In the year 2000, more than 4 billion pounds of toxic chemicals where released into the ground, threatening the soil we grow our food in and the natural underground water sources that supply some of our drinking water. Over 260 million pounds of chemicals were also discharged into surface waters like lakes and rivers. Nearly 2 billion pounds of chemical emissions were pumped into the air we breathe and live in- all in just one year. We have refined away most of the nutritional value of our food and replaced it with artificial colorings, preservatives, flavorings, etc. This poor quality diet combined with extensive use of antibiotics in medicine and agriculture may have predisposed many of us to an overactive and taxed immune system and overburdened organs such as our intestines, kidneys, and especially, our liver.
The body must rid itself of these dangerous substances by transforming and excreting them through the lungs, skin, kidneys and bowels. Unfortunately, not all of them get excreted efficiently- some are circulated back into the bloodstream and others are stored in tissues such as fat. Over the years, toxins can build up in fat, joints, the brain and various other tissues, potentially leading to a variety of health issues.
We need to take personal responsibility of make sure that we do not fall victim to toxicity. This involves learning what we need to do to help our body protect itself.
It was formally believed that a water or juice fast was a preferred detoxification program.
The modern-day realization that the body’s detoxification system is a heavily nutrient-supported process has made it clear that simple water or juice fasting is less complete and no longer the method of choice.
Prolonged fasting may weaken muscles and organs because of protein loses and a gradual slowing of metabolic activity.
A better approach to detoxification is to nourish the body thoroughly, fueling the natural detoxification process with nutrients needed to achieve optimal detoxification. By providing high quality protein, complex carbohydrates and essential fats, the body gets what it needs to prevent muscle and organ breakdown.
It is very important to eat a good diet with plenty of fresh wholesome foods. Avoid eating excess fat, refined sugar, allergenic foods, and foods high in additives and preservatives. Try as best as you can to consume meats from organically raised animals and select organically grown fruits and vegetables as much as possible (especially the “Dirty Dozen”).
Drink plenty of purified water, at least half of your body weight in ounces!
Do all you can to purify your work and home environments! Remove any toxic materials such as stored or leaking chemicals, dyes, paints, solvents, glues, etc. as well as household offenders such as insecticides and toxic cleaning agents. Regular replacement of air conditioning or furnace filters may also be helpful.
The two main factors involved in participating in a cleansing detox is the willingness to change and the time needed to engage in the process.
This means taking the time to shop for the appropriate foods, avoiding very stressful situations and ensuring that you are comfortable in an environment conducive to allowing this process to unfold (ex: You don’t have company coming in from out of town, plan on going “partying”, or going on vacation).
These are a few other areas to consider before starting the program:
- If you consume significant amounts of caffeinated beverages, simple sugars or alcohol you may experience withdrawal symptoms if you discontinue them all at once. Instead, gradually decrease your intake before you start the program.
- You may need to curtail strenuous activity during the core of the program. Judge how you feel and adjust accordingly.
- Avoid stressful situations as much as possible, and partake in relaxation activates such as meditation, yoga, massage, or deep breathing.
- Stock your pantry with the foods recommended on The Complete Detox Program, and get rid of processed foods and/or sweets that you may be tempted to eat while on the program. (Out of sight, out of reach!)
During your detox, engage in as many healthful activities as possible. For example, yoga, skin brushing, massage, sauna/steam, organic juicing, and good ol’ r & r.
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