Want to start the day with health, energy and radiance?
Almost everyone has heard of detoxifying but does it mean going on a raw juice cleanse? Thankfully not…as much as I love my green juice I would starve! And besides the body naturally detoxifies itself every day. The are simple, gentle strategies we can implement that will support the body in the detoxifying process and make us look and feel great.
According to circadian rhythm (the 24-hour cycle in the physiological processes of living beings) morning is the perfect time to help the body get rid of toxins.
Here are 6 rituals that can help you wake up and cleanse the body, allow you to have energy all day, feel great and thrive. Choose the ones that appeal to you and try for two to three months for a full lymph clearing and a whole new level of health, energy, and radiance.
This is one of my favourites and something I’ve done on and off for years.
Dry brush your body before you go in the shower. Sounds odd I know, but brushing our teeth two to three times a day feels totally natural – right? Believe it or not, our bodies need brushing too, just like our hair and teeth. Dry body brushing is a great way to detoxify the body and eliminate over a pound of waste a day. The skin is the body’s largest organ and it eliminates 25 percent of the toxins in your body each day, which equates to over a whole pound of waste! Every minute we lose over 30,000 dead skin cells, which are replaced by new healthy skin cells.
How to do it: Use a brush with soft natural bristles, preferably with a longer handle. Synthetic bristles often contain chemicals that are best to avoid. Begin brushing at your feet and work your way slowly up the body with long sweeping motions, always brushing towards the heart. When dry brushing the stomach it is best to go in a clockwise motion as that works with the natural digestive flow.
The skin may be slightly flushed afterwards but it should not be red or sore. Be sure to avoid brushing over fresh wounds, burns and cuts. The skin should be dry but not excessively dry when brushing. If you shower after brushing, it will help remove exfoliated skin cells.
I also use a soft complexion brush on my face gently using circular motions across the forehead and on the cheeks.
I usually follow with a silky body oil. I like Saje oils (Lavender and friends, Après Sport, Tantra).
For the face I use the Eminence products Patricia recommends for my skin.
Benefits: It stimulates the lymphatic system and helps with muscle tone. It removes dead skin cells. It makes your skin softer, smoother, and tighter by increasing the flow of blood, and improves circulation, which reduces the appearance of cellulite. It also improves digestion, reduces stress, and energizes your whole body.
HOT TOWEL BODY SCRUBBING
This comes from a friend of mine from Finland. She swears by body scrubbing and does it twice every day. I have been to a few Korean and Turkish Health Spas over the years that specialize in body scrubbing. It’s a unique experience (for sure) and not for everyone but there’s no question you feel c-l-e-a-n after.
Body scrubbing can be done before or after your bath or shower, or anytime during the day. All you need is a sink with hot water and a medium-sized cotton washcloth. Doing it at the sink has a deeper physical, mental, and emotional effect than doing it in the shower. For a maximum effect, scrub your body twice a day: once in the morning and once again in the evening. Scrub for 2 to 20 minutes, depending on the amount of time you have.
How to do it: Turn on the hot water and fill the sink. Add a few drops of lavender essential oil if you wish. Hold the towel at both ends and place in the hot water. Don’t burn yourself. Wring out the towel. While the towel is still hot and steamy, begin to scrub the skin gently. Do one section of your body at a time: for example, begin with the hands and fingers and work your way up the arms to the shoulders, neck and face, then down to the chest, upper back, abdomen, lower back, buttocks, legs, feet, and toes. Scrub until the skin becomes slightly pink or until each part becomes warm. Reheat the towel often by dipping it in the sink of hot water after scrubbing each section, or as soon as the towel starts to cool.
Benefits: This activates the lymphatic system. It calms the mind, reduces muscle tension and relieves stress. It helps you create a profound and loving relationship with your body. It promotes circulation and opens the pores to release stored toxins. Done it the morning, it will reenergize you and it deeply relaxes you at night.
COCONUT OIL PULLING
I have to admit this is not a cleansing strategy I’ve tried but I have several friends who swear by it. If you try it let us all know what you think…it does have amazing health benefits.
