The new year is a particularly good time to pay attention to cleansing the body. People have cleansed throughout the ages to remove buildup of toxins and impurities in the system which constantly drain our immune systems.
There are countless ways to cleanse, but here is just a sampling of ideas to consider:
1) Digestive Cleansing
One of the most comprehensive ways to rid the body of the accumulated junk (mucous and build-up) in our digestive track. Digestive cleanses may involve fasting, wheatgrass juice, or juicing, cayenne pepper, enemas and colonics. Each of these is intended to assist the body in the process of elimination (particularly the elimination off all the “bad” things we’ve ingested over the years). Often the results of digestive cleansing – after the initial “reaction” stages of headaches or irritability- include feeling more “clear-headed”, lighter, more aware, less fatigued, energized.
Cleanse and Purity Thyself is a great book to read before doing a cleanse and health and yoga is a great resource on this topic.
2) Skin Brushing / Dry Brush
Brushing your skin with a dry body brush is one of the best ways to clean your skin. It may feel kind of odd but it is more effective than brushing your skin with a wet soapy brush or sponge.
Incorporating a breathing practice, with breath retention, and focus on expelling all the air out of the lungs helps invigorate and cleanse the lungs. Many yoga studios offer a pranayama class or incorporate pranayama in their scheduled classes.
4) Tongue Scraping / Tongue Cleaning
Ever notice that slimy white (or sometimes yellow, if you’re sick) film on your tongue? Sounds, gross, I know, but that’s the mouth’s elimination system and one of the causes of bad breath (the rest of it is coming from your digestive system). A tongue scraper can be used to scrape off coated tongues first thing in the morning.
5) Detox Bath
Use a combination of epsom salt, sea salt and baking soda to help pull out toxins from the skin (another great way to eliminate toxins). This one can be especially beneficial to ease emotional imbalances.
6) Water Flush
Most of us know that it’s important to stay hydrated and drink lots of water. A Balinese healer gave me another tip…drink 2 liters of warm water first thing in the morning to flush your system.