What’s with all the Detoxing?
We’ve been hearing a lot about detoxing lately… Well, I have anyway. And I’ve been talking a lot about it to my health coaching clients. And anyone else who will listen. If you haven’t heard, here are some reasons why you may want to think about detoxing.
In this day and age – our bodies are bombarded with toxins and impurities on a daily basis. We simply cannot avoid it. Besides the obvious, like air pollution and car exhaust, there’s our water supply. If you are drinking water straight out of the tap – even in NY where’s it’s supposedly the best – use a filter. Think I’m wrong? Read this: http://www.riverkeeper.org/campaigns/tapwater/is-my-tap-water-safe-to-drink-fact-sheet/ Those of you using well water aren’t out of the woods either, as there’s always the potential for soil contamination.
Ok, besides air pollution and tap water, what else is there? Well, if you aren’t eating organic, you run the risk of ingesting pesticides, fungicides and herbicides from fruits and vegetables as well as steroids, hormones and antibiotics in meats. Add to that the flame-retardants in sofas and carpeting which contain harmful chemicals and toxic fumes from wood and laminate flooring, paint and cleaning supplies. I won’t even go into all the bad stuff that’s in shampoos, conditioners, soaps, lotions and cosmetics, except to say that our skin is the body’s largest organ and it absorbs everything we put on it.
But, wait! Don’t our bodies have internal filtering systems? Yes! Our bodies are amazing pieces of machinery. They keep a steady temperature, they keep us breathing, they keep our hearts pumping, blood circulating, brain synapses firing, etc. They do all of this in split seconds and all at the same time while we walk around and interact with other humans. Amazing! The human body’s filtering method includes the liver, kidneys, lungs, spleen and lymphatic system.
However, due to all of the above, this constant assault day after day, month after month, year after year has caused our body’s natural filters to become clogged. They are so clogged that they cannot keep up with the constant overload. The result is increased fat. Your body tries to protect itself and encapsulates those toxins in fat cells, so they can’t harm other parts of your body. Ever wonder why you can’t seem to lose those extra few pounds around your middle? Visceral fat is the worst!
So, detoxing… People detox for three main reasons: to release weight, to reduce pain and to increase energy. The benefits of a detox program include: weight loss, organ support, better digestive health, improved skin, mental clarity, energy, and it can help curb food cravings. When you detox, you support your body’s internal filtering system so that it functions better. When it functions better, you can finally release that stubborn visceral fat around your middle. You can feel better and more energized. Simply put, your body is designed to be an optimally functioning machine. Yes – Optimal!! We are not supposed to have brain-fog. We are not supposed to be tired at 2-3pm every day. We are not supposed to wake up exhausted!
Want to know what we can do about it? Read on…
Disclaimer: if you are pregnant, have raised blood pressure or heart issues, detoxing is not recommended. If you have any concerns, please check with your medical professional before attempting a detox on your own.
There are different ways to detox. For example, a fasting detox typically includes lots of water and specialty juices. You can also detox using raw and vegan foods. Another food-related detox is an elimination type diet in which you eliminate certain foods for three to four weeks and then reintroduce them back into your diet one at a time over a few days. By doing this, you can see which, if any, food sensitivities you have.
Good detox programs typically run a few weeks and include recipes, shopping lists, a daily schedule to follow, meditations and/or breathing exercises, massage, acupuncture and home spa techniques. Some will also offer online support such as a private Facebook group, private or group coaching calls, and/or an accountability partner. Using a journal throughout your detox experience is extremely helpful as you note your thoughts and feelings during each stage.
You should be prepared to experience some less than pleasant symptoms in the first few days, including dizziness, lethargy, headaches, cravings, mood swings, less than optimal sleep, etc. This is normal. It’s your body moving the toxins and impurities from where they were stored through your body to eliminate them. At the end of your program however, be prepared to feel and look awesome!
Here’s a simple detox bath recipe you can do at home two to three times per week. Besides the luxury of soaking in a tub, you are helping your body by drawing toxins out through the skin. This mixture combines Dead Sea salts, Epsom salts and bentonite clay. You can also add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to the mix. For example, lavender in the evening to help you sleep or eucalyptus earlier in the day is very refreshing.
Dead Sea salts have minerals which help alleviate stress, improve circulation, decrease fluid retention, energize the body and help with muscle stiffness. Epson salts are high in magnesium, which most humans are deficient in. So soaking in Epsom salts is an easy way to get more magnesium. But, why do we need it? Magnesium is hugely important to the human body as it helps regulate many enzymes and bodily functions. Specifically, magnesium helps improve heart health, relieves stress and inflammation, and helps flush toxins from the body. Bentonite clay helps draw heavy metal toxins out of your body.
Detox Bath Recipe
- 1 cup Dead Sea Salts
- ½ cup Epsom Salts
- ½ cup bentonite clay
- Essential oil if desired
- You can do all of the above without the bentonite clay if you don’t have any.
- Do not add any soaps or bubbles to the bath.
- When you are finished, you may rinse with water, but don’t use soap.
- Drink lots of water before and after!
- You will sweat during this process – that’s your body removing toxins.
- Make the water as hot as you can handle.
- Mix all the ingredients in the hot water as the tub is filling.
- Soak for at least 20 minutes.
In the first twenty minutes, the toxins and impurities are being drawn out of your body. If you soak for an additional twenty minutes, your body can now absorb the minerals from the salts. This has become one of my new favorite activities 😉