Dr. Nate's Experience with our 21-Day Detoxification Program
Your Detox Questions, Answered
Before we get to MY detox progress...
You have probably heard someone you know talk about or try a detoxification program. There is definitely a "correct way" to go about a detoxification so before you try some crazy diet you have read on the internet, keep reading and learn about the best way to detoxify. If you haven't done a detoxification program before let me walk you through some of the basics.
What is detoxification? Detoxification is the process of eliminating toxic chemicals from your body. Pretty simple, right?
Where do toxins come from? Plastics (eg: BPA, can cause estrogen-like effects; PFOA, increased risk of cardiovascular disease), pesticides (eg: atrazine, used in corn and linked to reproductive dysfunction; DDT (still used for mosquito control), liver and nervous system toxin), industrial waste (eg: dioxin, linked to low sperm counts, breast cancer, mental disorders), construction materials (eg: PCB used in insulation, linked directly to cancer, immune/endocrine/reproductive issues), household items (eg: PBDE [flame retardant in couches, carpet, clothing], brain development, thyroid, reproduction issues)... the list could go on-and-on!
Don't our bodies detoxify already? Absolutely, we detoxify by breathing, sweating, urinating, and defecating. Detoxification involves many organs, glands, tissues, organs, and pathways, however the liver is the major player in detoxification.
Why do I need to detoxify then? The liver can only detoxify blood and only the blood that passes through it. Eventually, all the blood in your body will pass through the liver, however not before depositing some chemicals in other tissues in your body. Once there, the liver has no way to break them down and get them out of your body. In addition, the detoxification pathways in the liver require several important vitamins and minerals to operate correctly which many people lack. Finally, the harder the liver has to work to regulate blood sugar, the less detoxification it can do so most people's detoxification pathways in our "high-sugar society" are less than optimal.
So what is the best way to detox? All good detox programs should consist of 3-things and they should always be done under the supervision of a qualified nutritional professional, like your chiropractor. 1) They should involve limiting pesticides from foods which means eating organic and abstaining from caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, etc.. 2) Since toxins are often stored in fat cells, we want to break down fat by eliminating sugar and limit potential food allergens including gluten, dairy, soy, eggs, and nuts. 3) We want to provide specific vitamins and minerals to support both detoxification pathways in the liver. Detoxes can range in length from 10-days to 30-days depending on individual circumstances.
How do I know if I should detox? The simple answer is, everyone could benefit from a routine detoxification program! I personally detox twice a year (Spring and Fall). Symptoms of increased toxicity can include chronic fatigue, headaches, muscle aches, intestinal issues, weakened or altered immune function, poor sleep, and more. People living with chronic pain, auto-immune conditions, fibromyalgia, blood-sugar issues including diabetes, migraines, mood disorders, history of exposure to toxins, and trouble losing weight should strongly consider a detoxification program.
Days 1-21 of my 21-day Detox!
Four days ago I began the Standard Process 21-Day Detoxification Program as a part of my annual detox routine. It has been a number of years since I last completed this particular detox so I figured I was due. The first thing you should know about Dr. Nate here is that I'm, admittedly, a coffee addict. Now I don't always completely go-off coffee during my detoxes, however this time I thought I'd challenge myself...
Day 1- I allowed myself 1-cup of coffee to "wean" myself off coffee. Breakfast consisted of a salad with organic kale and leafy greens, tomato, and avocado, with homemade greek dressing (was SUPER good) and a detox shake with fiber and liver support supplements. For lunch I had steamed cauliflower, a small salad, and some quinoa as well as my shake with some canned pumpkin added-in. Dinner was mashed sweet potatoes, cauliflower, and green beans with, you guessed it, another shake! I've been drinking lots of water to help keep my digestion moving with all the added fiber and to help flush-out toxins (since peeing is one of the ways our body naturally detoxifies).
The first day went really well. I enjoyed everything I ate and drank and I didn't have any food cravings. No general change in any particular symptoms that I've noticed. At this stage my liver is using up stored glycogen in my liver and muscles for energy.
Day 2- No. Coffee. I slept super well last night but woke with some sore muscles. By midday my energy was in the basement and I was ready for a nap! I also noticed some head congestion and a slight headache (probably from the lack of caffeine). Some occasional food cravings but nothing out-of-the-ordinary. Overall, the second day was pretty rough. Today my body probably started to shift to more fat-breakdown. Since toxins are often trapped in fat, as the fat is broken-down the toxins re-enter the blood and can cause muscle soreness, upset stomach, headaches, and other symptoms. That's why the liver support is important.
Day 3- I slept really well again last night but had some really funky dreams which usually only happens when I do a detox. My energy was OK but still battling some of the head congestion. No food cravings at all today! Had some friends over for dinner and made some sweet potatoes, squash, veggie kabobs, and quinoa which everyone loved. Today I could tell my body was settling-in to the new routine. I also got adjusted today because I could tell my body was feeling a little stressed and needed a "tune-up".
