Detox 101. How to Reduce Toxins.

Toxins. What are they? Environmental toxins can include everything from cigarette smoke to automobile fumes and even pesticides on produce. So how do you get rid of these toxins? Here are a few ways you can reduce the amount of toxins in your life...

How to Reduce Toxins

1. Buy Organic. Purchase organic produce and foods. Organic can be more expensive, so focus on produce with thin skins that you eat -- like peaches, apples, berries, leafy greens etc rather than bananas, avocado and other thick skinned fruits and veggies. Fast fact: look for produce stickers ending in "9" for organic assurance.

2. Stop Smoking. If you smoke. Stop. If you live with a smoker make it your mission to help them quit. Try to stay away from smoky environments. Second hand smoke is not good for your body and it smells pretty awful too.

"Every year in the U.S., more than 480,000 people die from tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke, making it the leading cause of preventable death in this country. Tragically, each day thousands of kids still pick up a tobacco product for the first time." - lung.org

3. Juices and Smoothies. Will juice cleanses "detox" your body? Will smoothies remove toxins? The truth is, there is not conclusive evidence, and there are opinions on both sides of the argument as to whether or not you can truly "detox" on a liquid diet cleanse. But I personally strongly believe you can lighten your bodies' load of toxins if you drink fresh presses juices and smoothie on a habitual basis. And a juice or smoothie "cleanse" may also help your body focus its energy on removing toxins and healing problems in your body. But really, you have to lISTEN TO YOUR OWN BODY. That is the number one way you can evaluate whether or not juice and smoothie "diets" are helpful for you. For me, I rarely do juice cleanses, I find them challenging and they zap my energy and mess up my digestion. But I know people who RAVE about them. Every body is different. But what is true: consuming more healthy plants -- always a good thing.

My book 365 Vegan Smoothies is a great resource for delicious smoothie recipes!

4. Detox Foods? Chia seeds, activated charcoal, flax seeds and some high fiber foods have been called "detoxifying" foods. You can try them and see if you feel a difference. But you should be aware that these types of foods can interact with medications, making them less absorbed by your body.

5. Manage Stress. Mindful breathing, yoga, stretching, daily walking, meditation and more can help your body stay in balance. which means you will be less likely to have your body go into a stress response. Keeping your own body in balance is your first line of defense for keeping your body healthy down the road. Watch FREE yoga videos here.

6. Seek out Healthy Environments. Clean air and clean water can make a huge difference on your everyday health. Do some research to make sure the water and air in your daily life is high quality. Though many of us do not have the option to move if we find ourselves in a more toxic environment -- think downtown LA vs the Swiss Alps -- but at least we can be aware of our environment and move from there. Research tap water here.

7. Dishes. Make sure you buy high quality dishes. Lead-free always. I prefer to try and stay away from dishes made in China. I love the website Bambeco for healthy, "green" dishes and glasses.
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