The Benefits of Gut Cleansing

Gut cleanses have been around since the ancient Egyptians and Greeks, but they have experienced a surge in popularity in recent years. There’s good reason: plenty of anecdotal evidence suggests that a gut cleanse can positively affect your overall physical, mental, and emotional health.

Before you get scared off by the idea of consuming nothing but lemon water for a week, rest assured that the purpose of any do-it-yourself cleanse should be to rid your body of toxins and excess waste, not to strip it of nutrients altogether. Quick, extreme cleanses often carry health risks and shouldn’t be attempted without medical supervision. But a gradual, gentle gut cleanse simply involves lot of liquids and clean eating. It’s easy, safe, and carries plenty of health benefits that can affect how you feel and look.

Increased Energy

In an age when it’s common to overwork and undersleep, we could all do with a bit more energy to carry us through our busy days. In fact, a lack of energy often stems from poor diet, and unfortunately, the more tired we are, the less likely we are to make healthy food choices. It’s just easier to swing by a fast food drive-in for dinner instead of trying to make a bowl of turmeric quinoa and baked vegetables.

There’s no denying that a clean eating plan takes some effort, but by planning ahead and setting aside time for food prep, you’ll find that it’s both possible and rewarding to create nutritious meals that support a healthy digestive system — and you may be surprised at how easy it becomes when your energy levels are higher.

Metabolism Boost

With over 65 percent of adult Americans deemed overweight, weight loss is on a lot of people’s minds. But it isn’t just how much we eat that factors into our weight: what we eat counts, too. While taking a close look at calorie consumption is certainly an important step in any weight management plan, paying attention to what kinds of calories are going into your body may have an even bigger payoff in the long run.

A gut cleanse makes it easier for your body to utilize important nutrients and get rid of waste, and minimizes the body’s task of sloughing off toxins and chemicals so that it can focus on metabolizing your food in the most efficient way.  

Beauty from Within

Whether you’re worried about your figure or your complexion, a regular gut cleanse can create a slimming effect on the waistline and bring a brighter glow to the skin. Dark circles under the eyes can indicate a lack of sleep, but may also be a sign of vitamin deficiency. We often use scrubs to brighten up dull-looking skin, but the truth is that we might be better served by drinking more water and eating foods high in skin-loving vitamins like A and E. And that acne that pops up occasionally? It will have a harder time coming back without all those processed sugars and trans fats to help it along.

Strengthened Immune System

Along with basics like good sleep and good hygiene, what you’re eating can also influence how well your immune system is able to fight off unwelcome visitors. It makes sense: by taking in clean, healthy foods and eliminating toxins and unnecessary waste, your immune system gets the boost of vitamins and minerals it needs to keep you in peak condition.

Reduced Cravings

If you’re a slave to that evening bowl of potato chips in front of the TV, a gut cleanse could be just the thing to get your cravings into line and show them who’s boss. The first few days of taming your appetite into submission can be rough, but people who manage it often find that they no longer have a strong desire for the unhealthy foods they used to be so dependent on. We all love a milkshake every once in a while, but a gut cleanse can help you relegate it to its proper place of occasional treat, not diet supplement.

Identify Trigger Foods

According to the most recent data, only about 4 percent of Americans have what can be classed as a genuine food allergy. But if you suspect that your diet is contributing to headaches, upset stomach, or bowel trouble, you may be right. Many people experience food sensitivities and find that they are better off without certain ingredients in their diet.

A gut cleanse eliminates common trigger foods like dairy, gluten, processed sugar, caffeine, and legumes. Once you’ve completed the regime, you can try adding back one food at a time, keeping track of your reactions to identify which foods you should steer clear of.

If you have any concerns about doing a gut cleanse you should consult your doctor, who can advise you and help you develop a plan to fit your specific health needs. Taking a few supplements, such as a probiotics and digestive enzymes, can also help you get the most out of your cleansing, and your doctor can help you determine which supplements will be best for you.

Setting aside a couple of weeks once or twice a year for a gut cleanse can greatly enhance your health and well-being. It’s not a cure-all, but if you combine gut cleansing with other healthy habits like regular exercise, lots of fluids, and a balanced diet overall, it may give you just the added boost you need to feel your best all the time.

Samantha Cryer

Samantha Cryer is a freelance writer and avid reader with a passion for learning about the world and sharing her discoveries with others. She loves big books, small animals, and seriously dark chocolate, and can be found curled up with all three on rainy afternoons.