In my spare time, I consume lots of information on the topic of health and wellness. The more I learn, the more difficult it becomes to ignore. In order to be better at implementing what I learn, I'm developing a system of what I call, "the daily detox."
The premise is simple. All I need to do is incorporate some simple steps into my everyday routine that help my body to recover from the multitude of stresses that bombard it on a daily basis.
The inspiration came from what I observed in my own daily activity.
I'm one of those people who make a mess whenever I'm actively doing something. Part of the blame for this is due to my short attention span. I pick an item up, do something with it, get distracted, and move on to something else without putting the item away. As you would imagine, this habit leads to lots of disorder in my environment.
In the past, I would allow many days to pass before truly cleaning up my mess. By then, cleaning everything up was a nightmare. I've since ingrained the habit of cleaning at the end of my tasks (or at the end of the day). This helps keeps things organized while preserving my sanity.
Looking back, I realized that I've been treating my internal environment in the same way. I lived from one day to the next without giving much thought to giving my body the fuel it needs to "clean up" internally.
Our bodies do a decent job of repair and regeneration......but.....we sometimes do a better job of increasing toxicity. We eat the wrong things, are exposed to toxic chemicals and we do an overall lousy job at giving our bodies the help it needs to properly detoxify. The older I get, the more I realize my body isn't as efficient as it used to be. The effects of my poor choices are becoming more evident day after day. But, on the flip side, our bodies are ultra-resourceful and respond well to any positive behaviors. Just a few simple daily detox actions will go a very long way.
Let's start at the most basic level. The most obvious way that our body cleanses itself is from waste elimination. The easiest way to promote/increase elimination is through adequate water intake
. When you drink more water, you'll use the restroom more. It's as simple as that. Anytime I slack on my water intake, my body holds onto more waste products then when adequately hydrated.
I read a book once that talked about how scientists were able to keep heart cells from a chicken alive in a petri dish for over 20 years (chickens normally live 7-8 years). These cells remained functional because they were placed in a saline solution that contained the right balance of oxygen, water, and minerals. Each day, the researchers were tasked with removing the waste products created by the cells. Once they neglected to remove the waste, the cells died. Here's the thing, when we don't properly eliminate waste, it doesn't just disappear into thin air, it's stewing in our bodies. You take showers every day, aren't you also interested in cleansing the body from the inside?#2 Healthy Lymph
Another critical component that we can't neglect is the lymph. Our body contains more lymph fluid than blood. This lets you know how important the lymphatic system is to our health. When we talk about detoxing, the lymphatic system HAS TO BE
a part of the conversation. We rarely think about our lymph but it's a critical component of our health and well-being. Our white blood (immune) cells live in our lymph fluid. You wanna know what else is there? Cellular waste.
Unlike the respiratory system where the heart pumps automatically, the lymph needs our help. In order to properly do its job, it requires movement. When you're sitting all day, our lymphatic system suffers. Lymphatic stagnation results in acne, puffiness, swollen face/arms/legs, cellulite, under eye bags, constipation, bloating and so much more. The good news is that we can easily incorporate detox actions to promote a healthy lymph. These include:
Next on my daily detox is sweating. It's one of the main ways our body eliminates waste (aside from going to the bathroom). Imma be honest with you. Sweating on a daily basis is not an easy task for me. I don't enjoy sweating, especially while working out (I know, that sounds bizarre). This is why I enjoy sauna's so much
. They do all the work for me which is why I made the investment of acquiring an at-home sauna. Even though I have a sauna sitting just a few feet from me, I still don't use it daily. But I'm making an effort to use it at least a few times a week as part of my daily detox. The list of benefits from using infrared saunas are too long to list. During that intense sweat, you're not just releasing fluid, your body is also using that opportunity to get rid of toxins and chemicals. Ideally, I'll work up to using it each day. If you are one of those people who love working up a sweat at the gym, then go sweat, and sweat often.
#4 GUT HEALTH
The other area we need to focus on during the daily detox is the gut. We have 10X more gut microbiome than any other type of cell in the body. We can not ignore the health of our gut. I love unhealthy foods which are horrible for our gut health. But I've decided to incorporate some strategies to counteract the outcomes of eating processed foods. The easiest thing for me is to take a probiotic on a daily basis. It makes such a difference.
But I need to do more.
The goal is to include other elements that support gut health that goes beyond simply popping a pill. I want to feed and nourish the good bacteria so they thrive. This basically means eating more fiber. One thing I've recently was swap out sugary processed snacks for juice or fresh fruit. I've also made sure to prep salads on the weekends again. At the very least, I can take a swig of apple cider vinegar which is great for the gut. The goal is to make a deliberate effort to get fiber in each day. It's all about balance. By the way, since eating better in an effort to be more mindful of my gut, I easily shed several pounds. Not bad.
There's so much more I could add to this list, but for now, I'll keep it short. Stay hydrated, move, sweat, and feed your gut. Doing these things daily (or as often as possible) will go a long way towards making sure that our bodies remain in great health.