Over time, our bodies accumulate toxins from various sources, such as certain foods, unfiltered water, cosmetic products, cleaning supplies, and pollutants in the environment.
The body has incredible innate detoxification systems which continuously metabolize toxins and release them from the body. Engaging in a specific detoxification plan involves supporting these key systems in the body to facilitate more rapid and efficient detoxification for better overall health.
Spring and early summer are a fantastic time for a whole body detox.
As the winter hibernation period ends, the warmer weather brings new energy, movement, and growth. In traditional Chinese medicine, spring is associated with the liver, which is the body’s primary detoxification organ. Once metabolized by the liver, toxins exit the body through the colon, kidneys, and skin.
Benefits of a spring detoxification can include improvements in energy, digestion, skin, mental clarity, body aches, headaches, and hormone health.
Occasionally, people temporarily feel worse before they feel better. This is caused by increased circulating toxins which haven’t been released yet. With functioning detoxification and elimination processes, this typically resolves in a few days.
There are many detoxification-support methods.
The primary goals are to limit toxin exposure while supporting the processing and release of toxins. Some methods are more appropriate for specific individuals depending on their current health status.
People often find that short-term dietary changes create a great opportunity to break unhealthy eating habits and build new long-term nutrition plans going forward.
General detox guidelines:
- Avoid refined sugar, coffee, alcohol, red meat, wheat, and dairy
- Eat a variety of fresh organic vegetables and fruits
- Specific liver-supportive vegetables include; broccoli, cauliflower, artichoke, Brussels sprouts, beets, arugula, mustard greens
- Berries and dark leafy greens are rich in antioxidants for liver support
- Stay well-hydrated to help release toxins from the body
- Lemon water is especially supportive to the liver
- Herbal teas such as milk thistle, fennel, ginger, and dandelion are liver-supporting and hydrating beverages
- Include daily gentle exercise such as walking and stretching to help move blood and lymphatic circulation
- Utilize saunas to assist detoxification through sweating
- Try hydrotherapy
- Alternate hot and cold in the shower to support circulation with one minute of hot water followed by 30 seconds of cold water, repeated 3 times
- Use specific herbs and nutrients to support the liver, kidneys, and intestines
- These treatments are best discussed with your healthcare provider
While a detoxification support plan can provide immense health benefits, they’re not appropriate for everyone. People with constipation should work towards improving their digestive health before detoxing, since many toxins are released through the intestines
Caution should also be used in pregnant/lactating women, as well as those who are significantly ill and fatigued. It’s best to discuss a detox with your healthcare provider to learn if it’s appropriate for you and which methods and protocols are most well-suited.
To learn more about safe and effective detoxification support, individualized to your needs, schedule an appointment today!