Friday, 12 February 2016


Toxins is certainly a buzzword, but is it purely an invention of marketers to coax us into spending money on dubious products?
Well, probably not.
Why else do we get food cravings, difficult-to-budge fat, joint pain, sleeping difficulties, fatigue, headaches, dark circles, heartburn, bad breath, farting, anxiety, sinus congestion, water retention, eczema and cold sores?
Its logical that these and other charming bodily offerings are warning signals. And that our bodies accumulate toxins, and we need to routinely ‘take the trash out’ to avoid being a walking, talking heap of junk.

So reader, it seems we’re both full of crap. But how to get rid of it?
The answer is detoxification.

Detoxing in the spotlight

Doctors and health experts are slowly beginning to recognize the value of some of the elements of detoxing. Fasting, specifically intermittent fasting is getting recognition as a fat loss tool andlongevity booster.
Juicing as a health tool is also enjoying a high profile, with people like Joe Cross and Kris Carrsharing powerful stories of turning their health around using juicing.
Another element (see below) of detoxing, colon therapy, has yet to gain much traction as a thing, but I predict it won’t be long, especially if sexy health goddesses like Donna Gates continue to promote its benefits.
Overall though, science has remained unconvinced that detoxification and cleansing programs deliver any real benefit – and in some cases, might even cause harm.
Always one to embrace anything potentially health boosting, I first tried a detox program – based around Dr Jenson’s approach to detoxification – three years ago. The process was hugely beneficial, giving me access to whole new layer of health (see more below). Since then I have been doing yearly detoxes at a number of retreats around the world offering similar programs.

What’s involved?

For seven days, solid foods are replaced by high fiber detox drinks containing a mix of psyllium husk,clay and if you’re lucky, mixed with watermelon or pineapple juice, if not, then plain water.
The mixture is designed to absorb toxins from your colon, as well as fill you up so you don’t get hungry. You also take juices and supplements containing intestinal cleansers and herbal nutrition throughout the day. This is the ‘fasting’ element.
The second part of the equation involves daily colonics (usually administered yourself using aColoma board) to remove the toxins that the drinks have helped to loosen from your intestines. You are also provided with ‘gut flora grow’ tablets to help manage levels of microbes in the gut, which are disturbed by the colonics.
There are usually other things on offer that assist with the process of detoxification, including herbal steaming, abdominal massage, meditation and yoga.

Why I keep detoxing

Here are some of the reasons I go on a detox each year. Afterwards:
• I have a few hours extra energy a day
• I have this feeling of being a ‘clean running engine’ – so I am like a Ferrari, compared to a gas guzzling Chevy Vega
• I lose fat and it stays off
• I lose food cravings
• My blood sugar levels stabilize
• The quality and tone of my skin improves
• I need less sleep
• When I do sleep, it is restful
• I don’t feel like I need coffee or any other kind of pick-me-up
• I drink more water
• I naturally choose foods with a higher nutrient density most of the time
• I eat with greater mindfulness of the digestion process – I chew more slowly
• My taste buds are more sensitive (food tastes better)
• I have a beautiful clean feeling in my mouth
• My bowel movements are more complete (my poos are better)
• I wake up refreshed and clear headed
• I have more mental energy and clarity
• I am more aware of life areas that I want to change and develop
• I feel calmer and less stressed
• I eat out of genuine hunger rather than boredom/other reasons
• I get a good physical rest
• My feelings of resilience and self sufficiency are improved
• I am more creative and easily able to ‘think outside the box’
• I feel a sense of accomplishment and achievement
I feel the full effect of those benefits for at least three months after a detox. After that time, they start to reduce.

But do we need to detoxify?

The short answer is – probably, but not conclusively. Long term fasting and detoxification processes like the one I described above haven’t been tested by research yet. (When they are, they might actually be taken seriously as a cure for diabetes and other health maladies).
Many doctors and physicians have spoken out about our ability to accumulate toxins. The simple reason is that our bodies, as awesome as they are, cannot break down some of the unnatural and manufactured rubbish we feed them.
Experts say that the presence of these toxins is having some sort of an effect, ranging fromunwanted fat to neurological disorders.
Doctor and author, Joel Fuhrman MD,  says: “You see a buildup of waste products in the cells – AGE, advanced glycation end products – that build up in cellular tissues and lead to atherosclerosis, aging, diabetes, nerve damage, and the deterioration of organs. This is basic science and physiology every doctor learns in medical school.”
Health expert, Donna Gates, identifies three reasons why everyone can benefit from colon cleansing:
  • The average person has between 7 – 10 pounds of old fecal matter in their colon, even with daily poo
  • The build-up of waste on the walls of your colon creates the perfect breeding ground for parasites, yeast, bad bacteria and viruses
  • For too many people today, detoxification pathways are essentially blocked. Over time, toxins build up. It is estimated that the average person is exposed to over 123 toxic chemicals each day from food, water, air, stress and personal care products
Dr Bernard Jensen says that blocked detoxification pathways can result in autointoxication, which “produces undesirable consequences in the body and is the root cause of many of today’s diseases and illnesses”.