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Six Ways to Detox

By Julie Pecarski

When we hear the word “detox” we may automatically think juice cleanses, fasting, and quite simply, deprivation. But you don’t have to suffer. If you begin to focus on plant-based foods, moderate protein and complex carbohydrates; along with regular, daily exercise, you are well on your way to helping your body eliminate toxins.

The body does need some extra help though. I’ve come up with six unique ways to detox that don’t require a juice cleanse. In fact, most of these techniques don’t even include food. Instead, they become part of a daily practice that, at the most, requires 20 minutes of your time.

1) Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal has been used for over 10,000 years by healers from Chinese, Ayurveda and Western medicines to soak up poisons and improve intestinal health through a process called “adsorption.” This means “to bind to,” rather than “to absorb.” Carbon is 100% alkaline and is spinning with electrons, which causes it to bind and escort toxins out of the body via the eliminative channel of the intestines. It is a very affordable supplement and found in most health food stores. It also whitens teeth like a charm!

Read more about activated charcoal here, or try my recipe for Activated Charcoal Lemonade:

1) Mix together the following ingredients:

  • 1 tsp activated charcoal powder
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • Honey or stevia (optional)

2) Drink and enjoy!

Note: It is best to drink this a few hours before bed to help with the detoxification process overnight.

2) Epsom Salt Detox Bath

Epsom salt baths are a daily practice in my household. In fact, Epsom salts (which are not actually salt) are loaded with magnesium and sulfates (the good kind). Among many benefits, Epsom salts help to flush toxins and heavy metals from the cells, helping the body to eliminate harmful substances. Magnesium and sulfate are both easily absorbed through the skin. Sulfates stimulate the pancreas to generate digestive enzymes and are thought to help in detoxifying the body of medicines and environmental contaminants.

To learn more, check out this article and how-to guide from care2.

3) Oil Pulling

Got 20 minutes? Then you’ve got time for this simple daily practice. This Ayurvedic practice has the ability to strengthen teeth, gums and jaws; improve bad breath; and prevent tooth decay and bleeding gums. We are now learning that fluoride is toxic to our health and that one of the primary keys to optimal health is proper dental care. When coconut oil has the ability to pull toxins out of the mouth, why couldn’t we afford 20 minutes?

Get the full story on oil pulling here.

4) Dry Brushing

One of the first things I learned when I began to study nutrition was that our skin is our largest organ and that it literally absorbs anything and everything we put on it. Although the skin has many purposes, it plays a crucial role in supporting the detoxification process. The daily practice of dry brushing removes dead skin cells and helps to activate the removal of waste via our lymph nodes. In addition, dry brushing helps to keep our immunity strong!

Learn more about how to dry brush your skin here.

5) Oil Cleansing Method

If you’re not researching the ingredients in the facial products that you use, you may be adding toxic chemicals to your skin. Further to that, foaming cleansers tend to strip the oil out of our skin, leaving it tight and dry, followed by even oilier skin.

Why? Each time we strip the oil away, our skin over-compensates for the lack of moisture by creating more oil. The oil cleansing method uses oil to massage your skin, which will dissolve the oil that has hardened and locked impurities in your pores. Then, steam will open your pores, allowing the oil and toxins to be easily removed.

Find out how to oil cleanse your skin here.

6) Bone Broth

Bone broth is quickly becoming the biggest health trend of 2015 already. Although we know that detoxification is important, we also need to consider repair – and that’s where bone broth is going to be the ideal staple in your fridge.

The key ingredients that are produced in a bone broth are gelatin and collagen. Gelatin has the ability to help those with food allergies and sensitivities, promotes probiotic balance and growth, and soothes the stomach lining, making it a benefit to those with leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune disorders. Collagen also protects and soothes the lining of the digestive tract and can aid in healing IBS, Crohn’s disease and acid reflux. To improve digestion, it is recommended to drink one or two eight-ounce servings per day.

There are many recipes for bone broth. Here is the traditional recipe from Dr. Axe.

How do you detox? Share your methods here, or on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Julie Pecarski is the founder of Eat Life Balance, a holistic health and lifestyle solutions site. Eat Life Balance provides clean living recipes, nutritional guidance and lifestyle advice in an approach to guide readers into making small, simple changes in their eating habits. Julie is currently studying nutrition in Vancouver, BC.

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