The Spring Reset – 10 Tips Before Starting a Detox
It finally looks like the long, cold and snowy winter is beyond us and perhaps it is now time for a Spring health tune-up and reset. As the flowers start blooming and animals come out of hibernation, you may be feeling a sudden urge to get back to your health routines, lose any weight you gained over the winter and start to feel your best self again in preparation for summer parties, weddings, and festivities.
Detoxes are one of the primary things that people think of when it comes to Spring and improving your health and losing weight. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, this is a great time to do a detox because the season ‘Spring’ belongs to the liver and gallbladder – our liver being the primary organ of detoxification. Cleaning your liver and optimizing your detoxification pathways can help eliminate toxins and heavy metals; improve skin conditions; and, alleviate seasonal allergy symptoms, particularly if you suffer from chronic seasonal allergies like hay fever.
However starting a detox can be daunting. How do you know which is the one you should be doing? Choosing a detox supplement or kit at your local health store can be overwhelming because there are so many. Doing a detox before your body is ready or picking a kit that is too harsh or stimulating for your body can leave you feeling worse such as having low energy or experiencing increased skin breakouts.
10 tips for beginning a detoxification protocol:
- Avoid sugar (refined sources like muffins, cakes, table sugar, cookies, chocolate; starchy vegetables if possible): Sugar can contribute to fat synthesis in the liver and fatty liver which can create inflammation
- Avoid alcohol: alcohol Removing alcohol from the body uses up your liver detoxification enzymes
- If you eat meat, choose grass-fed, hormone-free meat options
- Avoid or minimize exposure environmental estrogens (xenoestrogens)
- Eat 6-8 servings of vegetables, including greens per day
- Ensure your organs of elimination are optimal (digestive tract, lungs, and kidneys): If these are not functioning well, for example, if you have constipation (ideal bowel movements should be three times per day if you eat three meals), you will not be able to eliminate many of the toxins and waste products your liver tries to remove which leads to these getting reabsorbed back into the blood resulting in low energy, possible acne and other skin rashes and a general feeling of not feeling well.
- Ensure your energy levels are optimal: While a detox can give you more energy, if you have consistently low energy prior to the detox, you can feel more tired during it. Detoxification requires energy which is a reason for not engaging in overly stimulating activity and making sure you are getting a good amount of sleep during the detox. Do not use caffeine as a source of energy though. Imbalanced hormones, including cortisol and thyroid hormones, are one of many factors that can contribute to low energy.
- Acupuncture can aid in helping to move ‘qi’ (energy) along the channels and reduce stagnation and compliment your detox regime
- Massages can help move your lymph and blood throughout the body to help with elimination of toxins
- Take supplements that help optimize detoxification pathways in the body
4 ways I can work with you if you want a little more of a guided detoxification regime include:
1. Ensuring your organs of elimination are functioning well and addressing any underlying digestive concerns like bloating, gas, constipation or diarrhea;
2. Helping you increase your energy through ensuring optimal hormonal balance;
3. Providing you with detoxification supplement recommendations individualized to you; and,
4. Perform hormonal and digestive testing, and, urinary heavy metal testing to determine your heavy metal and toxin burden.
Contact Ascent Integrative Health to book a naturopathic initial appointment and reset your body this spring to help you have a great summer with recommendations geared specifically to your body!