Spring Detox: 4 Ways to Keep Your Detox Healthy and Safe

This is a spring detox guest post by Lisa Consiglio Ryan of Whole Health Designs.

Spring cleaning; spring forward; jump into spring; spring detox. How many more spring-isms can I come up with? I just LOVE this time of year. Not only does spring symbolize renewal and rebirth, it also reminds me of cleansing. AND a great way to supercharge the season is to detox.

About 9 years ago I tried my first 10 day detox with my acupuncturist. It was hell. Really. I remember spending over $200 on supplements and a concoction that tasted like paste. The first few days were a fast, and I was starving! I got to add some broth near the end, but I was so weak and felt hungry all the time. Needless to say whenever someone mentioned detox, I ran for the hills. The words that came to mind were deprivation, starvation, and torture.

After experimenting with a few different food-based cleanses and researching detox programs during my nutrition certification program, I now think of detox as glowing, vibrant, energizing, and light.

So why the change? Once you experience a detox that incorporates whole foods and daily activities that support your body, there isn’t anything in the world that can compare to the feeling you get after a detox. You may feel increased bouts of energy, eliminate food cravings, lose weight, reduce bloating and get rid of belly fat. Your mind is clear and focused, and even your mood can improve. My hubby sure liked that one the best.

There are lots of “detox” regimens out there. Some are juice cleanses. Some require fasting or calorie counting. Some promise a flushed colon or invigorated spleen. While these types of detox programs (which mainly come in a box) seem safe, I do not recommend cleanses that eliminate whole foods. Many of us are so busy and active, and if you aren’t eating, you can set yourself up for illness, feeling weak and unproductive.

Spring Detox Recommendations

Here are my top 4 sure fire ways to keep your detox healthy and safe.

Spring detox
  1. I suggest a gentle, clean food-based detox. The first step is to eliminate foods that have barcodes. Michael Pollen, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma and Food Rules, suggests that we avoid foods that come in a can or box. I usually remind myself of this rule when I shop. For your food-based cleanse stick to organic fruits and veggies plus lots of dark leafy greens like kale, Swiss chard, collards.My favorite spring detox food is leeks. This veggie rocks, but most of all it is known to cleanse and purify the liver, the spring organ according to Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture.Try this yummy leek recipe from the 10 Day Reboot Your Body Detox. This recipe is adapted from The Flexitarian Table. Bean, Leek, and Pea Soup Recipe
  2. As you pump the green stuff, you also need to avoid the following: added sugar, dairy, alcohol, caffeine, wheat/gluten, eggs, animal protein, corn, soy, and fruit juices since they are very high in sugar and calories.
  3. Of course eating foods that nourish and detoxify are necessary for your cleanse, but the next step is to incorporate exercise. Try gentle yoga, walking in nature, stretching. You don’t want to run for 12 miles or bike for hours during your cleanse. You will be completely exhausted. Your body is working hard to get rid of toxins, and she needs to rest to restore during the detox period. Taking time to breathe and meditate. This time is for YOU.
  4. Finally, determine the length of your detox. I recommend a program that is 10 days. Anything less than 10 days is not beneficial. It takes time to make changes, and your body needs time to adjust to eating differently, getting rid of toxins, and establishing habits. Usually my clients start to see changes around Day 8 and really feel the full effects by Day 10. If you are new to detoxing or want a power-boost to jump start healthy living, then 10 days is a good start.

Are you entertaining a spring detox?

Are you ready to try a spring detox? Have you done a cleanse before? Fill me in with your comment below. I would love to know your thoughts on getting your detox on!

Spring Detox

Lisa Consiglio Ryan is a Certified Health and Nutrition Coach for busy, active women and their families. Areas of expertise include weight loss, stress management, detox programs, and special diets such as vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free, and gluten-free. Services include private consulting and group seminars.

Contact Lisa at Whole Health Designs for more information. Connect with Lisa on Twitter and Facebook for more information about spring detox and healthy living!

5 Profound, Yet Simple Ways Juicing Can Transform Your Life

This is a guest post by Henri Junttila.

If you’re familiar with drinking freshly-squeezed juices, I think you already know the powerful effects it can have on your body. What most people don’t notice are the effects it can have on the non-physical you.

Benefits of Juicing
Photo by Alfonso

Four years ago I had my first real date with juicing. You see, I bought an Omega 8005 Juicer and started throwing everything in it. The results were interesting, but not particularly tasty. You live and learn.

After awhile I decided to go on a juice fast, which is where I noticed the 5 subtle, yet profound ways juicing can transform your health and consciousness.

1. Intuition

Intuitive knowing sounds mystical, but for me it’s just a feeling or thought that suddenly bubbles up. When I’m doing something I might get a thought or feeling helping me decide which apple to buy or even which country to live in.

When I was on my juice fast my intuition became stronger. It was interesting, almost like having someone there to help guide you through life.

2. Courage

Fear penetrates even the most hidden parts of our lives. We tend to look at fear with fear, but how much would your perspective change if you looked at it with a fresh pair of eyes? Because what is fear? For me fear just shows me where my belief systems are not aligned with who I want to be.

