Detoxification is a natural process of neutralizing or eliminating toxins from the human body. Toxins (all that can induce body tissue damage) are chemically converted into less harmful substances, which are then excreted through the stool or urine.
Toxins can appear as a result of normal processes that take place in our body, eg. intake of food, during which ammonia is produced during protein digestion, or in cases of inhalation or intake of chemicals such as pesticides, detergents, food additives, medicines, contaminants, cigarette smoke and heavy metals such as lead.
Although detoxification is primarily seen as a treatment of alcohol and drug dependence, the term also refers to special diets, herbs, and other methods of removing ecological and dietary toxins from the body with the aim of achieving a state of optimal health.
Detox plans can include special diets, herbs and supplements, hydrotherapy, exercise, breathing techniques and/or sauna therapy. There are some more controversial detox plans that include, for example, enema. Some detox diets are aimed at specific organs such as liver, kidneys, organs of the lymphatic system, lungs…
Anyone thinking of going on a detox diet should first consult with a qualified nutritionist or physician because it can be very harmful to people with certain health problems.
Most experts recommend goin on a detox diet once or twice a year to improve health and prevent from diseases. It is not recommended to go on a detox diet more than three times a year.
There are many different types of detox diets such as the lemon juice diet or liver and kidney detox diet, since those two are the most famous “collectors” of toxins in our body. A short-term detox plan is not a trick, but a reward for a body that will afterwards be refreshed and energy-boosted.
In general, detox diet is a short-term diet that:
- minimizes the amount of chemical intake (for example, by using organic food)
- advocates foods rich in vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants, which the body needs for detoxification
- contains nutrients, such as fiber and water, which pull out and eliminate toxins, increasing the rate of digestion and urination
Why Are Detox Diets Not Popular?
The objective of detox diets is not reducing weight, but rather maintaining good health.
The growing number of researches tells us that the many toxins we daily intake into our body through food, water, and air go straight into our fat deposits. A diet that is poor in certain nutrients can also reduce our natural ability to detoxify the harmful substances, which later causes them to be incorporated into the body.
The toxins in our body can give way to diseases and hormonal imbalance, weak immune system functions, nutritional deficiencies and inefficient metabolism. Signs of this include poor digestion, bad breath, fatigue, complexion problems and muscle pain.
The Benefits of a Detox Diet
Most common results of detox diet that people cite are increased energy, cleaner skin, improved digestion and increased concentration.
For Whom Is Detox Diet Not Recommended?
For pregnant women, women who are breastfeeding, and children.
Also, anemic people, people with eating disorders, diabetes, kidney, thyroid and autoimmune diseases, cancer, terminal illnesses, certain genetic diseases and other chronic conditions should not start a detox diet or should do so under increased professional supervision.
One of the most common side effects is headache accompanied by cough within the first few days of the detox. Some people even take the time off from work for the detox diet or start off during the weekend.
Other side effects include diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration and electrolyte loss. Constipation may also occur if people consume increased amounts of fiber without adequate fluid intake.
Other commonly reported side effects are fatigue, irritability, weight loss and hunger. Any deterioration of side effects or their constant occurrence is a new alarming sign to go the doctor’s.
If the detox diet is practiced for a long time, it may result in nutrient deficiency, especially regarding protein and calcium.
Avoid the following foods and substances during detoxification:
- Fast food
- Coffee, alcohol and cigarettes
- Sugary juices and soft drinks
- High-fat foods
- Sweets and snacks
- Canned and ready-made industrial dishes
- Foods containing wheat and gluten
Seven-Day Body Detox Plan
UPON GETTING OUT OF BED; Drink a glass of warm water into which you have previously squeezed half a lemon
BEFORE SLEEP; A glass of water with one spoonful of bentonite clay and a teaspoon of milled linen seeds
FIRST DAY; You can eat any fruit except for bananas. Nutritionists recommend apples, pears, tangerines, oranges, grapes and kiwi. Fruit, be it fresh or canned, will provide the body with all the nutrients it needs.
SECOND DAY; You can eat all kinds of vegetables, raw or cooked, in quantities according to preference. For dinner, bake one big potato coated with a piece of butter in the oven.
Vegetables will provide you with all the nutrients and fiber you need.
THIRD DAY; You can eat all kinds of fruits and vegetables, except for bananas and potatoes, in quantities according to preference. Do not be surprised if you do not feel full after following this regimen – this feeling will start to weaken as of the next day.
FOURTH DAY; Today you can eat up to eight bananas and drink three glasses of milk. You can also make yourself a vegetable soup. Bananas serve to compensate for the potassium and sodium you have lost.
FIFTH DAN; You can eat up to 600g of beef and 6 tomatoes. Increase water intake. Beef will provide you with iron and protein, and tomato will supply you with vitamins and fibers.
SIXTH DAY; Beef and vegetables in unlimited quantities.
SEVENTH DAN; Today you can eat brown rice, all kinds of vegetables and drink sugar-free fruit juices.
Drink at least 10 glasses of water a day. Also, drink two cups of herbal tea (green tea, nettle, dandelion, mint) without sugar.