Once Christmas is over and done with and New Year’s celebrations are behind us, we often start to think about our health and wonder if detox diets can help clean up some of the damage we may have done by overindulging in both food and alcohol. But, have you ever stopped to read what is in some of the detox diets out there on the market? What they might do to your body or if they are worth the sometimes hundreds of dollars you need to spend to make them “work”?
You may not realize it but your liver is constantly working to cleanse and detox your body – it is a natural part of the function of your liver and typically doesn’t need any assistance in this process. If however, you have given your liver a pretty hard time over the festive season (or in general really) you may find that you need to give your liver a bit of a help along; this is where detox diets often fit the bill.
The difference between healthy and unhealthy detox diets
Detox diets are all the same, right? Just a bunch of pretty colored boxes sitting on the shelf at the chemist and all you need to do is follow the instructions, drink some horrible tasting drink for a couple of days and your liver is on its merry way. Well, in theory, yes, but in reality, no.
Do you really want to spend what could be hundreds of dollars just to drink some chemical-filled shakes or lemon drink for a couple of days? I know I would prefer to spend that money at my local supermarket or greengrocers picking up some healthy fresh fruits and veggies that are much more beneficial to help my liver do its job than artificial chemicals in a box (nothing too healthy about that!).
Healthy detoxes such as following a fasting diet plan like the 5:2 diet gives your body an opportunity to rest and recover while still being fed all the minerals and vitamins you need day to day. A fasting diet plan is a version of detox diets can help your body reboot itself by using up stores of energy and fat, help to clear out all the toxins and give your cells a chance for a healthy rejuvenation process.
How to use the 5:2 diet as a healthy detox?
So, if unhealthy detox diets aren’t the way to go, and using healthy fresh food is, you might be wondering what the best type of diet is to follow. Sure you could drop most foods out of your diet and stick to just eating fruit and veggies and drinking water for a week or two and no one will argue with you that you are being unhealthy; but how long do you think you could keep that up for?
How long do you think you could go before craving some of your favorite foods or indulgences?
Following a fasting diet plan like the 5:2 diet will see you helping your body along while not falling into the trap of going back to old, unhealthy foods and ways of eating – you simply need to eat fewer calories two days a week and on the other five you eat your normal amount of food but choose healthy, lean options – veggies, fruits, complex carbs and good fats.
The 5:2 diet means there is no need to cut out your favorite foods so you won’t be left hanging out craving them and thinking about them constantly. Simply, you can eat healthy versions of your favorite meals, all while letting your liver and body rest.
When we think about it, every time we eat we are encouraging our cells to renew themselves, but sometimes we don’t always want those cells to renew – damaged cells aren’t good for the body and we certainly don’t want to renew damaged cells which can cause further issues.
How else can a fasting diet plan help as a detox?
It may not always be food that we want to detox from. Over the holiday period or at festive times we often find ourselves drinking a lot more than normal – sugary drinks and alcohol are usually at the top of the list – and if you need to give your body a rest from these than fasting can certainly help.
It is pretty difficult to fit a couple of glasses of wine, spirits or beer into a day where you can only consume 500 calories, and most people won’t want to waste two days of minimal eating by then going and filling up on alcohol on a non-fast day. Alcohol and sodas have no nutritional value whatsoever.
Simply speaking, by following an intermittent fasting style of eating and using these health tips, you will find that you will eat healthier, and stay healthier because your body is getting a chance to heal; without undergoing any real stress or depriving it for long periods of time of real natural foods.
If detox diets are looking like the way to get your body back on track, make it a healthy one and follow an intermittent fasting style of eating – you are likely to stay on track longer and find your body repairing itself faster; then you would from anything that is artificial and comes in a box off the shelf.