In this modern age we are surrounded by more toxins in our environment, homes, and food sources than ever before. These toxins – chemical compounds that are foreign and damaging to the human body – can come from sources as varied as the paint fumes in your home, the treatments on your wood furniture, the pesticides on your vegetables, the pollution in air and water, or the cleaning supplies used in your workplace. We absorb them not only by ingesting or breathing them in, but also, in some cases, right through our skin. And worst of all, a system overloaded with toxins can suffer all sorts of problems including skin rashes, acne, bloating, constipation, weight gain, heart disease, and cancer. Toxin overload can disrupt your ability to balance sugar, metabolize cholesterol, and contribute to conditions like type 2 diabetes.
So what do you do about toxic overload?
Both "cleansing" and "detoxing" are hot words these days, but there is a lot of misunderstanding surrounding these terms. Many people don’t really understand how cleansing (used here as a synonym for detoxing) works, and they turn to popular fad recommendations that have more harmful side-effects than scientific benefits. Fad cleanses that involve taking laxatives, drinking exclusively liquids, or fasting can be harmful. These starvation "cleanses" cause dangerous problems like fatigue, digestive discomfort, hunger, muscle loss, blood sugar problems, and nutrient shortages.
Fortunately for all of us, the only true "cleanse" we need is our own natural system. The body is an amazing, complex thing that naturally rids itself of toxins through sweating, bowel movements, breathing and organs (specifically the kidneys, liver and lungs). But even as wonderful as our biology is, if you’re suffering from toxic overload then it is critically important that you give your body the tools it needs – in the form of good nutrition – to efficiently and effectively do its job of naturally detoxing.
This is why the real key to cleansing the body lies in certain whole foods.
The best way to conquer toxic overload and cleanse your system is to eat whole foods that are packed with nutrients and enzymes that help your body’s natural detoxing system. The best whole foods for detoxing will:
- Have anti-inflammatory properties for reducing digestive stress and healing your cells;
- Have anti-microbial properties for eliminating harmful bacteria and fungi;
- Boost your immune system so that your body can better conquer harmful toxins;
- Remove toxic build-up from the system, usually with the right kinds of fiber;
- Rest and soothe your digestive system so that it can heal itself from toxic damage; and
- Naturally clean, heal and support important detoxing organs like the kidneys, liver, colon and lungs.
Eating these naturally cleansing foods can give you:
- Vibrant skin
- More energy
- More bowel movements
- Balanced blood sugar
- Less joint pain
- Fewer headaches
- Accelerated weight loss
However, eating the foods that will heal and support your system is only half of the story.
When cleansing, it is also very important to AVOID foods that will counteract all the benefits gained by eating cleansing foods. These are foods that contain toxins themselves, like artificial preservatives, but also foods that cause inflammation or stress on your digestive system, like dairy.
Foods to stay away from include: all processed foods, sugar, grains, gluten, dairy, red meat, alcohol, caffeine and anything with preservatives, artificial flavors or colors, or artificial sweeteners.
So what foods should you include in your diet to cleanse your body?
Find out here: 30 Cleansing Foods