How Does Detoxing Work?
Hot on the heels of the new year, you probably made some promises to kick bad habits to the curb. If you're one of those people who made a commitment to lead a healthier lifestyle, congratulations! It's not an easy journey, but remember that although there are no shortcuts or easy fixes, the benefits are tremendous.
That said, you've probably heard of the health buzzword "detoxing." Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions surrounding it, as it is quite often being confused for "detoxification."
What is detoxification?
Naturopathic doctor and Detoxification book author Linda Page describes detoxification as our body's natural process. It occurs daily, even without particular diet plans. The process eliminates "toxins through the colon and liver," she explains.
Note that these toxins aren't just from your weekend alcohol bender or cigarettes. You can get them everywhere — from the pollution outside and workplace stress, to pharmaceutical drugs and your food itself. It's your body's job to cleanse these harmful substances out of your system through the process of detoxification.
In fact, it is estimated that our livers filter 1.4 litres of blood every minute, and the actual detoxification process can be broken down into two phases. The first part involves neutralising the toxins. This is where antioxidants come in handy because they help remove potentially damaging oxidising agents in a living organism. Afterwards, chemicals from food, such as glutamine and sulphur, are used to break down these toxins so that they can be excreted by your body.
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How does detoxing work?
While your liver and kidneys work hard enough on their own, sometimes you end up with more toxins in your system than normal. Perhaps you've been on a fast food binge or had one too many beers, or it could be due to some unavoidable external factors.
Here, detox plans can help bolster the cleanse and dramatically illicit a much-needed 180-degree turn in your lifestyle — whether it's changing your eating habits or increasing your plant intake and hydration.
What are its benefits?
By doing so, you are providing your body with a wealth of micronutrients that can aid your liver, kidney, and other organs to perform more effectively and efficiently. On top of this, lifestyle writer Megan Rogers outlines even more benefits of a detox cleanse, which includes enhancing your immune system functions, a better mood, and weight loss. Who wouldn't want all that?
But before you guzzle all that green juice, it's important to note that detoxes aren't quick fixes, and not all of them are good for your body. "Detoxes have gotten very trendy, and many of them are unhealthy and quite dangerous," warns Dr. Ian K. Smith, who founded the SHRED Lifestyle, on Very Well Fit.
Like fad diets, detoxing has its risks especially if your body is not accustomed to it. That's why it’s important to consult your doctor first before doing anything drastic. And for it to work its magic, you must do it right, like we previously emphasised here on Fashion Studio Magazine.
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Ingredients to look out for
There are many ways to support your liver. The most common is doing a three-day liquid fast. Ideally, your diet should be limited to juices, smoothies, and soup. On the other hand, some like to stick with a vegan and plant-based selection, giving their body a refreshing reset. During this time, protein and healthy fats from nuts and avocados are highly recommended.
To take your detox even further, there are ingredients to look out for in supplements. Pretty Me's Detoxi Slim page suggests studying the options available to you and researching what's inside them. Organic ingredients like ginseng, wheat germ, and cassia seed are great things to have in a supplement. Sound familiar? Many of these ingredients have been used for centuries, with some tracing back to early Chinese and Indian history. They boast rich anti-oxidant properties, which, like we mentioned, are what your body needs to boost detoxification.
On the other hand, you can't go wrong with popular choices like glutathione, spirulina, and fibre supplements, which can easily be found at your local pharmacy.