Emily Shaw is the brains behind the detox brand Amaveda, where she shares her healing powers of herbs and Ayurveda with anyone looking to invigorate themselves. Jade Burke speaks with Shaw to find out how PAs can take time out of their busy schedules to look after their well-being and why more people should take part in home detox plans.
Can you tell me a little bit about the Amaveda brand and what it offers?
I created Amaveda in 2013 while I was still based in Lima, Peru, where I had been living for about five years. At the time I had been studying plant medicine of the Peruvian Amazon and decided to also study Ayurveda in India, specifically the Ayurvedic system of Pancha Karma, the oldest detoxification system in the world.
I returned to Peru and started to create detox products based on the amazing ingredients available in Peru and then started running week-long detox programmes with small groups of people to follow the protocol. The results were really amazing and it just sort of snowballed. When you feel good and look good, you talk about it and people notice, so suddenly I had waiting lists for the detox programmes. Now five years later, Amaveda is my brand that makes the products that complete my seven-day Ayurveda-Inspired and luxury focussed home-detox programmes that run in the UK on set dates and with international retreats.
How would you describe a detox? What does this involve?
Sadly, there are great misconceptions around this so I’m very pleased you asked. At our core, we are ‘detox sex machines’ really, these are the two things we are hard-wired to do; pro-create and self-cleanse. When it comes to detox, we are already doing this all day every day (and even more so when we sleep) with the help of our liver, kidney, lymphatic system, lungs, skin and of course our digestive system.
I see an effective detox programme doing four things:
- Rebooting all of the detoxification systems of the body I just mentioned.
- Since our digestive health is really at the core of how well we function as machines, it’s important to optimise digestive function so a full digestive re-set must be part of a good detox protocol.
- Boosted fat metabolism, AKA big-time fat burning. The toxins that we cannot eliminate through our regular processes end up being stored in our fat cells, so we must burn fat in order to eliminate these stored toxins, something known as ketosis. This is why detox so often gets confused for weight loss because a good detox protocol should result in significant weight loss, not muscle, not water, but fat loss.
- The nervous system must be addressed since we can only convince our body to boost all digestive and detox systems when it is in the parasympathetic mode, meaning we are chilled right out. Ultimately, detox is a bit of a ‘hack’ since we’re really ramping up normal bodily function for our desired result.
“You must make sure you are taking time for yourself and your own physical and mental well-being and you will reap the rewards for the rest of your life.”
Why could the process of a detox be so beneficial to the busy lives of a PA?
Honestly, the process benefits everyone. This is not ideal for me since one of the key rules of business is to find your niche. I would say it’s main benefits are that:
- A good detox massively boosts vitality. That doesn’t just mean getting more checked off your to-do list or nailing it in a shorter amount of time (which it definitely does) but even more importantly, brings you more energy and vitality for your actual life, outside work (so less plonking on the sofa exhausted and more energy to go play and socialise and do all of the important things that we work so hard for).
- Boosted cognition. I cannot tell you how wonderful it feels when your brain simply starts to work better. 60 per cent of our brain is fat, and when you boost fat metabolism in this way, combined with the incredible effects of fasting on cognitive function, you get to really experience a better functioning brain.
What are the benefits of a good detox?
In a nutshell, there are two main benefits:
- Disease prevention.
- A good detox is the most logical and most effective first step toward the treatment of anything that is not functioning optimally in the body, both physiologically and emotionally.
The actual quantifiable results will vary slightly, depending on the starting-point of the toxicity level of the person and the intensity of the detox, but for the most part, the results are extremely impressive and even today, after guiding well over 500 people through my programme, I am still blown away at the results people report back to me. So even though this might sound a bit farfetched, I can assure you, these are the real results that my seven-day program produces:
- Weight loss of approx. 2 to 4 kg.
- Notable energy boost and heightened mental clarity.
- Reduced inflammation/pain in the body.
- Improved intestinal flora and pH.
- Increased flexibility/agility.
- Brighter skin and eyes.
- Deeper sleep, easier mornings.
- Loss of sugar/carb cravings, reduced or complete elimination of caffeine dependency.
- Elimination or reduction of candida and parasites.
- Elimination of gas, bloating, constipation relief and boosted transit time.
What advice would you give to assistants leading a busy schedule? How can they ensure they are looking after themselves?
Do not underestimate the negative effects of stress on the body. When the body is stressed, all repair mechanisms are halted. Stress produces inflammation in the body, now regarded as the primary marker for almost all major diseases. Cortisol, the hormone created from the stress response will wreak havoc on the body if it’s stressed too much and too often. You must make sure you are taking time for yourself and your own physical and mental well-being and you will reap the rewards for the rest of your life.
Having ‘no time for well-being’ is a false economy of time distribution. It pays, big time, to be well. The other thing I would say is that if you are working for someone who is unforgiving in their demands on your time, or does not validate your need for selfcare practices, they are in need of a reality check in terms of how to get the most out of the people they depend on.
With such eventful lives, I’m sure many assistants would like to learn more about the home detox you offer. How does this work?
I offer the seven-day home detox programme on set dates in the UK, the next one is September 28 to October 6. The programme is designed to make the detox process as easy as possible, everything is laid out for you and there is no guess work, with no decisions to be made. This is not a programme that says “eat a healthy lunch,” this is a very specific step by step protocol that is full-on and gets results. If you’re looking to seriously up your well-being game before mentally, physically, and look your best before winter hits, maybe it’s time to invest in you, the only one you’ve got.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Many people ask me the question can I work during the detox week? The answer is, it depends. Since I emphatically emphasise the importance of keeping the nervous system in ‘chill’ mode, it’s pretty pointless to buy the programme and then try to squeeze it in to your already busy life. The programme isn’t designed to be a simple quick add-on to everyday life. The programme requires dedication and participation, but the results live on long after the seven days.
Amaveda is offering PA Life readers a 10 per cent discount on the upcoming home detox programme. Use the code PAGOODLIFE at the checkout or get in touch with Emily Shaw with any questions on firstname.lastname@example.org.