How to do it: Before you eat or drink anything, put ½ to 1 tablespoon of coconut oil in your mouth. Swish it around for 5 to 20 minutes. At first, you might feel disgusted having oil in your mouth. Start with 30 seconds and keep at it as you will feel the benefits quite rapidly. While you are swishing it becomes toxic so spit carefully into garbage bin or toilet. Not in the sink as it will clog it up. Then rinse your mouth a couple times and wash your teeth.
Benefits: Coconut oil pulling will kill cold and flu germs, and bad breath. It whitens the teeth, prevents cavities and gingivitis, and strengthens the gums. It heals cracked and dry lips, reduces inflammation, decreases bacterial load in the mouth, detoxifies the body, and helps regulates hormonal imbalance.
Tongue scraping is simple and inexpensive, yet completely transformative.
A tongue scraper is a thin, U-shaped device made of stainless steel or plastic, consisting of a blunt edge that removes build-up from the surface of the tongue. It originated in Ayurveda, which says that people who use it are more expressive and thoughtful, better public speakers, and more sincere and authoritative conversationalists. Interesting, huh?
How to do it: Apply a few quick strokes after brushing your teeth. Use the round edge to scrape gently down, while applying slight pressure. Rinse under running water and gently scrape again until no white residue is left.
Benefits: It helps fight cavities and prevents bad breath. It reduces excess mucus in the mouth, and in turn the nose and throat. It reduces cravings greatly and re-sensitizes your taste buds, which makes whole foods taste more delicious than ever.
WARM WATER WITH LEMON
I’ve been doing this one for over 20 years and I add one tablespoon of greens powder to the mix. A Naturopath recommended this years ago as a way of resetting the body PH. When we awake, our bodies are highly acidic, they’ve been working hard while we sleep to process waste and toxins. This reset to an alkaline level boosts the immune and helps the body be disease resistant. You can also try adding a pinch of cayenne pepper to boost metabolism.
The morning is all about replenishing your body with liquids. Did you know that drinking warm water on an empty stomach is said to increase metabolism? Drinking water in the morning stimulates your digestive-colic reflex, which will help you eliminate what is sitting in your intestines from the day before.
Lemons are jam packed with nutrients, including vitamin C, B complex vitamins, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and fiber.
Because of how hard lemon juice can be on the enamel of your teeth, it’s important to dilute it with water of any temperature (though lukewarm is recommended). Drink it first thing in the morning, and wait 15 to 30 minutes to have breakfast. This will help you fully receive the benefits of lemon water.
The popular belief is that lemons are very acidic which is true. But once inside the body, lemons are one of the most alkalizing foods.
Benefits: Lemon water gives your immune system a boost. Thanks to its excellent source of potassium, it’s good for your heart health, as well as your brain and nerve function. It aids digestion and cleanses your system by flushing out the toxins. It decreases blemishes and wrinkles, and gives radiance to your skin. It reduces inflammation and helps you lose weight by fighting hunger cravings. It gives you an energy boost, and reduces anxiety and depression—smelling the fragrance of lemon essential oil has a calming effect on the nervous system.
I love Epsom salt baths. I use approximately 2 cups of Epsom salts and several drops of essential oil (lavender for soothing, rosemary for energizing). I also do the same with baking soda (even though it cleanses it makes the skin feel very soft).
Here’s a recipe for a super deluxe detox bath.
MUSTARD + GINGER DETOX BATH
2 cups Epsom Salt
¼ cup fresh grated ginger (place in cheese cloth or gauze) or 2 tbsp dry ground
¼ cup baking soda
¼ cup mustard powder
Run a bath of hot water and add bath detox recipe.
Relax in detox bath for 30 minutes to an hour.
So there you go 6 strategies to detox your beautiful body. Give at least one a try and see how you feel.
Do you regularly detox? How does it make you feel? If you have strategies of your own that weren’t mentioned please share in the comments below. As always if you think this post was helpful please share.