We hear about them a lot: lemon juice (see previous article) and detox…
Like I said in my previous post, I am a little bit tired of the lemon juice thing, but I’ve reached another level altogether with its biggest companion – the one that needs no introduction: the detox!
Allow me to explain. It goes without question that cleansing your body from the inside occasionally is very beneficial (when properly done), but if you read articles in magazines or online, trendy restaurant menus and countless green/healthy blogs, the message is basically “if you do not have your detox juice, your protein smoothie, your detox herbal tea or your alkaline soup, then you don’t know how to take care of yourself”.
As if drinking a bottled smoothie would erase the harmful effects from a burger with chips, a big cream cake full of sugar, a few cigarettes or a drunken binge! Very often it sounds like ‘detox’ is just a way to feel less guilty about what we do that is less – or not at all - healthy. Fair enough. But then, the word ‘detox’ has become a cliché and overused.
Detoxing is good, sometimes, but not all the time and haphazardly. Drinking pineapple juice or eating an apple doesn’t mean we’re on a detox diet! It’s just eating normally. And that same apple that we just ate doesn’t allow us to have a rib steak with gravy for lunch every day! Sadly (or not) it doesn’t work like that. However, it feels good to go off the rails when we feel like it, and when it’s nicely balanced, it shouldn’t bring along any feeling of guilt.
The big idea is moderation! Yeaaaaa! Make wise choices, re-think your approach to your body and your lifestyle and appreciate healthier pleasures than all the industrial junk that is constantly thrown at us. As ‘detox’ is so trendy, many products stamped with this nice concept are just consumption goods in the same way as those they claim to replace. A real detox should not cost a lot of money, and it shouldn’t generate a little mountain of garbage made from juice bottles (even if the bottles look cool).
One last thing to keep in mind: our bodies are not made of sugar! If we apply this principle of moderation all year round, if we avoid piling on toxins day after day, everything will be fine! Our bodies are totally capable of regenerating by themselves – that’s their daily job! Our bodies are our best friends, our temples, so let’s just treat them that way, because they deserve it, and we will spend all our lives with them…
In Naturopathy, we advise two detox or ‘cleansing’ cures: one when Autumn comes to enter the cold season with ease and be ready to fight colds and other festivities; another one at Spring time, such as the big spring clean we may practice in our homes, to wake our body from Winter and cheerily set it going.
Whether you feel like you need it or not, it is always a good thing to enjoy a little vitality boost and to start the warm season of summer with a glowing skin and some energy for some fun holidays, rather than feeling exhausted, sluggish and with extra fat bulges from the winter comfort food!
Here is some advice for a gentle spring clean!
- Do a fresh birch sap cure: first thing in the morning when you wake up, have a big glass of the birch sap for 21 days. The birch juice is diuretic and purifying, very rich in oligoelements and minerals (magnesium, lithium, silicium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, selenium, vitamin C);
- Drink a lot of water during the day;
- Drink some herbal teas that help digestion: milk thistle, dandelion, artichoke, horseradish;
- Decrease your consumption of red meat and dairies that are acidic for the body;
- Apply the principles of the Mediterranean diet: olive oil, fish, eggs, a little bit of cheese (sheep or goat), and loads of fruit and vegetables;
- Ban any fried or refined food, pastries and sugar; anything that is industrial: vade retro satanas!
- Eat light dinner to avoid going to bed with a full and heavy stomach;
- Limit your alcohol intake;
- Sleep a lot! A LOT!
- Try to limit your gluten intake, as it doesn’t have the reputation to energise you, quite the opposite…
- Perform some physical activity at least 3 times a week: sweat it out!
- Dry brush your skin before showering to help your skin eliminate toxins. Plus, it boosts the circulation and helps reducing cellulitis! Nice bikini skin tip…
Also, at the start of any season, here is a little secret for the beauty of your hair… in the same way as we are used to exfoliate our face and body, it is very good and enjoyable to exfoliate the scalp!
For that, you have three solutions:
1- Buy a scalp scrub: for example, the « Masque Détox Cuir Chevelu », from Cattier.
2- Use ayurvedic powders: Kapoor Kachli, Neem, Amla, Aritha…
3- Make your own scalp scrub. Here is a quick and easy recipe:
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 3 tbsp conditioner (organic and natural if possible!)
- 2 drops of rosemary OR bay Saint Thomas essential oils.
How to use it
- Mix all the ingredients in a little bowl.
- Apply the mix with a brush – or your fingers – on the scalp, part by part.
- Massage the scalp with your fingertips to exfoliate the whole head.
- Leave it on for about 10 minutes.
- Wash your hair.
(Be careful, if you have a very irritated scalp or skin problems such as psoriasis or eczema, avoid that kind of treatment and use something specific for your condition).
Have a lovely spring, light and happy!