Earlier this week I was speaking with Kelley who brings you those healthy recipes here on Easy Health Options, and she told me it was spring cleaning week for her. Every year she goes through the house from top to bottom and clears out the accumulated dirt and junk.
When I was in school I learned that the spring cleaning tradition comes from ancient Persia. Every year they practice “khooneh tekouni” which means “shaking the house.”
It reminded me that it’s a good idea to do this for your body as well. Once a year you should shake out the internal junk, gunk and “cobwebs” and give your body a huge healing boost.
Internal cleansing is a really exciting subject for me because I’ve seen reliably impressive results with patients who do it … plus I have my own personal experience that I’ll share with you in a moment.
There are various kinds of cleanses, and the good news is that you don’t have to visit a doctor. You can do them along with spring cleaning right in your own home, and their healing effects are long lasting.
What’s so important about an “internal cleanse”?
You know how good it feels after you take a bath or shower … and your cells and organ tissues deserve that too!
A cleanse is a simple but powerful way to cause the cells of your body to release unneeded materials that either have accumulated from, or get in the way of, metabolic processes. These often promote inflammation and need to be flushed out.
But, this is not like an “oil change” in your car. That applies in a certain way, but not exactly. Let me explain.
Your internal systems already have built-in mechanisms for cleansing. Your liver is the main detoxification organ for your blood, for example. But how good are the rest of your body organs at detoxification?
Even if clean blood circulates throughout your body (like putting clean oil into your car every so often), your tissues are still subject to toxic build-up, just like in the way your car also needs new brake fluid, washer fluid, antifreeze, and so on. Mainstream medicine ignores your body’s need for all systems to be cleansed and focuses on clinical trials using prescription drugs, which can be toxic themselves.
And their advertising makes it seem wonderful that you can get a quick fix from a pill… of course they never tell you that there are natural remedies that can also give you results.
Slow buildup, deadly release
Accumulation of waste material is minimal on a day-to-day basis. Over time if you don’t clean it out it measurable levels of these cytotoxic chemicals can be released into your body and trigger real disease through inflammation. These cytotoxic chemicals are hugely responsible for heart disease, cancer, blood sugar abnormalities (type 2 diabetes), allergies of all types (from asthma to eczema), arthritis, fatigue…and the list goes on.
Consider the multitude of unnatural molecules you probably take in daily from foods, personal care products, and the environment (air/water pollutions, plastics, manufactured products).
How does your body eliminate them?
Well, when anything crosses into your bloodstream from your intestinal tract, it is sent first to your liver to be cleaned up before it flows to the rest of your body. The liver is your blood’s vacuum cleaner. Unnatural and potentially harmful molecules are detoxified through a complicated process called Phase 1 and Phase 2 liver detoxification.
But the molecules that get missed by the liver must go to the rest of your body where they eventually get stored away in fat cells wherever they might be: brain, endocrine organs (pituitary, thyroid, adrenals, and gonads), belly fat, skin, pancreas and liver.
Not a healthy occurrence, to be sure.
Additionally, each cell throughout your body naturally has its own metabolic waste, on a microscopic scale of course. This waste can accumulate right there in surrounding tissue spaces if it does not make it into the blood stream to be shuttled to the liver.
This also contributes to inflammation and in time disease develops in the very organs I just mentioned: Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s (brain); hormone imbalances (endocrine organs); obesity (belly fat); skin aging and rashes, and diabetes (pancreas and liver).
Add to that, if you suffer from constipation the waste material accumulation inside your bowel lumen (space) reabsorbs into your blood stream and also the bowel tissue itself.
Types of cleansing
The internal cleanse methods each have their own benefit. Let’s consider the five main ones I am familiar with:
- Liquid cleanse: water-only or lemonade cleanse for 3 to 10 days
- Fresh juice cleanse: only fresh fruit and vegetable juice for 3 to 30 days
- Liver cleanse: olive oil and lemon juice only for 3 hours to flush out the bile from the liver and gall bladder (you can find instruction for this cleanse in my free Detox book if you want to try it)
- Bowel and/or parasite cleanse: to evacuate your intestines and pull out parasites you may have (but didn’t know it)
- Infrared heat sauna cleanse: to release waste molecules (and drugs) from fat and skin tissues
There are several possible reasons to go on a liquid cleanse: weight loss… detoxification…to break food addictions…and to reverse chronic illness. In the process of cleansing physically, your mind and spirit are re-awakened too! As water only cleansing is the most effective, it is also the most difficult.
The Lemonade Cleanse is something all of us can do. After the first three days your cells are ready to start to dump waste. That’s when you can expect to feel the symptoms of “detoxification” which may include increased sweating, urination, or diarrhea. You’ll want to be sure to replenish minerals with a mineral electrolyte supplement.
Alternatively you may have decreased bowel movement, in which case you’ll know a bowel cleanse would help you too. You will probably also feel weakness, a change in breath odor, or some pain where your body has previous disease.
For example, if you get headaches or back pain often, you may feel pains there. Rest assured, you’ll feel less pains after the detoxification process.
Here are the specific directions for the Lemonade Cleanse:
What You Need Before Starting:
- Grade B maple syrup (do not use grade A or “pancake” maple syrup!)
- Large bag of fresh lemons or limes (do not use from concentrate)
- Cayenne spice you may already have in the kitchen
- Six 16 oz. water bottles so you can prepare several at once and store in refrigerator for up to 6 hours
Directions: Mix the following ingredients into each 16-ounce water bottle to your desired taste:
- Water: nearly fill up bottle but leave room
- Juice from 1 fresh squeezed lemon or lime
- Grade B maple syrup: just a quick pour at first and increase to desired taste
- Cayenne pepper: begin with only a pinch and increase/decrease according to flavor. Higher cayenne amounts will stimulate more cleansing.
Notes: On the second and succeeding bottles, experiment with more or less citrus juice, more or less maple syrup and more or less cayenne. For lunch or dinner consider using hot water (like a soup broth) with increased cayenne to get a powerful spice taste.
Drink 6 to 12 of these full bottles per day. Remember, this is your food and your drink for each day you are on the liquid cleanse. You will find that your hunger will decrease substantially after the third day.
Also, liquid cleansing is best done when there are no extra physical, emotional or mental demands upon you. It’s a time to stay warm and relaxed. Plan to make plenty of time for yourself so you can meditate, read, relax and focus on healing your body during these days. It is said that for every day of your liquid cleanse that you are dealing with some external stress and not allowing yourself time to focus on cleansing, it extends the time required to detoxify by an additional one-half day.
In my next article, I’ll show you how to do the other cleanses, and why you need them, too.
To feeling good,
Michael Cutler, M.D.
Easy Health Options