“Detox” is all the rage right now. Cleansing programs, pills and juicing protocols are everywhere. Do they work? Sometimes- Yes. More often than not they fail to do what they claim. Although many programs/approaches have some decent foundation, others are literally hogwash. There can be some benefit in nearly every detox or cleansing program but the end result, like nearly everything else in life, depends on the person, their history, the approach, the application and the “after-effect”. Flashy promises, pictures and testimonials fly about the detox world as if they were magic fairies waiting to sprinkle their healing pixie dust on whoever wants to “cleanse” and get a fresh start. Fix all your ails with this 3 Day Cleanse! People start with a few bucks, high hopes and a vigor they haven’t seen in years. It usually ends in a waste of time, money and energy. There is so much information and misinformation out there I thought it would be nice to give the Bare 5 take on cleansing and detox….
Are we toxic?
Yes. Pretty much every last one of us is or has been toxic.
What does it mean to be toxic?
We take in or produce more damaging substances (toxins) than we can filter and excrete. Most of these are food related, with additional environmental and some internally produced toxins.
Should we detoxify?
Yes. Every day. But here’s the thing: we are ALREADY detoxing every day. That is what the body does naturally. The question should be… How can we help the body work better and avoid toxic overload? The answer is… Turn the raging river of toxins into a small stream and let your body catch up. Once it catches up, order will be restored. We will never be free of toxins or toxic exposure. The key is to limit the obvious ones and allow the body to detoxify itself to the best of it’s ability. Let the inflow never exceed the capability of the outflow.
So how does someone detoxify?
Start with this groundbreaking new approach: Eat real, clean food, stop eating bad, toxic food and then limit exposure to other toxins.
Save the “cleanses” for someone else. There’s inconclusive research to back their efficacy and there is some that suggests that detoxifying quickly may not be that good for us. Let your body detoxify slowly, methodically and naturally. The body almost always knows best. If you eat real food and avoid many of the common toxins, you will get 90% of the “cleanse” benefit, you’ll feel much better in the process and you’ll likely be able to stick with it. I can’t count how many people I have talked to over the years that have tried the Master Cleanse (or some other trendy thing) only to flame out on day 2 or 3 and go right back to their toxic ways…
**There are a few extra/advanced things people can do down the line if one were to still feel the need for a “cleansing” but typically people by that time have long forgotten about their “detox” plan because they feel much better. Occasionally, there are a few people that do need a little more aggressive detox intervention/help. My advice is to always start with real food and lifestyle and go from there. All the pills, juices, potions and footbaths in the world won’t help if you’re not eating good food and limiting other toxins. I won’t even talk to someone about cleansing protocols until they are eating a good real food diet.
That being said, I present…
“The Bare 5 Cleanse and Detox Program”
Step 1: Stop eating toxins
Soy (unless traditionally fermented and non GMO)
Dairy, particularly pasteurized (unless grass-fed, which can be very beneficial to most people)
Refined Salt (real sea salt is detoxifying, white salt is toxic)
Dyes and Colorings
Step 2: Eat real food
This will give you nearly all the benefit you could ask for. Organic, pastured, wild caught, seasonal, local, fresh food. Meat, fish, seafood, eggs, vegetables, fruits, roots/tubers, nuts and seeds. Water is also vital for health and detoxification (just drink water, nearly everything else is trouble). Good food will help you detoxify by giving the body health promoting nutrients with little to no toxic load. The healthier the body is the better it can process out toxins. Get healthy = get cleansed. Although I believe ALL real food to be detoxifying and cleansing, people love lists so: For those who want a list of some foods that are believed to be a little more promoting of the detox or cleansing process, I give you…
Honestly, if it’s a real food it could go on this list.
Step 3: Don’t expose yourself to unnecessary toxins
Just be smart. Use glass containers whenever you can. Don’t heat plastics. Don’t inhale chemicals. Try to breathe fresh air whenever possible. Get out in the sun and away from artificial light and electricity whenever you can. Try to use natural cleaning products. Try to use natural body products (If you wouldn’t eat it, think about if you want to put it on your skin or in your hair). Don’t take medications unless you absolutely have to (look for natural/homeopathic alternatives or ways to get off medication if possible). Don’t drink or smoke or hang around people who do on a regular basis. Manage your stress and exposure to “toxic” people that stress you out, they will only bring you down. In general, just try to live a “clean” life.
Step 4: Do Step 1, 2 & 3 for a while
Just live a clean life for a while. Not days or weeks, months. Restoring health takes time. Health deteriorates over time, allow the body to regain it in time as well. You should notice improvements in how you feel and function but it should be slow and steady, not immediate and overwhelming.
Step 5: Reassess
If you do this for a while and still feel the need for a “detox” let me know. I will offer some direction if I can. Maybe by then I will have put together the Bare 5 Advanced Detox Program. 🙂
So, as you can see this isn’t really a “program” it’s just my approach to living a healthy life. Another cleanse program? The Bare Essentials. It’s the exact same thing. Live a natural life and the body will find its natural health.
Thanks for reading, have a great “clean” week!