Want to get rid of toxins faster? Want your skin to glow and boundless energy to flow? Consider a detox to help speed your body along its path to inner health.
Detoxing is a process that your body performs naturally daily, even as you read this article. The body eliminates waste from its cells, organs, blood and lymphatic system in different ways. However, the accumulation of toxins in the body due to stress, bad diet and imbalances in health may slow this process. This can leave the body overburdened and struggling to cope.
What are the benefits of a detox?
A detox allows the digestive and eliminative organs to rest and focus on internal housekeeping. Your body has immense capabilities to cleanse and heal itself, but it needs a break sometimes. When you do a detox, it can redirect its resources to discard accumulated toxic substances and break down damaged, diseased and unneeded cells.
After a detox, you should notice the following benefits:
- Clear skin
- Radiant white eyes
- Weight loss
- Resetting and rejuvenating the system on a cellular level
- Elimination of craving for sweet foods and unhealthy foods
- Abundance of energy and better workouts
I feel healthy. Do I need to do a detox?
Several symptoms associated with toxicity do not show up unless your system is heavily burdened and toxic. It is quite likely that your body is already quite toxic by the time you feel the need for a detox. This is especially true in today’s world where much of our diet includes saturated fats, excess proteins, refined and processed foods, drugs and artificial additives. You must also take into consideration the chemicals and pollutants introduced into our natural environment.
While our detoxification systems manage the stressors and toxins mentioned above, our modern lifestyles push our detox capabilities to the brink of breakdown. It’s not only important to take a regular psychological break from daily life – we must give our physiology time out too. This means that you probably need a detox right now, even if you feel pretty good.
However, there are clear indications your body displays when it is in desperate need of detox:
- Weight gain
- Bad breath
- Poor digestion
- Sore throat and congestion
- Unexplained and frequent colds and coughs
- Immune weakness
- Constantly feeling lethargic
- Skin rashes
- Dull skin
- Aching joints and muscles
- Emotional imbalance
- Mental fogginess
How do I do a detox?
More than the external environment, our modern lifestyles are to be blamed for the overwhelming toxic buildup in our bodies. Therefore you must focus on improving your lifestyle when you first consider a detox. The three major areas you should also focus on are activity, stress, and sleep.
Movement is crucial to the detox function of your body. Any activity gets the lymphatic system moving which is the primary system for elimination of wastes within the body. Little to moderate amounts of exercise increase your energy and elevate your mood. You might like to try yoga, Qigong or other similar activities regularly. If exercise is not possible you should make sure you walk for at least 30 minutes a day. These will make you sweat and enable the elimination of toxins through the sweat.
The importance of sleep cannot be overestimated. When you sleep, your body begins to detox and repair anything in your system that needs attention. This allows the body to eliminate wastes and regenerate on a cellular level. Maintain a consistent sleep schedule and aim for at least 7-9 hours of sleep regularly.
Stress hampers nearly every process in the body and has a blocking effect on the elimination of toxins from your body. Mindfulness practices augment healing and elimination to support a mental and emotional detox. Identify and minimize the stress triggers in your everyday life so that you can optimize your physical and emotional well-being.
Is my diet an important part of the detox process?
Considering that a lot of internal toxins are byproducts of digestion, food plays a pivotal role in a detox. Natural unprocessed food is highly alkalising and provides the minerals required to buffer your blood pH against a negative acidic lifestyle. Long-term consumption of fruits, vegetables and other healthy food has been shown to add flavonoids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
The following ingredients are found to be highly beneficial:
- Whole fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains
- Nuts and seeds
- Legumes and beans
- Soluble fibre from foods
- Olive oil, coconut oil, ghee and avocado oil
- Warm or room temperature water
Avoid the following products:
- Alcohol, tobacco and other drugs
- Artificial sweeteners
- Red meat
- Dairy and butter
- Refined, white carbohydrates and sugars
- Processed oils
In addition to what you eat, it is also important how you eat. You should consider intermittent fasting which is abstaining from eating food for 12-16 hours allowing for optimal detoxing to take place by giving your system some much-needed rest.
Can a juicing cleanse help me detox?
A juicing cleanse is a diet that involves sustaining oneself primarily on fruit and vegetable juices for a specific period. It can be a gentle approach, supporting the removal of toxins while strengthening cellular rejuvenation. It boosts the body’s energy system so that it is better able to cope with the daily stresses of our lives.
When you do a juice cleanse, make sure you follow these rules:
- Always use organic fruits and vegetables
- Always drink cold-pressed juices
- Take a fibre supplement like psyllium husks because juices lack fibre
- Add probiotics to your diet
You can do a juicing cleanse for different durations of time, depending on your current health, your level of day-to-day activity and your experience with a cleanse. The most common durations are 1 day, 3 days or 5 days.
If you’re considering adding juices to your diet, this article has several recipes that are great for a detox.
Is there anything else I should know about a detox?
You must prepare yourself well. If you have been drinking a lot of caffeine and dairy, if you consume highly processed and refined foods, or if you have a high-fat diet, it is recommended you wean yourself off them gradually before your detox.
It is best to consult a registered practitioner or medical health expert before going on a detox diet.
The emotional aspect of a detox
A detox goes deeper than the surface. The buildup of toxins in your body may keep you up at night or make you drowsy during the day. Anger, irritability and moodiness may also be caused by imbalances in your system that are due to toxins.
When you focus on cleansing, it improves the function of your body and all your systems. With better digestion and elimination, you are likely to feel energetic and alert. It may also stir up some emotional cleansing, leaving you feeling uplifted and positive.
If you have any preexisting medical conditions or would like to consult a nutritionist about a detox, Avaana can help you find one.