According to Traditional Chinese medicine, Spring is associated with liver and gallbladder. Liver is an organ with an incredible capacity for regeneration. A healthy individual can regenerate a brand new liver every month. Regeneration slows down with age, illness, toxins, alcohol abuse, junk food consumption, nutritional deficiency and emotional stress. At anytime your liver contains 10% of your total blood and pumps 1.4 litres of blood every minute to filter toxins and infections. The liver is the number one cleaning lady in our body. The liver’s ability to function properly impacts almost every system in the body. Malfunction of the liver contributes to all allergies, skin problems, digestion issues, hormonal imbalances, cancers, diabetics, fat metabolism and many other health problems.
9 out of 10 patients I see in our clinic need some kind of liver detox and support. Here are some simple and safe ways to cleanse your body in the spring.
2-3 days Juice Fast
Rest your digestive system. Juices require less work from the stomach. Processed food, pesticides, medications and stress can disrupt the balance of gut microbiome (flora and fauna balance) as well as cracks in the intestinal lining and can cause leaky gut. Consuming a phytonutrient-dense rainbow plant-based juice diet helps to repair the gut itself. An organic juice diet also reduces the liver’s overload and allows it to rest and regenerate.
Eliminate harmful foods. The juice cleanse eliminates dairy, wheat, gluten and processed foods from the diet (as well as coffee and alcohol). In my experience, many patients experience some form of inflammatory reaction to dairy, wheat, corn soy, eggs and food additives.
Increase life span and anti-aging effect. Juicing floods the body with mega dose of easily accessible nutrition and enzymes. It helps to combat inflammation and to promote cell regeneration. Fasting with juice gives your body what it needs and takes away the extra burden of toxins and calories. Research has shown intermittent fasting prolongs life span and slows down aging.
It improves energy, rehydrates the body and reboots the immune system. Historically, fasting has been used as an effective tool to combat autoimmune disease.
How To Do It
- Choose 2-3 days of your life that aren’t stressful, not packed with activities.
- Load up with fresh vegetables and fruits, local organic is best. Avoid the “dirty dozen” if they are not organically grown - please read: http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/dirty_dozen_list.php
- Eat a light dinner the night before the fast. Don’t go to bed late.
- On the day of fasting, drink a glass of warm water with fresh lemon juice first thing in the morning. Avoid heavy exertion. Make sure you are properly hydrated. Remember to gently chew the juices to add oral enzymes to further ease digestion.
- You can drink 1-1.5 litres of freshly made juice a day during the fast. If you wish to blend the vegetables and juice into a smoothy is fine too.
- It is best to use 60-80% vegetables and 40- 20 % fruits.
- It is good to add some warming herbs in the juice to help boosting metabolism, e.g. ginger, parsley, cilantro, cayenne or cinnamon.
- It is best to consume the juice within 30 minutes of making it to get the maximum amount of enzyme and nutrients. But if you are busy, you can make it enough for the day and keep the juice in the fridge.
- Bottled juice has significantly lower amount of nutrients and no viable enzymes.
- Drink the juice/smoothy 4-6 times a day. If you have a tendency for low blood sugar, you can drink a cup once every 2 hours.
- No alcohol, pop or coffee during the fast. If you are prone to a caffeine withdrawal headache you can drink some black or green tea.
- Break the juice fast with some clean, easily digestible breakfast. e.g.. oatmeal, fresh fruits. Eat light for couple days.
People with diabetics, pregnancy, during menstruation, kids, and infection should not do a juice fast. If you have other major illness please check with your ND first.
If you wish to do it longer than 2-3 days, please check in with your ND first and have a proper supervision.
My Favorite Recipes
- 6 carrot, 2 beets, 1 large cucumber, 4 celery stalk, 2 apples, 1/2-1 inch of ginger root.
- 2 beets, 8 celery stalks, 1 handful of cilantro, 1 lemon peeled, with a little bit ginger or cayenne.
- 2 beets, 4 carrots, 1 handful of parsley and 1 lemon peeled.
- 4 oranges, peeled. 4 celery stalks, 1 lemon, peeled. 1/2 cup dandelion greens.
- 12 leaves of kale (1 cup of baby kale packed), 1 cucumber, 8 asparagus stalks, 8 celery stalks, 1/2-1 of fresh ginger root, and or dash of cayenne.
Liver friendly food that you should eat in abundance
Beet and beet greens, leafy greens, parsley, cilantro, dandelion leaves, artichoke, carrot, garlic, turmeric, asparagus, lemon, cabbage, brussel sprouts and broccoli.
Be sure you cook cabbage, brussel sprouts and broccoli. Eating these raw will slow down your metabolism by interfering with thyroid function.
Liver and gall bladder flush
These flushes are a stronger form of liver and gallbladder cleansing that are not suitable for everyone. Please contact your ND for assessment and individual instruction.