I enjoy my espresso in the morning. I love my wine in the evening. And, I adore all manner of cheese at any time, day or night. But I’m giving all these up — plus wheat, dairy, sugar, and red meat — for 14 days to give my body a much needed cleansing.
For the first time I am willing to go without my culinary loves (or addictive habits, if you prefer) because I found a program that seemed doable, and I really wanted some extra energy in the final weeks of my website redesign project for the Good News Network. Plus, it’s spring, a great time to think about detoxing the body.
When my friend in Montana, who’d just started a two-week cleanse, listed the foods and snacks that were acceptable to consume — fruits and vegetables, stir-frys, hummus, organic fish and chicken — I knew I would be able to do it, but I hoped the benefits would outweigh the aggravation. Everyone I know who has done a cleanse has concurred that the benefits are worth it.
How Does This Work
After hanging up the phone with Mary, I ordered directly from Amazon the four products she recommended for cleansing the liver, which included a powdered nutritional shake, and within three days embarked on my 10-14 day jouney. (See the product list below.)
Marilyn Zink, the publisher and editor of The Herbal Collective magazine, says the healing crisis (also known as the Herxheimer Effect) occurs when the toxins enter the bloodstream faster than the body can get rid of them. “These detoxing symptoms are an indication that the detox is working and the body is working towards balance,” she wrote in an article. “Symptoms can include skin rashes or eruptions, headaches, bad breath, unusual body odors, dizziness, nausea, feelings of fatigue or even slight depression, gas, diarrhea, colds, ear infection, insomnia, itching, temporary confusion.”
“The healing crisis can sometimes scare people away from doing a detox program, but it shouldn’t,” she added. “Done correctly the detox symptoms shouldn’t be that intense and it should only last for 3 days.”
The most important key is drinking enough water. (I have NEVER guzzled so much water in one day!) Soaking in a tub with 1-2 cups of Epsom Salts, which are very inexpensive and found at any pharmacy, also is a great way to pull out the toxins. **And PLEASE NOTE: Women who are pregnant or lactating, and anyone who is taking any major medications, such as blood thinners or heart medicine, should consult their doctor before doing any cleanse.
My detox program includes capsules containting herbs that have several functions; some work on the bowel, others on the liver. Herbs that affect the liver are typically dandelion, burdock root and black radish. Milk thistle also impacts the liver and helps strengthen it. These herbs stimulate the liver to work harder and tone it up.
“A lot of people have overloaded livers,” says Dr. Terry Willard director of Wild Rose College and owner of Wild Rose Clinic in Calgary, Alberta, who says Spring is the best time to do a detox regimen.
“The bigger the city, the more overloaded the liver is.” That’s because modern life, especially when you live in the city, is fraught with chemicals that enter our bodies through our diet, our skin and our lungs, and settle into our organs.
All together these four products, which can support a 14-day cleanse totaled $100.
Bentonite Detox , 32-Ounce Glass Bottle – A naturally occurring mineral source as a dietary supplement that traps and binds unwanted, non-nutritive substances such as herbicides and other potentially harmful substances so that they do not remain in the body. Bentonite’s mechanism of action is physical, due to its colloidal structure and charge particles.
Metagenics – UltraClear Plus PH Medical Food Natural Vanilla Flavor – Shake powder formulated to provide enhanced, specialized nutritional support for patients with chronic fatigue syndrome, and includes macro- and micronutrients to address altered energetic function and liver detoxification. Featuring potassium citrate and sesame, this formula helps to promote alkalinization and support Phase II liver detoxification function. UltraClear Plus pH also provides glycine and magnesium sulfate to support Phase II detoxification activities, as well as green tea catechins and mixed carotenoids to provide antioxidant protection against potentially harmful compounds generated during the natural detoxification process. Provided in low-allergenic-potential rice protein concentrate base- which may be beneficial during times of increased detoxification burden- this formula provides well-rounded nutritional support.
Psyllium Husks (Veg Capsules) – A cheap and convenient source of concentrated dietary fiber
Lipotropic Complex – A dietary supplement containing clinically studied high-methyl nutrients, for optimal liver and biliary health. Herbs to provide comprehensive transmethylation support for the liver.
Below I have copied the specific regimen. Let me know if you decided to join me in a Spring Cleanse, and let me know how you fare on it. I’ve made it five days, I hope to go at least another five.
– Geri Weis Corbley, founder and managing editor, The Good News Network
- Lemon water – first thing in the morning
- Then, take a big glass of water with 1-2 tsp of bentonite stirred in (this is first thing in morning and last thing at night)
- Take Psyllium – 3-4 caps with 8-12 oz of water morning and night
- Morning Shake with nut (almond) milk or juice or water (2 scoops of Ultra Clear Plus)
- Lunch – shake (some days, if you eat really well, you can just have one shake.
- Snacks – veggies, fruit, hummus, rice crackers, almond butter, nuts (raw nuts if possible)
- Dinner: Fish, chicken, Tempeh, Beans, Wild Meat, Turkey, Tofu.
- Veggies: Steamed, Raw, Stir Fry
- Grains: Rice, Quinoa, Corn Torillas, Millet, Buckwheat, Oats, Amaranth
- Helpful for the Lungs, Kidneys, Skin/Lymph, Colon, Liver: five channels of elimination
- How to flush the toxins: Exercise, Drink 2-3 quarts water daily, Steam bath, Epsom salt bath, sauna.
- Take the Lipotropic complex herbs daily, begin w/ 1 capsule per day for 2-3 days, and then increase to 2 caps per day for 2-3 days, then 2 caps 2x per day
- Herbal teas are good
- No-no’s – alcohol, coffee, sugar, wheat, dairy (Mary says some of her friends don’t give up their coffee, even though it is recommended.)