Detoxification refers to the medical or physical removal of toxic materials from the body, most typically by the liver. The process of detoxification is intended to remove toxins that have built up in the body from food and water intake, exposure to chemicals, and even certain types of drug use. A detox diet may also be recommended by a doctor to permanently rid the body of harmful toxins. The detox diet should also be accompanied by exercise and healthy living, especially for someone already suffering from an illness. For the general public, detoxification is usually seen as a weight loss procedure, since eating healthier foods and decreasing caloric intake will lead to a decrease in weight.
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Some common methods of detoxification include the use of laxatives, juice fasts, fasting diets, vitamin and mineral supplements, and enemas. Laxatives are effective ways to remove toxins because they are able to pass through the intestinal tract without being digested. Juice fasting, on the other hand, involves drinking juice only of vegetable fruits for a certain period of time to flush the body of toxins. Fasting and enemas are both medical procedures that require the consumption of liquids while under observation. It should be noted, though, that these diets should not be done for more than a week at a time, as overdoing it may lead to dehydration and can also cause detoxification complications.
Detoxification should be considered as a preventative measure against disease and sickness, particularly since our consumption of processed foods contributes to the accumulation of toxins in our bodies. Processed foods contain chemicals, fat, salt, sugar, and other unnatural ingredients that are more likely to be stored in the fatty tissues instead of being eliminated through normal bowel movements, which can result in the accumulation of waste products. Over time, these waste products accumulate in the fatty tissues of the colon, resulting in increased levels of cholesterol and low levels of essential nutrients such as fiber and potassium.
Some alternative medicine practitioners recommend a variety of detoxification programs in order to keep their patients’ weight in check. While these diets can’t all be duplicated, they can be implemented along with regular lifestyle changes, such as a healthy diet and exercise. Most of these diets recommend limiting or eliminating refined carbohydrates from the diet, drinking plenty of water, and getting regular exercise.
The main goal behind these diets is to restore health by flushing out the body and removing the waste build-up. Detoxification allows the organs of elimination to work more efficiently, thereby reducing symptoms. For those who are unsure of how to go about detoxing, there are many books available for purchase on the internet, and a lot of information can be found in forums and blogs dedicated to this topic. A few of these methods include: drinking only purified water, eating a diet that consists almost entirely of raw fruits and vegetables, taking a salt water flush, drinking only sea salt water, or using a detoxifying herb such as milk thistle. Each of these methods requires a different amount of change in lifestyle, and a person may have to try them for a few weeks before finding the detoxification regimen that works best for them.
When used in conjunction with other forms of treatment, detox diets can provide relief from symptoms, as well as promote general health. A salt water flush requires no special preparation, and results in a lighter feeling during the flush itself. A diet high in fruits and vegetables can have positive results on the bowels and may eliminate some of the negative side effects of a typical fast. However, it’s best to consult with a doctor before going on a detoxification program.