All you need to know about a detox diet
Include high-fibre fruits and veggies in your diet to aid toxin removal
Skin problems, digestive problems, pains and aches could all mean that you have accumulated toxins in your body. In that case, a good detox programme is all you need to get back on track.
Body detoxification has been in practice for centuries across many cultures around the world, including Ayurvedic, Tibetan and Chinese medicine systems advocating it. By flushing out toxins from your body and feeding it healthy nutrients – detoxification – you can boost your immunity, aid weight loss, and ease digestive problems and skin ailments.
What is detoxification?
The body eliminates toxins through the liver, kidneys, lymph, lungs, kidneys and skin. Our diet, lifestyle and many other factors can clog the system, preventing it from filtering out toxins, thereby effecting body function. Detoxification means cleaning the body from inside. It mainly involves clearing impurities from the blood. It boosts liver function, thereby eliminating impurities from the blood. It also enables more efficient toxin filtration in other organs.
A detox programme aids the body’s cleaning process by:
- Giving body organs rest through fasting
- Boosting liver function to drive toxins out of the body
- Stimulating toxin removal in other organs like intestines, kidneys and skin
- Improving blood circulation
- Body regeneration through intake of healthy nutrients.
When to detoxify?
Experts recommend detoxification at least once a year for all adults. There is a heavy load of toxins in the environment today; therefore experts recommend detoxification at least once a year. A whole system cleanse is good for everyone. However, pregnant women, nursing mothers, kids and those suffering from serious diseases like cancer and tuberculosis are advised against it.
Some symptoms that could suggest you could use a detoxification programme include:
- Irritated or tired skin
- Allergies and frequent infections
- Menstrual difficulties
- Digestive problems
- Mental confusion
A simple detoxification programme:
- Start with food: Eat plenty of fibre. Substitute white rice with unpolished rice or brown rice; include fresh fruits and veggies in your diet (if you can source organically-grown varieties, even better!). Radish, cabbage, spirulina are known to be good detoxifying foods — include them in your diet.
- Reap benefits from green tea: Green tea is known to be an excellent cleanser. Sip on at least 4 cups of green tea a day. It will help flush out toxins from the liver and give you better health.
- Vitamin-C please: Take vitamin-C everyday. It helps the body produce glutathione, a liver compound that eliminates toxins. Squeese half a lime in hot water and drink first thing in the morning.
- Adam’s ale: Drink at least 2 litres of water a day, there is nothing better than H2O to clean your system.
- Stop and breathe: Breathe deeply and slowly, allowing the blood to absorb more oxygen and circulate in your body. Consiciously breathe throughout the day. Rf that seems too much, at least do some breathing exercises on rising and before going to bed.
- Stress relief: Meditation, visualisation, talking to friends — do whatever you need to release stress.
- Exercise: Choose from dance, yoga, cardio or jump the rope. Exercise is a key aspect of detox programme. Try Qigong, a martial-arts based exercise system that includes exercises specifically for detoxifying or cleansing. This is now becoming popular in Indian cities like Bangalore. Check your city listing to see if they offer this style of exercise.
- Water therapy: While taking a shower, alternate between hot and cold water. Take a hot shower for 5 minutes, allowing the water to run on your back, follow with cold water for 30 seconds. Do this 3 times, and then rest your body for 30 minutes before you head out (So best done before going to bed at night).
- Sweat it out: Allow your body to sweat. Perspiration helps eliminate toxins. Sit in sauna room.
- Brush it: Dry-brush your skin with a loofah or soft-bristled brush to remove toxins through pores. Add salt in your bath — it can go a long way in cleansing your body and mind. Make sure you shower after the salt bath.
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