Many of us are in poor health and don’t even realize it.
We often accept having low energy, unwanted body fat, constipation, a weakened immune system, and an unhealthy physical appearance as regular health problems. But detoxification can help you feel more energetic, improve health and increase longevity. It's important to understand how toxins affect us and how you can help your body reduce and get rid of them.
What is Detoxification?
Detoxification is the process by which our bodies filter and remove harmful toxins. We must process internal toxins or those created by digestion, energy production, hormonesynthesis, as well as external toxins from the environment.
Our bodies are continually eliminating toxins through our skin, urine, feces, and lungs. Potentially toxic substances need to be processed and eliminated from the body.
The liver does most of the work in converting these substances to forms that can leave the body either through bile or through the filtration system of the kidneys. The kidneys are also important as they help break down these compounds
Two main phases of liver detoxification:
Phase 1 - compounds are converted to forms that will dissolve more easily in water
Phase 2 - the toxic compounds go through a series of reactions to help make them less toxic and easier to excrete.
We need adequate nutrients to make this process work efficiently. In general, environmental toxins should be avoided through sensible lifestyle choices.
Tips to detoxify your body for improved and more balanced health:
- Eat a diet consisting of whole foods
- Eat foods close to their natural state
- Avoid processed foods that have additives, preservatives, and artificial sweeteners.
- Try to eat at least one whole food meal daily.
- Drink plenty of water daily
- Avoid drinking from plastic bottles as they often contain BPA (bisphenol A, a toxic chemical that research has shown to be linked to cancer, reproductive disorders, and other serious health problems)
- Instead, drink from a glass or stainless steel water bottle
- Increase your consumption of foods that improve liver health
- Ex. artichoke, avocado, dandelion greens, garlic, beets, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, lemons and limes, apples and mushrooms
- Add more fiber to your diet
- Vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds
- Reduce exposure to toxins
- Replace toxins in your home with non-toxic alternatives when possible
- Ex. Household cleaners, insecticides, and mold are potentially harmful household chemicals.
- Aim to reduce your biggest sources of exposure.
- Consider nutritional supplements
- Ex. milk thistle may help support liver function