As an avid detoxer for over 10 years now (crazy!), I have definitely learned a few things along the way. While no detox is ever ‘perfect’, I believe in doing everything we can to maximize our results. Plus, there are a few things you should do your best to avoid since this can slow down (or even halt) your detox success.
I recall several years ago I was in need of my upcoming annual detox. My skin was starting to break out again and I knew that my 1st detox cleared my skin within a few weeks so I figured doing another 21 day detox would do the trick. The problem was, it didn’t! Sure I felt more energy and didn’t have any headaches, but my skin was still breaking out in small red bumps, mostly on my forehead (whaaat?!?). So I went back to my naturopath at the time and asked her why the detox wasn’t working– the first question she asked me was about my stress. Yikes. That was the only thing I didn’t think about. Yes, I was under a lot more stress with school at the time but failed to really acknowledge it. I felt if I drank enough green juice and got enough sleep I’d be fine. Boy was I wrong.
Here are 3 of the most common mistakes I see with my virtual & in-office patients when it comes to detoxing. Be sure to avoid these and you’ll be well on your way to fast tracking your health in no time!
Okay, I admitted it. I didn’t always think stress levels had anything to do with detoxing. However, when I visited my naturopath all those years ago about my detox failure & my acne return I learned the truth. Elevated stress levels increase your body’s production of the hormone cortisol. This leads to inflammation (redness), more oil production (pimples) and a slowed-down detox process. If there is a lot on your plate, talk to your friends/family/boss about handling only what is most urgent for a period of 1-2 weeks. Say no to some commitments you don’t really want to say ‘yes’ to. And most of all, do something to de-stress (massage, journal, make a tea date with a friend).
Not being 100% committed
Truth be told I have a lot of patients that want to improve their health, but don’t always want to commit to making changes. This is frustrating because there is NO SILVER BULLET to getting healthy! And, although we can boost a detox to get more results faster, you need to commit to it for at least 7 days (ideally 21 days if you think certain foods are part of the issue). This means planning ahead (don’t detox during the week of weddings & baby showers and a ton of work events). Things will come up. However if you’ve set your dates in advance, anything that comes up after the fact will likely be less important, can be rescheduled or worse case scenario you can’t stick to your detox routine for that particular day. Aim to adhere to the detox principles (diet, lifestyle, sleep, stress) for 90% of the time. You owe it to yourself to see it through.
Not taking the right supplements
After my first real detox over a decade ago I thought I would save a bit of money and simply complete the food-only part of the plan. I would change my diet but didn’t think I needed to add in the detox protein powder, antioxidants or extra B vitamins. The good news was nothing bad happened. I still felt good during the detox but I didn’t feel AS GOOD as when I was taking my supplements. Years later, after I became a naturopathic doctor I learned why this was the case. Although the detox-friendly foods have a ton of nutrients, we simply can’t get enough of the powerful detox boosting vitamins & minerals unless we take a supplement. So I tell my detoxers this: if you want to simply maintain your good health, stick to a supplement-free detox plan. However, if you’re trying to fix or better your health (like 99% of my patients) you won’t see the same level of progress unless you add in your detox supplements. Invest in a few quality products and see what a difference this makes. This is especially important for those wanting to balance their hormones, lose weight or clear their skin.
There you have it- the 3 mistakes you want to steer clear of during your next detox! Did I forget any or are there any that I should I add to my list? Let me know in the comments below.
If you want doctor-approved support & yummy recipes for your next (or first) detox, be sure to get your copy of my 21 Day Whole Body Detox. This is the same program I use with my patients in my private practice, but I’ve made it easy enough for you to do at home!