Today we have a start of a very special series that mobile personal training Specialists Kat Rotunno has developed on Detoxing! There is some amazing information in here, enjoy!
Detox Blog Series
Part 1: What to know about detox diets
What it is?
A dietary detox follows the concept of cleansing the body of toxins by eliminating certain foods, loading up on fresh fruit and vegetables, avoiding alcohol, caffeine, grains and processed foods, rehydrating with plenty of water, for a set period of time. Some detox diets may also include herbal supplements, but it is mostly about eating as clean and natural as possible.
Why do it?
Detox diet advocates believe periodic cleansing is needed to flush toxins from the body that if left to accumulate will lead to health problems such as headaches, sluggishness and chronic diseases.
The body already has systems in place that protect us from potentially harmful substances. The liver, intestines, kidneys, lungs, skin, blood and lymphatic systems are all designed to work together to ensure any dangerous toxins are chemically transformed into less harmful compounds and then excreted from the body. Although, arguably, these systems are being compromised by much of the food we consume in today’s society that is highly processed and has contributed to the increasing amount of lifestyle diseases and general decline of our health and wellbeing. Eliminating such foods and focusing on eating naturally, even for a short period, allows the body to rid itself of such junk and function more effectively.
Will a detox make me feel better?
Those who normally eat an unhealthy diet will naturally feel better when they start eating properly. Most people don’t drink enough water or eat enough fresh fruit and vegetables anyway, so simple changes such as boosting hydration and eliminating processed foods will lead to an increased sense of wellbeing.
Other claimed benefits of detoxing, such as helping relieve headaches, are more likely to be linked to lifestyle changes such as not drinking alcohol or coffee. Reduced bloating, for example, is probably just a result of eating less while better skin may be due to drinking more fluids.
Will it help me lose weight?
Weight loss through detox diets is usually short-term, as these diets aren’t sustainable. Having completed the diet, most people feel they can go back to eating what they want anyway and return to their pre diet weight. BUT of course you can maintain your reduced body fat if you continue good habits and maintain the correct calorie intake for your body.
Are detox diets dangerous?
Our bodies have an amazing detox system already in place and there’s no need to spend on expensive treatments and products. Laxatives, ‘liquid’ diets, colonic irrigation are all of extreme detox measures that are unnecessary and not recommended.
If you do it correctly, detox diets are not dangerous. Experts say that the biggest danger with extreme detox diets is that they often don’t provide enough nutrients. Insufficient carbohydrates can drain you of energy. Other downsides may include blood sugar problems, fatigue, nausea and a decrease in the body’s ability to fight infection.
Be sure to include adequate protein in the diet; eat regularly to avoid blood sugar level drops and stay very well hydrated to avoid any of these downsides.
Interested in starting a detox?
Now you know what it is an involves, check your diary and mark a week where you have a clean break from functions or events that might derail your detox, such as weddings, birthdays or special occasion meals.
Leading up to the detox, start to slowly cut down the avoidables that are going to be the hardest for you, or that you consume most frequently, to get your body used to it. For example, if you drink 3 cups of coffee a day, try cutting back to one. If you eat 4 slices of bread a day, cut down to 2.
Some people may experience a ‘cleansing’ reaction in the first few days of detox, including headaches or loose bowel movements. This is due to the sudden withdrawal of certain foods, in addition to stimulation of detoxifying organs. These symptoms should subside in 24 to 48 hours and will be less extreme if diet is changed slightly already before commencing full detox.
As mentioned, our bodies have an amazing detox process in place that we can utilise. Short term detox is healthy if done correctly and can give you amazing health results including improved bodily functions, increased energy, better skin and reduced body fat. To maintain these results and an overall better lifestyle a sustainable investment in your health is to eat more natural foods, cut back on sugar, salt, additives, caffeine and alcohol and follow the 80/20 rule of sticking to healthy diet the majority of the time but allowing yourself the occasional treat.
Next Friday 29/11 Part 2 = Your detox plan: Including actions, tips, foods to enjoy and foods to avoid. Get detox ready!