THREE DAYS THAT CHANGED MY LIFE

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

by Morella Devost, EdM, MA

I looked into the bathroom mirror of my beautiful Manhattan studio apartment. It had only been three days, and I was stunned. My boyfriend and I were on the final day of our first-ever juicing detox. For three days, we consumed more vegetable juice than the whole prior thirty years of our lives. And for the first time in a decade, I was seeing a significant difference in the appearance of my skin…for the better.

Ten years prior, in college, I began developing massive cystic acne that plagued me throughout my twenties. Nothing had ever helped. Not the birth control my doctor prescribed. Not quitting dairy, meat, or gluten. But this three-day detox definitely had an impact.

It helped me open my eyes to the effect of our environment on our health. The improvement in my skin, while slight, was the tipping point that initiated a massive overhaul of my health, my career, and my views on our modern lifestyle.

Health-wise, it took two more years to fully resolve my issues, but that three-day cleanse got me started. I’d seen with my own eyes that food does in fact make a difference, and I became passionate about learning to use food for healing.

Career-wise, I facilitated my very first four-week detox for a group of ten clients three years after that cleanse. By then, I’d become certified in Holistic Nutrition Coaching and I’d done heaps of research on detoxification. I’d also personally undertaken countless other cleanses, liquid fasts, liver flushes, and more. I had synthesized the best into a program that remains unchanged to this day. The health turnarounds I’ve seen in my clients over the past eleven years have always left me in awe, and deeply humbled.

Now, as it relates to my lifestyle and my choices, I can’t claim that I completely overhauled my lifestyle overnight after just that detox. But over the course of the next three years, I made small changes with a lasting impact.

I became aware of ubiquitous products and substances contributing to my health issues, such as fragrances and plastics. I learned that these, among other chemicals, have a hormone-disrupting effect, which was a primary cause of my menstrual and acne problems. Eating foods packed in plastics, drinking water from plastic bottles, and microwaving food in plastic containers went out the window. I systematically began eliminating all plastics and fragrances from my home. I replaced my Tupperware with glass. I never wore a synthetic perfume again, and slowly replaced all of my personal care products with ones that were 100% plant-based and non-toxic. I also started to become aware of how household cleaners, processed foods, and certain conventionally grown foods contribute to our modern-age burdened livers. This has such a widespread effect on us that even just a short-term liver-supporting detox can produce noticeable improvements in our health.

So, little by little, I replaced all household cleaners with plant-based, biodegradable products. And I became an avid follower of the Environmental Working Group (EWG.org) and their “Dirty Dozen” list, as well as all of their safe-product guides.

This gradual transformation went hand in hand with the realization that what harms our bodies also harms the planet and vice versa. We have an environmental problem, and our planet has a human problem. We’ve created superfund sites, toxic landfills, and plastic islands in our oceans; environmental disasters for which we have yet to find solutions.

It is all affecting our health. And taking pills for our symptoms won’t improve our collective health or the health of the planet. Both the planet and humanity have to become healthier together. We can make small, incremental changes, like the ones I’ve mentioned. But is it enough?

I’m afraid it’s not. I believe we need to start imagining a new paradigm for life on the planet, because our consumerism culture is not sustainable; not for the planet nor for our health.

Switching our regular products for “greener” ones is only a minor step change. If you switch your gasoline car for an electric one, where are the tires, dashboard, and interiors coming from? If you switch to glass containers instead of Tupperware, what are the lids made of?

The extraction of oil is not just for fuel. Our entire lifestyle is dependent on petrochemicals. It’s not just tires, asphalt, and plastics. It’s perfumes, cosmetics, household cleaners, carpets, mattresses, sneakers, detergents, pesticides…the list goes on. Changing these things one at a time will help, no doubt. You’ll first notice it in your health. But collectively, we need to do more — for our children, grandchildren, and the generations to come.

What might happen if we start to see ourselves as stewards of both our health and planetary health? What actions might we take? What organizations and committees might we join?

Would we start our community’s composting program, or help facilitate recycling education within cities? Would we start a campaign for the elimination of plastics in restaurants? Or perhaps support trailblazing organizations like the Environmental Working Group?

Would we simply become that person who educates their family and friends on the impact of our environment on our health, and inspire them to take action? And what would happen for our family’s health if we were to do any of these things?

It is my dream to eventually create a lifestyle where I have zero impact on the planet, and maybe even help offset the impact others are having. I did overhaul my lifestyle over the course of a few years, and my health and well-being have been all the better for it… but I still have a ways to go, and I’m not off the hook.

In the end, we are all one. Humanity is a single organism on this beautiful, tiny, blue planet. For better and for worse, the health of the planet goes hand in hand with our own.

What will you do this year, for your sake, for our planet’s sake?

Morella Devost facilitates profound transformation for people who want to thrive in every aspect of life. After receiving two masters degrees in Counseling from Columbia University, she also became a Clinical Hypnotherapist, NLP facilitator, and Holistic Health Coach. Morella is a Venezuelan-Vermonter who works with people all over the world, from her beautiful office in Burlington, Vermont.

http://thrivewithmorella.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ThriveWithMorella

BIO: 

Morella Devost facilitates profound transformation for people who want to thrive in every aspect of life. After receiving two masters degrees in Counseling from Columbia University, she also became a Clinical Hypnotherapist, NLP facilitator, and Holistic Health Coach. Morella is a Venezuelan-Vermonter who works with people all over the world, from her beautiful office in Burlington, Vermont.

http://thrivewithmorella.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ThriveWithMorella

2018-12-29T19:51:08+00:00January 1st, 2019|Health|