Detox + Belly Dancers = A Healthy Decision??
The belly dance world is abuzz with talk of detoxes! Dancer Ann Marie Hammond of Aaliyah Belly Dance & Drumming - Devonport, Australia says, “I am 45 and have never done a detox yet in my lifetime...bit scary, haha. I have thought about it though, but don't know which one to try. That Acai berry one seems to be the go. Might help with some of my health issues.”
People have recently become aware of the fact that our environment is saturated with pollutants. Preservatives, additives, and other toxins are routinely added to the substances we ingest, which then build up in the body and lead to fatigue and illness – NOT something a belly dancer wants to deal with!
Now, we’ve gotta give our bodies a little credit; they do a great job of flushing out moderate amounts of waste on a daily basis during rehearsals and performances. According to Linda Page, ND, PhD, a naturopathic doctor, lecturer, and author of the book Detoxification, “Detoxification is a normal body process of eliminating or neutralizing toxins through the colon, liver, kidneys, lungs, lymph glands, and skin.” However, Page adds that “The body doesn't know what to do with foreign substances, so it will store them outside of the regular elimination system, so we don't get poisoned. Those poisons start building up in our body fat.”
When looking for a particular program to try, keep in mind that detoxing is completely different from dieting, which is another common interest among oriental dancers. Fasting is never recommended as a healthy way of losing weight. With a detox, you’re simply looking to purify the food you eat and help your body rid itself of waste more efficiently…leading to more energy and more shimmies!
There are a wide range of choices when it comes to detox programs. Don’t be fooled by pricey pills, shakes, or meals. It is completely possible to detox without wasting your money on yet another synthetic, commercially-produced product. Consider reading either Page’s book or Super Cleanse: Detox Your Body for Long-Lasting Health and Beauty by Adina Niemerow. These break down the components of a good detox and allow you to choose what to drink or eat based on the results you want to achieve. And because belly dancing is so physically demanding, you’ll have to be careful to get all the vitamins and minerals you need.
Do your research before you start a plan, and consult your primary care physician as well. “Frequently those detox programs, colonics, etcetera, can be potentially dangerous to one’s health if not done under the direction of a good doctor who is very knowledgeable about them,” says Dr. Tera Jean Rich, a chiropractic physician with 45 years of belly dance experience, “I recommend the basics. Plenty of fresh water, lots of fresh veggies and fruits, foods that are good sources of fiber, and proper exercise are the best things for a lay person to do without supervision and being monitored by a doctor knowledgeable in these detox programs.”
Here's a great, quick recipe to get you started:
2 green or red apples
2 celery stalks
1/4 lemon, peeled
Maybe a few mint leaves
Chop fruits and vegetables to manageable pieces , blend all the ingredients together with two cups of purified water. To change up the color, add a carrot, it couldn't hurt.
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