You may have gone to your local natural foods store and bought a detox in a box. It may have even been a great program that really made you feel well. However, maximizing the benefits and experience of your detox is determined by the details of design – or planning, preparation and personalization.
I often recommend to clients that they do a detox once or twice a year, usually in the spring and again in the fall. Why? Toxins build up in the body day by day through what you consume, breathe in and absorb. That may include processed food, what you drink (sodas, diet drinks, alcohol), smoking, skin care products, soaps, make-up, prescriptions and over the counter medications, cleaning products, and simply the air we breathe. These toxins negatively impact the health and function of our systems and hormones at the cellular level. If you’re going to try a detox, let’s set you up with four details to design a successful detox.
Be realistic about what you can handle. Let’s be honest. Detoxing will test your willpower. It can be hard on your body before it makes you feel better, especially if you’ve never done one. That shouldn’t deter you, but instead help you be selective about what will be the best approach for your detox. If this is your first detox, or first in a long while, be gentle both with your body and your expectations. Also, be aware of your current state of health. Consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions and especially if you have any serious health issues or are on a number of prescription medications.
Select the right detox plan. There are so many ways to detox ranging from the simple to the complex, short term and longer term. Let’s assume we’re talking about going through a detox regimen for a specific time period and not detoxing your overall diet and lifestyle. Here are a few options to consider: 1) A three to ten day juice cleanse. Check out my friends Karen Kipp with Power Your Journey and Tess Masters with Healthy Blender Recipes for resources and their cleanse programs; 2) A mineral broth detox, which is something we suggest frequently at Your Wellness Connection through wellness coach, Shelly Murray. See the photo below for recipe and on my Facebook page for the details of the 3 day detox here; 3) Green tea 3-day detox. This detox requires that you mix a big pitcher/container of fluid consisting of mostly green tea, some lime juice and a little grade B maple syrup. It is more of a fast with a minor support for your blood sugar. You will drink this mixture all day long as the only thing you consume. If you feel a little hypoglycemic you can consume a little clear broth or plain grilled chicken; 4) Any number of detox programs you can purchase at your health food store or from your healthcare provider. Simply follow instructions.
Remove obstacles to success. Pick a start date and time frame that works in your life. Don’t start a detox over your birthday weekend, during the holidays or a family reunion. Choose a time when you know you will have a little less stress, have no plans to eat at restaurants for work or fun, are not traveling, and when you also have time to sleep. Prepare your home as well. Get rid of any temptations that could derail your detox. If others live with you, let them know what you’re doing and how they can support you.
Flush it out. You’re taking massive action to release and remove toxins. You have to get them out. The number one way to do that is by drinking a lot of water and flushing them out. Even if your detox of choice is consuming juices or broths, liquids of all sorts, you still need water. Yes, you may feel like you are floating away, but you need it to clear your system. If you’ve read my blogs for long you know my formula for daily water consumption is half your body weight in ounces. That is true. However, no matter how much you weigh, when you are detoxing you need to make every effort to consume a minimum of 80 ounces of water a day. Be prepared to visit a restroom frequently while detoxing.
Engaging in a detox twice a year is a great way to support your overall health and well-being. I highly recommend you detox in the fall and spring as important times to prepare your body for seasonal changes and support your immune system. Be realistic about what you can handle. Select a program that will work best for you. Remove obstacles to your success and drink plenty of water. You can do this and your body will thank you.