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   How to detox safely & naturally

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Pre-Detox Guidelines:
Critical Early Steps for a Successful Detox Program

When we say "detox," we are talking about a series of steps, beginning with the consideration and decision to undertake a self-help detox.  The second decision should be to move GRADUALLY into more assertive forms of detox.  

Detox also takes place during the gradual phases, but not as quickly.  The gradual preparation is recommended because if you move into the intense detox phase too soon, you will experience more serious side-effects when all the toxins stored in your body re-enter the bloodstream, side-effects such as jittery nerves, racing pulse, headaches, dizziness, fatigue, insomnia, nausea, sinus congestion, bad breath, body odor and skin eruptions.  Some people may be willing to tough it out through these "cleansing crises," and can stay with their detox until the toxins are excreted and feelings of well-being return.  But we're betting that most of you won't, and forever after, when the word "detox" ever comes up again, it will bring back terrible associations and you'll tell your friends, "I've never been so sick as the time I tried to detox."  Good news!  Such experiences are unnecessary.

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It's important to process toxins out gradually by improving your diet and making use of a number of techniques (see  Tips for a Successful Detox.  This includes supplying your body with the nutrients and supplements that your liver needs to change these toxins into new substances that can be excreted via the colon and kidneys and skin

Please remember the benefits of going through this process is that you are going to feel better.  You are also going to look better because you can expect to loose at least five to 10 pounds. (If you're underweight, especially due to illness, this is one of the reasons you should only undertake this under the supervision of a qualified healthcare professional.)  Your eyes will become brighter.  Your skin will become clearer.  You'll have more energy because you will have given your internal systems, especially your liver, a well-deserved vacation.  You'll also be able to think more clearly. 

Dietary Considerations

Dietary considerations is one of the areas where great individualization of  a detox program can take place.  Given a choice of first reducing your intake of caffeine, meat, dairy, sugar and all manner of refined and deep fried foods, which do you choose?  Start with whichever one is easiest for you to give up.  After you've successfully kept that one out of your diet from anywhere between three days to three weeks, eliminate a second one as soon as you feel you are ready. 

Actually, if you're young and healthy, you can take as long as you want to change your diet, i.e. give up or cut down on one a year–for example, beef, dairy, chicken, seafood, non-organically grown produce, etc.  Many people are allergic to wheat and dairy and don't realize it.  You could have yourself tested for allergies, or just try going without them for at least two weeks.  Cutting them out can result in tremendous health improvements.  This is a very slow and painless detox process until you drop sugar, caffeine, tobacco, alcohol or recreational drugs.  We really caution you however about going "cold turkey" on more than one of these at a time unless you are under a licensed health practitioner's care.

All the while you will gradually be replacing these things you cut out with healthier substitutes.  Now is the time to get to know your local health food store and the produce section of your supermarket.  Buy organic to the extent it's available and the extent to which you can afford it.  (If you're ill, find a way to afford it, because health is priceless.)  Buy a wok and health-oriented cookbooks or take some cooking lessons.  Learn How to Cook Brown Rice.

Get into it.  It can be lots of fun!  Plan plenty of time for cooking as you begin this phase.  Listen to your favorite music as you prepare the meal.  Bring home flowers for the table.  Make meals an event where everyone sits down together.  Turn down the ring on the phone–and turn off the television.  Celebrate the meal!

We know changes of this nature can be tremendously difficult, especially if you have a family member who resists. Okay, so the kids want pizza once in a while, but order it from an Italian restaurant that can make you pasta with marinara sauce, with a green salad on the side.  See  The Italian Model.

If you don't like to cook, we hope you have an excellent health food store nearby, with a wide variety of pre-prepared foods available (check ingredients carefully), or have lots of money to spend at ethnic restaurants. 

Buying frozen meals or deli items at the conventional supermarket is not going to be an adequate substitute here.  The numbers of additives used in packaged foods runs counter to the process you're trying to accomplish.  You want food made from fresh whole ingredients, with few, if any, additives, and as much organic food as possible.

Not all of the changes have to be that difficult.  One of the advantages of eating more fresh fruits, for example, is that they require no advance preparation other than washing.  Try eating at least An Apple a Day.  Drinking more water is healthier, cheaper and easier than soda pop, and once you are used to it, water can be the most refreshing drink there is.  Better Water Choices

Sticking with a healthier diet also takes a lot of advance planning to make up for the times when you come home from work and you really just want to collapse into bed.  More and more working people are finding that the best way to eat both healthily and affordably is to do most of their cooking or cooking preparation all at once over the weekend, and then keep the food you'll eat within a couple of days in the refrigerator and freeze the rest.

To understand how the gradual improvement in your diet actually begins the physical detoxification by increasing the number of  phytonutrients in your diet. For more information on this, we suggest you read The 20-Day Rejuvenation Diet Program,  the latest book by Jeffrey Bland, Ph.D, one of the most highly recognized experts in nutritional biochemistry.  This is the cutting edge of nutritional science, and it's also easy to read and understand.

More pure water is a tremendous aid to the kidneys in their role in detoxification, especially if you're used to drinking mostly caffeinated beverages during the day. 

One more very important step in your pre-detox phase is to make sure your daily intake of essential supplements matches up with the recommendations of some of the leading clinicians and researchers in the field.

Related Articles: Set Yourself Up for Success, liver, colon, colon cleansing, kidneysskin, The Italian Model, An Apple a Day, Better Water Choices, The 20-Day Rejuvenation Diet Program, Essential Supplements

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