Author: Lily Mazzarella
Congratulations! If you’re reading this, you made it through the holiday season and the darkest days of winter (relatively) intact.
Many people enter the new year feeling below water but somehow hopeful, which—if you think about it—is quite the set-up: in the spirit of “resolution,” let’s undertake all the most elusive life changes when we’re feeling the least resourced! After two months of sugar and alcohol hangovers, sick kids, triggering visits with difficult family members, and too little sleep, let’s put more pressure on ourselves to be better and different! It’s not surprising so few resolutions take root and grow into sustained ways of being, and that we’re left feeling hopeless to effect real change in our lives.
Enter the reset button. This time of year, promises of the miraculous reset button abound.
Well, I have news for you. After years of study in the field of anatomy and physiology, as well as multiple attempts to locate one on my own body, I have concluded there isn’t one. Vis a vis the body, we are continuous beings. We carry our bodies with us, day to day, across the threshold of the new calendar year.
I have first-hand knowledge of this continuity, having lived decades under the curve of an outsized stress response, as well as navigating numerous gut crises. I’ve been diagnosed with (and recovered from) IBS, gastritis, and gallbladder dysfunction that resulted from high stress and food sensitivities, stress-related insomnia, burnout, and adrenal exhaustion. My recovery has been hard-won and non-linear—and while I am still prone to worry and feeling stressed out (it’s the Mazzarella way!), these challenges have given me precious insight and forced me to develop compassionate self-care that is non-negotiable.
So, yes, we bring our fried nervous systems and our gastrointestinal woes into the new year. But we’re going to do something about it. This is the year to get a handle on your stress and digestion. What would it feel like to have digestive comfort? To not feel overwhelmed, anxious, fatigued and stressed all the time? To care for ourselves deeply, and in a sustained way? To not view the foods that tear up our guts and leave us miserable and feeling out of control as “comfort foods”? To feel clear, energetic, and focused?
Let’s find out. Let’s learn and get stronger together.
This season the New Year’s Cleanse is all about Gut and Stress—two aspects of being that impact our lived experience terrifically. In this edition of the Seasonal Cleanse you’ll get gut and nerve soothing recipes, a mood-soother Grocery Guide, better understand the far reaching effects of stress, and get our top herbal and nutrient picks for nourishing the gut-brain connection.
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