health and wellness tips

6 Easy Natural Ways to Detox

natural ways to detox vidya sury

A couple of days ago, I was at my dentist’s clinic. Just as he was about to get going with the dreaded drill, there was a power outage. It was a good thing it went when it did. We had to wait a little for the generator to kick in and to pass the time, started talking. Somehow the topic turned to health spas and their ads for natural ways to detox. And these days, every where we look, there’s some product or other that claims to remove toxins from the body and help one stay healthy.

The discussion turned to the methods touted by some of the natural healers which involved fasting, liquid diets and herbal medicine. Then we had a good laugh when he said that most of these approaches had no solid research based evidence to show that they were effective. In fact, some of the products recommended also have unpleasant side effects. Unfortunately, some herbal products do not need regulatory approval. So, what can one do?

The good news however, is our body is quite the champ when it comes to natural ways to detox. Even better is the fact that there are simple ways we can make it easier for our body to do its job. For free, because natural is best. No need to go to an expensive spa.

natural ways to detox vidya sury

6 Natural ways to detox

Exfoliate

I was surprised to see this tip. But then it makes sense, doesn’t it? Exfoliating the skin is the fastest and easiest way to get rid of dead skin. This in turn helps better circulation and the growth of new skin cells. The result? You glow, naturally. If you are a fan of eco-living here are some cool recipes for making your own exfoliating skin cleansers from my friend Pratibha Pal.

Another easy recipe I use is mixing chickpea flour in curd with a pinch of turmeric into the consistency of a thick paste and scrubbing it on my skin. In fact, exfoliating your whole body is recommended. For those of us who are too lazy to go through the motions of cosmetics, here’s an easy trick. Use a loofah when you bathe and scrub your body in circular motion all over. This opens up your pores and says goodbye to dead skin cells.

Breathe

I know this is a fundamental requirement to stay alive, but you’d be surprised how you can learn to breathe properly. If you catch yourself holding your breath, or sometimes take in short shallow breaths, you must practice breathing slowly, rhythmically to bring down your stress levels. Call it conscious breathing. And feed your body more oxygen to help it function efficiently and do its job.

The best way to put this in action, for me, is first thing in the morning. I snooze my alarm once. Between that ring and the next, when I am happy to get out of bed, I take slow deep breaths. Tummy breathing here, people. Not chest. Watch your tummy rise and fall as you breathe in, hold it for five seconds and and breathe out slowly. I do this for about five minutes and just lie in the remaining ten, mulling over the day’s to-dos. Try it. It will change your life.

Stretch

Yes. For some of us, this is right out of our comfort zone. We already know that stretching helps the body and mind.  If you are into yoga, even better. Together, stretching and yoga relieve stress and maintain muscle elasticity, facilitating blood flow and keeping your circulation as it should be.  Stretching at least twice or thrice a week is good. Here are some easy stretching exercises – 15 minute workout for your abs. Lots of good exercise routines online. But  if you have any health issues check with your doc to find out what’s safe for you.

Sweat

Not over the small stuff. But good clean sweat. The talk of sweating makes us wrinkle our noses, but it is great for the body as one of the natural ways to detox. So work up a clean sweat. You can do this with aerobics. Or like me, vigorous cleaning house. Or going on a really brisk walk. Or climbing several flights of stairs – which takes care of your cardio exercise, too. As we sweat, the body gets rid of stored fluid, so make sure you drink enough water to make up for the loss. Practice working up to a sweat for a week and drink enough water to see noticeable results in the form of fresher skin, lower stress levels and better sleep!

Minimize pain killers

If you have the habit of depending on painkillers, step back a little and think about this – most painkillers, even Tylenol (or paracetamol as we know it) cause liver damage. Our liver has the job of filtering toxins from the blood. We can prevent it from having to work overtime and be kind to our bodies at the same time by thinking twice before popping that painkiller.

Boost digestion with fiber and water  

To keep our bodies functioning efficiently, fiber and water are vital ingredients. Both perform the role of cleansing our colon effectively. Getting adequate fiber is critical as it keeps the digestive system healthy. Besides filtering out toxins, water keeps us hydrated and ensures that our skin is supple and healthy, and the joints working smoothly. To get water and fiber working for us, the standard recommendation is 30 grams of fiber per day (salads, vegetables, whole grains) and about eight glasses of water. Water is a champ, really.

I follow all the above tips and feel the difference. They’re easy and well within my control.  And oh, tip no.7 – I smile a lot. That helps too!

How do you detox? Do you have any tips for natural ways to detox?

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23 Comments

  • Reply
    Pratibha
    June 19, 2014 at 5:13 pm

    When you actually discover how easy it is to do all the fancy things at home, it is fun! I know I love to experiment with loads of scrubs and polishes at home.
    Pratibha recently posted…5 eco friendly living tipsMy Profile

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      June 27, 2014 at 5:33 pm

      I envy you your patience, Pratibha! 😀 Give me slices of cucumber and I’ll eat them rather than place them on my eyes to cool them! But yes, the kitchen shelf is my beauty stash! 🙂
      Vidya Sury recently posted…Serenity. At Home In My ConservatoryMy Profile

  • Reply
    Susan Scott
    June 19, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    Lovely! Thank you Vidya for the wonderful reminders. I drink hot water. And you’re right – smile for tip top endorphins!
    Susan Scott recently posted…The Approach of the Winter SolsticeMy Profile

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      June 27, 2014 at 5:35 pm

      Smiling always works. As my Mom would remind me, it is so hard to stay mad when one’s smiling! It is a good thing I believed her…as I grew up, I realized that sometimes we have to grin and bear it. 🙂

      Thank you Susan! Water is a miracle liquid!
      Vidya Sury recently posted…Leather Puppetry An Ancient Indian Art FormMy Profile

  • Reply
    Ed
    June 19, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    I like to set my timer for every 30 minutes while I’m working. When it goes off, I do a brief 10-20 second meditation before returning to work.
    Ed recently posted…Do What The World Needs You To DoMy Profile

  • Reply
    pradip
    June 19, 2014 at 8:08 pm

    Thank you for sharing the knowledge to detoxify our body. While these exercise one may continue, one of the major source of toxin in the body is our civilized diet. In summary, if we eat like our villager counterpart i.e lots of fresh green vegetables. unpolished lentils and Rice then we may remain healthy.

