This time of the year detox becomes the buzzword in the health space. It’s like you have to undergo a special cleanse to make your body do it’s detoxification thing. Spoiler alert! Your body is actually performing this detoxification day in day out, hour by hour, minute by minute.
That being said there are ways in which you can enhance your body’s natural detox system, leaving your body feeling fresh and rejuvenated.
To start I want to bust a misconception that detox’s have to be an intense cleansing diet that consists of drinking some interesting mixtures for weeks on end. This is nothing more than a marketing ploy. You can detox that way but I am here to tell you that it is not the only way to achieve that rejuvenation you are looking for.
For a little background let’s have a quick look at the sophisticated way in which the body eliminates toxins. The body’s detox system involves many organs and systems. Your kidneys filter litres of blood to produce urine, your skin pushes out bacteria through sweat, your intestines extract nutrients and excrete waste through your stool, your lungs expel carbon dioxide and your liver clears toxins from the body. See the body works pretty hard on the daily to keep you detoxed.
Any detox that you undertake should be to enhance each of these body functions, allowing them to be happy and healthy, to help optimise your body’s natural detox system.
What’s tanking your detox system
Before we get into how to’s of a detox, let’s take a quick look at what may be tanking your body’s natural detox system
Chronic stress is a big one – you know that constant feeling of pressure and urgency…
Being physically inactive
Unhealthy habits such as lack of sleep, reliance on alcohol, sugar, coffee or maybe all three.
I bet you read that list, particularly the last one and thought – great there goes the fun… If that was you I invite the following reframe. Rather than looking at what you may be eliminating, think about what you will be gaining.
How you can detox
Now for my top tips to help keep your detox system happy and allow you to feel rejuvenated!
1. Remove Alcohol. 90% of the alcohol we drink is processed by the liver. As the liver is our prime organ for removing toxins we need to remove this burden allowing it to effectively process other toxins in our body. It really is one of the best ways to keep your detox system strong.
2. Drink more water. This does include herbal teas without caffeine. Our cells break down the food we eat to use for energy. This process produces waste – urea and carbon dioxide – which we don’t want building up in our blood. Water assists with transporting these out of our body through urination, breathing and sweating. This Digestion Tea adds to your hydration whilst also assisting your digestive system.
3. Reduce or remove processed foods and added sugars, including artificial sweeteners. Did you know the liver has to process refined sugars and oils? Much the same as alcohol, when we are consuming these foods it places extra burden on the liver and the kidneys to remove the toxins from these foods from our body. They also play havoc with our digestive system. We need our intestines to be working to effectively remove the bulk of the waste from our system.
4. Focus on feeding the body with foods that you can pick, grow or kill – veggies, fruits, locally raised proteins, nuts, seeds, legumes and wholegrains. Our body knows what to do with whole foods. Additionally they provide vital nutrients in the form of fats + proteins for our cell health and vitamins and minerals for our organs to detoxify. Foods that help with detoxification include brassicas (broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts), berries, beetroot, bone broth, chia seeds and nuts. You can find lots of yummy wholefood recipes under the recipes tab above.
5. Switch up the bedtime routine. When we sleep our body restores and heals itself. Inadequate hours of deep restful sleep impairs our body to perform this function. To help with your sleep remove ‘junk’ light at least an hour before bed – screens off, bright over-head lights off – think warm glows. Spend that important time before bed signalling to the body it’s time to rest. Have a bath or a shower, read a book, listen to a podcast or some music, try a guided meditation, do some stretching.
6. Daily movement. Whilst a good sweat session is great, regular smaller movements throughout the day need to also be included. Sitting for long periods of time results in the build up of waste products causing inflammation. Getting up and moving for 5 minutes each hour is enough to help get our blood and our lymph moving again. Set an alarm, get up, move around – perhaps use the time to go grab a glass of water…
7. Reduce stress. I know this is so much easier said than done. But a vital step in helping you detox and rejuvenate. The simplest way to bring the body back to a nice blissful state is through deep belly breathing. Try 5 rounds of belly breaths 3 times a day. Your new bedtime routine will also be helpful here. Getting out in nature is proven to also bring that stress down – maybe include this in your daily movement by taking a walk outside amongst the tress or near some water.
8. Improve your gut health. Like I mentioned earlier, the intestines are responsible for eliminating a large portion of waste from the body – we don’t want that hanging around… The cells of our intestines also have their own detoxification system which we want to keep healthy. To keep our gut health, well healthy, in addition to increasing your wholefoods, ensure you are consuming prebiotics, these are what feed our probiotics (our good bacteria). These include bananas (on the greener side of ripe), asparagus, onion, garlic, oats, raw cacao, cooked and cooled potatoes. These Sweet Potato Brownies tick all the boxes
9. Remove toxins from your home. Reducing your exposure to toxins works in much the same way as removing alcohol and sugar, it just gives the body a little less work to do. I’m not saying go and bin your cleaning products and body care. Just make a different choice next time you purchase.
As you can see rejuvenating your body with a detox does not need to involve radical cleanses. The best detox is the one that provides your body with the vitamins and minerals it needs whilst reducing the toxin load on the system, allowing the body to do its thing.
If you would like personalised help with rejuvenating your body I have a 2 week reset which provides meals plans and additional resources to help rejuvenate your body. If you would like to know when the next reset will be happening pop your details in below (promise I do not get spammy – that to me feels icky). Or you can book a discovery call to find personalised help.