Get confused with doing a natural cleanse, or find things don't go as smoothly as you hoped? Angie Newson, author of The Detox Factor, tells you how to avoid the top 10 mistakes many people make, so your cleanse is a success ...
Getting your body ready for your cleanse will not necessarily mean an "easy" fast as every cleanse is different.
However, avoiding these common mistakes will help your cleanse go as smooth as possible.
#1 – Going Full Steam Ahead Without Proper Preparation
Proper and organised preparation a week or two before is vital to gain the most health benefits from your detox.
Eliminate red meat, alcohol, junk food and caffeine from your diet and drink more water and herbal teas.
#2 – Rushing Around Doing Your Normal Daily Routine
Put a start date in your diary and clear social appointments for the length of your cleanse. If you are able to, take time off work, particularly if your work is physical.
Continuing a cleanse whilst dealing with a heavy schedule may leave you feeling deflated, demotivated and downright tired.
#3 – Ignoring Medical Advice
Although I suggest you stop all legal and illegal drugs, if your doctor says you need to continue with your medication, then please listen.
However, if you habitually take over the counter pills at the first twinge of a headache, sinus trouble or to help you sleep, then seek alternative and natural ways to alleviate these common issues.
#4 – NoT Changing Your Morning Routine
Resist jumping in the shower without thinking and instead take 5 minutes to body brush using a natural bristle brush. Use sweeping strokes towards the heart to get rid of dead cells and promote smooth, glowing skin.
Alternate the water temperature of your shower between hot and cold for 5 rounds of 30 seconds each to "shock" the body and improve blood and lymph circulation.
#5 – Ignoring What Your Body Is Telling You
If you feel you need to rest, then rest. If you have energy to exercise, then exercise.
Yoga, breathing techniques, HIIT (high intensity interval training) and rebounding all have huge benefits whilst cleansing. Choose what you feel you need on any given day.
#6 – Eating Cheat Meals
Sneaking in a quick takeaway, having a sly sip of a friend’s cocktail or waking up in the morning to a brew of coffee and think it won’t matter? It will.
The first few days of any cleanse can be challenging to say the least. Hang in there, you can do it. Stay focused by practising meditation, even if it’s for just 10 minutes a day.
Take the time to notice your breathing and be in the present moment.
#7 – Staying Indoors The Whole Time
Get out in the sunshine. Spending at least 15 minutes a day without slapped-on sun lotion will help you get your daily quota of vitamin D, essential for bone mineralisation.
Ditch the gym and workout outdoors – a walk or jog in woodlands or along a riverbank helps us get in touch with nature, all good for our soul.
You don’t have to feel closer to a higher being, but nature helps alleviate low mood, anxiousness and tension, particularly whilst detoxing. It makes you feel refreshed, vibrant and alive.
#8 – Forgeting To Practise Mindfulness
There are many varying ways to cleanse – juicing, psyllium husk and clay, salt-water etc., however whatever you decide, take the time to notice the taste and the smell of your food and the sights and sounds around you.
If you are detoxing by eating vitamin-rich organic, raw salads and vegetables, eat slowly and chew well and chew some more, savouring every morsel.
#9 – Going To Bed Too Late
Get more sleep. We know sleep is the best natural and free medicine there is and as kids were often told we need sleep in order to grow!
Sound sleep helps the regeneration of new, healthy cells. Create your own comforting sleeping ritual – warm salt bath, smooth sounds, aromatherapy soy candles and write a few lines in your gratitude journal.
When in bed, turn off the TV, laptop and mobile phone. The LCD screens produce blue spectrum light which keep us in daytime mode.
#10 – Going Back To Old Habits
Do not go straight back to old eating habits having used your detox as a weight-loss fad diet.
You may welcome the loss of surplus weight so now keep it off naturally by resisting the restocking of processed and canned foods, shop-bought juices and fizzy drinks.
When breaking your fast, eat raw salads and vegetables for at least 3 days and continue to hydrate well.
Continue eating clean and enjoying wholesome and nourishing organic food. Wear your skinny jeans with pride and without having to hold in your stomach.
So there you have it – the 10 big no-nos. Rectify these common errors and you will hopefully have a smoother and easier-flowing detox.
And we know it’s about much more than getting into those skinny jeans (although I love this result) – it’s about optimal health, improved wellbeing and enhancing longevity.
Flushing out toxic waste and impurities from the inside, we can naturally prevent premature ageing, sky-rocket our energy levels and look stunning and glam on the outside.