Sunday, January 8, 2017

Detox - A well orchestrated lie, followed by many

Nowadays it has become a fad for anyone and everyone to use the word detox. There are so many so called miraculous detox drinks, diet plans and even clinics or so called retreats selling detox packages to gullible people at large.

Whatever we eat, even if it is the most healthiest, organic, pollution free food on this planet, it will have certain toxins. Every fruit, vegetable or meat that we eat has some chemical compounds that are useful and some that are not so useful or are useful in small quantities and harmful or toxic in large quantities. Now our body (actually the body of any living being) is one of the most sophisticated machine ever created. It has its own in built mechanism to detox or remove the toxins from our body. The liver and the kidneys sole purpose is to detox our body. If these organs stop working partially or completely for more than a few hours we will be in trouble medically. So our body is totally capable of detoxing itself. We do not need any external assistance to detox our body. 

So if someone tells you that by drinking this drink or a juice made from a combination of some fruits and spices or vegetables will instantly cleanse your body or melt your fat etc, they are either not aware of the truth or are aware and just fooling you for their benefit materialistic or not.

Yes, I do agree that following certain healthy eating habits or lifestyle habits helps the internal organs especially the digestive tract to function better or assists it. However they do not detox the body. There is a reason why most religions have fasting and trust me it is not for religious purposes but for health. It is always easy to make people follow certain things by saying God said so rather than I say so. So if I can convince people that this article is a divine message received by me from the almighty then am sure that a few million will follow what I write. 

Now that I have explained that there is nothing called a detox, I shall explain some health benefits of following certain habits which just assists or creates an environment for our body to function at an optimum level.

Intermittent Fasting - 
This big word has sprouted out suddenly over the last decade or so like many other health fads or concepts. This is actually a very old practice and is still practiced by many indigenous people worldwide. I will explain it very briefly as it is actually a very detailed and long topic. Now when we increase the gap ( preferably beyond 12 hours) between our meals and our body starts running on the stored fuel, our body goes in to lets say - a survival mode- in this mode the cells rejuvenate, start creating more cells, the secretion of useful hormones gets balanced, immunity improves over time and lots more. We have this big brigade of (so called) experts that tell you how breakfast is the most important meal of the day and it will restart your metabolism etc. However in reality it is not so beneficial. The easiest way to follow intermittent fasting is to delay or skip breakfast. So if you have your dinner by 6:30pm (5 to 7:00pm is the ideal dinner time) and then don't eat anything after that except drinking water, then you sleep and in the morning instead of having breakfast at 7 or 8am you skip it or have a combined breakfast lunch at around 10 or 11am. Now you have a gap of about 16 hours between your dinner and breakfast. The magic within your body will start happening with more intensity after crossing the 12 hour point. It may be difficult for some to suddenly have such a long gap between meals, start gradually increasing the gap by an hour everyday or every few days.  

Fruit / Vegetable juices or salads -
These are good no doubt, however too much of even the good is bad. Always try to regulate your intake of fruits and vegetables so as to get a well balanced input of nutrients and chemical compounds. Nature had this resolved for us, but we had to prove to ourselves that we are clever ( actually brainless) so we messed up what nature had done for our benefit. Different fruits, vegetables, mushrooms etc actually grow in specific seasons only and not throughout the year. There were 2 reasons for that - 1) we need certain fruits / vegetables in certain months to cope with the weather etc. 2) they are available for a month or few months depending upon how much our body needs the nutrients in them.
We went and messed up this balance by growing most of the fruits and vegetables all year round. What is even worse is consuming fruits or vegetables or grains that are not local to the environment you stay in. There is no harm in eating fruits or vegetables or grains growing on any part of this planet. The wrong is in eating lots of a certain food because it is so called very healthy, the best example can be Quinoa. Grown naturally in South America has become the super star grain suggested by dieticians and so called experts worldwide. A grain which if excess was given to cattle to eat by the local inhabitants of South America has today become a pretty expensive grain to buy. The food that grows naturally in a certain climate zone is meant for the people who live in that area.   
So eat what grows locally.

Water -
Water is very important for the functioning of our body. Drinking water at regular intervals helps the body function better. That doesn't mean you drown yourself in gallons / litres of water. Drinking a glass or two before going to bed is useful. Not drinking water during meals and drinking after a minimum 45 minutes is good, you can have a few sips if the food is spicy etc. Drinking 1 litre of water as soon as we wake up is also a good practice to follow. Do not eat or drink anything after drinking 1 litre water for about 20 - 30 minutes, after that you can eat whatever you like unless you are doing intermittent fasting too.

Green / Black Tea - 
These are good to consume. However I have often seen people overdosing themselves with many things that people say is healthy. Green tea is one of them. If you like it do consume it no harm but don't overdo it by many mugs a day. 

There are many many more healthy food habits or lifestyle changes we can follow. Not possible to write about all in one article. It could actually fill up a book. Ideally I sit with my clients get a gist of what they usually eat and then depending on their work, lifestyle, exercise, ailments if any, I go about making a plan or routine for them.

Besides the above there is something which you could do to help your digestive tract get some rest from the regular input that we keep pushing down our throat especially all the processed and sugary foods.

For 3 days in a month you could try eating only fruits for all your meals. However try to eat fruits that are local inhabitants of your area. If you can not then any fruits will do too.

Am making the list below on the basis of fruits found in India
Eat fruits accordingly 

Breakfast - consume watery fruits like - oranges, watermelons etc
Lunch - consume fruits like gauvas, chikkoos, apples etc
Dinner - consume fruits like papaya, musk melons etc

One can have bananas and pomegranate with all meals. 

On the 4th day you can go back to eating everything like before but get back to it gradually.

There are many things that are mentioned above which are not explained in detail. Do get in touch with us if you would like to discuss or ask any doubts.