What has Reflexologist Helen Chin Lui been up to?
In addition to scheduling and coordinating various workshops, I have been on a 3 week liver detox/purification program. Why did I do this? Even though I live a pretty healthy lifestyle, eat balanced meals, follow a moderate exercise plan, and try to get enough rest and have enough quiet time, I felt off, stressed, and unbalanced.
Since starting my business in 2006 I have unconsciously gained 20 pounds. Yes, I knew my clothes didn’t fit, but I didn’t realize how unhealthy I was getting. My doctor told me that I was pre-diabetic and suggested (or ordered me) to lose 20 pounds. I knew my weight gain came from stress eating! Trying to balance my home life, work life, teaching and “me time” I was unconsciously eating without realizing it. My go-to food that I would look for right after I get home from work was cheese. I wouldn’t stop on 2 slices either.
As I approach my 60th birthday I finally gotten to the point that enough is enough and decided I can’t go into the next decade of my life being unhealthy and feeling like slug. I consulted with a nutritionist and decided that a purification program would be the best step for me to undertake at this time.
To help me to prepare for the actual detoxing, I started to eliminate unhealthy carbs and chocolate four weeks prior to the actual liver detox program. Why four weeks? I didn’t want my body go into shock or set myself up to fail when I actually started the program. I’d rather start slow than do it all of it at once.
It was hard to give up my morning toast and my afternoon cheese binge because I let myself get TOO hungry before my next meal.
I realize one of the most important steps I can take that will immediately improve my overall health is to detoxify my body. Everyone is exposed to an enormous amount of toxins daily, from the air we breathe, the food we eat, the water we drink, electronic pollution and STRESS! I know that by cleansing my body I will be removing built up toxins and strengthening the organs that are involved in my body’s detoxification process.
Did you know that next to your heart, your liver and kidneys (I will go into kidneys in another article) are the second most important organs in your body? The liver is processing toxins 24 hours a day, every day. Your liver is not only detoxifying—it is also a digestive organ breaking down fats.
Some signs that your liver is telling you it needs help –
- abdominal bloating
- pain or discomfort over the liver (right upper abdominal area under the rib cage)
- excessive abdominal fat, pot belly, or a roll around the upper abdomen
- trouble digesting fatty foods
- had your gallbladder removed
- acid reflux/heartburn
- dark spots on the skin commonly referred to liver spots
- overheating of the body & excessive perspiration
- acne/rosacea or itchy, blotchy skin
- unexplained weight gain and inability to lose weight even with calorie restriction
I had 6 out of the 10 symptoms. I was most frustrated with my itchy skin and the inability to lose weight. I was storing calories as though I was getting ready for the next ice age.
The night before my purification program I roasted three days’ worth of vegetables. I also cooked up a 10 quart pot of Indian lentil stew and prepared fruits and vegetable for smoothies.
On September 19 at 8am I was mentally and physically ready to start my 21 day purification and liver detox program.
Days 1 through 11 consisted primarily of fruits, vegetables, eliminating supplements and 1 cup of combined lentil or brown rice daily and drinking a gallon of water. I roasted all of my vegetables. The roasting process helped the vegetables to become sweet. The lentils and brown rice were my saving grace. They actually helped me to stay on the program. Because I could eat every 2-4 hours I was never hungry. Yes, drinking a gallon of water made the bathroom become my favorite room in the house, but not in a bad way.
As the days progressed I started to feel better; I had more energy, less itching and slept better. There were days when I was so tired. These were signs that the detoxifying program was working. I also learned while on the program that I was addicted to sugar. Not the sugar in pastries and candy but the sugar in simple carbs, like rice, pasta and bread. The withdrawal symptoms were itchy skin (toxins coming to the surface) and headaches (from coffee caffeine withdrawal).
I also learned that my body was inflamed. What is that? I had a slight food intolerance to gluten and dairy. Since my symptoms never got really bad (other than being bloated all of the time) I never addressed the problem. But when I started to get eczema under my eye brows, I knew it was time to address the toxin buildup. At the end of 21 days most of the eczema has healed. This was also a reason why I couldn’t lose weight no matter what I did—once the body is inflamed it will have a tendency to store calories instead of burning it for energy.
On days 11-21 I was able to add healthy fats like almond butter, almonds, rice cakes, salmon and chicken. I didn’t eat many raw vegetables.
Around tenth day I didn’t have a craving for sugar. How I knew this? On two occasions I went out to dinner with my family and I was able to resist the bread on the table, no wine and NO dessert. I knew I broke the sugar addiction.
Did I cheat on my program? Yes, twice. The first time was the third day. I was at a dinner party that served chilled lobster, crabcakes and steaks as the main entrees. I couldn’t resist. It was delicious! On the fifteenth day, I took my mother and mother-in-law to lunch and they wanted white rice noodles. My knees started to buckle and I GAVE in. I can’t resist rice noodles. I ended up with a food coma for the entire afternoon and I couldn’t keep my eyes open.
I finished my detoxing program on October 10th. Was it bad or overwhelming? No it wasn’t! Because I went into the program wanting to feel better, I didn’t see it as a punishment. In addition to feeling better, I can say that I have lost weight. Enough weight that I am able to fit into clothes that I haven’t worn in years.
I made a vow to maintain a healthy lifestyle. I decided to incorporate a purification detox as a everyday practice. Will I cheat? Of course I will. This time I will make conscious decisions instead eating mindlessly. My intention is to age gracefully. I want to stay healthy, be pain free and most of all, be balanced.
I am in the process of coordinating another liver detox program at the beginning of the New Year. Watch for details.
Come and be healthy with me.
About the writer: Helen Chin Lui is a Certified Reflexologist, Certified Energy Medicine and Reiki Practitioner. She is the founder and owner of the Healing Place in Medfield, MA. She specializes in helping adults and children to find long-lasting relief from chronic pain, digestive issues and heal hormonal imbalances naturally.
If you would like to schedule a FREE 60-minute consultation to learn how Reflexology, energy medicine and Reiki can help you to find long last relief call (508) 359-6463.
For Helen’s free report “Proven Alternative Ways to Heal Common Chronic Digestive Problems: What Your Doctor Doesn’t Know Can Keep You From Healing” click here.