Team Detox

admin/ September 30, 2015/ Dr. Danielle/

Go team go! Go team go!! It’s officially spring (and by officially, I’m not talking dates, I am talking weather). And with spring comes the realization that we have eaten like crap over the winter months, mostly for comfort from the blistery cold days. So what do we want to do?? Detox!!! How are we gonna do it?? Excellent question!

Unfortunately, the word detox carries with it a number of meanings leading most of us astray when taking on such a task. Detox does not mean going to any health food store, picking up an herbal tea product, drinking it for 5 days straight and pooping our bodies thin. No. That is not detoxing. That is called the trots. When you do nothing but run to the bathroom and emit foul, foul smelling feces. So please remember that if you define detoxing by pooping yourself silly for 5 days then all you have done in 5 days is look silly.

A proper detox also shouldn’t involve any sort of fasting, nor should it limit you to drinking only shakes each day.The purpose of a detox is to give your body a break from foods it finds more offending; foods which are a little more difficult to digest and metabolize both from a gut and a liver perspective. This cannot happen effectively over several days. The clean up should happen for at least 3 weeks. A detox should also cleanse your body of any toxin buildup that may have occurred from both a dietary and environmental standpoint.

So having said that, an effective, medical detox should involve two things:

  1. a dietary clean up and, 
  2. nutraceutical intervention.

Now, before one even considers taking on a detox, you must ensure that all of your emunctory (eliminating) organs are working properly. These include your liver, your gut, your kidneys, and your skin. If, for example, you suffer from constipation, a detox is a bad idea. Just imagine, already having poop backed up in your gut, only to have you detox and add much more toxic poop to the poop that’s already there. Ya. It’s not gonna be pretty. It is for this reason that a detox should only be done under medical supervision. When we mobilize toxins in our body for removal, bad things can happen. The bad things are generally short-lived and easily fixed, but not without a professional who knows how to handle them.

Another thing to consider when detoxing is losing weight. No, wait. Let me rephrase that. Another thing to NOT consider when detoxing is losing weight. What I mean by this is if you want to lose weight, don’t use detoxing as a way to do it. If you need to lose weight, then let’s talk about it. Losing weight and gaining better health requires a lifestyle change, not a detox.

Now, reasons to detox vary. For some of us, it’s just because we feel tired and run down and perhaps a little guilty for ingesting crap in the recent past. For others, we have symptoms that may point to a toxin buildup. This could look like some sort of skin affliction, foul gas and bloating, depressed immune system, and chemical sensitivities. And there is always a small group of people who do it because so is everyone else. Whatever your reason, I encourage you to do it properly. With that being said, it’s time for me to sign off….I have a busy day ahead of me, full of less-toxic patients!!

Dr. D