So it’s February already, yikes! January’s done and dusted and I’m glad, because I feel like I can now talk about the subject of detoxing without getting lost in all the new year hype. In January, it kind of feels like everyone’s doing it (a detox, that is) and if you’re not, you’re not one of the ‘cool kids’ or you’re missing out on something.
It really only struck me a couple of months ago when I was having a conversation with a friend that I’ve never really had a strong opinion about detoxes, one way or the other. Then when I sat down and thought about it, I became more confused – I mean, there are so many different kinds of detox or cleanse that you can do and they all last for different lengths of time, yet they all claim to do the same thing! How can that be?
And let’s not forget the argument on the other side of the coin that doing a detox is a waste of time because that’s the function that our liver and kidneys perform for us every day, anyway. Initially, when I was considering all of the evidence and points of view, I found this to be a pretty compelling argument. However, as with all things to do with our bodies, it’s not quite that simple.
My current opinion is basically do what feels right for you while applying common sense. What I mean is, if you feel better doing a detox every now and then and you genuinely feel some benefit, then do it! I don’t see any problems with people doing a short term ‘juice cleanse’ type of thing for a day or two if they believe that they benefit from it – the juices are chock full of fruits and veggies so chances are you’ll be getting more than you usually do, which is a good thing! There are some things that I don’t think are good for anyone such as long term fasting, or carrying on with a detox or cleanse when your body is clearly telling you not to – that’s what I mean about using common sense.
The biggest problem I find with the whole subject is that we’re all different, so how can there be only one right way to do it? And just as different diets and eating styles work differently for everyone, I believe that the same is true for detoxes and cleanses.
I think the trick is to know your own body and what works for you; that’s why I’ve never actually done a full-on detox – one that involved not eating, that is. Oh, I admit I’ve been tempted many times in the past – some of the benefits claimed sound wonderful and of course, who doesn’t want to feel and look better? But when it comes to the crunch, I love eating too much and I know that only drinking juices, even just for one day, wouldn’t work for me.
And I think a lot depends on how happy you are with your current diet and eating habits. If you eat healthy food and supply your body with the nourishment that it needs every day, you already feel great, so why would you think about detoxing? That’s pretty much where I’m at these days – I’m happy that my daily diet and exercise gives my body what it needs and keeps me healthy. I love drinking a green smoothie or juice everyday in addition to the whole foods that I eat at other meals, both raw and cooked.
So if you think it’s okay to ‘cheat’ and regularly eat high calorie, nutrient poor foods and then ‘cleanse’ once or twice a year, you might want to think again, because you’re only cheating yourself. It’s pretty simple really; if you eat well most of the time, your body will be well nourished at a cellular level, you’ll feel the benefits and best of all, your body will naturally cleanse toxins from your system on a daily basis.