If you are feeling a little imbalanced from the sedentary winter months, and your skin is looking dull and lacklustre, now is a great time to start to think about cleansing from within to help bring your body and complexion back into balance.
As the sun comes out and flowers unfurl, so does the body’s natural desire to push out toxins. Cleansing is especially helpful for those who are experiencing signs of toxicity: general fatigue, digestive issues, weakened immunity, mouth ulcers, frequent colds and flu, metallic taste in the mouth, strong body odour and skin imbalances including sensitivities, redness, dryness and outbreaks.
The skin is a good barometer of imbalance within the body’s systems. It is often described as the third kidney or the second liver. This is because if any of these elimination organs are overloaded and under-functioning, the skin will have to pick up the slack and try to push out more wastes and toxins through skin cells. This is a common cause underlying many skin conditions.
Assisting the body’s natural cleansing processes will help promote skin that has fewer reactions, is calmer and less inflamed.
Fortunately, spring brings an abundance of cleansing, green fare, from sulphur-rich veggies such as broccoli, leeks and cabbage, to beans and peas, and young bitter greens such as liver-loving dandelion. There’s plenty of other cleansing foods too, such as cucumbers, radishes and daikon.
CLEANSE Inner Beauty Powder is a comprehensive super-greens supplement designed to help detox and purify your body. The alkalising blend features 45 certified organic and bio-fermented fruits, vegetables, seeds, roots, algae, grasses, plant fibre, purifying herbs and digestive enzymes with enough natural probiotic power to support the cleansing of the liver and internal organs, and a super-blast of digestive enzymes to help balance gut health.
An intensive cleanse is best customised to the individual and done under the guidance of a health practitioner. However, here are 10 tips to help ease you into spring looking and feeling good.
1. Ditch the junk
Reduce your consumption and exposure to: processed and packaged foods, sugar, alcohol, white flour based products, cigarettes and cigarette smoke and chlorinated water.
2. Eat fresh
Eat a wide variety of seasonal, wholefoods – Certified Organic is best – and try to make ingredients such as sauces from scratch. The best way to do this is to prepare for the week ahead. Make fresh pestos, hummus, stews, sauces, spring veggie soup and chicken broth. Making large batches means you can freeze for convenience. Keep a cooked organic chicken and cooked quinoa in the fridge to add to salads for lunch alongside fresh nuts, hummus, carrot sticks and celery sticks.
3. Love your liver
Assist the liver’s detoxification process to ensure that toxins from chemicals, hormones, pathogens and allergenic food substances (such as salicylate, histamines, amines, sulphites and glutamates) are neutralised, mopped up and eliminated from the body. You can do this by eating a nutrient-dense, whole food diet. Foods that are especially helpful in supporting the liver include broccoli, beetroot, fennel, bitter greens, kale, barley grass, rosemary, St Mary’s thistle and dandelion.
4. Reduce irritating foods
Avoid common skin and gut irritants including gluten and unfermented dairy. Opt for freshly made almond or coconut milk and try eating live sprouted seed breads – they are lovely toasted with avocado, hummus and pesto.
5. Choose quality protein
Your body needs high-quality protein for amino acids that help it detoxify as well as for repair. Good sources include organic nuts and seeds, tempeh, organic eggs, fish (avoid high mercury-containing fish), organic chicken and red meat once a week if desired. If you eat red meat, opt for pasture-raised grass fed as opposed to grain fed as it is rich in anti-inflammatory fats, unlike grain fed meat.
6. Eat lacto-fermented foods
Eat lacto-fermented foods, and food rich in prebiotics and probiotics. The fermentation process provides beneficial prebiotics and probiotics that support the detoxification and elimination pathways of the body in a number of ways. Ongoing research is constantly discovering new roles and benefits of the beneficial bacteria that naturally reside in our gut. All of The Beauty Chef’s products are rich in bio-fermented goodness and brimming with good bacteria.
7. Bulk up on fibre
Fibre cleanses the bowel and helps boost digestive health and therefore skin health. Foods rich in fibre including: leafy greens, berries, chia seeds, avocados, coconuts, artichokes, peas, okra, brussel sprouts, beans (make sure you soak them to help make them more gentle on your gut), help support the body’s natural cleansing process, including helping to remove toxins so they are not reabsorbed back into the bloodstream.
8. Start with lemon
Begin your day with lemon juice squeezed into water and drink two litres of filtered water a day. Invest in a good filter to remove chlorine, ammonia, particulate matter, heavy metals, sediment and herbicides and pesticides from your water. There are many disinfectants put into our tap water to remove pathogenic bacteria and algae, however, our body becomes the filter of these disinfectants and other impurities if we don’t filter them first.
9. Detox with exercise and body brushing
Regular, moderate exercise alongside dry body brushing supports the body’s lymphatic system and detoxification process. Dry body brushing is a very effective way to improve lymphatic flow, eliminate toxins and help reduce cellulite. Brush in the morning, before you shower. The method? Use light pressure until you adjust to the bristles then move onto firmer strokes. Start with the soles of your feet, use swift upward strokes and brush from the feet, up the legs, working towards your heart. Once you’ve covered your lower body, move to your hands and work up your arms toward your heart. Next, brush your back. Lastly work on your abdomen (moving in a clockwise direction to follow the movement of the colon), chest and neck. Brush for around 2-3 minutes, until skin is rosy and slightly tingly.
10. Clean up your skincare routine
What we put onto our skin can find its way into our body and our liver which is why it is important to lighten the toxic load with clean skincare and personal care products. Products that have a Certified Organic logo are the kindest choice for your body.
Note: The signs of toxicity listed above may be signs of other medical problems. However often they are the body’s signal to you that it needs some cleansing from the inside out. For those with serious medical issues, a cleanse is always best done under the guidance of your health practitioner.