Hitting Detox Walls and Overcoming Them

June 29, 2009

Here I am this past weekend eating... I mean, picking strawberries! 🙂

Hello Guys!

 How was your weekend? I had a great weekend myself! It was sunny and beautiful all weekend, and I was up in Connecticut. I got to pick strawberries at this wonderful organic farm, went on two long hikes, and even made it to Compo Beach in Westport for a refreshing swim. I’m so happy that the sun came back out over here on the East Coast! I’m really happy I was fortunate enough to escape this weekend. Are you doing something special for 4th of July weekend- which is already next (!) weekend!


So when I was laying on the beach and watching the ocean this weekend, this particular topic came to mind. Some of you have written to me about it, and I have experienced it myself. When I began a mostly raw diet, the first month, maybe two months I felt awesome! I got very lean, my energy was high, and I was so excited about my newfound diet. Then…I started getting more sluggish. My skin broke out a bit, and I started craving old foods again!! Sounds familiar?? Well this is what is REALLY going on:

When you shift into eating more vegetarian, vegan, or an even more dramatic change…raw (!) your body automatically goes into ongoing detox mode. This is because previously we were constantly eating foods that were full of toxic matter (pesticides, dairy, gluten, flour, processed sugar, toxic food combinations, acidic animal products, often full of steroids and hormones, etc.), that it really was too much for our bodies to handle on its own. So what happens? It ends up being stored. Yes, accumulating in our bowels and in our cell tissue!! It doesn’t matter if you go to the bathroom 3 times a day! Trust me, waste and toxins, which are baking in the body at our temperature of 98 degrees, become lodged in our bodies, and over time lead to diseases and other signs of NOT optimal health- low energy, difficulty in losing weight, etc. Our bodies become more and more acidic over time with these levels of toxins.

 P1011458So when you stop eating so much toxic food, or toxic food combinations, your body can take a rest from having piles and piles of “new” toxins to deal with, and starts detoxing the surface stuff. Plus you’re eating tons of alkaline foods. That’s in the first month or two! That’s when you feel like a million bucks, and your feel that you’ve finally figured out the best food plan for you amongst the mind-boggling phethora of food diets and confusing information!

But alas…after that you start feeling not well. You go to your standard doctor who will tell you that you are low in protein, a vital nutrient or mineral like iron and calcium, that its not really healthy to be vegetarian, and you better start eating animal products again! So then you scratch your head  and think, “I guess vegetarianism and eating this way isn’t sustainable??” But this is not really the truth.

What is happening, is that as we shift into these new ways of eating, our bodies start to detox on a deeper, organ, tissue and cellular level. As we dislodge new toxins because our new, much cleaner eating habits, we “wake” up those toxins and they start to recirculate in the blood and body. Before, they were just lodged in there- weighing us down in many ways, but not making us sick…yet. The amount of impaction and waste that is in the colon (5-6 feet long) is indeed unfathomable to most people- it can be pounds and pounds, and can even permeate through the colon walls and into the tissue over time.

So when we hit this WALL after we know we’ve been eating great, clean, detoxing food we must realize that with our enzyme-rich diets we are starting to dislodge toxins from the colon wall. As they hit the bloodstream, we feel those symptoms again- headaches, skin break outs, weakness, irritation, moodiness, etc. etc.- and the toxins must be eliminated from the body so they don’t become reabsorbed back into the boodstream.


Some other friends came over to say hello!

Once we get through these walls of intense detoxification, we can continue on our highway to superior health! So how to get the toxins out? Well the most effective and best (in my opinion) way is to get some gravity colonics. Over 45 minutes, 25 gallons of water power washes out your colon, as opposed to 1 to 2 quarts, which is an enema. There can be moments of pressure, as old stuff is released, but you feel amazing when it is done! Also, be sure you are getting fiber in the diet- that is why the Green Smoothie is SO important, as it has a huge amount of fiber that acts like an internal broom and helps sweep toxins out. If you feel major detox symptoms you can add ground flax seeds. Also, chia seeds (see my blog on that), can also help as they expand and can help sweep debris out. Be sure you are having your lemon water in the morning so you are sure to have as complete an elimination as possible (see my blog “How is Your Colon This Morning?). Drink plenty of water to help yourself flush out!

I am trying a slightly different method of a gravity colonic here in NYC tomorrow, and I am thrilled!!  (It might sound weird to be excited about a colonic, but after you’ve had a few and see how effective they are, you’ll feel differently!) I’ve shifted my diet since it started getting warmer (even more smoothies, less solid food, different vegetables and fruits), a few weeks ago, and noticed a few little symptoms myself- some back acne, a few little headaches, etc. So I know I am detoxing! Remember everyone hits walls and has difficult detox periods- so we just have to acknowledge them, and then get past them. 

