When our bodies become “toxic,” it means that our natural means of ushering out metabolic waste from normal human metabolism, environmental pollution, and what has become known as the Standard American Diet (or SAD diet – funny, right!) have exceeded the threshold for what the body’s innate detoxification system can tolerate on its own. With this toxic load, every system in the human body can become affected. From our head to our toes and everything in between, toxicity makes us sick!

Help detox your body, naturally.

Take some basic measurements before you begin so that you can track your progress as you go through your program. For example, if weight loss is your goal, measure your waist, hips and weight. If, migraines are an issue, determine the duration, intensity and frequency they currently plague you. Keep a journal, which will help you in more ways than one.

Part of living a healthy life is about finding joy in living. Going to extremes in diet, fitness, or detox practices strip us of the healthy life we are aiming for. So if you want to detox your body, first start by giving it what it needs to do the job it was designed to do.

Make lists! Organize your pantry, toss out the junk, gather recipes, sketch out weekly menus, make shopping lists for healthy foods you will be eating and formulate a cooking schedule to ensure you allot time to prepare your food for the week. Use journaling as a way to “cleanse” your inner world and relieve yourself of mental and emotional stress. Gather any supplements you need that have been advised for you to take by your medical provider. Think about the kind of exercise that will best complement your end goal and plan for it in your schedule. Detoxification requires you to slow down. Make sure you fit time for deep relaxation into your plan. Often, unsavory side effects appear in the initial phase of a cleanse. Two side effects to look for and keep track of in your journal are: Constipation: Move those bowels! Drink plenty of purified water. Try warm water with lemon first thing in the morning. Often, taking 300 mg of magnesium citrate is helpful, too. Or, try an epsom salt bath. Food allergies or sensitivities: These can be obvious or obscure. But chances are, as your body lets go of toxic waste, it will be easier to recognize a hidden reaction to gluten, dairy, soy or any of the other common food allergies.

5 ways to detox your body safely and gently.

Tune in to your body and listen to the cues it provides you. A cleanse is a great journey to learn more about understanding how to operate your very own owner's manual!

Fruits – High in liquid-content, fruits help the body wash out toxins. They are also very easy to digest and full of nutrients, an added bonus in the detox process.

Constipation Persistent headaches, muscle aches and muscle fatigue Eating a lot of swordfish, tuna, shark etc. Several mercury fillings and dental amalgams Food allergies Stubborn weight loss Hormonal imbalances and consistent use of hormone replacement treatments such as birth control or creams like progesterone. Consistent use of NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen Skin abnormalities such as acne, rosacea or eczema A lifetime of consuming the SAD Diet.