Lifestyle & Nutrition Blog
Cleanses: Do they really make you “cleaner”?
These days we are bombarded with advertising about cleanses! Everywhere you look you see headlines about our bodies being full of toxins from chemicals, foods, the environment drugs and many other sources. It seems as though our only solution for this is to do a cleanse. Many of us get lured into this million-dollar market by promises of weight-loss, glowing skin, cleaner colons and increased energy. Juice cleanses, colon cleanses, liquid cleanses, liver cleanses, is one really better than the other??
Several health experts are in agreement that cleanses may provide initial improvements in certain conditions or health problems, but that they are not meant to sustain us long-term. For example, with a juice cleanse, (which are between 3 and 5 days), you consume concentrated amounts of fruits and vegetables and the nutrients they provide. However, these juices are often lacking in other key nutrients (protein, fat, calories and fiber) that are also necessary for optimal body performance. Another important consideration is that these cleanses are often between 800-1200 calories which are low totals for most people. Finally, the fruit component of juice cleanses can make these drinks carb-dense and high in natural sugars resulting in unstable blood sugar and hunger. When considering a colon cleanse, remember that our guts are naturally full of ‘good bacteria’ and that by aggressively flushing them out, we are interfering with our bodies natural defense system. Liver cleanses are also popular and often involve supplements, shakes and 2 weeks to complete! The options seem endless but the results are often the same: short-term improvement in health and a rapid return to bad eating habits.
As overwhelming as all this may seem, the facts are fairly simple. Cleanses may provide short-term reprieve from an over-taxed digestive system, or a break from a diet laden with sugar and processed foods. Cleanses are a good “kick-start” to break bad habits or to eliminate unhealthy foods from your diet but committing to healthier eating everyday will provide lasting benefits to your health.
Here is a list of some foods that naturally assist the body in neutralizing toxins:
Water Basil Asparagus Beets
Broccoli Brazil Nuts Kale Avocados
Lemons Carrots Onions Turmeric
Apples Garlic Walnuts Parsley
So, enjoy eating your way towards better health and naturally ‘cleansing’ your body every day!
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