Two of my biggest fears are public speaking and not having enough financially. When you go deeper and observe them, they are really not as big, bad and mean as you think they are. This awareness is amplified many times when you’re juicing and it allows you to break through these barriers and exercise courage.

3. Clarity

As you put less and less strain on your body, it starts to cleanse, detoxify and heal, which leads to enhanced clarity, focus and other mental functions. During my juice fast and when I juice daily I notice more clarity and an increased ability to make decisions.

Clarity is not only important in making decisions in your day to day, but in your life as well. What is your life purpose? What is your passion? What would you do if money didn’t exist? As I juiced, things suddenly started to become a lot clearer. Now, I am not saying I know everything about my life, just that it got a whole lot easier ;).

4. Awareness

Meditation is an awesome awareness expander, but cleaning up your body does that too. I remember walking down a quiet road in Spain (I lived in Spain then and will again soon, but that’s another story) and noticing new trees.

Had these trees appeared out of nowhere? How did they grow up so fast? I finally concluded that it was my awareness that had expanded. It’s almost as if I had been awarded the keys to a new world, the world of hidden trees.

(Editor’s Note: Maybe some of those trees were planted through my Tree Planting Initiative. If you could go back and in time, and all that. Ahem.)

5. Gratefulness

I was never the grateful type when I was younger, but as I’ve gained a few pearls of wisdom throughout the years I’ve noticed that being grateful feels awesome and is extremely uplifting.

If someone as anti-gratitude as me can become 87% more grateful on a juice fast, I’m sure you would notice it even more. How did I come up with 87%? I made it up, don’t you just love statistics?

To Juice or Not to Juice, That is Not the Question

We already know juicing rocks, so the question is: what benefits have you noticed from juicing? Any health benefits, healings or even subtle, transformational shifts?

About the Author: Henri Junttila is the founding father of the Wake Up Cloud, a place where you can discover your passion in 5 days and get conscious about your life.

What is The Master Cleanse?

This is day two of my Master Cleanse. So far, so good. I drank 3 liters of the lemonade yesterday, as recommended. You can read about why I chose to do this fast here.

Surprisingly I wasn’t really hungry. I did find myself scratching my head a few times, at lunch and dinner because I usually take a break from work then.

I also noticed that I like to take breaks to eat and relax throughout the day. And yeah, eating frequent small meals works for me. But fasting made me realize that I can take breaks without eating.

Food and breaks are not tied together. If I’m feeling overwhelmed or stressed, it is perfectly okay to take a walk, get away from the computer, or read a chapter of a book.

Imagine that!

So What is This Master Cleanse Thing, Anyways?

I wanted to give you a few more details about what the master cleanse consists of. It’s a liquid only cleanse, so there is no solid food consumed.

Here is the basic lemonade recipe for 1 Liter:

  • 3 oz. Freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice
  • 3 oz. Grade B Maple Syrup (the darker the better)
  • Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
  • Filtered or spring water

So far I’ve been drinking 3 of these 1 Liter mixtures per day, as recommended. You can drink more, but should not drink less.

Take a sip every 15 minutes, or more often as desired throughout the day. This ensures your blood sugar stays stable and you don’t experience hunger pangs.

Until tomorrow…

I’ve heard that days 2 and 3 tend to be the toughest, because that’s when the majority of toxins tend to be released in the blood stream. So far, so good. I’ll definitely write about any detox symptoms in my next installment.

Talk to you soon!
Love, Nathalie

7 Illogical Reasons for Doing a Fast

Okay, I have a confession to make. I’ve been teaching people about raw food, detox, and alternative healing for months, but I’ve never fasted before.

smiley-faces
Photo by Bu

Honestly, I feel like I should post a note that says “I’m not an expert” somewhere on this blog. If only for this reason.

Luckily, my friend Elizabeth P.W. reminded me that it’s okay not to have all the answers. She voiced what I’ve been noticing around the web: people trust those who are honest with them, even if that means admitting faults or problems.

For me that means letting you know that I’ve never done a real fast before. Well, unless you count that time where I decided to eat nothing but apples for one day. (Didn’t do much!)

But that’s all going to change…

I’m about to embark on my very first real fast! I’m going to do the lemonade fast, also known as the Master Cleanse.

I’ll be posting about my experiences here on the blog. I will be as honest and transparent as I can be, without sharing too many of the gory details, if you know what I mean.

It’s funny because before I went raw I always thought fasts had to be for an ulterior motive. Like a 24 hour fast for charity. Or for spiritual reasons.

My rationale for doing this 10 day cleanse is a lot less righteous. Here are a few of my thoughts and reasons:

  1. Winter is coming and I want a strong immune system, so giving my body time to heal would be good.
  2. I’ve been working hard on my Cure Cravings Forever program, and I could use a boost of energy.
  3. I realized that there’s never a perfect time for a cleanse. I was going to do a juice feast in the summer, but somehow the timing didn’t work out. Now or never, I say.
  4. It would be great to know what it’s like to experience “crippling cravings” again so I can really delve deep and share my insights in my Cure Cravings Forever program.
  5. I’m very curious about the reported benefits and I want to know whether to recommend it to people or not.
  6. This master cleanse will be an interesting way to build up my self confidence, and willpower. When you commit to something like this, it’s transformational. (Or so I hear.)
  7. I want to see how much yeast vs. beneficial bacteria I seem to have gathered over years of being on birth control pills and taking antibiotics.

