So the holidays are over. Have you had a little bit too much of “dirty” food, alcohol or sweets? If you didn’t I don’t know what you are doing here on my blog, haha. Or maybe you followed my advice in my previous post?
So if you did overdo it during Xmas, you now feel an urge to get rid of all the fat and toxins. You can’t wait to sweat it out in a gym, diet it out hard or, bless you, start a detox (whatever it means: juicing, herbal supplements, colon-cleansing, five-day programs, antioxidant pills, books, creams, baths, tea-bags etc…)
Don’t detox. Whatever action it requires.
Well, do detox, only if you enjoy ritual in your daily life too much 😛
If you don’t want to waste your time, money and effort on a pseudoscientific product, just become at peace with wherever you are and whatever you did for Xmas. Forgive yourself and simply get back to healthy lifestyle. Include few quiet nights in, vegetables rich in fiber and plenty of water. (But you should do it anyway, always)
And I will not explain to you WHY better than Ben Goldacre in his book “Bad Science”:
«The detox phenomenon is interesting because it represents one of the most grandiose innovations of marketers, lifestyle gurus, and alternative therapists: the invention of a whole new physiological process. In terms of basic human biochemistry, detox is a meaningless concept…There is nothing on ‘the detox system’ in a medical textbook. That burgers and beer can have negative effects on your body is certainly true, for a number of reasons; but the notion that they leave a specific residue, which can be extruded by a specific process, a physiological system called detox, is a marketing invention.
If you look at a metabolic flow chart, the gigantic wall- sized maps of all the molecules in your body, detailing the way that food is broken down into its constituent parts, and then those components are converted between each other, and then those new building blocks are assembled into muscle, and bone, and tongue, and bile, and sweat, and bogey, and hair, and skin, and sperm, and brain, and everything that makes you, it’s hard to pick out one thing that is the ‘detox system’.
Because it has no scientific meaning, detox is much better understood as a cultural product. Like the best pseudoscientific inventions, it deliberately blends useful common sense with outlandish, medicalised fantasy. In some respects, how much you buy into this reflects how self-dramatising you want to be; or in less damning terms, how much you enjoy ritual in your daily life. When I go through busy periods of partying, drinking, sleep deprivation and convenience eating, I usually decide— eventually—that I need a bit of a rest. So I have a few nights in, reading at home, and eating more salad than usual. Models and celebrities, meanwhile, ‘detox’»
Our body detoxifies itself. Here are the organs that do it: the digestive tract, kidneys, skin, lungs, liver, lymphatic system, and respiratory system.
These systems break down toxins into other forms that we can eliminate via the toilet, sweat, or breathing. The body detoxifies especially well when placed in a healthy environment. The leaner we are the healthier the environment is. So just go back to a healthy diet and active lifestyle!
Healthy New Year!
Fat loss expert, elite group fitness instructor and personal trainer based in Sheffield.