Our Founder's Favorite Ways To Detox
The word “detox” gets thrown around flippantly these days, but how often do we really stop and think about what detoxification is and why it’s necessary?
The world we live in today is infinitely more toxic than the one our great grandparents (or even our grandparents) grew up in. Diseases of every kind aren’t skyrocketing because our genetics have dramatically changed since then - but our environment sure has!
We’re exposed to toxins via the foods we eat, the products we use, the air we breathe, the water we drink and more. Some of these exposures are difficult to control, but some aren’t.
I love how Dr. Mark Hyman explains toxic load with this analogy:
“To understand toxicity, you must understand the concept of total load, or a total amount of stressors on your system at any one time. Think of total load like a glass filling over with water. It takes a certain amount to fill the glass and then, after a certain point, you put more in and it overflows. When our detoxification system becomes overwhelmed and overloaded, we start developing symptoms and get sick, but it may take years of accumulated stress and toxins to get to that point.”
Most of us are taking in toxins at a faster rate than we can detox from them, which is why it’s important to take charge of the things we DO have control over. Our bodies can handle occasional chemical exposures BUT when exposed consistently and daily, disease and health conditions are more likely to occur. Some of us are genetically better at detoxing than others, and some were not born with all of the mechanisms necessary to get rid of toxins efficiently.
Below, I’ve laid out some of my favorite methods of detoxification. Some are more intense detox protocols that I was implementing prior to becoming pregnant. Others are more gentle ways of detoxing for those who are pregnant, nursing or in a more fragile state healthwise.
GENTLE DETOXIFICATION METHODS
- Removal: The first and most important step to support detoxification is to stop the intake of additional toxins by removing them from your environment.
I always recommend beginning with deodorant. Most deodorants you’ll find on drugstore shelves are filled with ingredients like fragrance, aluminum and parabens that have been linked to sickness + disease time and time again (especially when applied in such a sensitive + absorptive part of the body next to our breast tissue and so many lymph nodes!).
If you’re not quite in a position to do a complete product overhaul just yet, that’s ok! Check out our DIY series where we teach you to make skincare and personal products using ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen.
- Hydration: Dehydration is one of the biggest culprits of a sluggish lymphatic system. Lymph is largely comprised of water as well (96%!) and requires adequate hydration to flow properly and remove waste most effectively. This system is your body’s natural cleansing and detoxification system (think: your body’s personal plumbing service).
- Diet Optimization: Just as removing toxins from our environment can give the body the space it needs to heal, removing toxins from the diet has the same effect.
- Movement: Exercise increases blood flow and boosts white blood cell counts which helps to fend off toxins and inflammation.
- Dry Brushing: One of the most powerful and important benefits of dry brushing is lymph drainage. The lymphatic system helps to detoxify the whole body, but when this system is blocked, it causes toxic buildup in tissues - leading to blemishes, rashes, irritations and other skin conditions.
- Optimizing Air Quality: Surprisingly, the level of pollutants inside the home can be a hundred times higher than outside (according to the EPA) and can contribute to health issues. And the products we spray, pump and apply have a big part to play in that statistic. One easy and very powerful way to detoxify your home (and declutter at the same time!) is to swap the products you use in your home.
Opening windows, adding houseplants and investing in an air purifier are all effective ways to further detoxify indoor spaces and eliminate air pollutants.
INTENSIVE DETOXIFICATION METHODS
- Fasting: Intermittent and extended fasting gives your body a break from digesting and breaking down food so that it can focus on detox and repair. When you fast, autophagy (the process of clearing out old, junky proteins and cellular parts) is activated and growth hormone is stimulated, producing newer + better cellular parts.
- Infrared Sauna: Sweating is a healthy, natural and necessary function to rid the body of toxic buildup. The body excretes toxins and heavy metals through the skin via sweat, and infrared sauna sessions are extremely effective in allowing the body to release a substantial amount of toxins in this fashion.
- Coffee Enemas: Coffee enemas stimulate glutathione (the body’s master antioxidant) and boost liver function. This post on my dear friend Season Johnson’s website has more info about the benefits and history of coffee enemas, as well as how to do them at home!
- Personalized Detox Protocols: If you’re unsure about where to start or what your levels of toxic buildup look like, finding a natural-minded healthcare practitioner to work with can be highly beneficial in designing a detox protocol that best fits your unique needs.
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