I am not sure about you, but every spring I get the desire to clean out my system and start the summer fresh! Here are some common FAQs about cleansing:
Why cleanse in the spring?
Spring is associated with the new growth of flower buds, trees, and the birth of many animals. Spring is the awaking of the earth after a long winter nap. A cleanse can be that reset button for your body and help you go into summer with a fresh perspective. It helps to shed the winter build-up and get you starting to feel great!
What does cleansing do?
The liver has two detoxification phases – phase I (Cytochrome P450 Enzymes) and phase II (Conjugation Pathways). Essentially, cleansing helps to support these processes so they function optimally. I often describe your liver as a recycling processing plant. It takes in a product and alters it or breaks it down and then either gets rid of it through your waste systems (excretory systems) or reuses it. A liver that is not functioning properly leads to a build-up of unwanted toxins or in the analogy of the recycling plant - recycling products build up and bog down the plant’s processing ability. Your elimination processes/excretory systems are urination, bowel movements, and through bile (secreted by the gallbladder).
What are the benefits of cleansing?
- Potential for weight loss - weight loss is a common effect of cleansing and this is usually loss of excess water weight. Water weight builds up when your body tries to dilute the toxins that are building up. In addition, your diet on a cleanse is often anti-inflammatory and free from junk food so weight loss is often seen.
- Increase in energy after the cleanse
- Learn new recipes
- Reset your system
- Get rid of gas, bloating, and fatigue
What side effects can I expect?
It is common to get some symptoms while on a cleanse: however, most disappear after the first few days.
- Headache/migraines/foggy mind
- Body aches/muscle aches
- Runny nose
- Increased bowel movements/constipation or diarrhea
- Hunger/decreased satiety after meals
- Food/sugar cravings
Which cleanse should I do?
There are many cleanses available and choosing the right cleanse can be difficult:
I think the best cleanses are customized to your needs. Cleansing properly requires good support and is individualized to focus on your specific needs. There are many focuses/purposes for cleansing: hormone balancing, stomach repair/leaky gut, liver cleanse, weight-loss, juice fasting and many more.
Can everybody cleanse? Where can I go to learn about different cleanses and which one is best for me?
In short, cleansing may or may not be right for you.
It is best if you consult your naturopathic physician to decide what type of cleanse and intensity is best for you and your specific needs.