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Do You Really Need A New Year Detox?

Detoxifying your body is a great way to improve your overall health. With the help of natural methods, you can eliminate toxins from your body and feel more energetic and healthier. Our body can detoxify on its own, however, specific factors can lead our detoxification system to not work at its most optimal state, hence needing a little support from us to help nudge it in the right direction.

But do we really need a New Year detox?

women drinking lemon water for her new year detox

Detoxification is the process by which the body eliminates or neutralizes toxins. Toxins are harmful substances that can enter your body through pollution, processed foods, medications, alcohol, and other sources. The body's natural detoxification process involves several systems and organs working together to eliminate these toxins.

The primary systems involved in detoxification are the lymphatic system, digestive system, the liver, the kidneys, the lungs, and the skin. Each of these systems plays a crucial role in the body's ability to eliminate toxins effectively from the body.

The lymphatic system is a network of vessels and tissues that help remove waste and toxins from the body. It works alongside the circulatory system to transport lymphatic fluid, which carries waste products and immune cells. The lymphatic system helps filter and remove waste products from the body, by transporting lymphatic fluid through lymphatic vessels and through lymph nodes, where immune cells and waste products are filtered out. The lymphatic system also helps remove excess fluid from the body, which can become stagnant and lead to swelling or edema.

The digestive system is responsible for breaking down food and absorbing nutrients. It also helps eliminate waste and toxins from the body through bowel movements. Eating a healthy diet rich in fibre, fruits, and vegetables can help support the digestive system's natural detoxification process and allow for frequent and easily passed bowel motions.

The liver is the body's main detoxifying organ. It filters toxins from the blood and converts them into less harmful substances that can be eliminated from the body. There are several key nutrients that we must consume in our diet to allow for the enzymatic processes of these liver detoxification pathways to occur, such as magnesium, B vitamins and selenium (to name a few). The liver also produces bile, which helps break down fats and eliminate waste from the body.

The kidneys are responsible for filtering waste products and excess fluids from the blood. They help eliminate toxins through urine. Drinking plenty of water and staying hydrated by adding sodium or good-quality salt can help support the kidneys' natural detoxification process.

The lungs help eliminate toxins from the body through respiration. They filter out harmful substances in the air we breathe and exhale them out of the body. You'd be so surprised how many toxins we breathe in, from bug spray, pesticides and herbicides, air fresheners, candles, perfumes, mould etc. These all have detrimental effects on our health.

The skin is the body's largest organ and also plays a role in detoxification. Sweating helps eliminate toxins from the body through the skin. Exercise, saunas, and hot baths can help promote sweating and support the skin's natural detoxification process. A key sign that your skin is purging toxins is acne and eczema. This means other elimination or detoxification organs in the body aren't allowing the proper elimination of these toxins, therefore they are present on the skin.

Now that you have an understanding of the body systems and organs involved in detoxification, here are 5 natural ways to detox your body for improved health:

1. Drink plenty of water: Water is essential for the proper functioning of your body's cells. Drinking enough water will help flush out toxins from your system allowing your kidneys to remove any waste. Aim to drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day and add a pinch of good quality sea salt or electrolytes for optimal hydration on a cellular level.

2. Eat a healthy diet: A healthy diet is key to detoxifying your body. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Avoid processed foods, sugary drinks, and junk food. Include foods that are high in fibre, such as beans, lentils, and whole grains, which will help eliminate toxins from your digestive system. Certain nutrients that you get from a whole foods diet will aid in providing the key nutrients required for detoxification processes to occur more easily.

3. Regular movement: Regular movement is important for your overall health and can help with detoxification. It helps your body sweat out toxins via the skin, improves circulation within the lymphatic system (which requires movement to eliminate toxins and wastes) and strengthens your immune system. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily, and choose something fun, non-negotiable and easy for you to take part in.

4. Increase your fibre: Fibre from fruits and vegetables is crucial to ensuring that you have regular and easy-to-pass bowel movements. This allows for a healthy digestive system which is part of the detoxification and elimination process, which means that the other organs involved can also work optimally and more efficiently. Fruits and vegetables are also abundant with phytonutrients and phytochemicals that allow for the liver detoxification pathways 1 and 2 to process efficiently, meaning toxins can be converted and eliminated in safe metabolites.

5. Reduce stress: Stress can hurt your health, including slowing down your body's natural detoxification process. Practice stress-reducing techniques such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises to promote relaxation and reduce stress levels. Additionally, reducing your burdens like your household chores, and commitments and always saying 'yes' to everything are good ways to remove the 'load' and allow for some rest.

Detoxification is a natural process that involves several systems and organs working together to eliminate toxins from the body. By supporting these systems through healthy lifestyle habits such as a healthy diet, regular exercise, and stress reduction, you can help promote your body's natural detoxification process and enjoy improved health. There is a time and a place for a more intensive detoxification, however, with the basics in place, you shouldn't need to do one long-term.

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