21 Feb Clean Slate i.e. Cleansing
Want to look and feel good? Sometimes you need to start your work from the inside. Cleansing and detoxification systems are the best way to start your total body makeover. Since your year should be focused around building a strong health foundation (core health), the topic of cleansing is critical.
Why is cleansing so important when discussing our strong foundation? Let’s use this example: You have a new piece of property you just purchased to build a home. Before you can dig the foundation, you need to clear off any debris that will impede the builders from placing the foundation in the correct spot. Not only will this debris keep you from building in the correct location, it will also weaken your foundation. Cleansing the property (your body) is critical to developing the healthiest you possible.
If you have ever been fortunate to attend one of my seminars, you know that I preach “spring cleaning and fall cleaning”. Well, my calendar doesn’t say fall, but if we are going to start fresh, we need to CLEANSE. Detoxification is one of the most basic functions of the body. General detoxification systems includes:
- Gastrointestinal system – liver, spleen, gallbladder, pancreas, colon, gastrointestinal tract
- Urinary system – kidneys, bladder, and urological tract
- Lymphatic system – lymph channels and lymph nodes
- Respiratory system – lungs, bronchial tubes, throat, sinuses, and nose
- Cardiovascular System- veins, arteries, heart, capillaries
Why should you cleanse?
Your body is like a high performance automobile. When the car is new, it runs at its optimal ability. Over time, if you don’t have the car serviced (filters changed, lines flushed) it will not operate efficiently like when you first bought it. It will begin to get poor gas mileage, hesitate or in some cases cease to run. With your body, you may begin to experience different health changes. Even though you are using the best fuel possible with your car, it won’t run the way it should. Even though you are eating the best foods and using the best supplements, your body won’t respond the way it should either.
Effects of Exposure to these toxins
- Possible long-term effects include
- Autoimmune Diseases
- Heart Disease
- Neurological Diseases
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Immune problems
- Weight and Metabolic issues
- Nervous System Disorders such as:
- Sleep disturbances
- Emotional Problems
- Behavioral Problems
- Chronic fatigue
- Skin disorders
- Digestive Disorders
- Colon Cancer
- Immune Disorders
- Autoimmune conditions
- Respiratory Disorders
- Cardiovascular Issues
- Hardening of arteries
As I mentioned above, your car has filters (fuel, oil, etc.) and lines (break, fuel, transmission etc.) and so does your body. Our filters (liver, kidneys, etc.) and lines (lymphatic system, cardiovascular system, etc.) need to be serviced regularly in order to get the best function possible. The problem is that we don’t really have anywhere to take our body to have the lines flushed and filters changed. So we must cleanse and detoxify on a regular schedule.
Please keep in mind that even if you eat organic, drink purified water and live in a bubble, your body also manufactures toxins. Just as with your car, the body burns fuel (food) and gets energy and exhaust. Just as with your car, if you don’t vent or neutralize the exhaust, your body will become toxic and not function the way it was intended. Yes, GOD did create us to naturally detoxify ourselves, but we were originally created to live in a clean, pristine environment-not the environment of today.
Benefits of detoxification include:
- improved health
- better work of organs
- weight loss
- clean skin
- improved flexibility
- slowed aging
- increased energy
- better breath
- reduced allergies
- potentially fewer aches and pains
- stronger immune system
- healthier skin and hair
- improved concentration and memory
I recommend using a “whole/total body” type of cleanses two times a year. These whole body cleansing systems work on more than just your bowels so don’t get nervous. Yes, these systems (cleansing kits) are designed to assist your body in removing the waste (toxins) from your bowel, but in a kinder and gentler way than the old days of natural health. I call these systems “mainstream” because if done properly, you won’t be stuck in the bathroom all of the time. I have heard experts say they estimate that the average 45 year old has about 15 pounds of excess waste in their colon. Add that to the fact that most Americans suffer from constipation; having a few extra bowel movements a day isn’t such a bad thing. Using a whole body cleanse will not only work on your colon, but also will usually work on cleaning other systems of the body such as; digestive, lymphatic, cardiovascular, urinary and more. Again, if you can keep these systems clean, your will get more “bang for your buck” from your body. There are two basic concepts when cleansing: Long-term and short-term cleansing. Here are the differences:
- Use daily for extended period of time-months to years
- Fewer side effects
- Similar results-may take longer to see
- Example: Flor Essence Tea, Using Greens (powdered)
- Sometimes Harsh but not uncomfortable
- Use daily for 1-4 weeks
- More side effects or more severe effects
- Results happen quickly
- Perfect Cleanse, AM/PM Power Cleanse, etc.
Another way to cleanse/detoxify long-term (beside Flor*Essence tea) would be to utilize Green Superfood products on a daily basis. Not only do these Superfood products help to remove toxins, but they also provide added nutrients to support the body’s repair and recovery.
What else should you do?
