Healthy Living

Kristi Whitley

Cleanses and Detox

"Cleanses" and detoxing are all the rage but do you really need something as drastic as a colonic? Here's a mini 411 on the subject.
Our bodies are designed to cleanse and detox themselves naturally. The body cleanses through elimination. The seven channels of elimination identified by Brenda Watson are blood, bowel, skin, kidneys, lymphatic system, lungs and liver. These all serve to cleanse the body of toxins in different ways. We are cleansing every time we use the bathroom, sweat, and exhale. 
The problem comes in when our bodies are overloaded with toxins and our organs can't keep up. The overload comes from eating processed food like bread, cereals, cookies, chips, and crackers, prepared foods that are ready to heat and eat, processed meats like cold cuts, hot dogs, pepperoni, ham, ground beef, and bottled beverages of all kinds including Gatorade and Sunny Delight. Stress also induces toxic overload as does our environment. To list the toxins we are exposed to on a minute by minute basis would take all day. 
Those who have had radiation or chemotherapy, who work in a toxic environment, or have kidney or liver disease are at even greater risk of toxic overload. 

The symptoms of toxic overload according to Nature's Intensions Naturopathic Clinic are: 

  • Allergy or intolerance to certain foods
  • Bad breath and foul-smelling gas and stools
  • Constipation, diarrhea, sluggish elimination, irregular bowel movements
  • Frequent congestion, colds, and viruses
  • Flatulence or gas and frequent intestinal disorders
  • Frequent headaches for no apparent reason
  • General aches and pains that migrate from one place to another
  • Intolerance to fatty foods
  • Low energy; loss of vitality for no apparent reason
  • Lower back pain
  • Lowered resistance to infections
  • Needing to sleep a long time
  • Pain in your liver or gall bladder
  • Premenstrual syndrome (PMS), breast soreness, vaginal infections
  • Skin problems, rashes, boils, pimples, and acne

Suffice to say, we need to pay close attention to what we put in our mouths to counteract what we have no control over.
To gently cleanse and detox the body, start by cleaning up the diet and adding a detox supplement or tea to your daily routine. Detox teas and supplements should contain oregano leaf, nettle leaf, and/or garlic bulb. The health food store should have a detox tea or supplement of high quality. 

Detoxifying Foods

Foods that detox by chelating (grabbing and removing) heavy metals are:

  • cilantro
  • Parsley
  • sauerkraut
  • Kimchi
  • lemons
  • limes 
  • chlorella, an algae that can be found at the health food store 
  • miso, a fermented paste made from soybeans, chickpeas or other
  • garlic 
  • milk thistle seeds
  • beets 
  • artichokes 
  • broccoli 
  • cabbage

Increasing intake of clean water to two quarts a day and eating raw vegetables, beans, and greens will help just by cleansing the kidneys and colon. Sweating during exercise, yard work, etc. or using an infrared sauna will remove toxins via the skin. Deep breathing as in yoga practice will detox through the lungs and stimulate lymphatic flow to move toxins from the blood to portals of elimination. To read more go here:

It's easy, right? Here's a recipe for a delicious juice drink you can make with your blender, store in jars and keep in the fridge for 2-3 days. Just drink about 6-8 ounces twice a day on an empty stomach before eating for at least 30 minutes, giving it time to be digested unobstructed. The cilantro will chelate, the pineapple and cucumber will reduce inflammation and the coconut water will add valuable minerals. 

Chelating anti-inflammatory smoothie:
20 +/- ounces of 100% coconut WATER, not milk, and no sugar added. Ask for it at Whole Foods
1/2 bunch of cilantro
1/2 fresh pineapple, chopped
1 med. organic cucumber, chopped
Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth. May take two batches. Just use a big pitcher to homogenize both batches together. 
Store in 8oz jars filled to the rim and refrigerate for up to 3 days. 
Makes 5-7 8oz servings. 

All the best!

Proverbs 19:20-21
Listen to advice and accept discipline, and at the end you will be counted among the wise. Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.