Oh, food cravings…

I’ve gathered a lot of craving busting tricks up my sleeve over the past few years.

I go into all the details in my new program called Cure Cravings Forever. I wanted to let you know that the program registration closes on Wednesday November 4th at Midnight, Eastern time.

So if you want to hear my advice on cravings, without the “high and mighty” voice (I’ll be just as bent on cravings as you during my fast!) then this is your time.

I look forward to working with you on kicking some craving butt!

Love, Nathalie

Raw Food Detox: The Myth, The Madness… The Magick?!

One of the things you’re bound to encounter along your raw food faerytale is detox. In this article I’ll explore the concept of detox, the common symptoms, and even the magick that happens during a detox.

Raw Food Detox Video


(Click here if you can’t see the video.)

Is Detox a Myth?

Take a look at this fictional scenario: You increase your intake of raw food or cut out certain things like processed sugar, processed starch, and/or meat and dairy.

Suddenly, you can feel yourself getting edgy. It’s as if someone took away a drug addict’s stash. All you can think about is food, and you crave a spoonful of that sugary cereal, pretty please.

That’s detox. That’s withdrawal.

Okay, Nathalie, so where does the myth come from? The truth is that sometimes people use detox as an excuse to ignore their body’s signals.

For example, maybe your skin breaks out because you’re eating nothing but dates and raw sweets. (They’re good, but you still need to balance sweets out with other stuff, like greens.) The danger creeps up when someone brushes off these signals as a sign of detox.

Common Detox Symptoms

Here is a short list of possible detox symptoms to help you recognize detox when it happens.

  • Skin breakouts
  • Bloating, stomach pains
  • Headaches
  • Food cravings
  • Trouble sleeping, nightmares
  • Diarrhea and constipation
  • Fatigue, drowsiness, low energy levels
  • Irritability
  • Congestion or Mucus that feels like a cold

Detox Madness

pulling-hair-out-detoxing
Photo by Kathleen

The short version of detox: when you eliminate or cut back on certain foods, your body eliminates toxins. Your body will try to expel toxins in any way it can: from your liver, via bowel movements, and through your skin’s pores.

While you are detoxing, your body focuses on releasing toxins, so you might feel under the weather because you have all of this garbage traveling throughout your body.

Think of it as deciding to clean a very dusty house for the first time in years. When you start sweeping the dust, it’s going to get into the air and make it hard to breathe. You’ll feel better when you’ve gotten all the dust out, of course.

The same goes for trying to brush away toxins in your body, you will feel the ill effects of drudging toxins up and out. Once they’re out you’ll feel better, but the process is not so peachy.

Why do we need to Detox?

You might be wondering what it is you need to expel exactly?

If you’ve been eating a fairly processed diet for many years, you might be surprised to find that a lot food might have gotten stuck, turning toxic.

In addition to left over food matter in the body, we are all constantly bombarded with modern day chemicals and toxins in the air, water, and products we use.

I believe every one of us could use a little detoxing.

Caution: I do want to caution against getting “detox fever” and constantly wanting to fast, cleanse, and detox. At some point you need to give your body a chance to rest from eliminating toxins.

Detox Magick

detox-cleanse-diet
Photo by Kenna Takahashi

Now that I’ve thoroughly scared you, I’ll put on my Good Witch’s hat and discuss the magickal aspects of detox.

If detoxing is so uncomfortable, why should you do it? The simple answer is because you’ll feel so much better afterward.

Going through bouts of detox really makes you grateful for those times when you’re just humming along. Plus, every time you detox, you reach a new level of cleanliness. Imagine a car running on the cleanest fuel without any impurities slowing it down.

Assuming you don’t revert your detoxing efforts, you’re going to continue to operate at such a higher level of energy and cleanliness, you’ll be grateful for detox.

Benefits of a Cleansing Detox

  • Clearer sinuses
  • Weight loss
  • Clearer skin
  • More energy
  • Regular bowel movements
  • Mental Clarity
  • Emotional stability / eliminated depression

Every time you detox, you peel away one layer of the onion. If you’re not ready to experience a full on detox, simply add a bit of the foods you’re cutting out.

For example, if the headaches of your detox are killing you, just add back a bit of cooked grains or dairy, if that’s what you cut out. It will slow down the detox, and make it easier for your body to adjust to the changes you’re making.

You can control how fast you want to detox. I recommend you detox slowly, unless you give your body the support it needs to eliminate toxins: with hydrocolon therapy, dry skin brushing, or a supportive system for detoxing.

Read my follow-up article full of tips to stop detox, or speed up detox so you can get back to feeling good again.

What Detox Symptoms have you Experienced?

I’d love to know if you’ve ever had a bout of detox, and how severe it might have been. Let me know in the comments!

Love, Nathalie