DeStress/ Detox Increase Energy Relax/Meditation /Aromatherapy Natural Solutions
What is Detoxification?
Detoxification, also referred to as detox, is the removal of toxic substances (toxins) from your body. It usually involves following a specific diet or using a specific medical product to rid your body of toxins. The detoxification can be:
- Natural: Your body eliminates toxic substances and metabolic byproducts naturally through the liver, colon, etc.
- Induced: Toxic substances and habits or addictions are eliminated physiologically (diet detox) or medicinally.
Toxins are substances that can potentially harm your body tissues. They can be:
- Waste products that result from normal cell activity (like ammonia, lactic acid, and homocysteine).
- Chemicals that you are exposed to in the environment, food and water which include pesticides, detergents, food additives, heavy metals, pollution, drugs and cigarette smoke.
Need for Detoxification
As you breathe and live life, you are exposed to toxins consistently and accumulate them in your body. Some of these toxins accumulate as a result of your diet, others due to the environment around you and the rest because of your lifestyle (smoking and alcohol or drug addiction).
Your body has its own filtering and regenerative systems; however, these systems can be overwhelmed by high levels of toxins to the point that they cannot function as they should. Moreover, continuing to allow toxic build-up is a recipe for disaster as the situation can put you at risk of illness, diseases and other dangerous health issues.
Although your body has a means of processing and eliminating these toxins on its own, detoxification can help your body accelerate that process towards a healthy and better you.
Indications for Detoxification
A cumulative load of toxins in your body may lead to certain symptoms which indicate you need to undergo detoxification. Listed below are the most common signs indicating toxic buildup in your body, although there can be other symptoms as well.
- Persistent headaches, muscle aches and muscle fatigues
- Brain fog (memory problem, mental fatigue and depression)
- Bad breath, smelly perspiration, and acidic-smelling urine
- Breathing difficulties that persist for several days or weeks
- Food allergies and/or indigestion (changes in bowel function)
- Constipation, bloating and gas for a long period of time
- Nutritional deficiencies coupled with impaired immune function
- Poor concentration, pallor (paleness) and tiredness
- Unexplained weight gain or loss, poor skin appearance
- Drug dependence
Short-term dietary intervention, popularly known as a ‘detox diet’, is the most common method of detoxification.
A detox diet ranges from strict fasting to whole foods and/or lifestyle modifications. It typically involves at least one or some of the following:
- Fasting for specific days or certain hours of the day (as prescribed by your physician or dietician)
- Drinking plenty of water (preferably 6-8 glasses every day)
- Drinking fresh fruit juices, smoothies and green tea
- Drinking only certain liquids, such as salt water or lemon juice
- Eating a restricted selection of foods (only specified or fiber-rich foods)
- Eating foods that provide the vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants
- Eliminating foods high in contaminants, allergens and heavy metals
- Consuming whole grains, nuts, eggs, fish and chicken without the skin
- Minimizing the amount of chemicals ingested (by eating organic food)
- Taking various dietary supplements or herbs as prescribed
- Using laxatives or colon cleanses (colon hydrotherapy or colonic irrigation)
- Eliminating junk or processed foods, alcohol, cigarettes, and refined sugar
- Exercising regularly for at least 30 minutes a day to keep your body active
The detox diet may vary in intensity and duration depending on the needs and condition of your body.
The side effects of a detox diet depend on the plan and how long you are on it. Some of the common issues include but are not limited to:
- Lack of energy, fatigue, dizziness
- Feeling of hunger and weakness
- Headache, lightheadedness
- Low blood sugar, irritability
- Diarrhea leading to dehydration or electrolyte loss
Staying on your detox diet for a longer time than recommended can result in nutrient deficiencies and low body weight. Therefore, it is advisable to check with your health professional and follow the prescribed detox diet regime for best results.
Medical detoxification is another method usually adopted for substance abuse or addiction. This method is used to treat alcohol, cigarette and other drug addictions. It involves the use of medicines and other therapies separately or in combination, and is usually performed in hospitals, clinics or rehab centers. This method helps you rid your body of dangerous, often life-threatening, levels of alcohol, drugs, or poisons.
Detoxification is not suitable for pregnant women and those who are malnourished or suffering from blood sugar issues.
Benefits of Detoxification
Detoxification improves many facets of your health including your energy, immune system and outlook. Moreover, it is a way to recharge, rejuvenate and renew your body for a more active and healthier life.