Detox. My favorite health-related buzz word! Even though this word is thrown around nonchalantly most of the time, its a serious subject that requires a lot of intention to carry out correctly. A detox's purpose is to rid the body of unwanted toxins or "poisons" that build up in our systems and accumulate over time. There are lots of different toxicities that can show up: chemical toxins, hormonal toxins, food related toxins, and even emotional toxins. How do you know if you're toxic? Here are some common signs and symptoms that can indicate a detox is a good idea: anxiety, hormonal imbalance, poor memory, insomnia and sleep issues, weight gain/ obesity, headaches, chronic pain or inflammation (like arthritis), physical weakness, irritability, depression, hives, allergies, infertility, and chronic fatigue.
Yikes. That's a lot of stuff that many of us experience. The best way to go about a healthy detox is from the inside out. It all boils down to how everything is processed through the liver and gut, so by eliminating some of the things that heavily tax those body systems, you give yourself a better chance of feeling much better!
Start with your diet. How clean are you eating? If that answer is "not very clean," its important to make some changes in that area. Cruciferous veggies are the best way to cleanse the system. That includes things like broccoli, cauliflower, dark leafy greens, cabbage, brussels sprouts, etc. Take out all processed and GMO foods as well. And definitely no processed sugar (I know I know, it's torture).
Next, look at your household and daily routine. Did you know we're exposed to over 80,000 chemicals on a DAILY basis? Thats CRAZY. So in order to cut down on the chemical toxicity, change out all of your cleaning products to natural ones. Make your own with essential oils or buy "green" cleaning product that don't have any harsh chemical agents. Also, for the ladies (or gents) out there- what cosmetics and lotions/fragrances/body products are you using? Surprisingly, there's very little regulation of the chemicals used in makeup and body products by the FDA. Quite often the chemicals in these products can cause hormone disruption. Hence, the more infertility issues we're seeing with men and women along with an increase in weight gain for both parties. Personally, I check everything I use on the Environmental Working Group website to see how toxic it is. As long as I'm in the green, I'm good (that means low toxicity). Check your products out here. Chemical toxicity also relates to how many drugs/ medications or supplements a person is taking. Multiple meds can be very hard on the liver, so it's important to be extremely clear on what's absolutely necessary to take and what's not.
Lastly, take a look at your emotional or spiritual toxins. How stressed are you at work or at home? Can you do something to change the levels of negativity or stress if they're high? Finding a therapist or finding a support group to talk to can be incredibly beneficial. And as always, we use acupuncture to take the body's stress response down significantly.
If you're considering a deeper detox, let us guide you through it! Karen and I have other amazing tools to help you through a healthy detox process in order optimize your liver and gut functions. We've been using some new supplements from a few established and trustworthy companies (both Chinese Medicine and Western medicine based) that have proven to be extremely beneficial for us personally and for our patients. Depending on what you need specifically, we have detox options that range from full meal replacement shakes to herbal supplements you can add to a clean diet. From there, we can explore other ways to help rebuild the system once the detox is over. Feel free to contact us with any questions and happy detoxing!