Detoxing - How do I know if I need to?
How did I know I needed to detox? Well I didn't really, it was after working with people like me a few years ago that we assessed my body was really toxic. My main symptoms was just "feeling unwell"...kind of like a flu that never comes or aches that are low level, but still annoying, and I was so incredibly sensitive to fumes that I couldn't be in the same room as someone who had just sprayed perfume or used dishwashing liquid.
A doctor will not and can not diagnose "general feeling of unwell", so this is where natural therapies play a huge role. The first thing to note is how are you feeling? Are you tired or fatigued, does it feel like you may be getting a cold or flu that never comes? Do you just feel 'blah'. Then ask yourself, how long have you felt like this for? For me, it was quite a chunk of time, and I could compare it to how I have felt in the past, and it just didn't FEEL right.
Pay close attention to your elimination (yes, that's #1's and #2's) You should be going #2's at least once a day and they should be firm, but not hard and dry. Most naturopaths recommend twice a day, while doctors have said to me in the past that every second day is still considered regular. I say, EVERY DAY is the aim. You should be emptying the bladder at least 5-7x per day and it should be pale yellow (straw coloured) and be of a non-offensive odour.
Check your tongue and eyes. There are loads of different things to look at, but 2 basic ones are: Do you have dark or yellowing circles around your eyes and does your tongue feel normal. For me, I had an ongoing burning feeling on my tongue, some people will taste sweet on the tongue even if they haven't eaten anything sweet, others will have a severely white coated tongue. There are too many things to list, but it's about feeling your body and comparing it to a time when you felt great, so if the tongue just "feels" different - then pay attention to it and assess it with other symptoms.
How are you sleeping? For those of us without young babies or shift workers we should be able to get through a nights sleep soundly, and we should be able to wake refreshed in the morning. Our body performs it's growth and repair functions at night - sleep really is your fountain of youth. So if you're not feeling refreshed, then your body may be struggling with it's nightly functions.
How is your diet? A poor diet will leave us feeling sluggish, and there's no point doing a detox if you're not prepared to at least keep your diet 80% healthy.
How is your general health? Do you get recurrent infections (eg flu, colds, tummy bugs, candida, UTI's etc). This is a sign that your immune system is having a little battle with the nasties also.
These are the most basic things you can do to assess whether you need a detox or not.