With the start of a new year, it's no wonder that people are embracing change. It's a chance to start over. We are eager to dive into our newer, healthier habits, but while it may be overwhelming to tackle meal prepping, your new spin class, and home re-organization all at once, you can still implement one simple habit that can make a world of a difference for your 2018.
Most simply, its a morning cleanser. Some people pour themselves a hot mug of water with lemon. Others swear by their daily shot of ACV (apple cider vinegar, for you non-Pinteresters). And while a white or herbal tea could possibly be considered a cleanser as well, it's bolder counterpart coffee does not make this list. Even if you take your coffee black (props to you) it's diuretic properties and caffeine levels are a harsh start to your day compared to these morning cleansers. A good cleanser should slowly wake your insides after a hopefully long night of hibernation. You wouldn't want to be plucked out of bed and plopped down in an office meeting with unruly bedhead and no pants on. You should show some kindness to your gut in the morning, too.
I started off the new year feeling like Jeb Bush due to a sinus infection I seem to have caught from my holiday travels. While I drink this cleanser even when I'm not feeling sick, it helped me immensely to get through those first few days of feeling like a zombie. My version is a simple lemon "tea" that I throw together with basic spices that are always in the pantry.
Morning Cleanser Lemon Tea
1 8 oz mug of hot water
1/2 a lemon
1/2 tsp of ground ginger
1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
a pinch of cayenne pepper
Firstly you heat the water by itself. When I'm lazy I just microwave my water in the mug, but if I have time I will boil it on the stove in my cute little glass teapot. I squeeze the juice of half of a large lemon into my mug and I will place some sliced wedges on top. I like a strong lemon flavor: if you include the rind in the water it will be stronger, but if the water is too hot and you keep it in for too long, it might become bitter. Then I toss in my spices. The measurements are just approximate, and you can add as little or as much as you like, as there is no science to it really. While I was scared to use cayenne pepper at first, I found that a small amount won't blow your palate. I make different variations of this tea depending what I have on hand. When we don't have lemons, I use lime. If we are out of ground cinnamon, I will treat myself to a whole cinnamon stick and use it to stir my tea. (It's also an added treat because my family buys the Mexican cinnamon, which is a brighter red and is more warm and mellow in flavor). On days when I feel a tickling in my throat I will add honey, but if you would like some sweetness and are vegan I would suggest maple syrup instead.
There are many elixirs and recipes you can adopt to create your very own cleanser. I have seen people include everything from chia seeds, to turmeric, to matcha powder in their morning drinks. It is all a matter of playing with different ingredients and flavors. The health properties of any ingredient can be endless, so it really depends on what you feel your body needs. Nothing is off limits here: if you are feeling adventurous you can try drinking bee pollen, as it has endless health benefits (although it is an acquired taste). I hope you have fun finding your morning cleanser, and happy 2018!
I'm Lisa Cecilia Garcia. I'm a freelance writer specializing in food and lifestyle but have experience in poetry, creative writing, and everything in between. I'm a recent college graduate residing in Valdosta, GA. I love sketching, running, and obviously cooking and eating. When I'm older, I plan to run away to the mountains.