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Detox Defined
The term detoxification is one that is commonly associated with alcohol, drug and substance abuse; as well as dieting and loss of weight: "diet detox." However, beyond this popular belief, detoxification is also a process aiming to eliminate all the negative effects on our body from the environment, such as industrial chemicals, pesticides, additives in our foods, secondary smoke, pollutants, or heavy metals. Nowadays, internal detoxification is adopted by healthy individuals to keep their body systems in pristine condition.

Detoxification refers mainly to the removal of toxic substances and cleansing of the kidneys and colon, as these are organs involved in the detoxification of chemicals and toxins from the body. Detoxification is performed in a variety of ways including nutritional supplements, herbal mixtures, oral chelating agents, safe mercury removal, intravenous injections, colonics, etc. Once heavy metal burden is relieved, other parasite, yeast and organic detoxification proceeds easier.

Reasons to Detox
Detoxification is one of the best ways to remain healthy in a polluted and toxic environment. These are signs that detoxification is needed: unexplained headaches or back pain, memory failing, brittle nails and hair, frequent allergies, exposure to cleansing solvents, pesticides, diuretics and certain drugs, etc.

One of the benefits of detoxification is that liver, kidney, and blood purification can take place - which wouldn't occur during regular eating patterns. Other advantages include: the immune system stimulated, the hormonal system is enhanced, dependency on substances such as sugar, caffeine, nicotine or alcohol can be reduced.

Long Term vs. Short Term Detox
Detox programs can be short-term or long-term, but they all aim to release toxins from the body. Short-term detox programs should include: 24-hour juice fasting, chelation therapy and heavy metal removal, colon cleansing (colonics), skin cleansing, safe mercury removal, intravenous injections.

Long-term detox programs should include, but are not limited to: dietary changes such as avoiding meats, high-carbohydrates or sweeteners, and eating more vegetables and fruits or garlic; drinking fluids (water, vegetable and fruit juice, herbal tea); taking vitamins and supplements. It is also recommended to exercise (Yoga, Tai Chi), try alternative therapies such as homeopathy, acupuncture, hydrotherapy; and try methods to reduce stress like massage, herbal soaks, or meditation.

Budget/At-home detox treatments
The following at-home detox treatments are simple, budget friendly ways to start a detox regime. However, I suggest that anyone looking to seriously detox and improve their overall health and wellness receive a medical consultation for their detox needs, so they can truly find out the root of their symptoms and receive the best treatment regime. The below detox routines are good "starting off" points, but they will not produce long term results.

Epsom Bath Salts
Hot water draws toxins out of the body to the skin's surface, while the water cools it pulls toxins from the skin. Epsom salts augment this detoxification by causing you to sweat. Also, when added to water, these natural salts can help to cleanse your colon.

Lemon Water
Just add lemon to your water through out the day. The acid in the lemons assist the cleansing process. Citrus fruits, such as lemons, contain a pure concentrated form of citric acid. Citric acid works like bleach on fat. Due to its acidity and high ph, citric acid is able to actually penetrate and break down fat molecules.

Detox Pills
Many companies are offering pills that will cleanse out your system with out any extra work. Just take one a day and your detox has begun.

Apple Detox Diet
For three or four days, eat nothing but raw early-ripening apples, like Jonathans, red or yellow Delicious, Oregon Reds, Arkansas Black, or Sheep Nose. You may prefer organically-grown apples. You should try to eat at least six apples each day.

By Sylvie Beljanski, owner, The Beljanski Wellness Center

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