“To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.”
To maintain optimum wellness, it is essential that you cleanse and eliminate toxins in your body on a continual basis. The good news is that our bodies are naturally equipped with a self-cleansing process. If you are generally healthy, the kidney, liver and colon work hard at flushing or filtering unwanted toxins.
However, with excess caffeine, sugar, processed foods, stress, chemical laden cosmetics, and too little exercise in certain cases, the natural detoxification process slows down. When there is overflow, toxins get stored in the liver, lungs, kidneys, fat cells, intestines, bloodstream, and skin. This overflow can lead to chronic illnesses and the following: feeling sluggish, memory loss, allergies, infections, anxiety, depression, difficulty gaining or losing weight, muscle and joint pain, weakness, rashes and/or indigestion.
Just as we cleanse our bodies with the foods we put (or do not put) in our bodies, we can also cleanse through our movements. And then take it one step forward to our thoughts. Have you ever watched your reaction as you move throughout the day? Where does your mind go when things are going well? Where does your mind go when things are hard? Can the moment you are in right now be enough? The practice of mindfulness, of watching where your mind wanders can be very cleansing leading to more clarity and growth.
Let’s practice cleansing with a twisting pose and watch our thoughts as we come in and out of each movement.
Utkatasana (Fierce Pose) with a Twist
Utkatasana is a great blend of strengthening the legs as you squat while keep your heart open as you lift your arms to the sky. Add in a twist to each side for great cleansing benefits as you release energy and massage the internal organs.
- Stand tall in mountain pose.
- Inhale and reach your arms overhead.
- Exhale and bend your knees like you were about to sit on a chair.
- Stay in for a few breaths
- To come into a twist, take your left elbow to your right thigh looking over your right shoulder
- Try to stack your shoulders and hip
- To go deeper, open out your arms like you were going to give someone (yourself) a big hug
- Inhale to come out back into Utkatasna and left by twisting to your left
- Strengthens the ankles, thighs, calves, and spine
- Stretches shoulders and chest
- Stimulates the abdominal organs, diaphragm, and heart
- Benefits from Yoga Journal
One of the best ways to stay healthy is to drink water-after all we are made up of 60% water. The brain itself is composed of 70%, the lungs nearly 90%, lean muscle tissue contains about 75% water by weight, and 83% of our blood is water, which helps digest our food, transport waste, and control body temperature. Every biological function in your body takes place in a medium of water. Water should be the most important beverage in your diet.
Drink filtered water out of glass when possible. Here are great add-ins to making drinking water more fun:
- Cucumber & Mint
- Mixed Berries
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Honey & Cinnamon (especially good with hot water)
- Chrysanthemum Flower
- Milk Thistle
- Hawthorn Berry
+ Spiraling Tools
Playlist: NS Cleanse
What’s Cooking: Mediterranean Quinoa Salad