Spring is here, a great time of the year to do a whole bodymind re-set! Time to let go, make space and gain clarity about ourselves and in which direction we want to go. Many people (including myself) like to do a detox, which is a great way to support our bodymind in that process. But we need to make sure we also look after ourselves and make sure this is consciously done.
What is a Detox? Is it needed?
Many people have different opinions and views around Detox diets, hence why it is a very delicate topic to talk about. Some people say detox diet involves a period of fasting, followed by a strict diet of fruit, vegetables, fruit juices, and water. Sometimes it means including herbs, teas, supplements, and colon cleanses, etc. For others, the term “detox cleanse” is little more than a marketing tool used to sell expensive and overpriced products.
In reality, a detox diet can be a healthy way to get back on track of your health and help your body do exactly what it’s designed to do: clear out toxins and keep you in a good. healthy shape.
Oftentimes we don’t realize that our body has its own extraordinary internal detoxification system! Our skin pushes out bacteria through the sweat, our kidneys filter through liters of blood and produce urine, our lungs expel carbon dioxide, our intestines extract nutrients from food to excrete waste products, and your liver clears out toxins from the body.
Even though out body is incredibly wise and can clean itself, there are a few habits that unfortunately get on the way of our body’s natural way of healing.
What makes our body toxic?
Examples of factors listed below can totally tank our body’s natural detox system, making it even harder to remove toxins from the bloodstream efficiently. Factors such as:
- Chronic stress
- Unhealthy habits
- Physical inactivity
- A diet high in ultra-processed foods
Reasons why a Detox is worth it considering
- Recurrent headaches
- Muscle aching and weakness
- Nerve pain or numbness
- Poor short term memory and concentration
- Adverse reactions / sensitivity to environmental chemicals and odours
- Chronic fatigue and lethargy
- Depression, anxiety and or mood swings.
Taking this into consideration, detox can be a great way to get your body back to its natural state.
How to do a Detox
Detoxification is about resting, cleansing and nourishing the body from the inside out. Following a few easy guidelines and incorporating some detox foods into your diet is the best way to optimize your built-in detox system and supply your liver with the tools it needs to clear out accumulated toxins efficiently. The goals of a detoxification program should be to:
- Removing toxin exposure through dietary and lifestyle changes;
- Releasing your body’s toxins so they can be eliminated.
- Removing potentially pathogenic bacteria and waste from your digestive system;
- Renewing your digestive lining and the healthy bacteria to improve your digestive function;
A good detox diet should supply all of the important nutrients that your body needs while also cutting out the chemicals, junk and added ingredients that it doesn’t. To simply put it, eating simply Real Food, and eliminating the following:
Daily supplements might also be necessary, specially if you have a very active lifestyle. Consult your doctor before using any health treatment, including herbal supplements and natural remedies, and tell your doctor if you have a serious medical condition or are taking any medications.
The mind is also Included…
Another hindrance to good health is stress, which triggers your body to release stress hormones into your system. While these hormones can provide the “adrenaline rush” to win a race or meet a deadline, in large amounts they create toxins and slow down detoxification enzymes in the liver.
Adding a daily meditation and relaxation practices to our routine are extremely important when doing a detox. Otherwise it can bring more stress into your system.
Although detox can be extremely beneficial, it can bring more stress into your bodymind if not done consciously. The best detox cleanse will always be the one that gives your body what it needs rather than depriving it of valuable vitamins and minerals. Consulting with a practitioner and getting a plan tailored for you is highly recommended.
In my next article I will be talking about the pitfalls that can happen during a detox diet and some important things to consider before doing one!