Make real lasting changes this spring!
I love spring!! More than any other season, I feel it inspires intense inward reflection and motivates one to clean out and clear out the old in order to make way for the new. Spring-cleaning happens on many levels, and you will no doubt be bombarded by messages to detox with juice cleanses and various other extreme diets.
Before you sign-up for a quick fix detox, let me introduce you to my good friend and super sexy mamma, Health and Nutrition Coach Leslie Burns of One Healthy Mother. We had an amazing chat about what it means to really detox and how incredibly powerful it is for women to revolutionize and clean up what they’re putting in their bodies.
The highlights are below, but there were so many golden nuggets in our banter that I included a link to our entire conversation at the end of this post.
After 18 years of takeout in New York, Leslie became passionate about nutrition once she moved to LA and realized she didn’t have a clue how to cook. Becoming a mom then took that passion to the next level.
LB: I LOVE giving my family nutritious meals to eat and I loved creating my sons palette for him and not drenching it with ranch dressing or ketchup. At that point I started a blog, One Hungry Mutha, because I was photographing my son trying the food, and he would help me out in the kitchen.
I was also working with my own nutritionist, and she really tapped into something in me. I wasn’t even looking for a career. I was very happy being a mother to my baby and taking care of the house and the family and my own pleasures. But I found that this was a real pleasure of mine. I loved it and people started asking me questions in Whole Foods and at the park and when I would work out. It just seemed to click.
So I went to school and it really took off for me. I created my business out of my blog, from One Hungry Mutha to One Healthy Mother. I really concentrate on women who are about 40 or 50 who have taken care of everyone else and have forgotten to take care of themselves. So they usually come to me with weight loss issues at first, then it turns into much more than that.
I want to empower women to mother themselves. All of us had mothers that weren’t perfect, but some of us didn’t get the nurturing that we so desire and that we’re giving our children and we forget that we need to nurture ourselves and we need to mother ourselves.
SS: Self-care is the centerpiece of my whole philosophy. Most people are filled with excuses for why they don’t take care of themselves. But if you aren’t taking care of yourself there’s no way you are functioning at your highest level.
LB: Another point on that is that the more you take care of yourself, the easier your life is going to be and the better you’ll feel. Everything affects everything.
SS: I think a big block, for women especially, is the feeling of it being somehow selfish. And to me it’s the opposite of selfish! Because it’s helping you show up more. You then end up being less taxing on the people in your life.
LB: AND, it really isn’t that hard. It’s actually quite simple. It may not sound easy and it may take some habit changing, and that’s why I usually work in a 6-month program because real change takes time. By the end of that program, the new habits are so easy, my clients can’t even imagine going back to the way they used to operate.
SS: I think as a society we’re addicted to quick fixes. What’s your perspective on cleansing and detoxing? Juice cleanses are a big fad right now.
LB: When someone approaches me about wanting to do a cleanse, a detox, or a flush, my first question is why? Why do you want this and what are you trying to achieve? Because what they tell me might indicate that that’s not what they need.
My personal opinion is that if you have a steady stream of nutritious, predominantly plant-based foods in your system on a day-to-day, week-to-week, year-to-year basis, that is when the deep healing begins. That’s when the toxins are released. That’s how you make lifelong changes. You change those habits that are so ingrained in you. That is to me how real healing happens.
SS: I believe the first step to changing anything in your life is having a lot of awareness around it, and for me writing is incredibly powerful to create awareness. Would you say that’s a powerful tool in your practice as well?
LB: Definitely. We start first with food journals, and eventually we add on to that. I ask them to write their feelings. What comes up for you at 3:00? We start connecting the mind and the body.
SS: What’s the difference between emotional eating vs. taking pleasure from eating something decadent?
LB: Emotional eating is usually mindless. You’re unaware. You go to the pantry almost like you’re sleepwalking.
Sometimes it feels like you’re doing it very deliberately. “I’m having a doughnut, I deserve this.” Or, “I’ve had such a shitty day and I want this.”
SS: So it’s like you’re trying to replace a negative feeling with food. You’re trying to cover something up.
LB: Absolutely. And as women, we’re so emotional, and we’re so in touch with how we’re feeling on a daily basis. So if you’re sad, there’s nothing wrong with being sad. Write about it. Go for a swim, go for a hike, go ask somebody for a hug, call somebody, walk your dog, put a song on that you love and dance around your kitchen. Do something that’s going to make you happy rather doing something you think will make you feel better when in actuality it’s going to make you feel worse.
The flip side is, you’re making the decision to eat something decadent because you’re at a restaurant, you’ve always loved the flowerless chocolate cake there, and it reminds you of your father who used to make it. It’s a positive connection. So you say I’m making this choice to have this decadent indulgent desert or whatever it is, because I want it, but I know that I’m not unconsciously trying to cover something up.
If you’re making the choice to indulge, it feels better, because you’re choosing it, it’s not choosing you.
SS: When you were going through your own nutrition makeover, working with a nutritionist, then going to school, what was a major breakthrough you experienced around your own eating habits?
LB: She had me food journaling, and I thought, well, I’m doing pretty well here. I don’t have a sugar problem. And yet every night I was having 1-2 glasses of wine and hadn’t made the connection that that is sugar. And also, alcohol is a downer, so I wasn’t making the connection with that and my mood and that and my health. And when she said I want you to try having only 2 glasses a week…that was not a nice week. To see how it was affecting my mood and how I related to people. That was a revelation.
SS: What gave you the strength to break that habit?
LB: I wanted to change. When something is pointed out to me that clearly, I can’t avoid it. Once I was truthful with her and honest with myself, it was impossible for me to go back.
SS: I believe that highlights the importance of working with someone that can mentor you and hold you accountable.
LB: Absolutely. It’s about nurturing them and not judging them. And just telling them what it’s doing to their body.
SS: Before someone signs up for that Spring juice cleanse, what can they ask themselves in preparation for a change that they want to make?
- What is my goal?
- What is getting in my way of achieving that goal?
- What would I lose if I didn’t achieve that and what would I gain if I did achieve that?
When people start to really focus in on that and say things like, “I could die, I could develop diabetes, I won’t be able to run around with my kids because I won’t have the energy”…obviously what they gain is going to really outshine those things. If you write those down, I highly doubt that a juice clease is going to be the answer to those questions. What you need are some lifelong changes in your lifestyle.
SS: How can we make clean eating fun and sexy?
LB: How can you not?? I mean, what’s sexier than getting the most gorgeous produce at a farmer’s market and creating art with it, and then putting it inside of you? That is sexy!!
At the end of the day, if we don’t love ourselves, how are we going to love those around us?
In the comments below, share one insight you gained from this interview, and definitely share this article with your friends and family by clicking the like and share buttons below so that they can make last changes in their lives as well!
If you would like a FREE consultation with Leslie, go to One Healthy Mother and under the Initial Consultation block, write “Sasha Stone” in the subject line. Step onto the path of true healing and lifelong self-love.
Listen to the complete conversation:
Leslie’s Recommended Resources:
The Clean Diet, Alejandro Junger
The Amazing Liver and Gallbladder Flush, Andreas Moritz
Foodist, Darya Pino Rose
Women, Food, and God, Geneen Roth
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