How a Cleanse Can Help
Of course, as a living being everything about you is alive — and that includes bacteria. Nothing to be afraid of, because billions of them have always been and need to be on your skin, in your mouth, respiratory tract, and gut — from head to toe you are loaded with bacteria. And like the saying goes, you get the good with the bad. There are different kinds of bacteria on the skin, keeping the skin healthy by taking up residence and space so that dangerous pathogens don't get hold. Sometimes bacteria can cause issues such as warts or athlete's foot. Other bacteria make use of sweat to make body odors. Others keep genitalia healthy by warding off candida and other infections.
A noticeable shift in the good/bad bacteria balance of the gut could be a possible indicator of future colon cancer, according to a study published by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine. The researchers found that when the balance tips in favor of the “bad” bacteria, those bacteria make toxic waste in the colon that could lead to cancer.
Hopefully, there's a nice balance always going on so that the good ones are keeping the bad ones out and in check. But changes in this balance can be responsible for a host of issues. Changes in balance can be the result of taking antibiotics, other medications, food additives, stress, and many things that happen in the typical American life. So, it is a wise thing to take the time to leave things behind that may upset your necessary balance and put into your body some healthy nutrients that all contribute to keeping pathogens in check.
Plan to do your cleanse from one to three days. Begin your day with 12–16 ounces of water with a squirt of lemon or lime juice and 1 teaspoon of ground flaxseed. Choose a breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and two in-between snacks/light meals. Some recipes are suggested later in this chapter.
For your in-betweeners, you could also choose a blended drink of 1 celery, 1 cucumber, 1 cut-up orange, a small piece of fresh ginger, and water, or a few chunks of watermelon or other melon, or a handful of strawberries blended with water and ice. If using watermelon, do use the white area of the watermelon as well and add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice. Or, you could blend up a dollop of fat-free plain yogurt with cucumber and fresh dill, with water and ice.
Gingerols are volatile oils in the gingerroot. Ginger has long been known to soothe stomach distress, and it is now believed that the gingerols may be responsible for destroying bad bacteria in the gut and helping more good bacteria to take hold.
Another beverage suggestion is a hot cocoa made with water, 1 table-spoon of unsweetened cocoa, ¼ cup soy or fat-free milk, and stevia to sweeten if desired. Make sure to drink your fluids every hour, or ½ hour, including water and herbal teas.