Stop! Should you really be detoxing with a box cleanse?
From your favourite Trendy Fit columnist: Steph
Have you ever bought a box cleanse before? You know the ones that come with a giant list of instructions, elixirs, supplements, pills etc, all in one little box? If you said “Yes!”, you aren’t alone; this has become a very common practice nowadays. It seems that you hear about it in the office, at the gym, from your friends “I’m cleansing.” (Trust me, they will tell you..) But the question is, do you really need to participate in a structured box cleanse system? Should you really spend your hard-earned money on something like this?
Everyone who participates in this has his or her own reasons for doing so. Whether they are at the end or beginning of a fitness journey, after the holidays or for giggles. But whatever the reason, is it actually necessary for you?
The human body is a very intelligent mechanical creation. Believe it or not, it has the ability to detoxify itself weekly, daily, and even hourly. The only real reason to participate in a regulated cleanse is if you are regularly putting garbage into your body. The importance of cleansing your body is about rejuvenating and resetting the body from the inside out. There is no need to run out to a health food store and purchase one from a box when there are so many things you can do to help detoxify your body in a natural way.
Water is a natural detoxifying agent.
First and foremost: WATER! (You know we have been here before) Water flushes toxins and impurities out of your system by helping both the kidneys and the bowel to maintain their normal functions; to eliminate waste.
Match water with fibre to detox even better.
Second, eat more fibre. Fibre is the main nutrient that is going to help you maintain proper digestive health. When everything is properly digesting, your body is eliminating waste in a correct manner. The key thing to remember is that when you are upping your fibre intake; you are matching it with your water consumption. Fibre works better when it absorbs water, if you aren’t matching the fibre increase with more water, you will give yourself constipation (not good!). Increased fibre means more healthy bowel movements, and it also means less bloating and water retention.
Finally, eliminate and introduce.
Eliminate all processed crap, alcohol, coffee (gulp) and refined sugars. Anything that is coming in a package with an expiry date and a list of ingredients you cant even pronounce. This is a start. Introduce foods that exist in nature that will help you naturally detoxify and cleanse your system.
A few of my favourites:
Avocados: they contain a nutrient called glutathione, which blocks at least thirty different carcinogens while helping the liver detoxify synthetic chemicals.
Beets: contain a unique mixture of natural plant compounds that make them superb blood purifiers and liver cleansers.
Blueberries: nature’s powerhouse! They are a natural anti-inflammatory, block out bad bacteria, prevent certain infections, and block the bad toxins from crossing the blood-barrier into your brain.
Legumes: Add a handful of cooked beans to your next meal since they are loaded with the ever so important fiber that helps lower cholesterol, cleanses the intestines, and regulate blood sugar levels.
Lemons: Excellent liver detoxifiers, lemons contain high amounts of vitamin C, a vitamin needed by the body to make an important substance called glutathione. Glutathione helps the liver detoxify harmful chemicals. Add lemon to your water to support your cleansing efforts on a daily basis.
The point I am trying to make is not to be sold on pre-packaged cleanses, juice fasts, pills, and supplements. There are so many options available in nature to help detoxify, cleanse and reset yourself. The list of items above is only a drop in the bucket. There are so many more readily available year-round to help you to continue on your path to clean eating and happy healthy digestion. Whether you choose to live this way every day or use this as a cleanse for a month, a week, a few days, whatever it is: do what feels right for you and your own body. Don’t just cleanse because everyone else is doing it.