Detox 101- The ABC’s of Detox & Healing
A: Alkalize the Body & Adrenal Support
B: Bowels & Gut Microbiome
C: Cleanse the Liver
Key factors of the ABC’s
(For the most gentle detox results for sensitive individuals, approach the ABC’s in order, one-at-a-time & take YOUR time)
1. To effectively alkalize your blood you need MINERALS; eat a rainbow of colour on your plate daily including a variety of farm-fresh fruits & vegetables. Scientists now recommend 7-13, 1-cup servings daily to prevent Cancer and cardiovascular disease. The pH of healthy blood is 6.8 – 7, there are a few ways to test yourself to see if you are in fact in a pH balance; when you are in balance it means that your liver is releasing enough minerals to buffer the acidic foods, stress and other chemical toxins to maintain health. In an acidic condition, disease will thrive such as, heart burn, indigestion, IBS, autoimmune conditions, arthritis, bloating, Cancer, heart disease, etc.
The best concentrated forms of alkalizing foods are raw juice, sprouts, fermented vegetables, lemon water, spring water, chlorophyll, spirulina, sea weed, wild green herbs or weeds & wheat grass shots. *Juice Plus+ has the most research for reducing inflammation which will alkalize the body quickly. It is a concentrated cold-pressed juice, dried into powder with the sugar removed & pulp, seeds, peels, & fibre intact! *Juice Plus+ will optimally replace a multivitamin and offer much more antioxidant and anti-inflammatory protection.
2. The adrenal glands are basically nerve bundles and nerves need MINERALS to thrive (see alkalize above!), they also love Adaptogenic herbs, healthy fats including fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, K & CoQ10 (grass-fed butter, coconut oil, liver, desiccated liver pills & cod liver oil), Vitamin C, B-Vitamins, rest, enough sleep, meditation, restorative yoga, spinal health, good posture, breathing, positive thoughts and loving affirmations.
3. Healthy bowels & gut microbiome has many levels to achieve thriving health and limit disease:
-Alkalize the gut environment (this again!)
-Probiotics & prebiotics: fermented foods & drinks, dirt, root vegetables, polyphenols, no antibiotics and reduce chemical toxins.
-Fiber: flax seeds, chia seeds, vegetables, fruit, herbs, clay, diatomaceous earth, and dirt.
-Hydration: Minerals (more whole foods), magnesium, spring water, green leafy vegetables, cucumber, watermelon, herbal tea, drink ENOUGH clean water (3- 4 litres daily including tea).
-Grounded eating habits: calm down before you eat, breath-work & prayer before food, meditation practice. Eating your meals on a daily rhythm: the circadian system in the brain thrives on this, or else inflammation will occur and confusion in cell communication causing over-eating.
-Reduced stress: the bowels have a complex nervous system wrapped around them and stress also increases inflammation which will create an imbalance in good vs. bad bacteria. When the bad bacteria thrive they send negative messages to the brain to make unhealthy choices.
For information about my 8 Weeks to Gut Wellness program, click here!
4. Cleanse the liver with bitter herbs & food such as lettuce, spring dandelion greens, stems and flowers in the back yard & arugula.
-Milk Thistle, Schizandra, Dandelion and Chamomile are my favorite herbs for effective liver detoxification.
-*The Liver & Gallbladder Flush (olive oil & lemon juice) is the most effective way to clear the liver (try it before gallbladder surgery). The Herbal Mama has a guide and detox kit available.
-Root vegetables & herbs help to support and build the liver cells. Dandelion root, burdock root & beetroot are some of the best. Bitter tasting vegetables & herbs literally help to release liver toxins and gall stones!
-Reducing stress, fried & packaged foods, hydrogenated oils, margarine, eat only organic & grass-fed animal products including butter.
-Reduce animal protein! Protein is difficult for the liver to process, especialy animal protein. In Asian cultures where their diet is higher in fat and plant foods while being low in protein, thrive far better than Western cultures low-fat and high protein diets, with little diversity in plant food.
