Fasting has been considered and essential part of people's personal health regime for centuries. Once an important element in religious and cultural festivals, modern approaches to fasting and detox centre around weight loss and cutting down on the toxin levels in the body. A natural process if applied carefully, fasting offers many benefits for the body and mind.
On Koh Samui in Thailand, fasting and detox retreats have been popular for several years and there are now a number of choices for those interested in cleansing their system during a holiday. Detox and wellness centres normally incorporate a number of approaches in combination with one another. Colonic irrigation is one popular system that involves flushing the lower bowel with water to assist the body in eliminating toxins built up over the years. The colonic or colema is generally self-applied on a daily basis in the privacy of your bathroom using a colema board. Water is suspended above the board and the flow is gravity led, which allows it to slowly fill your bowel and intestinal tract. The process is believed to help with the release of harmful deposits in your digestive system and although there is no actual medical evidence to support the benefits associated with colonic irrigation, most people report an increase in energy and general well being results.
Other methods often applied at fasting and wellness retreats on Koh Samui to assist detoxification during a fast include taking liver flush drinks eating herbal food supplements. Liver flush drinks often contain bentonite clay and a mixture of other natural ingredients, while herbal food supplements are generally taken in tablet form to maintain energy and replenish vitamins and minerals.
Yoga is another useful approach to cleansing and therefore often included in a detox retreat. Practicing this ancient art helps the body and mind relax, while toning the muscles at the same time and releasing toxins through the skin. The type and extent of yoga practice included in the programme depends on the individual centre and the focus of the retreat.
Once you reach the end of a detox, it is important to return gradually to solid food and most wellness centres will guide participants back onto a normal diet, advising the best foods to re-introduce to the body and when. With the correct approach, the benefits of the detox will remain with you for several weeks and may even inspire a more healthy approach to daily life.
For those who prefer a more personal approach to detox, ‘The Signature Collection’ now offers private villa guests cleansing, fasting and detox programmes, tailor made to match clients' lifestyle, current vibration, goals and intentions. Trained therapists guide and educate participants on the different options available leaving guests free to decide the best approach to suit their individual needs.
By Jules Kay