The word "detox" has become increasingly popular in the wellness community especially when it comes to diets and taking care of our bodies. While there are numerous benefits to detoxing there is also a lot of misinformation out there that are not healthy. One of the remarkable capabilities God gave our bodies is the ability to adapt very quickly to the lifestyle we live but we can also reach a point where that lifestyle is no longer is sustainable. This has both a good and a bad side. The bad side is those unhealthy habits can become so routine and part of your everyday normal that you may not even be aware of the symptoms or signs that your body is giving you that you need to stop and make changes to your habits.
Let's start with the definition of detox: a process or period of time in which one abstains from or rids the body of toxic or unhealthy substances; detoxification. We all could use some detoxing in areas of our lives, right? Getting rid of habits, situations and even people in our lives that are causing us stress and to make choices that are not good for us physically and spiritually.
A physical detox to cut out what is not good for our bodies can increase energy levels, boost our metabolism, support digestion and weight management, reduce inflammation and free radical damage, promote healthy skin, strengthen the immune system, help you sleep better and reduce premenopausal symptoms.
An emotional and spiritual detox can reduce stress and depression, uplift our mood, promote emotions of happiness and joy and reduce the risk of dementia.
Here are 5 healthy ways you can detox your mind, body and soul to live happier and healthier:
1. Add color to your diet. Up the fruits and veggies which are loaded with vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants. Eating a diet rich in whole foods can can lead to better cardiovascular health, lower risk of cancer, improve your vision, reduce the risk of diabetes and improve digestive health (just to name a few). Part of a healthy detox is getting rid of the bad that has built up in our bodies and the natural fiber found in fruits and vegetables can help us to clear out our digestive systems. Be sure to check out this post with 3 superfoods you should always have in your kitchen (recipes included!)
2. Cut the sugars - even the artificial. Too much sugar causes inflammation in our body which is a huge health concern and can be at the root cause of many health issues. Just by cutting back on foods with added sugar (yes including artificial sugars which are not good for your body) you will be amazed at how much better you feel with more energy and a clearer mind. Sugar is highly addictive and can be tough to quit but you can do it. Need some guidance to kick the sugar habit? We are sharing our best tips with this post on 12 Ways To Curb Your Sugar Cravings.
3. Hydrate. Our bodies are made up of 70% water so staying hydrated is one of the most important and effective ways you can detox not only your body but also your brain and other organs. Here are some body water ratio fun facts for you: the brain and heart are composed of 73% water, and the lungs are about 83% water, the skin contains 64% water, muscles and kidneys are 79% and even the bones are watery at 31%. See why staying hydrated is so important?! Water helps to clear your body of toxins and did you know dehydration can also contribute to weight gain?
Here's your hydration challenge: drink at least 64 oz of water (more is even better) daily. You can spice things up too to keep the H2O from getting boring with fresh fruits and herbs like crushed fresh mint. Sparkling and flavored water has become increasingly popular but just ensure you read the ingredients. There should be no added sugars or artificial sugar like sucralose or artificial ingredients or coloring. The ingredients should only list carbonated water.
4. Limit screen time. In the age of technology we live in, we are connected to information 24/7 which is not good for our minds. We need time each and every day to allow our brains to decompress. We often claim we don't have time to think or spend quality time with God in prayer but the reality is we are always being inundated with too much information and chatter. This takes discipline but carve out at least 2 hours each day where you put away the distractions like your computer, phone, television and any other device to open your Bible or go for a walk. Give your soul batteries time to recharge and rejuvenate.
5. Spend time with God. The more you spend time with God the more you will come to know Him and the more you will grow in your faith. The bible tells us that those who KNOW Him, trust Him. "Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you." Psalm 9:10 If you aren't spending quality time with God each day, how can you grow to truly know Him?
Spending time with Him each day could be at home reading your Bible, in church, talking with Him on the hiking trail or during a workout where you can lay your health struggles at the foot of the cross. It is when we intentionally place our hearts and eyes on Christ that we grow deeper into Him. When we know and trust Him through the truth of His word, we surrender to Him our fears and reduce the stress that wreaks havoc on us physically, mentally and spiritually.
No matter where you are in your health journey it's never too late to create healthy habits that will help you reach your goals and live a life healthy and happy!