  • Reply
    Proactive Indian
    June 19, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    I drink plenty of water every day and sweat a lot during brisk walks most mornings.
    None of the other things so far.
    Proactive Indian recently posted…Misplaced trust or utter foolishness?My Profile

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      June 27, 2014 at 5:42 pm

      Pro, You’re probably doing the top 2! 🙂
      Vidya Sury recently posted…On WritingMy Profile

  • Reply
    Birgit
    June 19, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    I like to meditate even if it is for 5 min. it really helps calm the mind and body. I try not to eat crap. What’s crap? Fast food is crap, potato chips, cheesies(anything that glows orange must be a warning sign) and all that other candy crap and spreads like marshmellow spread-yuck. Actually when i think of the grocery stores we have here I can think of at least 4 rows that could be eliminated and most greatly reduced since most of it is sugar anyway. Eating a little throughout the day is better but hard to do when one is working. I agree about pain meds but, unfortunately, I am on tylenol 3. I have tried not taking it but the pain in all my joints becomes so intense that I cannot walk, talk or hold a pen. There are no other medicines for my type of pain and many Dr’s don’t even take it seriously even though it is a bad syndrome. So I go to a naturalpath and take a variety of vitamins especially to help cleanse the liver and I smile every day:)
    Birgit recently posted…For the MenMy Profile

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      June 27, 2014 at 5:44 pm

      Hugs, Birgit! Pain is taken less seriously by doctors than other ailments. I suspect most of them really respond only when things are in dire straits! My wish for you is that you feel better soon – naturopathy gets to the root of the issue.

      Supermarkets? Oh! Ugh! 🙂
      Vidya Sury recently posted…Leather Puppetry An Ancient Indian Art FormMy Profile

  • Reply
    Uplifting Families
    June 20, 2014 at 7:25 am

    Great tips and suggestions. I agree natural is so much better for you.

  • Reply
    Shailaja V
    June 20, 2014 at 9:17 am

    I love how you make even the most complex habits sound so simple! Interestingly, I have begun to do the deep breathing and stretching over the last few days and it makes such a difference!
    Shailaja V recently posted…Yelling Less- Tip Sheet #3- Befriend Father TimeMy Profile

  • Reply
    Pixie
    June 20, 2014 at 10:11 am

    I do all the above things you have mentioned! besan flour mix every 15 days once! 🙂

    And I also walk and laugh quite a bit 🙂

    very informative post Vidya

  • Reply
    Nibha
    June 20, 2014 at 10:14 am

    That were so nice tips to detox! Thanks for sharing! Will surely be implementing them.
    Nibha recently posted…It’s A Century!!My Profile

  • Reply
    Rajlakshmi
    June 20, 2014 at 11:17 am

    I am glad I do most of the things. The chickpea flour face mask really helps. Thanks for sharing these points.
    Rajlakshmi recently posted…Got my Soccer Nails on!!!My Profile

  • Reply
    Sulekha
    June 20, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    I smile and exercise 🙂 I also drink a lot of water but apart from that I am a lazy person when it comes to cosmetics or home remedies, must try. Thanks for sharing your secrets.

  • Reply
    Betsy/Zen Mama
    June 20, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    Vidya,
    Great tips! i like to have morning breakfast shakes with bananas, pineapple and spinach when i feel the need to detox and cleanse my system. it only takes a few to make me feel new!
    Thanks for these tips… breathing is my favorite!
    Betsy/Zen Mama recently posted…Oh The Possibilities…My Profile

  • Reply
    Shilpa Garg
    June 20, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Simple and easy ways to detox which we can all implement. Water is my friend and love its effect on my skin and system! Must stretch a bit more… literally and out of my comfort zone too. Thanks for sharing these fab tips, Vidya 🙂 ♥
    Shilpa Garg recently posted…Zoutons.com : The Loot is OnMy Profile

  • Reply
    richmiraclefiles
    June 20, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    Hi Vidya’
    You have asked detoxing.The best way out is to practice Suryanamaskar.This is one big Yoga sequence that not only makes you sweat profusely,but also streches you extremely well.

    It makes you do pranayam(deep cyclic breathing) by default,and then elevates your energy levels by many notches.You feel rejuvenated.

    It is said that most exercise makes you use your muscles,but not to their full capacity.However suryanamaskar ensures you use 97% of your muscles.
    That’s pretty good for detox.
    Thanks
    Mona
    richmiraclefiles recently posted…Change Your Self Talk and Get the Most Out of Your ThinkingMy Profile

  • Reply
    Sebastian Aiden Daniels
    June 21, 2014 at 4:24 am

    Thanks for the tips. I need to get a loofah. It might be time to get back into yoga also because it is very calming and peaceful. I agree with the sweating and working out. It makes a big difference. Have a wonderful weekend Vidya.
    Sebastian Aiden Daniels recently posted…The Zen of Surfing – Part 1My Profile

  • Reply
    Jen
    June 21, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    Excellent tips. Add salads and fruits in your diet especially watermelon and you will naturally get detoxed. I love watermelon. It is delicious and flushes you out.

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