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July 31 2014

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5 posts tagged "Detox"

A New Generation of Superfoods at Amchara Detox

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Amchara Detox

If you are going to take a week and eat your way to beauty, you might as well do it in one of the U.K.’s most unsung beauty spots—Somerset. Here, in Bindon Hall, an atmospheric thirteenth-century manor complete with a baroque interior and masterpiece staircase, is where the Amchara Detox takes place. On first blush, Amchara is like any other juice/raw food fast retreat, complete with self-colonics and gentle yoga. The difference is that it is headed up by husband-and-wife team Justin Williams and Karen Boyle, basically two Sherpas guiding their clients into a new generation of little-known superfoods—eviscerating everything we thought we knew before.

So yup, if you are still in a loop of wheatgrass or açai, it’s official: Those are so 2012. At Amchara, whether a juice fast or a raw-food menu is chosen, each “meal” is accompanied by superfood shots designed to make you beautiful starting from the inside. A chlorella shot is first, dubbed a “dream food” by the Carnegie Institute for its one-two punch of protein and essential acids. Known to reduce body fat with its powerhouse of antioxidant properties, it is equally hardworking on the skin and hair front. Then there is the incredible blue green algae, the king of fighting free radicals and one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet, with a too-good-to-be-true list of health and beauty benefits—Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center says that it can boost your immune system and has natural antiviral properties. Bringing up the rear is the mighty aloe ferox, nicknamed a “pharmacy in a plant.” This superfood is credited for preventing the formation of wrinkles, improving skin elasticity, aiding in skin regeneration, and being a natural immune-system booster. Take that, echinacea and raspberry ketones.

Amchara’s daily health lectures provide running commentary on superfoods we should all have stocked in our pantries. For example, who knew that barley grass has a dream list of proteins, iron, vitamin C, and calcium and has transformative effects on skin, hair, and nails? Or that chromium picolinate is excellent for warding off sugar and carb cravings. Maca root taken prior to training helps with endurance, and with its high level of calcium, it’s is a wonder food for women. In fact, with the weight falling off everywhere and clients’ blood sugar regulating itself, Amchara is adding a diabetes program, as type 2 diabetes and obesity are, according to the World Health Organization, major global epidemics.

A combination of all this, plus the colonics and infrared sauna, definitely beat the crap (so to speak) out of my lazy metabolic system—though it wasn’t easy to give up the coffee/bagel morning routine, never mind red wine. At week’s end, I was less elated with my eight-pound weight loss than I was with the fact that my skin looked like I spent the week in a derm’s office; my hair was glossy, Kardashian-style; and my eyes were clear and present. If there is a small negative side, it’s that, in the great hall, you may have to get past the ghost— a comforting, cute ghost in a form of a little girl, but a ghost, nonetheless. It is a thirteenth-century English manor, after all.

Amchara Health Retreat, Somerset, United Kingdom, +44 207-603-7744, www.amchara.co.uk

L.A. Beauty Collab: The Doable Detox

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Paleta-Sonya-Dakar-Beauty-DetoxTwo is the magic number for Los Angeles wellness duo Sonya Dakar (skincare kingpin) and Kelly Boyer (executive chef and founder of farm-to-table meal-delivery service Paleta). The pair met while collaborating on charitable events at Dakar’s Beverly Hills clinic and then became each other’s clients. “Sonya keeps my skin looking young and beautiful, and I keep her nourished,” explains Boyer. “We decided, why not put the two together to truly address the complexion?” The fruit of their labor: A shippable two-day, two-pronged Get Glowing! Beauty Detox, which aims to purify and balance—both inside and out.

Dakar contributes products from her newest collection, NutraSphere Detox, which harnesses the power of Marrubium and Buddleja (botanical stem cells that fight free radicals and purge toxins). Included in the face-saving plan: a two-week supply (Dakar says it takes that long to really see results) of Detox Wash, Detox Micro Scrub, and Detox Hydrator. As a bonus, she added two days’ worth of Organic Omega Booster (a moisturizing serum), Daily Face Shield SPF 30, and Perfect Women Multi Vitamins. “It’s not uncommon to break out when doing a juice cleanse,” Dakar explains. “We wanted to keep skin clear during the detoxification process [with an] ingestible and topical approach.”

For her part, Boyer—a health-conscious survivor of late-stage cancer—overnights two days’ worth of tasty cold-pressed juices, “magic milkshakes” (gourmet nut milks), handmade energy bars, bath salts, smoothies bolstered by Dakar’s Ultima Power Protein Powder, and special “boosts” that fuel regeneration and skin repair. The standouts: A pumpkin pie milkshake with antioxidants and nourishing coconut, and prickly pear juice—a blend of healing cactus and cleansing chlorophyll that help keep inflammation at bay. Drink (and wash) up!

