How Toxic Are You? Look In The Mirror

You're stressed. You're tired. You can't drop those five extra pounds that make zipping up your pencil skirt in the morning a suck-in worthy task. Should you jump on the latest celebrity-endorsed detox diet or start to gulp down copious amounts of kale smoothies? Perhaps. First and foremost, you should know exactly why your body feels like dead weight.

Advocates of detoxification, or cleansing, believe that detox neutralizes acids and other toxins, like sugars, chemicals and food additives, releasing them from the tissues and flushing them out of the body. But which toxins does your body need to get rid of-and where do they come from in the first place?

"Toxins" come from a number of sources, including the air, water, and food we eat. "Overly processed foods, processed white flours and fried foods generally have ingredients (like additives) that interfere with the body's natural ability to digest and cleanse," says celebrity nutritionist Paula Simpson. Several clinical studies suggest that many of the chemicals we are exposed to can accumulate in our bodies, particularly in fat tissue. "This waste and by-products stick to tissue and accumulate over time," says nutritionist Natalia Rose.

Celebrity aesthetician Nerida Joy says she sees a definite difference in her clients skin when they do a detox. "Generally, when people eliminate coffee and alcohol from their diet, it really helps-but the results I've seen from a raw food diet are remarkable. The skin looks younger, dewier, clearer and prettier.

To reduce toxicity, try to minimize the amount of chemicals ingested by choosing organic foods when applicable. Select items such as high-fiber foods and water, which can help to draw out and eliminate toxins through digestive and urinary pathways. Rose suggests starting each day with a green-based, fresh vegetable juice. For lunch, try eating a salad with avocado and goat cheese, carrot soup, baked yams and steamed veggies. You want to be wary of any diets or detox plans that involve things like spending extended periods of time without any food or the exclusion of one or more food groups.

Have you tried a detox diet? Which one and did you see a difference in your skin?

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