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So after the long weekend, most of us can say that we over-indulged at some point, and are feeling quite sluggish. Chocolate being the biggest offender. Bad skin, digestive problems and broken sleep are just some of the side effects to a bad diet. Here are some useful tips on how to safely detox. A cleanse for mind and body by nourishing from the inside out.

How do you know if you need to detoxify?

If you are suffering from any of the following, or you just know that you have overdone it in the food or drink stakes, then a detox could be just the thing to boost your health.

Unexplained fatigue
Mental confusion
Sluggish elimination
Irritated or skin breakouts
Menstrual problems
Puffy eye or bags under the eyes

Why Detox?

A detox program helps to eliminate toxins in the blood, which cause your vital organs to work harder to cleanse your blood. During your detox it is important to encompass the following:

Promote elimination through the intestines, kidneys and skin
Improve blood circulation
Rest your organs through fasting
Stimulate your liver to rid your body of toxins
Refuel with healthy nutrients high in vital vitamins and mineral

How do you start a detox?

Eliminating alcohol, coffee, cigarettes, refined sugars and saturated fats is essential as all of these are toxins to the body. Think cave man times. Only eat foods that are naturally occurring. Trying to substitute any chemical products that you use with natural alternatives will also help to minimize your toxin intake. Using Yoga, Pilates or Meditation as an effective way to relieve stress can be hugely helpful for mental health.

Here are our top 10 tips on how to detox your body:

1. Eat plenty of fiber, including brown rice and organically grown fresh fruits and vegetables. Bulking up on foods like beetroot, spinach, avocado, asparagus, artichokes, cabbage and broccoli are excellent detoxifying foods. Try to avoid fruits that have high sugar content. Berries are a good choice, with blueberries being one the best options.

2. Drinking plenty of water is essential to help flush away all of those toxins. At least  8 glasses or 2 liters a day is ideal, however if you are exercising you will need to increase your water intake. Sipping throughout the day is better than gulping it all in one of two goes. This will only put pressure on your kidneys.

3. Drinking green or peppermint tea are great for cleansing and protecting the liver.  Taking herbs such as dandelion root, burdock and milk thistle are also great liver boosters.

4. Take vitamin C, which helps the liver drive away toxins and boost immunity

5. Breathe deeply to allow oxygen to circulate more completely through your system.

6. Become more aware of what stresses you out and if possible avoid doing it, if you can’t avoid it, become better at managing your stress levels by deep breathing or meditating.
7. Practice hydrotherapy by taking a very hot shower for five minutes, allowing the water to run on your back. Follow with cold water for 30 seconds. Do this three times, and then get into bed for 30 minutes.

8. Sauna or Steam rooms are a great to induce sweat, which can eliminate wastes through perspiration.

9. Dry-brush your skin using body brushes to increase circulation or use detox foot baths to remove toxins through your pores.
10. Exercise. Yoga is great for detoxifying or cleansing. Particularly Bikram Yoga. 90mins of yoga in a heated room really makes you sweat!

Before you decide to detox, you should consult your doctor before using any health treatment — including herbal supplements and natural remedies — and tell your doctor if you have a serious medical condition or are taking any medications.