Can I do a cleanse? Careful, if you're not strong enough, a cleansing diet can make you very sick, burnt out and toxic! I see it over and over again when people go on the latest cleanse craze and end up exhausted and depressed with bizarre symptoms ranging from skin eruptions and brain fog to trouble breathing. All they have to do is build their own body systems before a spring cleanse.
A cleanse refers to reducing the amount of food intake to give the digestive system a break and release toxins. In order to benefit from a cleanse you must have stable blood sugar and strong adrenals so that eating less doesn’t make you weak, dizzy and stressed. Your liver and bowels should be working well so the toxins released don’t try to come out the skin and lungs or circulate in the brain.
Are you strong enough for a Spring Cleanse?
Answer the questions below to find out: Do you feel weak and shaky if you miss a meal? Do you have sugar cravings in the afternoon? Do you feel exhausted the day after a busy or stressful day? Are you constipated? Do you have itchy skin in the evening? Do you wake up between 2 and 4 am and have trouble going back to sleep?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you have some work to do before your body is strong enough to benefit from a spring cleanse. Restricting food when you are feeling weak and shaky, have sugar cravings or are unable to recover from a busy, stressful day will only make these blood sugar adrenal and toxicity problems worse. Itchy skin tells me toxins are trying to get out through the skin because the liver and bowels are not strong enough to remove the toxins.
Every diet plan is either building, balancing or cleansing and the key is to understand what your body needs at this time.
A building diet is used short term to recover from weakness and is strengthening and stabilizing. A building diet contains plenty of protein and oils along with vegetables and sometimes beans and grains. A cleansing diet is also short term and is mostly fruits and vegetables with lots of water and some cleansing supplements. A balancing diet is somewhere in between and is designed for long term health to match your body type.
If you are dealing with blood sugar problems, adrenal weakness or weak detoxification systems, then it’s important to use a building diet to resolve these issues before going on a cleansing diet.
Blood Sugar Issues –If you feel weak and shaky after missing a meal or crave sugar in the afternoon, then you need to stabilize blood sugar before going on a cleanse. Balancing blood sugar involves eating 5 times a day and taking mineral supplements which will help retrain the body to burn food for energy more effectively. When blood sugar is stable, then limiting foods won’t make you weak and dizzy and you won’t crave sugar.
Adrenal weakness – If you have a hard time functioning the day after a busy or stressful day then you probably have weak adrenal glands. To strengthen the adrenal glands it’s important to eat protein every few hours, get plenty of rest and take herbal supplements to strengthen the adrenals.
You can see how blood sugar and adrenal weakness are helped by building diets so a cleansing diet would do the opposite and exacerbate these conditions. Don’t worry, the building diet won’t make you gain weight. Most people feel stronger and actually lose weight on a building diet.
Detox systems – A cleanse is designed to release stored toxins in the body by putting less food into the body. What happens if you are constipated? Those toxins are released; they circulate, then reabsorb and are never excreted. Do not reduce food intake if you constipated.
Is your liver capable of processing those toxins? The liver requires nutrient tools in order to do the job of removing toxins. If the liver is deficient in these nutrient tools, the toxins circulate in the body instead of being released. Symptoms that the liver isn’t removing toxins include a foul body odor, itchy skin and waking up in the middle of the night. The body does this nice cleansing routine while you are sleeping and it wakes you up when the cleansing process runs into trouble. Usually 2 am is liver time and then we move down the system to clean the small intestine at 3am and the large intestine at 4 am. What time do you wake up and which system should we support before you do a Spring Cleanse?
After your body has stable blood sugar, strong adrenals and is able to remove waste and detoxify, then you can benefit from a Spring Cleanse.
Whichever diet plan you are on at the moment – build, balance or cleanse – it should feel great. Too often, I see people getting sick from a cleansing diet when they would benefit from eating more! If your body is strong enough for a spring cleanse then you will feel motivated and energized by restricting food. You will enjoy the cleansing process. Reducing food and going on a spring cleanse does have benefits, but not until you are strong enough.
Build before you cleanse.
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