Day 4- Slept well again last night and woke with lots of energy. Congestion and headache are completely gone today. Energy is back to "normal", even without caffeine. No food cravings and I can tell that I have lost a little bit of weight as well as some bloating. Overall I feel great! At this point my body is in full-fledged detox mode. Fat (where toxins often accumulate) is being broken down and my liver (thanks to my diet and nutritional support) is efficiently breaking-down those toxins so they can be removed from the body (with help from lots of water and extra fiber).
Day 5 (Saturday) - Headed north to the cabin yesterday for the weekend and luckily had packed a few bananas and carrots to munch-on because I discovered how little good food options there are for a quick bite to eat. I stopped by Aldi up in Brainerd to stock-up for the weekend so I have plenty of good food options which included lots of organic broth and quinoa, lemons, oranges, and berries, cauliflower, broccoli, asparagus, sweet potatoes, some coconut milk, carrots, kale, leafy greens, and olive oil. If you haven’t check-out the Detox Recipe book from our clinic, I highly recommend doing so. They have great recipes for soups, salads, and salad dressings…among other things.
I can tell I’m in full-detox mode now because I’ve noticed some urgency when I have to pee. Whatever my body is pushing-out is irritating my bladder and my bladder just wants it out… NOW!
Slept like a rock again. I drink distilled water up at the cabin which lacks any minerals and can make it difficult for our body to absorb. To help, I add a pinch of sea-salt to my glass of water before I drink it. I forgo the normal cabin breakfast of bacon, eggs, and fried potatoes and instead make a sweet potato and carrot hash with a small salad. I opt to pack the pontoon cooler with lemon-water and orange-water to stay refreshed. After dinner I blended two-scoops of the Chocolate SP-Complete with hot water for delicious and nutritious hot chocolate!
Day 6 (Sunday) - I can tell I’ve lost some more weight and am feeling less bloated (even though I never really felt bloated before). Our neighbors up north invited my family over to their lake-home for lunch (we are all doing the detox together) and I let them know of our food options. They were super gracious and prepared a beautiful meal of salad options, fresh fruit, and teas. It turned-out great and it helped me realize that social get-togethers and healthy choices CAN go together.
Today was a day of reckoning a little bit because I realized how content and happy I am just eating real, good food. Do I miss coffee and cashews and burgers on the grill? Sure, but I’m comforted knowing that eating healthy can be fun, fulfilling, simple, and enough.
Day 7- Today is the last day taking the SP-Cleanse before we switch to SP Green Foods which supports a different part of the detoxification pathway. I’m a third of the way through the detox and I’m eating, sleeping, pooping, breathing, and feeling great! My energy and mood are good, I’m not craving anything, and I just have an overall improved sense of health.
Day 8- Had very vivid and weird dreams last night (again, I rarely dream… at least ones I remember). Energy and concentration remain good. Overall, feeling great.
Day 9- Well, I somehow managed to get poison ivy over the weekend. I have a few spots on the tops of my feet, stomach, and face that are swollen and are awfully itchy! Other than that, things are going well. I've been experimenting more with adding different fruits and vegetable to my shakes to mix things up. I've had a couple of people comment that my face looks slimmer and "more tan" which I take as a "healthy glow" which I've noticed as well.
Day 10- My poison ivy is in breakout mode and has become incredibly itchy and "scabby" with some swelling. I'm using Thymex, Antronex, teat tree oil, and doing some icing to mange the swelling and itching.
Tomorrow starts day-11 when quality, organic meats are reintroduced and I can't wait; just in time for the weekend! I'm very happy with how things are going so far. Heading up to the cabin again this weekend so will have to make sure to plan-out my meals accordingly.
Day 11- Today is "meat day"! We are allowed 2-4 servings of organic, minimally processed meat a day and half must be fish. I made grilled salmon for dinner along with some veggies which was perfection. I continue to feel great. No food cravings.
Days 12-14- I've gotten into the habit of making a GIANT bowl of salad for breakfast consisting of organic kale and lettuce with a chopped-up tomato and avocado. I use a homemade Greek dressing that I found in the Standard Process Purification Recipe book which is both super easy to make and also delicious. On weekends I make a carrot/sweet potato hash which is great and super filling. I'm eating about one serving of meat a day and, surprisingly, that is enough. I continue to do 3-shakes a day (one with each meal) which i LOVE. I use12oz vanilla, unsweetened almond milk with 2-scoops SP-Complete, 1-scoop Whole Food Fiber, and 1-banana. Occasionally I'll add fruit or canned pumpkin to mix things up.
I'm really feeling great! I've lost anywhere from 5-10lbs and my energy is super stable and reliable.
Days 15-21- The last week of the detoxification was both a breeze. By this time everything has become routine and habit and I almost forget that I have food limitations. Sure, I miss coffee and I still occasionally let-out a whimper when I pass a Starbucks but I'm also proud of myself for going a full 21-days without it. Plus, fantasizing about tomorrow morning's cup of life makes it that much enjoyable.
It's my plan to pretty much stick with the purification program going-forward with some slight modifications like going-down to 1-shake a day and decreasing the amount of support supplements to a maintenance level. I SO recommend this program to anyone struggling with energy and blood sugar issues, thyroid or other hormonal problems, chronic pain, fibromyalgia, fertility issues, and much more. If you have any questions or would like to start the program FEEL FREE to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I would be happy to get you started.