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(Class Notes from Dr. Blesoff)

Thank you to everyone who attended our community class “Spring into Spring: Creating a Cleanse”, this past Wednesday evening at Tilia Natural Health. I had such a great time talking with all of you! For those who couldn’t join us, this post will highlight some of the ideas I touched on.

Spring is a great time to plan an intentional detox or cleanse for yourself. It is a season of transition, physically and energetically, from inward to outward. We see this in the animals and plants around us as they emerge from hibernation and the comforts of the soil. That which has been stored over winter may no longer serve us in spring. A detoxification plan can work to facilitate this transition physically, mentally, and spiritually.

The goals of a cleanse include:
• Optimize and support all the organs of Elimination
• Decrease your Total Body Burden by Minimize intake of toxins, Mobilize toxins, and Maximize excretion of toxins
• Address the physical, mental, and spiritual realms

If you are under the care of a physician or following a medication regimen, please inform your health care provider that you are planning on doing a light detox as it may shift the metabolism of certain prescription medications.

Plan ahead and pick a time where you can set aside time for yourself, with minimal commitments, to start . You can do this detox for 2 to 4 weeks.

Our primary organs of elimination include: Skin, Lungs, Kidney, Colon/Liver, and Mind. Below are some suggestions to optimize function of each, this is not an all-inclusive list, but some of what we touched on during the Detox class earlier this week:

Increase your fiber intake when you increase your veggie intake!

• Optimize digestion by taking 1 Tbsp Apple cider vinegar (in a little water) before meals or taking digestive enzymes with meals
• Pick one or two food groups to eliminate from your diet. These may be foods that you are suspicious or curious about it’s effect on your body. Some ideas to start with: gluten, dairy, corn, soy, nightshades, citrus, potatoes.  For information and ideas on meal planning, one of my favorite resources is the Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen blog by personal chef Alissa Segersten and nutritionist Tom Malterre MS, CN.  Their cookbook is fantastic.
• Increase your fiber intake. Your goal should be 25-30 grams per day. It is best if fiber comes from fresh vegetables such as broccoli, artichokes, beets, dark leafy greens, turmeric, burdock, onions, garlic. These veggies will also enhance Liver detoxification pathways.

• Minimize toxins in your food. Use the http://www.ewg.org “Dirty Dozen/Clean 15” Guide to prioritize organic picks
• Castor Oil Packs 3-4 nights per week to tonify the Liver and improve lymphatic circulation
• Optimize regular elimination with daily exercise

• Minimize toxic load from your skin care products. Take a look at the Environmental Working Group’s latest post on how to read product labels and know what chemicals to avoid http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/\
Try this: Dry Skin Brushing before bed. See my previous post for more details
SWEAT is an excellent way to encourage elimination through the skin.  Though exercise is optimal, sweating in the sauna or steam room is also very efficient way to detox through the skin.

• Decrease exposure to chemical irritants including strong perfumes and pollution
• Deep breathing after exercise, as part of a meditation practice, or relaxing before bed
Try This: Inhale X 4 count, Exhale X 8 count, Hold x 4 count. Repeat 5 to 10 times

herbal tea is a great way to increase hydration

• Take a break from coffee, soda, alcohol (it doesn’t have to be cold turkey, make it gradual)
• Increase your hydration.  Drink 1/2 your bodyweight in ounces of water or herbal teas
• Substitute green tea, coconut water, or herbal teas. Some of my favorite herbs: Yarrow, dandelion root, ginger, Elder flower, schisandra, burdock root, nettle leaf

• “Unplug” your cell phones, TV, computers, and other technologies 1 hour before bed.
• Clear the clutter of your mind and your home (maybe organize a goodwill drop-off)
• This can be a time for reflection. Be gentle with yourself. Pay attention to any thoughts, emotions, or feelings that may come up for you during this time. Let them go as needed.

These are very basic fundamental suggestions, a place to start. Following these tips will point you (and your body) in the right direction toward enhancing your body’s ability to Detoxify that which you no longer need.

We also discussed specific products to support areas of detoxification. Contact your doctor at Tilia Natural Health to learn more about these.

Please join us for our next monthly community class on Thursday May 12, 2011 from 6-8pm. Dr. Laura Walton will be speaking on the topic Allergies: seasonal, food, and environmental. Learn more about it on our website.

In health,
Jamine Blesoff, ND

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