Fiber plays an important role too. As your body works to eliminate your toxins, it dumps many of them into your colon. Fiber helps to trap these toxins-keeping them from being able to be reabsorbed into the body. It also helps to increase bowel movements and further assist in eliminating toxic material. Without enough fiber, you will probably suffer from diarrhea while cleansing. This extra fiber will absorb the extra water in your stool and help you feel much more comfortable while cleansing. I recommend using a fiber supplement that has both soluble and insoluble fiber components. I prefer the use of Flax or Chia because it not only contains these forms of fiber, but also has other health benefits like essential fatty acids. You may as well get the biggest bang for your buck as possible if you buying a supplement to your diet.
Toxins leave your body in three ways; urine, sweat and stool. Water is a key player in all three of these elimination pathways. The old “eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day” just isn’t going to cut it here. You need to make sure you are doing everything you can to eliminate these toxins as quickly as possible. The more you urinate, sweat and empty your bowels, the sooner you are on your way to feeling GREAT. I recommend a foundation of half your body weight in ounces of water per day. (If you weigh 200 pounds then you need AT LEAST 100 ounces of water per day. During cleansing the need usually increases. Drink purified water-either distilled with added trace minerals or R/O (Reverse Osmosis) water. You are working hard to eliminate toxins so why would you want to use water with more toxins in it.
Probiotics might be the last mentioned, but are just as important as Fiber and Water. Probiotics (see the article in this newsletter) are important in cleansing for two basic reasons. One, they help suppress the “bad guys” (parasites, bacteria etc.) found in the lower digestive tract. Certain bad bacterial in the bowel can actually set free the toxins that were bound by your liver and dumped into your bowel. By having enough good bacteria from the probiotic we can suppress the “bad guys” and keep those toxins tied up for removal. The second reason I like to add probiotics is to put back the good bacteria that may be eliminated as you take your cleanse. As we have increased bowel movements, not only are the toxins being eliminated, but some of the good things like our friendly bacteria are being removed too. By restocking these good bacteria you are preparing the body for better digestion and overall improved health.
You aren’t done yet
After you are done with your multi-system cleansing, you may need to move on to a cleanse that targets a particular area or system of the body. For example: Someone who works in an environment with harsh chemicals may need to focus specifically on their liver (Liver Cleanse). I met a gentleman years ago who was a painter. The prolonged exposure to paints and the other chemicals used by painters (thinners, strippers, etc.) had taken a toll on his body-primarily his liver. He had cirrhosis of the liver and had never consumed alcohol. Had he periodically used multi-system cleansing and then targeted his liver every 3-4 months, he may have never developed this condition. Below are examples of other areas you may wish to focus on and why:
- Parasites: Sushi or international travel
- Yeast: Chronic yeast infections or digestive problems
- Heavy Metals: grew up around lead paints, oil refinery nearby, smoker
- Respiratory: Work or lived in area with heavy air quality problems, past smoker
- Urinary: Past urinary tract issues such as prostatitis, bladder problems
- Bowel: Chronic constipation
- Liver: Toxic lifestyle, stress, past drug use, Alcohol abuse, Job environment (painter, house cleaning etc.)
If you are planning to use this approach of targeting a specific system wait about 10-14 days between cleanses. Unless your cleanse is one of the gentle ones I mentioned above, it is not safe or beneficial to your body to start a new cleanse immediately after finishing another. You need to give your body a chance to recover and rebuild.
What to Expect
Often times when you begin to cleanse you may actually feel worse than you did before you began your program. When people hear this they often ask then why do I want to do this? You will have to trust me on this. You will feel much better after the completion of your cleanse. Cleansing is sort of like dusting your house. We not only clean the dust from the surface, but stir up dust in the process. If you could imagine your body is like a jar and the top half of the jar has crystal clear water and the bottom half has fine, black silt in it. This image is what your body is probably like now prior to cleansing. It has a bunch of toxic “stuff” in it, but it has all settled somewhere in your body. When we begin to cleanse, it is like shaking the jar of water and silt. You now can’t even see through the jar because the toxins are released from where they were resting. This release of toxins from our many systems can often make you feel tired, achy, and almost flu-like. For most who do cleansing the proper way, these symptoms may last for 3 to 7 days. As the symptoms disappear, you will begin to feel like “a million bucks”. Increases in energy, weight loss, improved overall health are just some of the many changes that can present themselves to you when cleansing regularly. If you don’t cleanse properly, these symptoms can last much longer and be more severe.
I find it important to make a few dietary changes too. Below are my suggestions:
- Eliminate- Animal Protein & Refined Foods (pasta, bread, sugar)
- Try to eat a vegetarian type diet
- Eliminate Dairy (Milk containing products)
By removing these foods from your diet while cleansing, you will assure yourself of more efficient cleansing and reduced side effects.
Remember, you are just like a fine automobile. You want to make sure you treat your body like that car. Keep the lines and filters clean and use the best fuel possible. Whether you have a health challenge or not, Cleansing and Detoxification are a critical part of your health program. Cleansing is part of all of my “prevention” and “treatment” programs. When I used to consult for individuals, I would always have the person start with a Cleanse prior to beginning their other natural health supplement program. Taking this approach will benefit all health challenges including the major Killers of Americans: Heart Disease, Cancer, Diabetes and Obesity. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure…Cleansing should be part of your prevention program.