‘Cleanse’ is a scary buzz word. I know I don’t want to drink juice or cayenne pepper lemon water for 5 days straight. Well, good news…you don’t!
Laxative teas, juice diets, or the master cleanse are all quick ways to dextoxify your body (and in less medical-ish jargon- ‘poop’), I like to take the route that allows for a less extreme way to reset your body and more about adapting healthy habits to aid your digestive system.
My naturopath once told me that if we “consistently clear out the toxins in your system, our body is equipped to take care of itself”. This tip has stuck with me. Our digestive track is a super complex internal organ. If we give it the nutrients and tools to keep itself healthy, it can look after itself!
1) DIETARY FIBER
Eat your fruits and vegetables! Your body needs two kinds of dietary fiber- soluble (oatmeat, lentils, apples, oranges, pears, strawberries, flaxseeds, blueberries, cucumbers and carrots) and insoluble (whole wheat, seeds, nuts, grapes, brown rice, tomatoes, fruit, and root vegetables) fiber help the contents in your gastrointestinal tract move through the system. Check out www.eatright.org for suggestions for how to create balanced meals.
2) DIGESTIVE TEAS
Some teas that I enjoy after a heavy meal include Green Tea, Ginger Tea and Pu’erh Tea which is a nice dark fermented tea from China. Caffeine-free Green tea in small amounts can help the way the body breaks down food and can assist your metabolism and weight-loss. Ginger tea is soothing for nausea, diarrhea , indigestion and cramping. It can also help with stress. And my favorite Pu’erh Tea, which is a bitter black tea that can also be found mixed-in popular David’s Tea concoctions or Teavana…but I like mine straight up. The Chinese also drink this tea to counteract hangovers and there are claims that it aids weight loss. I don’t know about the previous two claims, but I find it is soothing on my upset stomach after greasy foods.
Not all bacteria are bad. Your stomach is made up of various strands of bacteria that help break down the food in your system. Probiotics can be beneficial in the treatment of individuals who suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), however, there is not enough research done on this link to which exact probiotics can help ease the symptoms. Thankfully, there are lots of easy drinking yogurts and milk that have the addition of various strains of probiotics that help IBS- Activa and Bio K+ are two I have tried with good results.