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Body Cleansing

Body cleansing helps prevent a number of diseases and offers several health benefits. Here is some useful information about this process.
HolisticZine Staff
Body cleaning, also known as detoxification, is a form of alternative treatment, which removes many harmful substances from the body. Detoxification diets are mainly based on herbs, potions, colonics, etc., to rid the body of impurities. It not only helps cleanse the body, but can also lead to weight loss. There are different types of detoxification procedures to remove the toxins from the body such as colon cleanse, ion cleanse, parasite cleanse, Candida albicans cleanse and liver/gallbladder cleanse. You can use some natural methods such as water fasting, minimal eating, juice fasting, detox diets, herbal detoxification, detoxification baths, and the use of cleaning shakes. You can also use the cleansing supplement packages that contain vitamins, minerals, fibers, and herbs.

Colon Cleanse

Any blockage in the colon could lead to constipation or other digestive problems. The toxins that accumulate in the colon can be removed by two methods: the use of powdered or liquid supplements and colon irrigation. The former includes, enemas, laxatives, herbal teas, and enzymes. The latter is somewhat like enema, but involves lot of water, with less odor and discomfort. In this procedure, a low-pressure pump is used for flushing several gallons of water through a small tube that is inserted in the person's rectum. The therapist massages the individual's abdomen, which causes water as well as the wastes to be released like a regular bowel movement. It is also important to replenish the colon with the good bacteria after the cleanse, to maintain the natural flora of the colon. Symptoms like bad breath, constipation, bloating, frequent fatigue, low energy, candida infection, frequent mood swings, irritable bowel syndrome and skin problems are indicative of toxic colon. If these symptoms appear, seek medial help.

Parasite Cleanse

Parasites such as flukes, pinworms, roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms reproduce very rapidly and feed on the valuable nutrients in the body. Some may even travel through bloodstream and cause damage to other body organs such as brain and stomach. Therefore, elimination of such parasites is essential. The diet followed should contain some natural herbs garlic, wormwood, black walnut, and goldenseal.

Detox Diet

A detox or cleansing diet acts in two ways. It cleanses the body by preventing the buildup of toxins. It also helps detoxification by flushing out the toxins already present in the body. There are a number of detox diets to choose from, like vegetarian diet, Mediterranean diet, etc. It is very essential to eat only non-processed, organic foods. The detox diet mainly consists of fresh, organically-grown fruits and vegetables such as cauliflowers, onions, broccoli, beets, artichokes, red and green vegetables. All forms of rice such as rice crackers, rice cakes, and rice pasta are included in the detox diet, although brown rice is preferred. Grains such as millet, quinoa, buckwheat, and amaranth can also be used instead of rice. Beans such as green peas, kidney beans, adzuki beans, garbanzo beans, and pinto beans are easy to digest and are preferred. Flaxseed, sesame seeds, almonds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, almonds, and cashews are also recommended. The preferable beverages include green tea, herbal tea, water, rice milk, lemon water, and unsweetened vegetable and fruit juices. Products containing high amount of sugar, dairy products such as milk, cream, butter, etc., wheat and wheat products, coffee, alcohol and high-fat foods should be avoided.

Herbal Detoxification

Various herbs can also be used for the detoxification. Herbs such as angelica, goldenrod, chamomile, black cohosh, and parsley can be used for liver cleanse. The herbs such as uva ursi, cedar berries, marshmallow, dong quai, and ginger are used for the kidney cleansing. The lungs can be detoxified using Chinese ephedra, senega, mullein, LH Comfrey, and slippery elm. These herbs can be consumed in the form of herbal tea, extracts, or powders.

Benefits

During the detoxification program, there is a significant reduction in the food intake, which leads to the loss of excess calories. As the body gets rid of excess of toxins, increase in energy level is observed. Also, improved mental clarity, clear skin, improved sleep, and a positive attitude are some of the benefits. Some of the long-term benefits of body cleansing are reduced risk of illnesses.

Ways to Cleanse the Body

After the detoxification program, daily cleanse of the body can be done through a balanced diet, supplements, and healthy lifestyle practices.
  • Intake of fibrous foods such as brown rice, fresh vegetables, and fruits should be increased. Radishes, broccoli, beets, cabbage, artichokes, seaweed, and spirulina are also excellent detoxifying foods.
  • Intake of herbs such as burdock, dandelion root, milk thistle or green tea cleanses and protects the liver.
  • Adequate intake of vitamin C helps the body produce glutathione (one of the antioxidants produced by the body), which removes toxins from the body.
  • Drinking at least 2 quarts of water everyday enhances kidney function and helps remove the toxins.
  • Sauna can also help eliminate the wastes from your body through perspiration.
  • Dry skin brushing, which is a gentle exfoliation and massage technique that helps increase lymphatic flow can also prove beneficial. Alternate hot and cold showers can also help.
Side Effects

During the body cleansing process, some may experience sore muscles, headache, insomnia, mood swings, and weakness. People undergoing detoxification feel a bit dizzy or lightheaded due to lesser amount of food intake. Anxiety and restlessness are the common reactions to detoxification. It must be noted that these side effects are temporary. Though following the aforementioned measures will certainly help, do consult a medical expert before going for a detox program.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.