Have a great start to the week!

Love, Kimberly 



  1. Thank you so much Kim for this article. I NEEDED to hear this. Though I am not 100% raw, I have been doing my green smoothies am currently nearing the end of this detox phase. (Can’t wait to get my flawless skin back!) Do you ever incorporate carrot juice in your smoothies?
    Sending love and health your way! Have a great weekend

  2. Hi Kimberly,
    Thnks for sharing your wonderful experiences with us..I recently sta rted to follow you and your blog-wish I knew before!!!- I would like you to share more ideas about what is a typical day of yours. Which foods you really like to eat and breakfast ideas? Thank you..

  3. […] Kimberly Snyder – Hitting detox walls & overcoming them. This really resonated with me, because I feel like this has been going on in my life lately. […]

  4. Hi Kim,

    I wanted to get your opinion on my situation with psoriasis. I have had psoriasis for 14 years and have managed it mainly though acupuncture and eating habits. Recently, it the last few months, I have given up most animal products and my skin has not had a breakout since December. I am now breaking out again, and am wondering if it is from the detoxing, or maybe just from the weather getting warmer? I was wondering what you would recommend to make it better? I have also just begun using coconut oil to see if that makes a difference. Do you have any other suggestions or ideas?

    • The more alkaline-forming your diet is, the better your body can ward off the psoriasis! I’ve seen lots of alleviation with my clients. Dairy is very important to avoid. Yes, you may be cleansing out matter which would make it come back. Between seasons are major detox times, where there is probably more going through our lymph systems.
      I recommend drinking lots of water and having lots of Green Smoothie- so you flush your body with alkaline greens and fruit. A daily probiotic or some gravity-centered colonics (depending on where you live) would be really helpful for you!
      All my best, Kimberly

  5. Hi Kimberly,
    Just discovered your website and I can’t get enough of it! So informative and makes so much sense. Several years ago I went to we care spa and was introduced to colonics…but I haven’t had any since. I do remember how wonderful I felt after having them and would love start doing them again. Can you recommend any therapists in NYC?
    Also, do you do nutritional consultations?
    Thanks so much!

    • Hi Beth!
      That is so great. Yes, I do do nutritional consultations, and if you are interested you can email me: kimberly@envision-beauty.com.

      As for colonics, I recommend my good friend Jodi: 917 622 0300 or Linda at Release NYC. 212 880 2100.
      Let me know how you do!! Colonics are so great.
      All my very best,

  6. Thanks so much for sharing your time and life experiences. Do you have some yummy cooked recipes that aid well with transitioning and keeping the cleansing effects from being too harsh? I would love to incorporate them into our families journey to more raw. I would love to hear from others on your post regarding transition meals.

    • Hi Tressey,
      The best cooked foods to incorporate during dinner are steamed veggies, roasted veggies, and either millet, quinoa or sprouted grain bread. Or a big sweet potato! Try to stay away from very difficult to digest at all foods, like dairy, which will not slow down the cleansing process- it will take you back many steps.
      All my very best!

  7. Ok, I have been doing the raw diet 100% for the past two months. Now I have been reading about the importance of transitioning, though I have not had any negative reactions since going raw. I have tried to eat some cooked foods, but it made me queasy. Do you recommend I continue to try cooked foods or stay 100%? I am concerned about other health issues and the rumor that many who claim to eat 100% raw, do on occasion eat cooked and animal product, thus eliminating health issues, they are supposedly just not sharing that info with those in the raw circles to not hurt the raw name or products sold. Any thoughts/insights?

    • Hi Tressey,
      Given that I don’t know your health background, I can just speak in general.

      I for one, do not eat any animal products! And they are definitely not necessary to eliminate health issues. You don’t need them – period.
      The raw diet is very high vibration, and if someone isn’t cleansing regularly, then you could kick up too much and eventually feel pretty low on energy, or sick. So watch how you feel. If you feel those effects, eating raw food will slow down the cleansing process and will help stabilize you. The reason people don’t last on raw food is that they start to feel “low” sometimes, and point to what they think is a lack somewhere. But usually it is their bodies have released toxins, and they have not had a proper chance to eliminate them, because they are releasing too much too fast. I am a big fan of gravity centered colonics! Enemas and dry brushing also help. Usually if someone is not cleansing at all in any way, I usually only recommend they do 60-70% raw.
      Cleansing has allowed me to stay comfortably at mostly raw, while not getting sick and having a lot of energy!
      Hope that helps- that was sort of the quick explanation.
      Come visit again and let me know how you do.
      xx Kimberly

  8. As I am new to raw food, I was wondering, do you every eat cooked food? How does it help or hinder the detox process?

    • Hi Tressey,
      Raw food is a very high vibration diet. It is important to transition into it, as to go too fast could mean that someone could cleanse too quickly. Cooked food is a very important part of the transition process, as it slows down the cleansing process and makes sure you can transition safely.
      xx Kimberly

  9. Great post Kimberly
    My twin sister and I are both still going through our detox phase…we have been about 95% raw we are in our 2nd year. We love raw foods and the way we feel but sometimes it gets hard when going through detox…but we know we just have to keep going and it will get better. Thanks for being our inspiration!!

