Frequent exposure to environmental toxins is more common than most people realize. Most of us have varying levels of toxins in our bodies and the scary part is that we live with this threat unknowingly. The good news is that long-term health can be achieved by minimizing the buildup of these internal toxins though detoxification. So, what is a #detox? How does it benefit you? What are the effective ways to detox your body? You can find answers to all these questions and more in this post which provides you with a complete overview of detoxing and how it can help you live a healthier lifestyle.
An Overview Of Detoxing
Detoxing is simply the process of removing toxins from your body. This is achieved primarily through dietary changes but can also involve the use of essential oils, herbal supplements and other detox tools.
Why Should You Detox?
Although the liver, skin, intestines, kidneys, lungs and lymphatic system perform your body’s natural detoxing functions, these organs do not always get rid of all toxins. Much of this has to do with the fact that humans are exposed to harmful chemicals on a daily basis. Our bodies are like sponges and absorb free radicals and other harmful toxins from the air, things we touch, in the food we eat and through the skin when using personal care products. As these toxins accumulate to dangerous levels over time, they can cause permanent damage to your body, make you more susceptible to certain diseases and drastically reduce your energy levels.
While the process of detoxing requires you to make some sacrifices and involves a great deal of discipline, there are many benefits to reap. After a detox program, the organs affected by toxin overload will begin to function more effectively. This results in your body feeling lighter and more energized, your skin becoming smoother and clearer, your immune system getting stronger, your blood circulation improving, your brain functioning more effectively and much more.
Ways To Detox Your Body
There are endless programs, diets, and detox plans screaming for your attention these days. Therefore, it’s important to select a detox method that works for you. Not all detox regimens work as well as they claim to and some are even downright dangerous. If you want to rid your body of toxins without causing harm to it, the following are some of the detox methods that have been tested and proven effective.
- Chelation Therapy: Chelation is the process of ridding your body of heavy metals such as calcium, lead and mercury. Various chelating agents may be administered orally or intravenously. These drugs combine with heavy metals in the blood before being filtered by the kidneys and excreted in urine. While chelation therapy is often used to treat heavy metal poisoning, it can also be an effective way to cleanse your body from the cumulative effects of years of toxic buildup.
- Colonic Irrigation: Dating back to ancient Greek times, colonic irrigation or colonic hydrotherapy is a medical practice that involves flushing out waste materials from the bowels. This is usually done by squirting water through a tube inserted into the rectum.
- Dietary Changes: Detox diets work to ease and improve toxicity by letting your body clean itself while you take a break from chemical-laden processed foods. They typically begin with a period of fasting, followed by a strict diet of raw vegetables, fresh fruits, herbal supplements and water.
- Fasting: The process of fasting involves going without solid food and only taking water or fresh fruit juice for a certain period of time. This promotes detoxification because when food no longer enters your body, your digestive system and other vital organs that process toxins are allowed time to rest, rejuvenate and replenish. This rest period makes your body much more efficient at processing and eliminating toxins and reduces the overall toxicity levels in your body.
- Increased Water Intake: Water helps to flush out toxins from your body and transports nutrients to where they are needed. Therefore, drinking at least eight glasses of water a day will assist your body with detox functions.
Popular Detox Programs
With so many detox programs available today, it may seem a daunting task in trying to figure out which works best. The following are five of the most popular and most effective detox programs:
- The Master Cleanse: Perhaps one of the most popular detox regimens, The Master Cleanse is a 10-day program that consists of a morning salt-water flush, 6-12 daily glasses of lemonade mixture that are consumed during the day and a nightly laxative tea. The program starts and ends with eating fresh fruits and greens in what is termed as an ease-in/ease-out option.
- The 24 Hour Cleanse: During The 24 Hour Cleanse, you consume a concoction of lemonade, cayenne pepper and maple syrup. This fat flush diet is a popular holiday detox program that claims to offer the same benefits as other detox diets within a very short timeframe.
- The JuJu Cleanse: Lasting anywhere between one and three days, The JuJu Cleanse is a short blast program that involves fasting while only drinking juice made from pure, natural ingredients. These juices keep your body nourished as you take a break from meals and give your digestive system a much needed rest.
- The BluePrint Cleanse: Before beginning The BluePrint Cleanse, you must choose the how much you want to detox your body. Levels of cleanse include renovation, foundation or excavation (also known as beginner, medium or advanced, respectively). From there, detox drinks will be recommended based on your chosen level of detoxification.
- The Clean Program: Similar to the meal replacements shake diet, The Clean Program helps your body get rid of toxins as you take flavored shakes two times a day along with program-approved supplements. Dieters are allowed to eat lunch while completing this detox but only pre-approved foods may be consumed. The Clean Program often encourages other detox habits like meditation and massage in addition to dietary changes.
If you want to fire up your energy levels and immunity, detoxing is a great solution that’s definitely worth trying. However, it’s important to point out that although many people report feeling more energized, lighter and sharper after a detox diet, detoxing is not safe for everyone. Detox programs can cause more harm than good in pregnant women, elderly persons, children and people with weak immune systems. Therefore, always consult a health care provider before starting any detox program to be on the safe side.
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