Available in L.A. now and nationwide September 1, at SonyaDakarSkinClinic.com and Paleta.com; $229.

Photo: Courtesy of Sonya Dakar and Paleta

A Cupful of BB

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Already the cup of choice for those who like their tea to have style and substance, Kusmi, the 145-year-old Russian-born, Paris-adopted brand, is entering fragrant new territory with the launch of its latest brew. You’ve heard of BB creams (and also CC, and soon enough, DD); now, say hello to BB teas. Much like their topical counterparts, Kusmi’s BB tea—here, short for Beauty Beverage, not Beauty Balm; the moniker was the brainchild of the women working in the company’s Paris offices—has skin refining at its core. They are just doing it from the inside out. The sweetly aromatic blend of antioxidant-rich green tea, vitamin A- and C-packed dandelion, and alpha-hydroxy-laced rooibos, is designed to provide intense hydration for the skin while also boosting immunity and helping to remove toxins from the body. Kusmi CEO Sylvain Orebi suggests five cups a day for maximum skin-detoxing benefits, and considering how delicious the tea is, heeding that advice should prove very easy.


Available at us.kusmitea.com.

Photo: Courtesy of Kusmi Tea

The Detox Diary, Part 1

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Editor’s Note: In this two-part series, frequent Style File contributor Maya Singer makes like Gwyneth and seeks out Dr. Frank Lipman and his new Eleven Eleven Wellness Remove Detox for a little “spring cleaning.” Here, she reports from deprivation’s front lines.

It’s been two hours and 13 minutes since I had my early-morning shake today, which means there’s one hour and 47 minutes left before I get to have my mid-morning shake. And another two hours after that before I eat my first “light meal” of the day. I haven’t had coffee in nearly a week, and my head is still feeling like frogs are moshing around inside it, having some kind of amphibious punk party. I want a piece of chocolate. I want a bagel with butter melting over the sides. I want to die. Correction: I want to eat.

Continue Reading “The Detox Diary, Part 1″ »

Stay Healthy (and Out of the Red)

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If the current economic climate has forced you to make some changes to your lifestyle (read: cut back on those biweekly facials, personal training sessions, and other “gratuitous” forms of personal enhancement), you don’t have to resolve to completely let yourself go in 2009. In response to growing inquiries as to how to maintain optimal health with minimal financial commitment, the medical and spa communities have teamed up to offer ten ways to look good in the new year—while conserving your funds. Below, we’ve listed some of their suggestions, complemented by a few of our own; if anything, you can use them as a very manageable plan B when that “I WILL go to the gym every day” resolution falls by the wayside.

Drink more tea.

A source of healing antioxidants that can help prevent various types of cancer, lower cholesterol, and reduce blood pressure, green tea has been known to assist in weight loss as well. Replacing your daily coffee intake with green tea can do wonders for your health, not to mention your budget; brewing a big pitcher that you can enjoy iced all week will save you some serious pocket change (and line time) at your local Starbucks.

Make it mineral makeup.

The all-natural, unadulterated mineral compounds in these product lines are free of heavy filters and pore-clogging ingredients and allow even the most acne-prone skin to breathe freely underneath layers of foundation and powder—which can help you avoid the cost and commitment of clarifying skincare products. We like Youngblood Cosmetics, which offers a pretty impressive range of colors and incredibly smooth formulas.

Get a weekly massage.

This actually made the aforementioned list of ways to scale back in 2009, mostly because of the benefits associated with massage when administered by a trained professional on a regular basis. These include increased lymphatic drainage and a reduction in water retention, cellulite, tension, and muscle pain, as well as increased oxygen and blood flow throughout the body. A quick Internet search will help you find discount services near you so you can get some self-prescribed relaxation on the cheap.

Detoxify and hydrate.

While this doesn’t necessarily have to mean deliberately starving yourself with the lemonade diet or shelling out for expensive juicing programs, purging your body of toxins regularly is a good way to keep skin clear and your body beautiful—and can save you money on reparative treatments down the road. Wild Rose Herbal Detox Kit is a good biannual option, while regular salt-water foot baths and a diet that consists of foods that are naturally “cleansing”—like lemons; garlic; green, leafy vegetables; broccoli; and sesame seeds—can also work wonders. Also, never underestimate the power of drinking lots of water to get more energy and reduce bloating.

Photo: Courtesy of Youngblood Cosmetics