Every spring I get many requests for cleansing programs or kits. Cleansing is a fantastic way to mentally and physically discard the heaviness of winter and step into the new season refreshed and ready to go. It’s a great tool to bring awareness to all the things that have slipped into your diet since the new year and since it is usually a gentler diet than what we normally eat it can do wonders for keeping seasonal allergies and illnesses at bay. There are, however, times when cleansing, even gentle cleanses, are not a good idea. Before you invest in a detox kit or a program, review this checklist to make certain you will not do yourself a disadvantage by cleansing:
Reconsider cleansing if:
- you are underweight
- if your body has been weakened by disease, illness, or severe stress
- if your job is very physically or psychologically demanding
- if you are training heavily for a sports event or physique goal (6 hours a week or more)
- You score higher than 150 on the Holmes and Rahe Stress scale
- You’ve recently had a significant cleanse (in the last 3-6 months)
The above factors do not not mean you cannot cleanse, but they do indicate you should be cautious if doing so. Very gentle dietary changes which support healing can be implemented instead of juice fasts, limited diets, or strong herbal preparations. If you want to get a jump start for spring in a more gentle, supportive way, try these options:
- Increase your water consumption to 2-3 Liters per day (apx. 1 oz. per pound of body weight)
- Go on a ‘sugar fast’ where you eliminate all sweeteners for 10-30 days.
- Have one meal a day be made exclusively of vegetables – stir-fries, vegetable stews, salads, and the like. See which way your body prefers to eat its veggies!
- Pull caffeine out of your diet for 30 days; taking 10 days to wean it out and 20 days to abstain completely. Observe how you feel.
If you want a more structured plan, you may enjoy VIBRANCE Nutrition’s spring detox diet. This 10 day detox plan was designed for the athletic population, so it is gentle, nourishing, and effective. It is a great option for those who are not limited by the above indicators (if you are beginning a training program you are fine, but if you are peaking in marathon or triathlon training this is not a good time to cleanse). This is a food-based cleanse that has optional supplement support, but they are not needed to experience great results. This detox has been effectively used in my practice to discover food intolerance, get off coffee or sugar, improve digestion and sleep, and get deeply in touch with one’s body. Some people experience significant weight loss, others may experience none. It is not designed as a weight loss diet, so it is not appropriate for those seeking weight loss as a primary or exclusive outcome. Included are two 30 minute consultations to answer questions, discuss outcome and next steps, as well as email support while you are cleansing. If you are interested in exploring VIBRANCE’s Spring Detox Plan, email me at email@example.com to learn more!
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