The liver is the fat factory of the body, when it is functioning properly it will help to harness fat metabolism which will allow the body to start using fat for energy, burning up fat stores quickly. This will also help to assist the absorption of fat soluble vitamins: so important for adrenal health as mentioned above.
Leading into INTERMITTENT FASTING! This is my favourite way to burn fat fast, to live a long life, and to feel amazing too! I totally recommend just jumping in to this as long as you are not showing any symptoms such as:
-Diabetes, glucose intolerance, autoimmune conditions, nausea, fat intolerances, uncontrollable cravings and binge eating.
All those symptoms are a sign that you need to start at the beginning of the ABCs of detox and be your own health detective to sort it all out, also finding a health practitioner that can guide you will be a benefit. You will notice these as side-effects from intermittent fasting if you are unsure you have those symptoms listed above. Basically you will be cranky because you will feel hungry, so don’t push it and just start eating regular meals, find your daily rhythm with food, DON’T SKIP MEALS unless you are intentionally doing the intermittent fasting program which is very simple =
~Don’t eat processed & packaged foods, fried foods, trans fats, margarine, chips, crackers, alcohol, pop, sugar.
~EAT grass-fed animal products, only natural sweeteners in moderation such as honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar, stevia, and fruit.
The well-researched book, Eat Fat, Lose Fat recommends consuming 4-6 Tbsp. of coconut oil daily! You can integrate that by adding 1-2 Tbsp. to smoothies, your coffee or coffee substitute in the morning (Dandy Blend- great prebiotic), on sprouted or sourdough toast, in soups. You also want to take a cod liver oil supplement to get your fat soluble vitamins into balance or eat more organ meats from healthy wild or grass-fed animals.
The Bulletproof diet recommends adding Brain Octane oil, a highly concentrated coconut oil with MCTs that give your body ketones to convert into a fat fuelled metabolism (fat burning). Download the Bulletproof roadmap or read it here.
The Green Smoothie Challenge incorporates the Shred10, 10 day detox program & the Bulletproof intermittent fasting (start at beginner level), the Eat Fat, Lose Fat concepts, and The Herbal Mama green foods & micro biome diet additions as well.
–Start your day off with a bulletproof coffee THIS IS YOUR FIRST SMOOTHIE (recipe: add 1 tbsp. of coconut oil and 1 tbsp of grass fed butter with hot coffee and blend) using the Dandy Blend coffee replacement instead if you need a break from coffee. Dandy Blend feeds the gut micro biome so is an excellent bowel buddy 😉 Add: Complete Juice Plus+ vegan protein blend (contains 14 “greens”), collagen powder, spirulina, glucomannan (PGX) and cinnamon powder if you like.
You will also be taking 30 fruits & veggies in your Juice Plus+ capsules now! (Approx. 5 servings of a diversity of plant foods).
Then try to “fast” until 1 or 2pm having no snacks, a 6 hour fasting window is the minimal goal (9 hours max), if you get hungry have some fatty snacks on hand such as trail mix where the nuts have been soaked in salt water for 6-12 hours and roasted at a low temperature until crispy, or raw organic cheese & an apple, or veggies and cashew cheese or hummus (home made is best).
-Have a fatty green smoothie for lunch. I recommend adding brain octane oil to the Juice Plus+ Complete vegan protein blend. I will add more spirulina powder or add a handful of leafy greens and an avocado if I have access to my Vitamix blender (coconut oil if there is no Brain Octane oil handy). It is recommended to chew your smoothie and roll it around in your mouth a bit… Maybe chew on some lettuce and avocado along with it to be sure you are chewing, or a few crispy nuts (Don’t over eat your nuts!)
-For supper you will want to eat a healthy balanced meal, very little starchy carbs, some prebiotic root veggies, some grass-fed animal protein or sprouted veggie protein, high amount of healthy fats, and high in greens and coloured veggies. No fast food, no gluten, no dairy: except raw, grass-fed cheese and milk kefir or full-fat organic grass-fed yogurt; making saturated fats a priority in your meal, animal foods need to be grass-fed or there will be toxins present which are acidic and will shut down all cell metabolism! The Bulletproof diet roadmap has all the optimal food choices listed! Sprouted beans, legumes and soured grains are also acceptable; according to Nourishing Traditions they will alklanize and neutralize phytic acid.
