I expect you have heard the word detoxification many times and probably have the idea that it usually involves eating less, even starving for a few days, drinking lots of water etc. Well it actually encompasses other methods. There are many ways of cleansing your body and some of them are discussed here. Detoxification has been the subject of lengthy discussions for many years and there is a long history of cultural fasting/detoxing as religious rituals and worship. However, today detoxing is more or less identified with modern health issues and natural health lifestyles. Even though you are ‘healthy’ this does not mean that you don’t need to detox. Obviously our body does this on a continual basis, our kidneys and liver (our filters) are constantly working cleaning out all the pollutants (smoke, caffeine, chemical-based products etc) in our body. Detoxing strengthen our organs back to optimal function. Basically, as mentioned before, this is mainly done through fasting, which rests the organs and stimulates the liver by pushing away the toxins from the body. Nourishing the body with healthy nutrients is also done to maintain optimum health. Although a lot of people want whole body detoxification, detoxing a particular organ only is also popular. These are usually the kidneys, the liver or colon. During kidney cleansing, herbal supplements and juices are used to dissolve and wash out kidney stones. Particular foods are consumed in liver cleansing which cause the gall bladder and liver to remove fatty deposits and toxins out of the body. Colon cleansing on the other hand, gently flushes the colon with water providing a pathway for the release of toxins. There are also other techniques used in whole body cleansing such as: Fasting – Water or juice fasting is applied for a period of time to lessen toxic loads in the body causing the body to heal itself and nourish inside out. Parasite cleaning – Right amount of pills or tinctures made out of bitter herbs are consumed to build an unreceptive environment for the parasites inside the body. Contrast Shower – The contrast among hot and cold water enhances circulation, helps in detoxifying thus having a stronger immune system. This also helps by bringing oxygen, nutrients and immune cells towards damaged and stressed tissue and flushes metabolic waste and other toxins. Other popluar methods include: Saunas, yoga, exercise, raw food dieting and dry skin brushing. These also enhance the body’s natural cleansing process. Other Detoxifying aids: There are a number of safe products that helps in the cleansing process such as cleansing supplement packages (with easy-to-follow instructions), detox foot patches, commercially prepared detox teas, Epsom salts, high-class multivitamins for daily intake and antioxidants like Q10 and E that can be found at health food stores. Before and after side effects: As the procedures differ, so do the benefits. During the detox, you’ll most likely feel the side effects that take place during the first few days such as headaches, feeling weak, sore muscles, cranky moods and unable to sleep soundly. There are also a number of positive side effects days after the cleansing process. You will feel energetic, mental clarity improved, skin is clearer, improved sleep, and have a positive attitude in life for a fresh start. Detoxification is safe and beneficial for our health. It is suggested that each one should at least have a short detoxification program yearly. However, children, nursing mothers, and patients with cancer, chronic degenerative illness and tuberculosis should consult their physician first for approval and supervision or find someone who is familiar with detox. If you decide to award your body with holiday, find a nutritional therapist who is familiar with detox. Here’s how: You can call your friends who are into health foods and alternative medicines, ask them for a person who they can refer. Another way is to search in the yellow pages under nutrition or by looking for ads in health publication in your locality. Get the name of someone you found whose name appears in more than one place and check for his profile, like from which school he/she attended the training and if it’s an accredited one. Also ask how long he’s been in practice. A further thought: I have also noticed in some of the magazines I read that there are an increasing number of hotels that are offering ‘green’ services. Amongst their services ‘detoxing’ is included. There is also a number specifically based around everything ‘detox’ and they appear to becoming very popular. So have a holiday with a difference and look for these particular hotels and please come back and drop a comment on the blog. I think we would all be very interested in what you have to say.