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Clearing out the holiday fat
By Patsy Yang

Every year as Chinese New Year approaches, most of us see the month as a time to indulge in big feasts, curl up in heated rooms and end up feeling bloated and gaining weight. It can also be the right time to set ourselves the ultimate new year resolution to achieve personal balance and get into a healthy rhythm. A sustained feeling of energy, harmony and peace is what we all need. Whether the goal is to detox, break bad habits, lose weight, eat healthier, get fitter, or simply make time for ourselves, a range of treatments, classes and tips make it easier. And it’s not usually necessary to travel far to a well-being/detox retreat. First, a detoxification program is like a “spring cleaning” for your body, and this time of the year is a great time to do detox.


We live in a toxic age. Toxic chemicals enter our bodies in the form of unhealthy and refined foods, chemical additives and environmental pollutants. Detoxification helps to decrease your toxic load by enhancing your pathways to promote good health. However, you don’t need to start an intensive detox program and rely on anything other than your body’s natural detoxification processes to put you on the right track. Increase your water intake to support the kidneys; do daily exercises to increase lymphatic circulation; eat a good amount of fiber to keep your digestive system operating at a healthy rate; eat a diet rich in vegetables and fruits and avoid processed food, fried foods, too much caffeine, cigarettes and alcohol; follow a healthy lifestyle that provides the body with everything it needs to get on with sorting itself out. Based on the above basic detox tips, one should find time to take a break to enjoy a spa treatment that can make help facilitate the detoxification program and reduce stress levels. 


A few years ago, the term “detoxification” was associated with special rehabilitation clinics where people went to withdraw from drugs or alcohol. But recently, people have spoiled for the chance at a range of treatments available at many spas in connection with restoring the body’s inner balance. They complement the existing array of therapies and daily detoxification programs and help people feel rejuvenated.

Most of the qualified spas provide detox treatment that includes brushing, water treatment and lymphatic drainage massage to flush and cleanse the circulatory and lymphatic system. The newly opened V2 Spa at Andaz Xintaindi, Shanghai, offers “Hooked on the Feeling” purifying lymphatic drainage therapy designed to massage the body according to the lymphatic

flow and exercise a strong effect to relax tissues without causing any uncomfortable feeling. V2 also introduces a signature treatment, “When Soul Meets Body” yoga massage, that is a kind of assisted yoga that combines the opening, stretching elements of yoga with their very own finger-and-elbow pressurepoint massage, which improves spinal and skeletal alignment and increases energy.

At the end of the session, the therapist uses the vibrational sound and fundamental frequency from Tibetan singing bowls to relax the mind and cleanse the soul. Meanwhile, an aromatherap massage offers benefits and your body will get the boost it needs to get energized and warm this winter and for early spring season. CHI, The Spa at Pudong Shangri-La, Shanghai is offering a new body treatment “Organic Body Touch Treatment” as it welcomes the new year. Luxuriate in the rich, warm aromas of the season as this luscious treatment helps moisturize the skin while leaving it buttery soft. With the organic rose aromatherapy oils, the soothing massage aims to balance the mind while promoting skin cell renewal and reducing broken capillaries. Especially in this cold, dry season, it’s vital to repair and condition skin to reduce visible damage and the appearance of wrinkles while helping repair elasticity. Detoxification and maintaining a healthy lifestyle are an ongoing process. Extremes are rarely of benefit in the long run.

 The idea of having a clean, wellfunctioning body is everyone’s dream and is best achieved by a healthy and wholesome approach. An exercise routine is one of the important aspects to achieve the goal. When we start to practice yoga on a regular basis, we start to become more in tune with our body and are more inclined to look toward lighter and healthier options that help us feel light.

The right yoga routine can help you detox your body and mind, to remove toxins, sprinkled in with poses to stimulate digestion and the thyroid gland, build muscle and get the digestive track moving. Yogic deep breathing with strong exhalations can empty the lungs of unneeded carbon dioxide and allow for a fresh breath of more oxygenated air. This nourishes all our body cells and is also a method of cleansing because better circulation equals better health. 

Many of the studies have also confirmed that the practice of yoga builds strength, increases flexibility, helps de-stress, and improves the body’s functions and feeling of well-being. Meditative movement practices such as yoga and taichi can detox your attitude because they require staying in the present moment and discourage dwelling on the past.

However, not everybody enjoys meditation and yoga movements and wants to integrate the practices into their daily routines. A few boutique fitness studios have been opened in Shanghai catering to different exercise needs.

Some of the most up-to-date group and private classes include Xtend Barre, Zumba, Combat, and Pump that are very popular among fitness fanatics beating their way to a better body in time with music.

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