A client recently mentioned that she wants to do another cleanse. Grew up on junk food was the reason she gave. Makes sense, I thought. Every now and then a deep clearing of the digestive tract is good practice, especially since many of us eat more than we need and often not as well as we wish.
For this, I have just the thing: an Intestinal Cleanse adapted from Jeremy Safron’s delightful little book, The Raw Truth. But, first, I am concerned about something. Does our present culture encourage a certain yo-yo approach to eating? Binges, extreme fasts, indulge, detox..?
The best way we take care of ourselves is by sustaining good habits with regularity and consistency. Healthy, whole food not only nourishes us, but also detoxifies and cleanses our bodies. Digestive enzymes, soluble and insoluble fiber, protein, good flora, vitamins and minerals are all in vegetables, fruit, whole grains and legumes. All these bits and pieces that scientists try to pry out of food or synthesize in a lab, and that superstores sell as the next sexy thing, are already in nature’s pure whole food.
Before I commit to a cleanse I like to ask myself ~ Is an Intestinal Cleanse a healthy way to love myself? Is it needed? Is now the time to do it? Or, am I using it as a subtle form of punishment? A quiet act of self-flagellation?
Because women do use food, and diets, to hurt themselves. I certainly have ~ and would not want, in any way whatsoever, to encourage this.
Still, there are times when an intestinal cleanse is a good idea. Ayurveda suggests we do it annually each Spring. For such times, this apple-based drink is sweet and easy.
One final warning ~ Psyllium is habit-forming and should not be taken daily. It dries out the colon, increasing your need for it and creating a vicious cycle. Therefore, use it only when necessary and repeat this kind of intestinal cleanse once every three months at the most.
For safe bowel regularity, try Triphala. It works by strengthening the colon, optimizing its function, and is not drying so can be taken daily. Still, it is always best to seek the advice of an Ayurvedic Practitioner.
The wisdom in your body knows what to do with the intelligence in nature’s food. Trying to outsmart the body with one cleanse or dietary regime after another doesn’t work. Over-fussing with digestion, elimination and metabolism turns the body-wisdom off.
So eat what appeals to your body-wisdom. Eat when you are hungry. Eat warm foods in the morning and evening. Make lunch your biggest meal when the fire to digest is naturally ablaze. Eat what’s in season and align yourself with the beauty of nature, time, the earth’s spin, the cosmic churn. This will, in turn, create peace, harmony, abundance and ease in your life.
Food is more than just what you put in your mouth. It is the relationship you have with yourself, with life, with the world.
What kind of relationship do you want to have?
I invite you to make it sacred.
So true, and so inspiring!
“Food is more than just what you put in your mouth. It is the relationship you have with yourself, with life, with the world.” Love this, Laura! Thorough, thoughtful and yes, sacred. I believe that our culture encourages a certain “yo-yo” approach – the constant change feeds our need for activity and instant gratification. For this very reason the consistent practices of moderation, meditation and yoga are particularly valuable. The art of allowing ourselves to be still. The act of listening to what our body needs not simply what we think it wants. There is nothing more precious than nurturing a sacred daily relationship with ourselves. In health & gratitude:-)
Thank you, Clea. So true!
Thank you for such a sane and gentle reminder of our own wisdom.
as a nutritionist i couldn’t have said it better myself. laura- thankyou for the wisdom you share with us, i fully appreciate it :)kelli
Happy to have discovered your blog! It’s beautiful and beautifully written. We use psyllium on a semi-regular basis as part of a breakfast drink, so I’m pleased to learn that, long-term, it is not the best choice. Best wishes, Laura
I LOVE your blog! The photographs, the design, layout and style, the variety ~ it is visual poetry. Thank you for your creative expression and inspiration. Blessings!
Thanks Laura…your blog is great and an inspiration – Thank You!
Thank you, Gregg! As are you, in so many ways 😉
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