Whether you are interested in trying this hot juicing trend or eating raw/vegan for a few weeks, let’s first take a look at why it has become so popular. Why are so many people out there doing so many of these cleanses, and what can you do to support yourself if you decide to follow suit?
Cleansing has been around for many years, but recently it has been widely marketed and used by a growing population of health-conscious people.
Why do people cleanse?
People feel downright tired and sluggish. With everything going on in our anxiety-ridden modern lifestyles, it’s rare to find those who are stress-free and have it all figured out. Most of the time, our dietary choices are convenience-based and actually add to this fatigue, stress and inflammation we encounter on a daily basis.
Energy. We all want it. We want to feel young again and be able to steamroll through that part of the day where lying our head down for a nap seems like the only viable way to keep from going on a rampage or just falling apart at the seams. It may not seem this dramatic for some, but in the end we all want to feel vivacious!
This is what your friends and colleagues in their personal encounters with cleansing promise. Am I right?
Of course there are other ways in which we harbor toxins, but dietary choices are the biggest factor that will mainly be addressed. Other reasons for cleansing include chronic illness or environmental toxins, and as such should be diagnosed and supervised by a doctor.
Now that we have figured out why, let’s figure out what and how.
What should I be eating or drinking during a cleanse?
Most opt for a juice cleanse. This seems to be the easiest and to be quite honest, most people think it is the ONLY way to get an effective cleanse.
This just isn’t true. ANY shift in dietary changes can have a major effect on your system.
Dr. Stephen Holt once said something during a lecture at a Colon Hydrotherapy conference that really stuck with me. The exact phrasing isn’t important, but said something to the effect of, “You should NEVER feel like you are detoxing.”
What he meant was that you should always be gentle with your body. You should never be squirming around with headaches, constipation, brain fog and turning your life upside down to prove to yourself that what you are doing is effectively working.
I believe that dietary detoxification can almost be likened to the detoxification of alcohol or any hard drug that the body needs to cycle out of the system. Drug and alcohol protocols are carefully and methodically planned out to ensure that the withdrawal effects do not harm the person. Food can be considered a “drug” or substance (that is legal!). It’s something we choose to put into our bodies – into our bloodstream – that has a chemical and metabolic effect on our system. Taking away your cookie may not be fatal and send you into cardiac arrest, but you may notice some negative symptoms in your body!
Detoxification should take time and you always want to be sure to take care of your body and well-being.
Less can really be more in this situation. That being said. Let’s move on to the how.
How do I approach cleansing in a way that fits my needs?
Say that you eat fast food on a daily basis, drink sodas, eat a slice (or a few) of cake or bowl of cereal late at night and drink more than the recommended amounts of alcohol. You probably aren’t going to be someone who is going to benefit the most from a twenty-one day juice cleanse. Sure, you may get through the pain in the beginning and overall reach the end quicker than if you took it slower. Trust me, unless this is what the doctor ordered and you are chronically ill, and supposing you even make it to the end, you are not going to like this route.
Someone like you would greatly benefit from first cutting any alcohol, tobacco, soda or cutting back slightly on sweets. Sometimes it’s about what we take away from the diet instead of what we can add to the diet. What I mean is this – removing foods that cause negative effects on your bodies will detox you enough. There’s no need to add herbal cleanses to the mix as it could “push” your body too much. It’s vital to make sure the exit door is open. (Keep reading and I will explain.)
Give your body time to acclimate. Notice a headache creeping in? Drink plenty of water to flush your system. Once that subsides in a few days, then you might add a green smoothie or juice in the morning for a week or two in addition to keeping the rest of your diet the same as it always has been. Then maybe you would change your lunch to a salad or some cooked veggies in addition to the smoothie. Have whatever you like for dinner! Don’t stress too much about doing it a certain way or sticking to a strict regimen. Remember, we are snowflakes! Pretty little fluffy, cuddly snowflakes. Aw.
See what we are doing here? Raw foods and juicing has a way of loosening up junk in the system, to put it simply. If done slowly and with care, this junk can successfully flow out of the body like it should. Ask those around you who have tried it this way. They may tell you that you will begin to feel more energy, less detox symptoms, and more importantly you will NOT feel defeated. You will not feel like you are getting the flu (which happens a lot for those who cleanse in an extreme way) and you will have the strength to continue these beneficial lifestyle changes, making it more likely that you will keep these as a positive and permanent change.
Those who already eat a ton of greens or fresh produce might want to try an all-raw diet for a while. They might even want to ease into a juice fast or juice “feast”, as some like to call it. The important thing is to listen to your body. It will give you signs. There is so much information about how food digests, and this will definitely be a topic in future posts. For the sake of keeping it simple, the important thing to know is that we should be working our way from processed, to cooked, to raw, to juice during a cleanse. Or any combination of these in which the food we are putting in our body is healthier than previously consumed prior to the cleanse. Green juice is the purest and fastest way to get enzymes and nutrients into the body and will kick the detox into the highest gear. However, any type of cleansing on any level will create changes in your body.
Are there any issues that can arise from cleansing?
Yes. All of which you can address or even prevent.
Your cells may be dumping garbage to make room for all of the great new nutrients you are putting into your body. Great! Now you can let go of all of that old stuff and feel amazing, right? Maybe. How well does your body handle getting rid of waste? What are the pathways in which our bodies do so? These are things to consider.
The obvious one is that we go to the bathroom. What do you think will happen when there is a fire in a building that houses millions of people… with one main exit? All of these people (waste) will be heading for the exit and most likely get jammed. Many people experience constipation and bloating as a side effect of cleansing.
This is where a colonic will be extremely helpful. Making sure to clear the exit (the colon) before the fire is crucial in making sure all of the people can get out. Waste creating a blockade in the way of even more toxic waste is the worst way to start a cleanse. Gently clearing this waste from the colon with a colonic has been touted to be the best investment before, during, and after a cleanse.
The lymphatic system is also a big factor here. This is our cellular waste management system as well as our nutrient delivery system. This system can become congested as well during a cleanse. Clients have reported feeling bloated and puffy after starting a cleanse, with some even reporting a gain in weight. Lymphatic fluid pooling in between the cells is a contributor to this effect. The lymphatic system is responsible for clearing a path for waste to exit and for nutrient and oxygen delivery to the cells. During a cleanse it can be overloaded by a rush of cellular detoxification. If the lymphatic system is overloaded it may be unable to do its job of getting these fresh new nutrients to your cells. Less oxygen contributes to more acidity as well. The resulting effect is the opposite of what we want from the cleanse, which is alkalinity!
How do we get the lymphatic system moving???
Movement or exercise (preferably rebounding)
Dry skin brushing
There are also ways to speed up lymphatic drainage that involves using a bio-electric device to break up sticky blood proteins in the interstitial fluid, which also contribute to congestion. Along with a manual lymphatic massage, clients have reported this as a very successful method of lymphatic drainage.
Be smart. Choose which method of cleansing fits your needs and lifestyle best. Make sure to “take out the trash” before adding more.
If you’ve decided to embark on a cleanse and feel some detoxification assistance through colonics and bio electric lymphatic drainage may help, give me a call and book an appointment. I’m happy to assist your efforts for a successful cleanse and a happy you!!
Thanks for reading – Bre.
“If you’re looking to go deep on many levels, this colonic spot incorporates energy work, essential oils, crystals and aromatherapy.”Goop’s Beauty & Wellness Detox Guide