What is body detoxification?
The way we throw wastes out from our house to keep it clean and hygienic, so does detoxification when it comes to our body. Detoxification cleans the waste materials that gets accumulated in our body over time and interferes with the physiological activities of our body. If any toxic element enters our body with food, it directly reaches the liver. Here it gets metabolized and after metabolism it gets circulated through blood to various parts of the body. There it gets absorbed by cells and results in buildup of that toxic element in body. Once this toxic material gets accumulated in the cells, it starts to interfere with the metabolism of the cells resulting in many disorders. So, in order to keep our organs and cells safe from the onslaught of these toxins we must make sure that the buildup of toxins does not take place in our bodies. And that is where Detoxification comes into play.
Do we need detoxification regularly? Is it for every one? These are some question that pop into our mind. ‘Certainly not’ is the answer.
When our body experiences symptoms like fatigue, weight gain, trouble in breathing, constipation, skin allergies, muscle aches etc., it means body or particular organ is signaling about some abnormal conditions. These are the symptoms that tell us that our body has become toxic and needs detoxification.
Benefits of body detoxification:
Detoxification is essential because it not only cleans the body and organs but also prevents body from diseases such as cardiovascular problems, liver infection, kidney failure, hormonal imbalance etc. of course body detoxification is beneficial if required. Some major benefits are as follows:
1. Physical benefits:
- Cleanses body: The purpose of the detoxification is to get rid of the toxic substances stored in the body. Once these get excreted from the body system through balanced diet, medication, ayurvedic therapies or any other traditional detox therapies, it allows the body to return to its normal condition.
- Helps to lose weight: Toxic elements get easily stored within the body fat and can lead to weigh gain. Toxic elements deposition sometimes causes cravings for sweet things which in turn leads to fat gain. Removal of those toxic elements and adoption of healthy food habit helps in weight reduction.
- Protects our immune system: Detoxification results in normalization of organ activities. A normal healthy body is in an ideal state where it has the capacity to properly absorb vitamins and nutrients from our diet. This leads to strengthening of our body as well as our immune system.
- Betterment of skin: Purification of internal organs reflect through skin brightening. The traditional method sauna, also called steam bathing, helps in excreting toxic elements from skin through sweat and detoxifies it. This makes skin bright and glowing.
- Improves breathing: Lung detoxification results in improved breathing. Air passage becomes smoother after cleaning trachea along with lungs.
- Healthier food habits: A strict diet plan has to be followed for detoxification. The diet for detoxification of our body mostly includes foods that have rich antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and includes lots of different fruits, veggies and herbs. This diet strictly excludes chocolate, sweet, artificial soft drinks and white sugar.
- Improved hair: Detox program add adequate vitamins, minerals, micro-nutrients and a lot of herbs those have direct impact on hair. These food ingredients make hair healthy, strong and shiny.
- Restricts aging: Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory foods are directly related to anti-aging process. So, intake of these foods gives the added benefits of anti-aging along with body detox.
2. Mental benefits:
- Clear thinking: Body cleansing techniques also have a very positive effect on our mental health. Exercise, meditation and yoga are usually a part of detox program. These activities regulate blood circulation and hormone levels in our body making us fit and healthy. Meditation calms the mind and lowers anxiety level.
- Energy booster: Elimination of toxins by excluding harmful foods such as sugar, trans-fats, from regular diet makes our body more energetic. Minerals, other nutrients and adequate water intake regulate blood flow and nourish the cardiovascular system. This leads to abundant supply of oxygen to body cells. And when our cells have abundant oxygen we feel more energetic and fit.
- Reduces stress: Cortisol is the stress hormone in humans i.e. accumulation of cortisol leads to stress. So, whenever our body is under any stress or is in imbalance more and more cortisol gets secreted. Detoxification diets helps in controlling cortisol level and reduce stress.
Side-effects of organ detoxification:
The purpose of detoxification is to clean the body by removing toxic foreign materials such as heavy metals from it. Detoxification is important to keep our organs healthy and safe so that they function properly and keep us healthy. 7-days detox program or 3-days detox program are very popular among people. Detox programs like these denote sudden changes in body system and our body sometimes responds by shoeing certain side effects. Some of these side effects are:
- Headaches: It is the most common side-effect of detoxification. As a part of the short-term detoxification program, consumption of caffeine is strictly prohibited. Sudden removal of caffeine results in headache as withdrawal syndrome. It can be restricted if we gradually lower the consumption instead of sudden halt.
- Weight gain: According to some researchers, the weight reduced during 7-days detox program is called ‘water weight’ and gained immediately as soon as the program ends. On the other hand drastic reduction of calories for long time can imbalance the hormones which can be equally harmful for our body. But if the calorie restriction occurs gradually and allows body to get accustomed to the change, then only the weight loss will be effective.
- Indigestion: Detoxification affects the digestion system as toxins released from other organs accumulate in the liver. Liver sends the wastage to bile for excretion. It results in inability to take food and nausea. Detox diet lays stress on liquid diet, and excessive intake of fruit juices, which act as laxatives, causes diarrhea. This is why nausea and diarrhea are common side-effects of detox program.
- Weakness: Detox diet usually includes low calorie food such as fruits, boiled vegetables, juices etc. Proteins and fats are being excluded from diet as liver needs rest to recovery as a part of the detox program. Sudden lack of food intake leads to body weakening. Inadequate protein intake also sometimes causes muscle cramps and pain.
- Dehydration: This might be caused due to insufficient fluid intake by the person who is undergoing detoxification. Although detox program includes ingestion of plenty of fluids still the intake level might vary from person to person. As caloric intake reduces suddenly, the body sometimes needs more water for carrying out processes like digestion, and excretion and this too can result in dehydration.
- Adrenalin imbalance resulting in depression and negative emotion: Sudden change of food habits might cause adrenal hormone imbalance can lead to mood swings and depression.
- Skin problems, skin rashes, allergy: Skin problems are common as detox program mostly affects the digestion system. Allergy due to toxic elements, skin rashes and acne are common as withdrawal syndrome.
Extreme fatigue and body pain: Fatigue is another common withdrawal sign caused by sudden changes and inadequate food intake.