Fall is here, and it’s the perfect time for a detox program! In Chinese medicine, the fall is the season of letting go and clearing away what is no longer useful. Detoxification quite literally helps our bodies to let go of what isn’t useful to us and what may be getting in the way of our health and healing.
What is detoxification?
People are often confused when they hear the word “detoxification.” It’s a term that is used a lot these days to refer to many different practices, strategies, products, and protocols. People think of everything from the Master Cleanse to juice fasts to rehab when they hear the word detox. When I talk about detoxification, I am talking about reducing the input of toxic substances into the body while increasing the output of toxins through supporting the liver, kidneys, and digestive system with nutrition, lifestyle changes, and appropriate supplementation.
I have also noticed the profound benefits of acupuncture for clearing mental and emotional “junk” away and since I think that a detoxification program is the perfect time to clear out the old to make room for the new, I offer a detox program that includes acupuncture, too.
Over the past century, scientific advances have led to the broad scale production of synthetic chemicals. Our bodies are confronted with a larger burden of toxins in our food, water, and air supply than ever before. Harmful chemicals are present in our cosmetics and personal hygiene products, our household cleaners, and even our furniture! Studies tell us that many of these chemicals are present in our bodies and that some of these chemicals can interfere with our hormone balance. with the long-term healthy function of our nervous systems and immune systems, and some are linked with the development of cancers.
What are the benefits?
Helping your body to clear out the accumulated “junk” or toxic chemicals and helping to more efficiently eliminate toxins in the future has many benefits. Most people notice greater energy, better sleep, improved digestion, less joint and muscle pain, clearer thinking, improved mood, reduced allergy symptoms, and clearer, more even skin tone. Many people even notice that they have less body odor and better breath!
What exactly is involved in a detox program?
A good detoxification program is soundly based in the latest science and research on nutritional supplements and botanical medicines. You can expect to invest 10-28 days in most high quality detoxification programs. They involve diet changes to remove foods that promote inflammation in your body, addition of supplemental vitamins, minerals, and protein, and botanical and nutritional support for the detoxification pathways in your liver and kidneys. A detox program is not the same as a fast and it should not involve laxatives so you shouldn’t be starving nor should you spend your days running to the restroom.
A good detoxification program can be the beginning of an amazing journey toward improved health and well-being. It is the single most effective strategy I know of to improve a variety of health problems and troubling symptoms in the shortest amount of time. To learn more about the detox programs offered by BodyMind Integrative Medicine, click here.