Our bodies are continuously in the process of creating toxins (a natural by-product of metabolism) and eliminating these toxins. However our bodies natural detoxification processes can be overburdened with the addition of environmental toxins as well as lifestyle factors that hamper this natural process.
Detoxification is therefore neither un-natural nor does it require a packaged box from the health-food store labelled “detoxification” for it to take place! For the purposes of this article I’ll refer to what is widely known as a “detox” to a Systematic Stimulation Of Detox Systems (SSDS).
So then why do we need a SSDS you ask?
Detoxing in the 21st Century is more important than ever before! We are more and more exposed to both internal toxins -free radicals, metabolic waste products, toxic emotions- as well as a host of external toxins not limited to: pollution, radiation, sugar, additives, drugs, cosmetics, etc.
What do these toxins do once they enter the body or are created in the body?
} Endocrine disruptors – thyroid and infertility
} Immune dysfunction – autoimmune disorders, arthritis
} Carcinogenic substances – act on DNA
These Symptoms represent our body’s attempt to auto-regulate and self-heal and should be seen as warning lights on your dashboard for your body’s need of a tune-up. We clear and filter toxins and wastes constantly through our general detoxification systems:
Respiratory- lungs, bronchial tubes, throat, sinuses, and nose
Gastrointestinal- liver, gallbladder, colon
Urinary- kidneys, bladder, and urethra
Skin- sweat glands and tears
Lymphatic- lymph channels and lymph nodes
Thereby, anything that helps us eliminate will help us detox! Some general guidelines include:
} Reducing toxin exposure through dietary and lifestyle changes.
} Decreasing “bad bacteria” in the gut and Re-introducing “good bacteria”
} Improving digestion
} Increasing the speed at which your body removes toxins
The last step above is where the confusion arises for most. With so many products on the market claiming to ‘detox’ how does one choose? In the same way every vehicle model requires a different type of oil for its oil change, likewise depending on your unique bodily requirements and specific toxic burdens, a unique program of SSDS is required. For example, a heavy smoker has different detoxification needs as compared to an individual who is a chronic user of NSAIDS (pain-relief drug). Each of the toxic conditions mentioned have a different effect on the liver’s detoxification processes and as such require a different approach to SSDS.
To find out what your specific bodily requirements for SSDS may be, contact your Naturopathic Physician who is well-versed in the language of SSDS