What to Expect During a Cleanse


There are a lot of myths about cleansing floating around, many of which we’ve already debunked in an earlier blog post. But if you won’t feel tired and cranky or be running to the bathroom all day, what should you expect during your first cleanse?

Read on for the answer!

Welcome to Cleansing

Although every person will experience a cleanse slightly differently, there are some common features. For many people, cleansing will happen so gradually that the changes are all but invisible. One day you’re going about your life as normal. The next day you’re cleansing, but nothing much feels different.

Changes Can Happen as You Cleanse

Most people will notice a gradual series of changes once they’re one week or several weeks into a cleanse – less fatigue after a long day at work, fewer aches and pains or the realization that your occasional headaches haven’t come around in a while. You may start to have more energy when you exercise. You might notice that you’re using less makeup to cover up blemishes, or that irritating twinge you’ve had in your back for years might suddenly vanish.

For other people, cleansing can cause dramatic changes right from the start. Patients who live with chronic pain will often notice improvements more quickly, as will people with severe allergies. If you’ve been living with digestive problems or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, you’re likely to notice quick improvements.

If you’re the sort of person who relies on coffee first thing in the morning or a sugar rush to get you through stressful parts of your day, you may have a rough transition as you begin your cleanse. That’s not really due to the cleanse – it’s your addiction to caffeine or sugar making itself known. These first few days will be a lot easier if you can wean yourself off of coffee, sugar and other vices gradually in the weeks before you start your cleanse.

Planning for Your First Cleanse

There are a few things you can do to make your first cleanse easier and more pleasant:

  • Plan your cleanse at a time when you’ll be able to prepare your own meals
  • Prepare a list of tasty food alternatives for the things you’re avoiding
  • Plan a grocery list and meal ideas
  • Wean yourself off of caffeine, sugar, alcohol and other “toxins”
  • Ensure that you’re having regular, daily bowel movements before you start to cleanse
  • Do what you can to decrease your toxin load by avoiding paint fumes, cleaning products, nail polish, perfumes, hair dyes and other chemicals
  • Make sure to stay hydrated by keeping a water bottle with you at all times
  • Keep healthy snacks in your desk, purse/backpack, fridge, etc.
  • Prepare to slip up occasionally, and try not to feel guilty when you do
  • Prepare yourself with the knowledge that cleansing isn’t always easy. You may notice some discomfort, especially in the first two weeks of your cleanse. If you experience headache, nausea, irritability, body odor or any other issues as you start your cleanse, don’t give up! Stay on target and inform your naturopathic doctor of all the details so they can adjust your cleanse as needed.

Interested in learning more about detoxification? Visit our Metabolic Detoxification page, or contact us in Toronto at info@tcnm.com to schedule an appointment to start your spring cleanse.



Posted: 2013 May 9