How To Do a Detox Cleanse


It has become common to hear someone explain, “I need to detox” (or, more annoyingly, “You need to detox”). Find out more about sleep apnea solutions from Positive Health Wellness – What does this really mean? Many health-conscious people are increasingly concerned about the effects of environmental and dietary toxins—substances or chemicals that can potentially damage tissues or organs in our bodies. Our bodies absorb toxins from the air we breathe, the medications we ingest and the foods we eat on a daily basis. Happily, our bodies have many ways of capturing and getting rid of these toxins. Our lungs, liver, kidneys, lymphatic system, bladder, intestines, blood, and even our skin continually filter and excrete unnecessary or toxic waste products as part of their normal functioning.
Unfortunately, the body sometimes cannot get rid of all the toxins we take in, and these unhealthy waste products can accumulate. Over time, they can compromise the ability of the body’s organ systems to function optimally. Toxins that build up in the intestines prevent digested food from being completely absorbed. A clogged lymph system can affect mood, hormonal regulation, and immune function. A sluggish liver can make you feel sluggish.

Here’s where a detox program can help. Cleaning toxins out of your system may speed up your metabolism and help your body function better.

Choosing the Right Detox Program
There are many detoxification programs and diets available. Before you begin any kind of detox, consult with your doctor, especially if you have diabetes, heart disease or low blood sugar. Pregnant women, children, elderly people and anyone recovering from an illness or surgery should not fast or restrict their food intake.

Some detox programs promise quick weight loss—and if it sounds too good to be true, that’s a good warning signal. Quick weight loss is usually followed by an equally rapid weight gain, and this yo-yo cycle is not healthy for your body. Fitness trainer Stephen Cabral also warns that a weak or under functioning liver or lymph system may not be able to handle all the toxins that are being released, so a detox diet might overload your body with even more toxins than before you started.

That said, many nutritionists and alternative healthcare practitioners encourage their clients to detox—and many people make it a regular part of their personal routine because it makes them feel healthier and more energetic. These are some of the popular detox regimens.

Master Cleanse. Also known as the lemonade detox, this program limits you to drinking lemon juice mixed with cayenne and maple syrup for at least ten days, along with herbal laxatives. The Master Cleanse should be preceded by an ease-in diet, and followed by ease-out diet.
Raw food diet. Limiting your diet to raw, uncooked fruits and vegetables will eliminate dairy, protein and wheat products that are more difficult to digest, while increasing water and fiber.
Juice detox. Fresh fruit and vegetable juices provide your body with vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants while your system flushes toxins. They also restore a healthier alkaline balance.
Single-food diets (brown rice, cabbage soup). Brown rice contains vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids and fiber, and is easy to digest. Cabbage is high in antioxidants and fiber, as well as other nutrients and vitamins. Single-food detox regimens give you an easy focus, and you can eat as much of this food as you want so you won’t feel hungry (bored maybe, but not hungry).
Digestive cleanse with activated charcoal or bentonite clay. Bentonite clay is highly absorbent; those who recommend bentonite for detoxing claim that it absorbs toxins from the digestive tract. Activated charcoal is on hand in hospital emergency rooms to treat harmful overdoses of medications or drugs since it binds with these substances and eliminates them from the body. It is available in health food stores and can be taken as a detox agent.

Seven-Day Simple Detox Plan
You can also try this simple, safe cleansing plan if you want to experience the benefits of detoxifying your system.

Plan your seven-day detox. Since you will be altering your eating habits, choose a week when you have time to prepare and eat smaller, more frequent meals. Cancel going out to eat—or drink—with friends. This is probably not the best week to run a marathon or celebrate a holiday. Schedule some quiet time for yourself to relax in the tub, meditate or write down how you are feeling during the detox.
No caffeine, alcohol or other stimulants. Caffeine, alcohol and nicotine are some of the most obvious toxins that we ingest on a regular basis—and the simplest ones to avoid (at least for a week). Cross off soda, carbonated beverages and energy drinks, as well.
Stock up on detoxifying foods. Foods that naturally help the body eliminate toxins include leafy greens like kale, spinach, and chard, and broccoli; fresh fruit, especially citrus; flax seed, raw almonds, and pumpkin seeds; mung beans; garlic; and green tea. Adding Omega-3 oils—from avocados, flax seed oil, or olive oil—is also recommended. You can eat these foods cooked, raw or juiced. Broiled chicken or salmon can be added occasionally, as well as plain yogurt, brown rice and beans.
Avoid processed, hard-to-digest foods. During your detox week, avoid the following foods: red meat, dairy products, eggs, processed foods, wheat products (pasta, bread, crackers, cereal), sweet desserts and salt.
Eat five or six small meals. Smaller meals will help regulate insulin and hormone levels and keep you from feeling hungry.
Drink plenty of water. As you work through the cleansing, your body will need water to help flush the toxins through your system, so drink water and green tea throughout the day.
Sweat a little each day. Don’t attempt strenuous exercise while cleansing but do try to get some mild form of exercise. Take a walk for fifteen to twenty minutes, for instance. Put on your favorite music and dance.

This is not a difficult plan to follow, but be prepared to feel worse before you feel better. When you detoxify, you release toxins from where your body has stored them, and it may take a few days before they are flushed out of your system. Don’t be alarmed if you get a mild headache, feel mildly nauseous, or experience a drop in energy. (If you have any symptoms that are more unusual than this, stop the detox and see your physician.) If you regularly drink caffeine, you may feel unpleasant withdrawal symptoms the first few days, including headache and fatigue.
By the end of the week, however, you will most likely be feeling more energetic, calmer and more clear-headed. People will comment on how great your skin looks, or note that your eyes have a particular shine. You may also notice a few pounds missing when you step on the scale. (That’s what happens when you avoid beer, French fries and ice cream for a week.) After performing a detox program, you may become more familiar with the foods used in the program. Who knows? You might even incorporate some of these dietary changes in your regular routine, even when you aren’t detoxing.