Updated: Jan 2
As human beings living in the modern day we are constantly bombarded with toxins from so many directions. From the air we breathe to the food we eat and the products that we use on our bodies and in our environments we are surrounded by man-made chemicals.
Our bodies were made to cleanse naturally with our systems of
detoxification-- gastrointestinal, urinary, respiratory, lymphatic and skin. But, unfortunately we are inundated with new and stronger chemicals, air and water pollution, refined and processed foods, electromagnetic frequencies, stimulants, sedatives, and prescription drugs.
It is necessary to support your natural detoxification processes with a regular cleanse. Giving yourself a break from as many toxins as you can is vital to good health and longevity. It allows your body to clear congestion and stagnation in your organs, tissues and cells so that they can keep you functioning optimally.
A clean system runs smoothly allowing your metabolism to balance all they way down to the cellular level therefore providing you with energy and vitality.
By doing a regular cleanse, you are supporting your liver which is the primary organ of detoxification. A cleansing detox helps give your organs a break by helping to clear and filter toxins and wastes. This process allows the body then to focus on optimizing the basic functions since the burden has been eliminated.
Detoxing is also a good time to focus on eliminating any mental and emotional toxins that you may be experiencing as well. You will find that you emerge from the experience feeling lighter, refreshed and with more clarity. You will feel recharged with a clear mind and a clear body.
It can also be a good way to jump start a new healthier lifestyle!
First, let's look at the toxins that you are exposed to and the signs that you may have toxin build-up. Then you will learn the benefits of doing a regular cleanse and how the process works.
Am I Really Surrounded by Toxins?
If you are a human being living on planet earth, then the answer is yes. You probably don't realize just how much exposure you have to toxins that can have an effect on your health now and into the future.
Toxins cause cellular damage leading to inflammation which can cascade into chronic conditions over time. It is exposure to and build-up of many of these toxins that can cause cumulative damage over the long term.
Toxins affect us in subtle ways which are unique to each individual.
Environmental toxins are found everywhere: in food, air and the physical environment. They can shut down our energy metabolism and can ultimately lead to cellular dysfunction. The body has no mechanism to fight the toxic chemicals we are exposed to.
To the detriment of public health, manufacturers are not required to prove the safety of the chemicals they put out so the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has no way to assess their safety. There are 80,000 man-made chemicals which did not exist until recently. They impact our body because they are not supposed to exist and our bodies do not know how to handle them.
Here are just some of the toxins that can be found in our environment:
Food additives-preservatives, artificial sweeteners
Chemicals in household cleaning products
Prescription drugs and antibiotics
GMO foods-genetically modified organisms
Chemicals in personal care products/makeup
Heavy metals-mercury, lead, arsenic
You are more than likely exposed to many of these toxins in your daily life. The effects can be subtle, depending on your toxic load, or profound if you are exposed over a long period of time and they have triggered more severe, chronic health conditions.
Signs of Toxicity
Toxin build-up can damage your immune system response as well as affect your sleep and energy while accelerating aging. Mitochondria, which are the powerhouses of your cells and responsible for producing all of your energy, need to function optimally in order for you to feel energized. They are extremely sensitive to environmental toxins and when overburdened by a heavy toxic load you will feel it in the form of low energy.
There are many signs of toxicity which also may be related to other health issues. It is very important to be aware of what you may have going on in order to determine if you have an issue of concern that you should share with your regular physician.
By doing a 5-day elimination of the major culprits of these issues--like gluten, sugar, dairy, caffeine and alcohol--you may find relief and realize you want to eliminate certain items permanently in order to address your specific issues.
Signs of toxicity:
Sugar and carb cravings
Skin issues-eczema, psoriasis, acne
Brain fog, trouble focusing and concentrating
Mucus problems--sinus congestion, runny nose, wheezing, sore throat, itchy nose
Mood issues--anxiety, depression, nervousness, mood swings, stress
Gastrointestinal issues--constipation, indigestion, nausea, bloating, digestive pain
Benefits of Doing a Regular Cleanse
Depending on the current state of your diet and health, you may see or feel mild changes if your system is already pretty clean or more profound cleansing if you are under a heavy toxic load. Also, depending on how many toxins you are regularly exposed to in your diet and your environment, you may feel some side effects for the first few days including headaches, body aches, congestion and fatigue. For this reason, it is best to begin on your day(s) off just in case you feel funky at first. This should clear as the toxins clear.
What you can expect after doing a cleanse:
Identified food addictions
Feeling lighter and healthier
*There are some circumstances where you would avoid detoxification or only do under supervision of a doctor:
You are pregnant or nursing
You have cancer
Before or after surgery
You have heart problems
You suffer from extreme fatigue
You have poor circulation
You are underweight
The Cleansing Process
It is good to give your body a break, usually a few times a year. The seasonal changes are a natural cleansing and re-balancing time to do it. And, it doesn't have to be a major upset to your life. You are just changing a few things, especially if you are doing a quick 5-day detox.
The process involves avoiding chemicals from food or other sources, refined sugar, gluten, dairy, caffeine, alcohol and nicotine. While avoiding these substances you want to focus on drinking lots of purified water as well as increasing your fiber intake by eating lots of wholesome foods...mainly vegetables and fruits. This supports the elimination processes while minimizing the toxic load.
This is also a good time to give yourself a break from electronics and being busy to focus on some 'ME' time away from the screens. This could look like reading a book you've been putting off, working on a project you've been wanting to get to, writing in your journal, meditating, getting a massage or taking a yoga class. It is so important to re-fuel and reconnect to your SELF during this cleansing time.
Doing a regular detoxifying cleanse allows you to reboot your system to rejuvenate, revitalize and recharge!
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About the Author
Kristi Ryan is the founder of Kristi Ryan Holistic Nutrition and the creator of the Abundant Energy Method for Busy Women. As a holistic nutrition and health coach specializing in energy wellness she supports, educates, motivates and empowers busy women with nutrition, mindset and lifestyle transformation using her proven methodology to bring abundant energy and vitality into their lives.
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Disclaimer: The information I share is for general information only and is not intended to replace medical advice. I do not diagnose, treat or cure disease, prescribe treatments or medications, or recommend medical treatment or surgery. You should speak to your physician prior to making any changes to your diet, lifestyle, exercise or medications or acting on anything you have read or discussed with me. If you don’t, you are doing so at your own risk.
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