mama you might choose to omit the peppermint as it has been known to decrease milk supply.
This is a great routine to get in the habit of in general, don’t just wait to do when you overindulge.