Detoxing, cleansing, and fasting are not new trends. Hippocrates, considered to be the father of Western medicine, believed in fasts as a way to heal the body, purge the system of pollutants, and even excrete the emotional residue built up from daily life. And while modern medicine has tended to be symptom-focused, seeking healing through pill-popping and reactionary remedies, recently there has been a shift, returning faith to the time-tested holistic practices of our medicinal forefathers. Seems that, though we continue to technologically advance, we are in fact looking back and acknowledging the benefits of preventative medicine in addition to curative care.
From juice diets to organic cleaning products, natural make-up to the esoteric de-cluttering of unhealthy people from your life, there are lots of detox techniques to explore. But for an overall overhaul, here are 7 detox tips that can get you on your way to a cleaner tomorrow (I’ll be doing them too).
Begin your day with a cleansing breathing technique to aid in a greater supply of oxygen that will carry away waste that accumulate in all of our cells. I love belly breathing- inhaling through your nose, filling up your lungs and expanding your stomach with clean fresh oxygen. Hold that for 6 seconds, then slowly exhale through your mouth- another 6 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
In the morning while I’m drinking my coffee is when I spend 5-minutes focused on my intention board. It’s my time to get clear and think about my goals- not only for the day, but the year, how each small choice can feed into the bigger picture.
Try Sun Salutations- a series of 12 postures performed in a continuous flow and coordinated with the breath- Inhaling with each extension or stretch, and exhaling with each fold or contraction. The postures include: Mountain, Hands Up, Head to Knees, Lunge, Plank, Stick, Upward Dog, Downward Dog, Lunge, Head to Knees, Hands Up Mountain. Sun Salutations are a great way to warm-up the body, lubricating the joints and promoting circulation.
Working up a sweat is a great way to literally sweat out the old toxins and stuck stuff from your system. Work it out for 45 minutes to an hour a day and you will feel cleaner.
For one week, cut out all simple carbs (bread, white rice, sugar), alcohol, sugar (obviously), and replace them with lots of veggies, tons of water, and clean proteins (grilled or poached chicken, egg whites, tofu, salmon). Eat several small meals throughout the day to keep your metabolism cranking and your body performing at its highest, healthiest level.
Do a daily pre-shower dry brushing with a natural bristle brush for 5 minutes. This will help to stimulate the lymph glands near the surface of the skin, encourage circulation and to gently exfoliate the skin. You will gently brush from your feet up to your shoulders, always brushing towards your heart in and upward motion.
May sound strange, but take a seaweed or herbal bath (such as nettle, ivy, or Melissa) from Kneipp to re-mineralize the skin and provide essential nutrients that you might not normally get in. Remember, your skin is like a sponge drinking up whatever it comes into contact with. Feed it well! Soak for at least 25 minutes in medium warm water right before bed.
You need to know what your internal nemesis’ are in order to cleanse both your body and mind. Journaling can help you release you acknowledge and release your thoughts, helping you to clear both physical and emotional clutter. You can choose to begin or end your day with journaling.