Feel your best with these no-stress tips.

By Kelly Nardo

For those striving to improve their health this year, there is no better time than the present. Although the word “detox” can get a bad rap and is often associated with juice fasts and restrictive eating, it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are five simple ways to start anew in 2018.

  1. Drink more water. Switch your midmorning coffee or afternoon energy drink for water. While the recommended eight glasses a day might seem daunting, add some mix-ins to change the taste. Fresh cucumbers, citrus and mint are all refreshing options, while adding fresh-squeezed lemon juice promotes healthy digestion.
  2. Avoid processed foods and ditch the sugar. When sugar and refined carbohydrates are eaten in excess, they can’t be used by our bodies and are instead stored as fat. Highly processed foods cause inflammation, which forces the body to work harder than it needs to and can ultimately lead to the development of cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
  3. Eat foods that naturally help the body detoxify. Examples include leafy green vegetables; beets; turmeric, which stimulates liver detoxification; garlic and citrus fruits.
  4. Move more. Whether it be in the form of your favorite high-intensity-interval-training class, gentle yoga or a walk around Lady Bird Lake, exercise is a great stress reliever for the body. Exercising also encourages circulation, bringing nutrients to muscles and organs.
  5. Add dry brushing to your hygiene routine. As the largest organ, the skin is the primary vehicle through which toxins exit the body. Dry brushing can help detoxify the body, as it removes dead skin cells, encourages circulation and cleanses the lymphatic system.

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