    • Hi Michelle,

      Great! Thanks so much for writing me! Yes, it will get better!! Are you guys having the Green Smoothie/juices and/or getting and colonics?
      Love, Kimberly

      • Yes we have green smoothie (about 2 a day) and a juice everyday. We luv them! We were getting colonics done but had to cut back due to money. One day soon we will do them again.

  10. I’ve heard it is necessary to clear the body before detoxing, whether it be with energy work or homeopathic remedies. Otherwise we can detox but the body will just keep recycling it’s waste. Do you have any recommendations? thanks!

    • Hi Lisa,
      It is necessary to change the diet to stir up the toxins so you can start to pull them out. If you don’t pull them out, THEN they will keep getting recycled in the body and reabsorbed into the blood and colon.
      Energy work may help the body go into more of a detox mode- see my blog on Acupuncture- but if you don’t change the diet then deep detoxing will not occur, so that is the real key, in my opinion.
      Let me know how you do!
      xx Kimberly

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this! It’s been a while since my last comment but I have been reading your blog religiously and following a lot of the advice you give. After the initial two months of feeling fantastic and getting lean, I went through the breakouts on my face and feeling sluggish – I started veering back towards cooked foods. I am so glad you posted this because now I understand what was happening and can’t wait to do it all over again for good this time!

    Thanks again for sharing! Those strawberries look yummy – I’m going to head to my farmer’s market to pick some up!

    • Hi Ninu,
      That’s great! And now is SUCH the best time to get back into more raw foods, with so much being in season and the warm weather not having us need so much cooked food. 🙂 Have your Green Smoothies and fiber!
      Keep in touch about how you are doing.
      xx Love, Kimberly

  12. It is all starting to make sense! Thank you for sharing. A few months back I wrote to you regarding a B12 deficiency. . you recommended adding raw sauerkraut, probiotics, nutritional yeast, hemps seeds, etc. I feel great now! Thank you so much! You have been an inspiration!

    • Hi Amanda,
      Great! I’m SO happy to hear that you are feeling great now! All these nutrients and vibrant health ARE available in a at least partly raw, mostly vegetarian diet!
      It sounds like you are doing great, so keep it up and keep in touch with me on how you are doing.

  13. I second Ann’s post–Absolutely perfect timing! Detox is one of my fears that holds me back and keeps me on the almost-not-quite raw food bandwagon. I haven’t ever had anything major, but that’s only because I’m so worried (mostly about a huge acne fest–since I don’t usually break out)that I’ll always back off at the last moment. Thank you for the post so that I can remind myself that I have to go through it, that it will pass, and that I’ll come out on the other side of detox in a much better place.

    • Hi Morgan,

      There is nothing to fear!!! If you practice the methods I talked about, you will get through your detox relatively quickly and will feel so much better, and more vibrant and healthier afterwards. If acne comes, just keep your face really clean and not weighed down and it will pass as the toxins leave the body… so don’t worry. 🙂
      xx Kimberly

  14. What perfect timing! i’ve been so good at eating right for about 3 months but lately getting tired..moody…feeling a bit weak, having a bit of tummy pains actually, and i started thinking…i need some meat! But this was a great reinvigorator! (where do you get colonics? (I live in NYC) how much do they cost approx..i have zero idea? what types of things should you look for in a place that does colonics?)


    • Hey Ann,
      Great! It sounds that your body is shifting into this new way of eating and that you indeed do need to pull out the toxins that have been stirred up. As for colonics, the method I recommend is the gravity method, where water is poured into and out of the body by one insert- but with 2 different tubes attached to it (like a wishbone). So one is flowing pure water in, and other is evacuating the waste into the septic tank. I’ve tried other methods where they fill you up with water and you tell them when you can’t take it anymore, and then they release it out the same tube. I really don’t like that method!!! It is scary and for me, nowhere near as much stuff came out!
      There are places in Brooklyn that will shuffle you in and out for $50. But remember that colon hydrotherapists are healers, and you want them to really be great and understand the body. So they usually are $100- $120. Email me at kimberly@envision-beauty.com if you want more details and want to talk about specific therapists and their contact info.
      Let me know if you go and how you do!!!
      Love, Kimberly

  15. Very nice and informative post. Well written and accurate. Thanks!

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