The need for detox and detoxification processes (whether they are therapies, diets or even fasting) does not ignite consensus among the conventional medical community and public. Let’s demystify the concept.
Detoxification is the process of purging toxins out of our body. The way we acquire these toxins is diverse: we produce them, we eat them, we breathe them and we absorb them. Confused? Further clarification follows.
For a start (and the good news is) our body is an incredibly efficient detox machine. Your liver, kidneys, gastrointestinal system and even the skin are in-built systems designed to remove everyday toxins. Now, if our own body has systems to naturally detox, the perspective that we can do without it is redundant. The human body critically needs a detox capability in order to maintain good health.
One might then argue that if our body naturally detoxes autonomously, there would be no need to take further action on that matter. That assumption would be correct, if it wasn’t for the fact that the amount of toxins we are exposed to (daily) has changed substantially in quantity, diversity and potency, over time.
We are naturally designed to deal with the toxic waste that our own metabolism produces (free-radicals for example), but nowadays we are constantly exposed to other toxic substances – equally or even more harmful than the above – by the most usual and unpresuming things in our life. Chemical fertilizers and pesticides are used to grow our vegetables and the fish we consume builds up in mercury; processed food is loaded with preservatives, synthesized taste enhancers are packed in materials that can release cancerous substances in the food; our water carries similar substances when coming out of our taps; our cosmetics, cleaning products, medication, materials used in some manual jobs (mechanics, radiometers, painters…) and even our old dental fillings, are all composed by chemicals of every kind that release into our system. Should we continue?
When our body is unable to process these toxins, it will store it all over our body, in our fat cells, in our vessel walls, bones and even our brain, compromising the normal performance of our inner systems and promoting premature ageing. The exposure to heavy metals is been widely related to all sort of chronical and degenerative diseases, like heart conditions, Alzheimer’s and even autism in children.
Conclusion: yes, the body has an amazing detox system, but it’s not prepared for the realities of modern day living. There is no harm in giving it a little help to avoid harmful effects on our overall health.
Benefits of cleansing your inner systems are wide and rewarding: better energy to face your day, stronger immune system, better sleep patterns, better digestive and bowel performance, lower risk of chronic diseases, help with weight loss and, last but definitely not least, the natural anti-ageing benefits. In resume, an overall sense of improved wellbeing.
You can naturally help your detox process with some daily steps, some simpler than others:
Drinking as much water possible, filtered or mineral if available. Add some lemon juice to your first glass in the morning for an extra vitamin C boost.
Replace processed and high fat food for healthier options and more balanced meals. Load your cupboards with vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean proteins. Veggie juices are excellent for detox, as are berries (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries) because they are packed with anti-oxidants. Opt for organic and whole foods with no, or minimal, processing, when you have that choice. Eat more broccoli, garlic, spinach, cabbage, sprouts and ginger (they are great detox food). Include Aloe Vera, cilantro and turmeric in your daily diet and recipes - Aloe Vera helps intestine cleansing, cilantro has been found to be a natural chelating agent and turmeric protects the liver. Add a probiotic supplement to your diet.
Change your chemical cleaning products for ones of natural or (even better) organic compositions. That applies to all your beauty and cosmetic products too.
Then, the obvious advice: quit smoking and avoid smoky environments. Reduce your alcohol consumption.
Exercise regularly and, finally, see the bright side of life. A positive attitude is the best stress management tool available. Less stress, less free radicals.
A note here, on taking detox too seriously: beware of detox diets. Not all advertised detox diet plans are brought up and designed consciously by nutrition professionals. Some of these plans are radical, unfit for a proper nutrition and a healthy metabolism, proven to do more damage than good in many cases. Optionally make of eating clean a regular habit, an effective lifestyle option.
If your age and health condition requires, and under medical supervision, you can opt to take your detox process a step further with detox therapies.
Here are some examples:
Chelation with EDTA is a powerful and one of the most common heavy metal detox therapies. Commonly in chelation therapy, Edta (ethylene diamine tetra-acid) is administrated into our bloodstream. This amino-acid binds to adverse heavy metals present in our blood ( like lead, mercury and iron) that cause free-radical damage to our cells and a buildup of calcium deposits in the arteries, then carries them harmlessly out of our system through urine.
Plaquex - Administered as an infusion, works as an arterial cleanser. By removing the plaque from the capillaries, the blood flow circulates more efficiently, improving transportation of nutrients and oxygen to the tissues and facilitating the removal of toxins and free radicals
Ozone Therapy and Oxygen Therapies benefit the oxygen increase and deliver to all body, so they are perfect for free radicals’ elimination.
Colon hydrotherapy is a slightly different type of detox therapy. It acts by directly cleansing the bowels from digested food retained in the intestinal wall. This buildup of the colon leads to inefficient nutritional absorption and releases toxins into our blood stream, causing fatigue, headaches, low energy and even weight gain. Cleaning the colon, will then improve your bowel movements and the benefits of a good diet while taking away the “bloated tummy feeling”.