Herbal Cleansing…Your 101

Post on: 2011-04-13.

Posted in: Read.

Usually when a girlfriend passes on caffeinated and alcoholic drinks on girls night out, you start to wonder if she’s pregnant. But, if its spring, she might be cleansing. Cleansing in the spring is very common. How do you cleanse? Well, most people use herbs to help stimulate the body’s natural cleansing abilities.

Here’s your herbal cleansing 101:

Milk Thistle – (silymarin) protects liver from toxins and promotes new liver cell growth.
Tumeric – traditionally used for intestinal support.
Fennel – stimulates movement of food through the stomach and intestines.
Peppermint – traditionally used to sooth the digestive tract.
Psyllium – may help reduce cholesterol, regular glucose and keeps your intestines moving.
Cascara sagrada – used to relieve constipation (a bit aggressive…see below)
Note: Cascara sagrada irritates the colon to encourage emptying. This can be too much for some people. Alternatives such as magnesium hydroxide encourage water movement into the colon, stimulating it to empty.
Today, health retailers carry lots of cleansing-kits that combine these herbs for you. If you’re looking for a non-kit cleanse option, try a high quality milk thistle (80% silymarin), with a bulking agent (psyllium, wheat bran) and something to help your colon move (cascara sagrada, magnesium hydroxide).
My Confession of the Day
Ha! Cleanin’ out the old pipes, eh? That’s something I encourage daily – I use probiotics that are rich in Bifidobacteria (their the “B.” on your probiotic labels). Plus, ensuring my diet is rich in a variety of whole foods that are packed with firbe (e.g. nuts, seeds, vegetables) works great too. Why wait for spring to clean up – do it daily.