What is a detox?
The dictionary defines it as a process or period of time in which one abstains from or rids the body of toxic or unhealthy substances; detoxification.
February is almost over, and I’m sure most of you have tried a detox, cleanse, juice or fast. With the intention of ridding the body of toxins or getting back on track. I’m not going to bash companies that sell cleanses and juices because there is a time and place for them. But I think it’s easy to forget the basics of what our body naturally thrives on.
What if we rethink how we approach a detox or cleanse? Instead of focusing on deprivation and elimination, let’s focus on feeding our body’s food and activities to thrive. What I’m about to tell you is no secret, and all these tips contribute to a healthier body with more energy, happier moods, less bloating (#1 reason why most people detox), less stress, and better sleep.
Here are 6 ways to detox that won’t cost you a dime. Here we go!
You don’t need a fancy gym or expensive clothes to get a good workout in. All you need is your body, comfy clothes and minimal space to get started.
Not only does exercise boost your immune system, but sweating through exercise naturally detoxes the body. It helps balances your hormones and flushes the body of alcohol, cholesterol and salt.
And it boosts your confidence! It’s no coincidence that when you exercise you’re in a better mood, you feel sexy, and have more energy. Exercise releases the “feel-good” endorphin hormones. And studies have shown that group workouts increased endorphin levels vs someone who worked out by themselves. So for those who like to workout alone (totally me), invite a friend to join you, try a group workout, or visit a popular park.
2. Drink MORE Water
I know this may sound like a no brainer, but most people do not drink the minimum recommended amount of water each day. It used to be 8 cups of water a day, but that number is outdated.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine have determined more accurately that men should drink about 3.7 liters of water a day (15.5 cups), and women 2.7 liters of water a day (11.5 cups). And that does not factor in exercise, hot or humid weather, pregnancy or breast-feeding and overall health which can increase your water needs.
And most of us drink MORE sugary and caffeinated drinks than we need to. This can cause dehydration because water is needed to metabolize and flush the sugar and chemicals out of your body.
More importantly, 60% of your body weight is made up from water, and your body needs sufficient water to work properly. Your body loses water naturally on a regular basis by getting rid of waste through urination, sweat, and bowel movements. Drink enough water, and watch your body begin to thrive.
3. Stretch it Out
A great way to increase blood flow, reduce bloating, and release the tension in your muscles is to stretch. We often neglect this as part of our wellness routine, because it’s not often viewed as a workout unless you’re doing yoga. You don’t have to be a yogi to stretch..
But imagine that your body is a rubber band that sits in your junk drawer unused for months or even years. And moment you try to use it, it practically snaps in half. Our muscles can be thought of like a rubber band. The more you use the rubber band like it’s supposed to be used, it maintains its elasticity. Flexibility in your body is needed for proper blood flow, and with the help of water, it allows the body to properly get rid of waste and prevent buildup.
4. Eat MORE whole foods.
As a nutritionist, I have seen a lot of fad diets, and worked with clients of all backgrounds. And there has been a common theme amongst those who have been successful in their lifestyle change in regards to food. They focused on enhancing their diet vs depriving their bodies of foods they once enjoyed.
I’m not saying that you should eat junk food every day, but when you enhance your diet by adding more whole foods, you leave less room for junk food and start to crave it less. And when you do crave it, you have the freedom to eat some and not feel like it will spiral you back to old eating habits.
5. Go Outside
Most of us are always rushing from one place to another, whether it’s in a car or on a bus, or looking down at our phones. We rarely get chances to connect with nature accidentally. If you live in a big city, or cold climates, spending time outdoors can be a challenge. But it is something we have to intentionally set aside time to do.
Being outside with nature reminds us to slow down, breathe, and connect with our bodies. Many meditation practices include breathing techniques done outside for maximum benefits. Your body naturally gets vitamin D, it boosts your mood, can reduce stress, and reduces bouts of depression.
There are a lot of other ways to detox your body naturally but I wanted to start you off with these five. You should not feel the need to reset your body with a detox or cleanse every month if you implement these practices. And if you feel the need to spend money on detox or cleanse, more power to you! Just remember your body will thrive if you listen to it and go back to the basics.
Which one of these practices do you see yourself adding to your wellness routine?
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