Easy Ways for Body Detoxification
Detoxification – For thousands of years, everything we did revolved around planting, harvesting and preparing food. During this time we grew different crops for each season and lived by the clock of sunrise and sunset. The foods that were available in each season each served a purpose in detoxifying our bodies. When I was a child, every year in the spring my mother would make sassafrass tea. Dandelion greens were picked from the yard, and the meals were light and fresh in contrast to the heavy stews of winter.
In the last 60 years or so, how we live has changed more rapidly than any other time in history. The invention of processed foods, disappearance of family farms and the birth of the industrial and chemical revolution spawned a lifestyle of convenience and opportunity for eating all types of food year round. However, even though life as we know it around us has changed, our bodies have not.
People come into my office today for drastically different reasons than they did 30 years ago. Today more and more teenager’s hair is turning gray, chronic fatigue and adrenal fatigue is rampant, sleep disorders are becoming more common, and stress related digestive orders have become an issue I see every day. As humans, we have always had stress. However it has never been so constant. We are on continual alert with the ongoing stimulation of juggling a cell phone and blackberry, answering emails every minute from every location, and trying to text while eating, walking and driving.
The environment we inhabit today is nothing like our ancestors knew. Over 900 million pounds of herbicides and pesticides are applied to U.S. crops every year, and are also used to keep lawns, home gardens and golf courses free of insects. Less than .1 percent of these chemicals actually reach the targeted pest, leaving the other 99.9 percent free to circulate in the environment. These chemicals are not biodegradable and are neurotoxins. These can be found in our air, water and soil and in turn, our bodies.
To give you an idea of how far we have gone with pollutants, look at this fact. When a bus leaves and you are standing near, you will ingest more toxins than a person 60 years ago would have ingested in a lifetime. Since our livers have not evolved to handle such an enormous toxic load, we have to be conscious to consistently be incorporating foods that aid the body in the detoxification process, and avoiding ones that do us harm.
How do you begin Detoxification?
To understand how to properly detox, you have to first remember three simple rules:
- Don’t eat anything that won’t mold
- Don’t eat anything that your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize
- Don’t eat anything that is non-fat
Knowing these simple rules will help carefully aid your body in recovery from a diet high in processed foods, and begin to rebuild strong cells.
Gentle Detoxification through the digestive system, the liver, the kidneys and the skin.
Keeping a healthy digestion full of good bacteria is one of your strongest allies in proper detoxification. If you have a high amount of bad bacteria in your stomach like Candida, toxins will re-circulate in your body increasing your full toxic load each day. Constipation in the strongest indicator that your body is recycling toxins in the your blood stream. This can result from low fiber, excessive amounts of factory farmed red meat, coffee and sugar, processed food, and allergens.
How do I keep my digestion healthy?
Probiotics found in yogurt, kombucha, non-pasteurized sauerkraut and other fermented foods build your good bacteria colony. Keeping your body full of fresh fruit, vegetables and whole grains also contribute to their growth, where as coffee, alcohol, sugar and fried foods can all contribute to an unhealthy digestive system, and in turn your immune system. 70-80% of your immune system is in your digestive tract, so good digestion is important.
Supporting the Liver
The important concept to remember about the liver is that it has a huge job. To do that job well, it doesn’t like to be given inadequate time to do the work. A good way to remember this is to make sure you eat a solid breakfast between 7:00 and 9:00 in the morning, and that you eat your last meal before 6:00 pm. Digestion is at its strongest at noon, and at its slowest at 7:00pm and later.
The spring is a wonderful time to support your liver because nature assists with the food that is available. Dandelion greens, artichokes and beets are some of the best foods for your liver, along with garlic, onions, celery, seaweed, miso, kale, alfalfa, mushrooms and watercress. Spices like cinnamon, cardamom and turmeric are also incredibly beneficial.
Supporting the Kidneys
The kidneys are responsible for filtering waste products in the form of urine and chemicals from the blood. If it does get eliminated in the urine, the toxins will end up in the blood. It has to process 200 quarts of blood to sift out 2 quarts of waste. The kidneys also monitor concentrations of sodium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, chloride and bicarbonate as well as body fluid levels and remove excess amounts of salts and fluids in the urine. When the kidneys aren’t functioning properly, a substance called rennin can be produced in large amounts resulting in high blood pressure. Secondly, the regulation of calcium and phosphorus in the blood affect bone formation and the production of an active form of Vitamin D, which promotes calcium absorption from the food.
Supporting the kidneys begins with purified water each day, minimizing coffee and alcohol, and eliminating sodas. Parsley is one of the best additions to your diet for assisting kidney function, along with millet, barley, tofu, string beans, black beans, kidney beans, watermelon, blackberries and blueberries.
Eliminating through your Skin
Many toxins come through our skin in ways we may not think about. Look at the possible chemicals in your soap, shampoo, laundry detergent and cosmetics to see if you may be putting toxins into your body each today. To help eliminate back out through the skin, weekly massage and yoga are wonderful ways to achieve this, along with other forms of consistent exercise.
Now, a very common question is “Should I do a water, fruit or vegetable juice fast?”
2,000 years ago, people were healthy enough to do liquid fasts and have it be a positive ritual. The problem today is that our toxic load is so heavy, that doing some of these fasts can release toxins too quickly from our fat cells. The enzymes in the liver require a constant supply of nutrients to function properly. This is the reason why prolonged fasting with water or juices can sometimes be an unhealthy thing to do, especially for a person who has a high toxic load. When the liver is not provided with adequate nutrients (like when fasting) it’s ability to detox is impaired.
The other problem with many of today’s fasts, is that detoxification programs need to be individualized. Everyone’s bodies are too unique to use one form of detoxification to properly rid the body. I believe the answer to properly detoxifying our bodies in today’s age is to gently nourish ourselves with foods and supplementation that aid in removing toxins and that work for each person’s individual constitution.
The Gentle Detoxification Supplement Program
*If you have a clean liver, intestines, kidneys it is very difficult for disease occur when your filters are clean.
1. Liver DTX
The most effective formula that we have stuck with for decades uses milk thistle, artichoke, turmeric, dandelion, shizandra and reishi.
Probiotics are up to 80% of your immune system to kick out toxins and produce vitamins. VSL in particular has a strain called L. paracasei probiotic, which can reverse the gut permeability and internal hypersensitivity.