Are you tired, fatigued and feeling bloated? Then dare a new start now: Find out which detox form or dietary change suits you best to regain your old energy and strength.
You currently feel limp, tired, bloated and your skin has completely lost its glow?
Anyone who wants to boost their metabolism and cleanse themselves of the toxins of the past few months is often advised to give detox a try.
But what is actually behind the "detox trend"? And are detox cures necessary at all?
What is Detox?
The term "detox" comes from the English word "detoxification" and means to cleanse the body of the effects of unhealthy diets, stress-related hormone "poisoning" and environmental pollutants.
Toxins can accumulate, for example, due to an unhealthy diet, alcohol, smoking, polluted air or stress.
Our most important detoxification organs are the liver, kidneys, intestines, skin and lungs, which always ensure that the body cleanses itself of environmental toxins.
However, if the detoxification organs are overwhelmed or not fully functioning due to an illness, an adjusted diet and a few days of relief can do a lot of good.
Common warning signs: a sallow complexion, you feel listless, drained and the body is more susceptible to illness.
What detox methods are there?
1. Ayurvedic Diet
Digestion and well-being are two central themes in Ayurvedic nutrition - according to the teachings, the health of every person sits in the gut.
To optimize intestinal function, Ayurveda focuses on digestive and especially plant-based foods that are cooked rather than eaten raw.
In addition, anti-inflammatory spices such as turmeric, cumin, fennel, cardamom, black pepper, chili and ginger support.
Well-functioning digestive processes are called "Agni" (translated "fire"). If the Agni functions, the hair and skin shine, because the body can optimally break down the food and transport many nutrients.
If the Agni is weakened, this is often an indication that the "Ama" is predominant. Ama are metabolic residues that can burden the body. You feel listless and tired.
2. 36 hours fasting
The 36-hour fast is also known under the term "Alternate Day Fasting". Here, a fasting day and a normal "eating day" alternate constantly.
It works as follows: 36 hours is abstained from a complete food intake. It's best to start fasting at 6 p.m. the day before, then completely for 24 hours until 6 a.m. the following day. In the following 12 hours everything may be eaten, independently of the calorie number.
Scientists at the Karl Franzens University in Graz conducted various short- and long-term studies on 36-hour fasting. The result: The majority of subjects benefited from weight loss, better cholesterol and high blood pressure levels. In addition, abdominal fat was reduced.
In addition, the scientists examined the immune system in 30 test subjects, since critics are convinced that a large calorie renunciation can lead to a nutrient deficiency. But here, too, it was shown that the immune system was completely strengthened.
However, the constant change between a normal day and a fasting day is very exhausting in the long run and can be additionally stressful for the body.
Better: Fast for 36 hours at least once a week or twice a month to relieve the gastrointestinal tract.
3. Alkaline Fasting
Alkaline fasting rebalances the acid-base balance, which was previously disturbed by an excessive intake of acid-forming foods.
This works optimally with a diet of fresh and alkaline foods.
In doing so, you mainly abstain from meat, cheese, white flour, sweets, alcohol, nicotine and coffee. By abstaining from such acid-forming foods, the acid-base balance stabilizes, whereby "detoxification" takes place.
Acid-base diets can also be used to counteract hyperacidity in the body.
Already before the chamfering these food is omitted gradually, directly before the start then two relief days with fruit and vegetables, in order to relieve the digestion.
To avoid unnecessary strain on the body, you should drink at least two liters per day - preferably still water or tea.
4. Detox cure with juices and smoothies
With this detox cure, you completely forgo solid foods and instead consume water and juices made from fruits and vegetables. Due to their thick consistency, smoothies are filling and keep you full for a long time - so you don't have to starve yourself during detox.
However, this kind of Detox has its price: There are many offerers, who require more than 100 dollar for a three-day juice cure.
Therefore, it is recommended that you make your own vegetable-based juices and alternate them with a home-cooked vegetable or miso broth throughout the day.
By the way, you should not live exclusively on juices or smoothies for longer than three days, as the body will then start to draw energy from the muscles and you will lack important fats to keep your hormone balance.
When should you detox?
If the body is heavily loaded with environmental toxins, the first warning signs may indicate that it is time to detoxify, for example:
Increased susceptibility to infections
Digestive problems (for example, constipation or a constant feeling of fullness)
Detox is always possible - and for your self-cleansing you don't need a specific season or a week in a wellness hotel or on an Ayurveda farm with a special treatment program.
But make sure you only start detoxing when you don't have to perform at your best at work or sports, because common side effects of detoxing include temporary fatigue, listlessness, headaches, or low blood pressure.
What happens in the body during detoxing?
In principle, the body can rid itself of most toxins on its own. However, if the toxins get out of hand, an overload occurs. This happens especially when there are already complications in the liver and kidneys.
The idea behind Detox: to eliminate superfluous substances via the intestines or the skin and to optimize these processes.
Detox affects metabolism and digestion, which is why the first few days are also the biggest adjustment.
If you completely avoid solid foods, you may experience mild headaches or mood swings or feel weak and dizzy for the first few days.
After about three days, however, the habituation effect sets in and many people feel much more energy than before detoxing.
What is the detoxing process?
In the case of alkaline fasting, the intestines are emptied with Epsom salts or a colonic irrigation on the first detox day.
With as natural as possible, ripe vegetarian foods full of nutrients and vitamins, the detox process in the body is then set in motion; as a rule, a course of treatment lasts for one to two weeks.
A detox cure with juices and smoothies, on the other hand, should not last longer than three days. As with fasting, there are three recovery days after the cure, until you are allowed to eat normally again.
Athletes should consume enough nutrients in the process and also include soups, smoothies plus light alkaline meals with vegetables, nuts, grains and legumes.
Detox for weight loss - does it work?
Toxins sit in the fat cells and are released when the fat is broken down. Digestion and metabolism work at full speed.
A cure with only liquid (juices and smoothies) can lose up to one kilo per day.
However, if you want to lose weight, you should not take the detox cure as the method of choice, as this is more about gently ridding the body of toxins and not necessarily about losing weight.
Another problem is that detox is equivalent to a zero diet, which is often followed by the yo-yo effect.
Also, detoxing in the form of juice cures does not teach you how to eat a balanced diet in order to live healthier and maintain your weight in the long term.