“Clearing the clutter” is a phrase that is often used in the context of home organization and cleaning. In this context, it refers to the process of getting rid of unnecessary items and creating a more organized and streamlined living space.
Just like a cluttered living space can be overwhelming and stressful, a “cluttered” body can also experience similar negative effects. Our bodies are constantly exposed to toxins from a variety of sources, including the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the products we use. Over time, these toxins can accumulate in our bodies, leading to a range of health issues. Just as clearing the clutter in your home can help create a more peaceful and stress-free environment, supporting the body’s natural detoxification processes can help clear out the toxins that are cluttering up your system.
Detoxification is a term that often only surfaces after the holiday season or in anticipation of a special event. The concept is often associated with fasting, carb counting, eliminating sugar or undertaking some type of cleanse. While some may have experienced positive results with detox, it can be a confusing and overwhelming topic. Let’s explore the meaning of detoxification and why it is important to allow your body to take a much-needed break.
What is Detox?
Detoxification in the body normally happens through a complex system involving the stomach, colon, small and large intestine, lymph, gall bladder, kidneys and liver. The entire system depends heavily upon a well-functioning liver. The liver is the organ that turns fat soluble toxins like heavy metals, plastic derivatives, and other noxious chemicals into water soluble compounds that can be taken away through the organs of elimination. When more toxins are coming in than the liver and digestive system can handle, these toxins circulate in the blood, causing problems and disrupting normal metabolic function. If they are not eliminated because the liver cannot process them, they will get stored in the fat, the brain, or other cells of the body. This is the start of toxic overload and it can cause alarming problems to our health.
Is Your Body Screaming Out for a Detox?! Here are 10 Tell-Tale Signs, Laurentine Ten Bosch, Filmmaker of Food Matters says:
- You constantly feel fatigued, stressed and overwhelmed
- You experience frequent headaches and/or lack of mental clarity
- You often have skin breakouts and blemishes and/or a tired, dull and lack-luster complexion
- You seem to pick up colds, flu, bugs, and viruses easily and are often on medication
- Your digestion is troublesome, uncomfortable and irregular
- You slip into making less-healthy food choices and often have fried foods, processed meat, dairy, gluten, processed foods, refined sugar or fast food
- You are exposed to common environmental toxins such as carbon emissions, cigarette smoke, herbicides, pesticides, artificial fragrances, and household chemicals
- You are carrying excess body weight
- You often feel emotionally unstable, depressed, unmotivated and lacking energy and enthusiasm for life
- Your breath and BO seem to have an alarming stink, no matter how much deodorant or toothpaste you use
How Can I Detox?
There are several ways to eliminate toxins from the body, including through urine, feces, exhalation, and sweat. The skin, being the largest organ in the body, helps in detoxification by working with the lymph system and directly removing toxins through the pores. Sweating gets rid of toxins without needing to go through the liver. This is important because many of our systems become overloaded under the onslaught of these chemicals over time. Detoxing helps restore balance, vitality, and functionality to an overloaded system, and the use of an infrared sauna can be an effective way to remove toxins.
People often ask if they can detoxify their body through sweating during exercise. While exercise is crucial for maintaining a healthy lifestyle, exercise alone cannot raise one’s body temperature long enough or high enough to move most chemicals through the skin. On the other hand, sitting in an infrared sauna can help achieve this. Sweating with exercise also activates the sympathetic nervous system (“fight or flight”), which reduces the activity of the organs of elimination – liver, kidney, colon – so that all your energy can be directed toward your large muscles. However, sauna therapy induces the parasympathetic state (“rest and digest”), allowing for healing to occur.
Detoxification is the single most common reason people I talk to want to use an infrared sauna. My clients say the other benefits—such as weight loss, closely followed by pain management, for example—are great, but there are other means of getting these things. Infrared saunas offer a uniquely efficient solution to detoxification that isn’t easily achievable in any other way.