Are you tired of feeling sluggish? It’s possible that the hazardous chemicals and toxins we’re exposed to every day are stealing your health and vitality. Toxins naturally accumulate over time, and with the increased media attention focusing on this issue over the past several years, I’m sure it’s one that most of you are well aware of and concerned about – and rightly so.
Consumption of natural, organic food limits exposure to chemicals, additives and preservatives. However, even with healthy organic eating, toxins from the environment (pollution) and ingredients found in many cleaning and body care products can still enter your system through inhalation or absorption through your skin.
Toxin exposure is inevitable in this world. Compounds used in our everyday life such as detergent, chronic use of medication, excessive consumption of caffeine and alcohol, tobacco use, and a poor diet high in processed foods and fat are just some examples of unwanted exposure to toxins. Although your body is designed by nature to cleanse itself of many of the harmful agents it is exposed to through the environment and everyday living, it can be an overwhelming task. Removing toxins that have built up over time with a cleansing protocol will help you get on the road to feeling your best. Research supports the general and specific health benefits of detoxification. Here are some helpful suggestions and strategies to show you how you can: (1) eliminate the accumulation of toxins from your body; and (2) minimize their re-accumulation in the future. From the perspective of naturopathic medicine, the primary way for eliminating an accumulation of toxins and minimizing re-accumulation afterwards is a detoxification regimen along with a change in diet. To be at our best, in terms of health and energy, each and every cell of our body should be vibrantly clean and well nourished. Accomplish this and many health problems will be resolved. Detoxification programs can be difficult to maintain in social gatherings. Here are three ways to make it easier on you
or “detox buddy” who is also interested in doing a cleanse. He or she can provide added support and strengthen your willpower.
meals and keep snacks handy at all times.
With a detox program, you can expect to experience an increase in energy, mental clarity, smoother skin and improved sleep. Weight loss is also another common occurrence. The foods you eat play a key role in the strength of your immune system and your naturopathic doctor (ND) can provide you with dietary suggestions to re-balance, replenish, and re-start your system. Most detoxification programs recommend an increased intake of fresh vegetables and garlic, consuming whole grains (like quinoa, millet and brown rice), reducing stress, and saying goodbye to sugar in all its forms (refined carbohydrates). Regular exercise and yoga are also encouraged. Detoxify this spring and start living the healthy lifestyle that your body deserves.
Toxins affect various systems in the body and may play a role in allergies, skin disorders, poor immune functioning, headaches, digestive disorders, fatigue and a lack of mental clarity. Simply put, when the liver (the major detoxification organ in the body) is overwhelmed, its ability to rid the body of toxins is hindered. As a result, toxin levels accumulate over time and can lead to an array of health problems.
Most detoxification products found in health food stores do not address the lymphatic system and only offer a laxative effect (i.e., cleansing your colon by eliminating the accumulation of waste in the intestine). While colon cleansing is an essential part of a good detoxification program, these products and other bulking herbal agents do not address other systems in the body where toxins may be hiding. The lymphatic system transports lymph fluid throughout the body and picks up waste products, which it carries to the lymph nodes and ultimately into circulation where they can be removed by the liver. Without a well-functioning lymphatic system (which can be due to many factors, including the toxins themselves), the liver does not receive anything to detoxify.