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Why It’s Important to Detox for the Winter: Here Are 2 Healthy Ways You Can Detox

Why It’s Important to Detox for the Winter: Here Are 2 Healthy Ways You Can Detox

Do you detox every once in a while? Well, it’s especially good practice to detox when transitioning between seasons. Now that winter’s approaching, you should consider going on a detox. Why? Your body undergoes changes during the winter – your metabolism, hormones, and circulation adapt to the colder environment. But your lifestyle changes in the winter too – you might stay indoors more and eat different kinds of foods. In the summer, you might have enjoyed lighter, cooler foods and now, in the winter, you might be fonder of heavier meals and warm soups. These transitions introduce new levels of environmental toxins to your body than what your body is used to. The same holds true for your winter foods versus your summer foods – both types of foods have different kinds and levels of preservatives, GMOs, and fat content.

That’s why it’s important to give your body a chance to reset itself by clearing any toxin buildup from your summer lifestyle before you change your lifestyle in the colder seasons. This gives your body an easier, fresh start and helps it better handle the influx of new winter toxins.

Here are two ways you can detox this winter:

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1. Physical Detox Plan

You can help your body expel toxins by dry skin brushing every morning and taking an Epsom salt bath once a week.

Dry skin brushing is an Ayurvedic technique where you use a bristled body brush to gently brush your body using long, sweeping strokes. Brushing towards your lymph nodes helps move lymph through your lymphatic system. One of its many functions is to take toxins away from your tissues. By speeding up your lymph flow, you’re speeding up the detoxification of the toxins your lymph is carrying.

Dry skin brushing also exfoliates dead skin and impurities, while improving your skin’s blood circulation. Better skin circulation means more toxins can be moved out through your pores, and more nutrients from your blood can move into your skin cells.

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According to the National Institutes of Health, placing Epsom salts in your bath helps flush toxins from your pores and replenishes your body’s magnesium stores. Dr. Shilpa Tarugu of Detox of South Florida explains that magnesium from the Epsom salts naturally enters through your pores, like osmosis. The magnesium boost helps detox your body from stress and anxiety because your body uses it to make more melatonin and serotonin, which both fight stress and promote calmness. The Epsom salts’ sulfates coax toxins from your bloodstream out through your pores.

2. Detox Foods

Many holistically healthy foods both nourish and help clear your body of toxins. Artichokes are antioxidant-rich and have been found to help prevent cardiovascular disease. Artichokes also nourish your body with vitamin C, potassium, and other nutrients that are important to your immune and nervous systems. The chlorogenic acid and cynarin found in artichokes also protect and support your liver, which boosts its detoxification abilities.

Eating two Brazil nuts a day helps your body detoxify heavy toxic metals, like mercury. If you’ve been enjoying seafood during the summer, you’ve been exposing yourself to mercury because most seafood is contaminated with some level of mercury. Two Brazil nuts get you your daily selenium, which helps neutralize any mercury in your system. Your body also uses selenium to make enzymes that neutralize free radicals and other toxins in your body. Keeping your selenium stores optimal also keeps these toxin-fighting enzyme levels healthy.

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But one of the best ways to detox through foods is by spending a day eating only antioxidant-rich nuts, vegetables, and fruits. Unlike meat, vegetables, and fruits are rich in cancer-preventing, cleansing compounds. This burst of antioxidants will flood your system and scavenge for and neutralize toxins in your system. Choose cruciferous vegetables, like spinach and broccoli, because they have higher levels of antioxidants and have been found to boost your liver’s detox enzymes. They’re also high in fiber, which cleanses your digestive system of any preservatives and toxins stuck to your intestinal walls.

Some other healthy detox foods include apricots, cantaloupe, and peaches because they’re high in vitamin A, which is good for your eyes and another powerful toxin-neutralizing antioxidant.

When detoxing stay away from dairy and sugary foods because they tax your digestive system. They’re also acidic, which can upset the balance of your gut bacteria and encourage candida proliferation. Candida make harmful toxins that your body has to eliminate, which sabotages your detox efforts. Putting strain on your digestive system also diverts energy from cleansing to digesting.

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Your immune system also helps your body detox by fighting and removing harmful microbes that release toxins. But researchers found that simple sugars promote inflammation and hamper your immune cells’ ability to engulf microbes. Eating sugary foods can lower your body’s resistance, which means it isn’t as effective at preventing microbes from releasing harmful toxins.

Give your body a break and a chance to catch up before you start your new winter lifestyle. Try these detox tips to cleanse your body of any toxins left behind from the summer months. You’ll feel freer and you’ll help protect yourself from many sicknesses and diseases.

Featured photo credit: Pelambung via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on July 23, 2019

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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  • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
  • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
  • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
  • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
  • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
  • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

1. Realize You’re Not Alone

Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

2. Find What Inspires You

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Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

3. Give Yourself a Break

When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

4. Shake up Your Routines

Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

5. Start with a Small Step

Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

More to Help You Stay Motivated

Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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