Detoxification: A Silent System With Many Players
In recognition of those who have gone through my detox program and for those who arecurrently going through it I thought it only fitting to write about detoxification this month and highlight some of the aspects of this system.
Detoxification IS a System
Many people think that detoxification is something that happens only when we’re sweating in a sauna or fasting on water and juices. Although those are cleansing actions for the body, detoxification is a system that’s working everyday just like your respiratory system, digestive or cardiac system. You can tell when your breathing and digestion are working well or when they are congested and sluggish. The action of detoxification on the other hand is fairly silent while it works and you may not even know that its function is over taxed and slowing.
Despite the long list of very common symptoms that can indicate an overburdened detox system such as headaches, rashes, fatigue, restless sleep, acne, constipation, joint pain, irritability, inability to lose weight and so on, we usually don’t put two and two together and realize that the network of actions that make up detoxification may in fact be challenged and under functioning. While your doctor may be keen about identifying issues with your heart, your lungs or your kidneys, he may never realize or address that the system that keeps your body from accumulating dangerous levels of chemicals, hormones and other toxins may actually be impaired and even at the root of causing your symptoms.
Key Players in the System
The liver is the primary player when it comes to transforming toxic substances that cling to the body’s tissues to ones that are less harmful and that can easily exit the body.
The liver is an organ with complex chemical mechanics that we basically divide into two phases when it comes to its detox ability. These 2 phases require proper balance to take a fat loving dangerous toxin through transformation to a water soluble one that can easily exit the body. Genetic mishaps that involve these 2 phases of detox are fairly common and strengthen the argument for why we all need to take ourselves through a structured, science based detox program.
The kidneys are also key players in detoxification and are one of the final pathways to eliminating toxins in the urine. We actually refer to this as Phase 3 detoxification. This phase requires the correct alkaline pH for proper toxin elimination and this is achieved by eating enough vegetables!
The intestine is another exit pathway for removing toxins that the liver has readied for elimination. Again, a diet that is dominant with vegetables is essential to keep the bowel swept clean of its contents on a daily basis.
The skin is actually the answer to the question, “What is the largest organ in the body?”
Rarely do we think of the skin as an organ let alone as an organ of detoxification. But just as we can deliver medications transdermally (across the skin into the body) we can also have substances exit via the skin. This is why we practice dry skin brushing techniques during my detox program, to keep the pores open and free of old dead skin layers while stimulating the lymph fluid just under the skin that delivers toxins to the skin.
The lungs are the last organs of detoxification as we can actually release small amounts of toxins in the breath. Exercising during detoxification is beneficial and should be done so that one clearly notices an increase in the rate of their breathing but not at a strenuous level. Moderate exercise not only allows the lungs to process more toxins through the breath but also increases the body’s metabolism to enhance the entire detoxification process.
A Common Denominator
If you are someone who experiences several of the common complaints already mentioned, (skin, joints, pain, mood, digestion, etc……), then it’s time to realize that all of these symptoms just might share a common denominator: dysfunctional detoxification! When you are ready to engage in a science based program then take a look at www.cleanseandchange.com