Things to consider when attempting a detox

Did I ever tell you of the time I attempted to do a green juice detox in the middle of December?

It wasn’t good news. I should’ve made a rap song and dedicate the song around my experience with the detox. It would be a remix to Drake’s “0 to 100” except my song would be called “100 to 0” because that was basically what happened to my body temperature at the time. Boom! Who ever said Drake and the world of nutrition wouldn’t meet? Jokes aside, my body fat percentage dropped, which many may believe, is indicative of health, but with all things, we have to look at the body in its entirety. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a firm believer of detoxification. However, I strongly advise against prolonged detoxes, especially in the winter. Today, many people get caught up in the idea of detoxifying and elimination, but forget about the tonification and rejuvenation that needs to happen after the detox. Think of it as “over-cleaning” your room. Picture this.

Once you’ve finished cleaning your room, you start scrubbing the floors. Once you’ve finished scrubbing the floors, you look around, then you start scrubbing the walls. You look at the walls and say “I think there’s mold, let me bleach this rag and start wiping a little more. Eventually you start peeling the paint off the wall and what was once a fresh clean room, becomes a bare stripped down space of nothing. A little extreme, but you get the picture.

Here are some things to consider when attempting a detox…

  1. Try to hold off until the spring and summer months. Ideally we should look to eat more seasonally. This means, we shouldn’t be knocking back kale and spinach smoothies 4 times a day, 7 days a week. If anyone has tried a detox in the middle of the winter, they can back me up when I say, YOU WILL BE COLD.

  2. Once you’ve completed a detox, listen to your body. If you start to feel anxious or overly tired, try adding some healthy fats (avocado, olive oil, fish oil) back into your diet.

  3. I remember in my undergrad, my cousin was getting ready for a trip to the West Coast. In her attempts to lose weight, she started a 1 week cleanse consisting primarily of cayenne, lemon, maple syrup, and water (known as the master cleanse). Once she completed her cleanse, the first introductory meal she had was at an Indian restaurant where she indulged in everything the menu had to offer. To say her body was shocked, was an understatement. She broke out in hives and she felt pretty bad for the next 3 days. The takeaway here is that the tonification stage in which you introduce foods that you were off of during your detox should be calculated and concise.

  4. Here’s your most basic and/or reasonable detox. This works wonders especially well for the meat eaters. Start implementing a “Meatless Monday” or “Meatless Weekend”. For most “year round” vegans, adding dietary fats are most likely a priority for you.