No eating past 8pm. Traditional intermittent fasting is during the night for a 12 hour window, until 8am where you will have breakfast. Bulletproof upgrades this traditional fast with his bulletproof coffee to fast another 6 hours, for a total fasting time of 18 hours, where you eat only alkaline foods until supper… save the root veggies until then. Read the “Bulletproof” roadmap above, that is my favourite way to do it.
The Shred10 program itself has 2 cookbooks that will help you to find more inspiration to cook tasty plant-based meals. There is also many smoothie recipes to choose from (add “greens” to boost the gut microbiome!).
A further upgrade with The Herbal Mama’s “Flush-Fat-Fast” kit is to add L-Carnitine & a 10-Day Detox Tea blend to your Shred10 program. L-Carnitine is recommended to be taken in high doses during a 10 day or 2 week cycle… and ween off slowly when you stop. Here is my tried & tested guide to L-Carnitine: Start with 1500mg twice per day, on an empty stomach before exercise is best. Then I take the second 1500mg dose before bed (empty stomach is 2 hours after food). L-Carnitine is not a stimulant, but some people have noticed that it keeps them up at night… If you notice that, take it as soon as you wake up 30 minutes before breakfast and your second dose before your workout or another time during the day on an empty stomach… best to create a rhythm with it by taking it at the same times every day! Near the end of the 10 day Shred program you will want to start taking less: 1000mg twice per day for 2 days, then 500 mg twice per day until the bottle is done (60 caps bottle in my kit)… you will go over 10 days and that is ok!
The 10-day detox tea is designed for balancing blood sugar levels (Cinnamon) and supporting the Thyroid gland. There is Bladderwrack in this tea which is an iodine supplement. If you are already on synthroid, you will want to watch your heart rate and any other hyper thyroid symptoms. Synthroid is bascially an iodine supplement!! So more may not be better… Sea weeds are a lost food, we need those alkaline minerals to keep the toxins away! Other herbs in my detox tea are: Holy Basil an adaptogenic herb to keep the stress away and help you sleep at night. Nettle is an herb filled with alkaline minerals that is known for it’s anti-inflammatory effects. Drink this tea in a strong 10 minute steeped infusion, in a 1 litre glass mason jar to be drank all day like iced tea… add a drop of stevia or a tsp of honey when hot and add ice if you like. This tea will flush your body with many plant nutrients to reset many detox pathways in the body!
If you are interested in starting any of these programs contact Elaine Doucette Cl.H with The Herbal Mama. You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram to find out about the latest group programs online and locally in Edmonton, AB. Contact me here.
Alkalinity & Antioxidants: “Several Indicators of Oxidative Stress, Immunity, and Illness Improved, Consuming an Encapsulated (Juice Plus+) for 28 Weeks”, Institute of Physiological Chemistry, 2007
Insulin Resistance, Obesity: “Reduction in adiposity in conjunction with an improvement in insulin resistance”, The Journal of Pediatrics, 2012
Fitness: “Juice Plus+ can attenuate blood oxidative stress markers induced by eccentric exercise. The glutathione ratio was elevated immediately post exercise in both groups”, Medical Science in Sports & Exercise, 2011
Teeth: “Daily supplementation with encapsulated (Juice Plus+) attributed to reducing levels of oxidative stress secondary to the resolution of periodontal inflammation” Journal of Clinical Periodontology, 2012
Skin: “Juice Plus+ helps improve skin hydration, skin thickness, and circulation in skin capillaries” University of Witten-Herdecke, Germany, 2012
The Liver & Gallbladder Miracle Cleanse, Andreas Moritz, 2007
Healing with Whole Foods, book by: Paul Pitchfork, 2002
Eat Fat, Lose Fat, book by: Sally Fallon & Dr. Mary Enig (International expert on fats), 2006
The Bulletproof Diet, Dave Asprey, www.bulletproofexec.com
Nourishing Traditions, book by: Sally Fallon, Weston A. Price Foundation 1945-present