Understanding Detox | Ways to Detox Your Body Effectively

Detox is a process in which a person makes lifestyle changes to clear toxins from their body. It was being practised for centuries by various cultures around the world including Ayurvedic and Chinese Traditional Medicine systems. Toxins are any foreign substances that can be poisonous or cause negative health effects to our body. They might come from metals, pollutants, chemicals, artificial food ingredients, pesticides, and poisons that cause the body harm. We are in constant contact and are exposed to all these toxins regularly. They are in our water, food, and in the air that we breathe; it is very difficult to get away from them. Removing and eliminating toxins can help protect our body from disease and renew our ability to maintain optimum health.

Detoxification means cleansing the blood. This is done by removing impurities from the blood through the liver where toxins are filtered and processed for elimination from the body. Besides the liver, our body also eliminates toxins through kidneys, intestines, lungs, lymphatic systems, and even skin. However, when these systems are compromised, toxins are not properly filtered and the body is adversely affected.

Ways to detox your body

Here are some tips on how to detox our body naturally without any medications.

  • Choose the right foods – lighten body’s load and decrease the toxins you put in your body. Try to choose organic vegetables and fruits over fast and processed foods.
  • Exercise and meditation – sweating is a way to detox your body through your skin. Meditation helps you clear and reduce mental and physical stress. Stress will produce free radicals inside your body, which will lead to cell damage and eventually causes your body to function poorly.
  • Diet – there are many foods that aid detoxification such as garlic, lemon, broccoli, mung beans, and raw vegetables.
  • Purify the air you breathe – we can control the air in our home from unwanted smoke, fumes, pet dander, mold and microorganisms by using an air purifying device
  • Purify body with water – our body needs water to function well. Water is needed to produce saliva, help with perspiration, and remove waste.
  • Complete body detox – a complete body detox is a step-by-step process that focuses on each organ involved in ridding the body of toxins. We should focus on removing harmful organisms, chemicals, and toxic metals while cleansing colon, liver, and kidneys.

Intestines or colon detox

Colon cleansing is to help the colon to expel its contents. It is the foundation for other detox phases of the full body detox because if the intestinal tract is clogged, many toxins being dumped by your liver will back up into the blood stream. Waste products that are left over from digestion of the food is sent to the colon to be safely excreted from the body. But, important nutrients and hormones are still being absorbed there. Hence, the colon is deciding what to get rid of and what important nutrients to redistribute.

Here are three important reasons everyone can benefit from colon cleansing:

  • Average person has between 7 – 10 pounds of old faecal matter in their colon even those with daily bowel movement
  • Accumulation of waste on the colon wall creates the perfect breeding ground for parasites, yeast, bad bacteria, and viruses
  • Detoxification pathway is blocked and results in autointoxication (constipation, diarrhoea, vomiting, yeast infection, acne, dermatitis, fatigue, and insomnia)

Colon cleansing methods may be applied or done as below especially for those with a history of chronic constipation:

  • Home enemas
  • Laxatives
  • Herbal teas
  • Multi-enzymes supplement
  • Probiotics
  • Fibres

Liver detox

The liver is the largest organ in the body after skin. The liver has been identified as having over five hundred vital functions. One of its main function is to clean out used blood and return it to the heart. If the liver is not functioning at its optimum, you may end up with recycled toxins entering your heart and the rest of your body via uncleaned blood. This will damage your cells, organs and weaken your immune system, subsequently leading to a rapid ageing process.  Some of the more well-known functions of the liver include the following:

  • Responsible for bile production which helps carry away waste and fat breakdown
  • Glucose storage in the form of glycogen
  • Protein and carbohydrate metabolism
  • Cholesterol production
  • Stores vitamins A, D, K, B12, iron, copper, and folate
  • Help resist infections by producing immune factors
  • Primary organ responsible for detoxification

The diagram above explains how toxins enter and are secreted out from our liver. If the liver is not able to convert the harmful substances (toxins) into water soluble form, these toxins will be deposited inside the fatty areas of the body such as the brain, hormonal glands, buttocks, abdomen, and thigh. This makes it harder to lose weight even while dieting.

There are many herbs and foods that can help with liver cleansing such as:

  • Milk thistle seed – renew and repair liver cells, stimulate bile production, and improve digestion
  • Dandelion root – stimulates bile flow from liver
  • Peppermint – stimulates bile flow and relaxes bile ducts, helping to break down fats.
  • Asparagus – natural diuretic that helps with liver drainage
  • Avocado – contain glutathione which helps the liver detoxify synthetic chemicals and get rid of unwanted toxins from body
  • Broccoli – helps liver transform toxins into a form that can be easily eliminated
  • Cilantro (coriander) – help to mobilize mercury and other heavy metals out of the tissue. The metals can attach to other compounds and will be secreted out from body


Kidney detox

The longer toxins are left and build up in your kidneys, the more at risk you are for renal disease or renal failure. Healthy kidneys have a million nephrons that will filter out waste. This waste is then removed through the urine. In contrast with unhealthy kidneys, they lose the ability to filter out waste efficiently and toxins start to build up in the blood. Excess waste in the body can cause nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, weak, and itchy skin. Our kidneys filter out about 30 gallons of blood while removing toxins and excess fluid. Besides that, it also monitors blood pressure, regulates calcium to build strong bones, and balance out electrolytes levels in the body.

Without a balanced diet, purified drinking water, and body cleansing, toxins can build up and affect the function of the kidneys, liver, and other organs. They may even lead to kidney stones and other concerns. Below are some kidney cleansing foods and drinks:

  • Apple cider vinegar (ACV): the citric, acetic, and phosphorus acid content in ACV helps to breaks down and prevent kidney stones formation
  • Dandelion root: due to its diuretic properties, it helps to clean both kidneys and the liver
  • Cranberry juice: cranberries may also be helpful for cleansing the kidneys of excess calcium oxalate (one of the main contributors to kidney stones)
  • Celery: has natural diuretic properties. It aids in removing toxins and harmful materials from the body by increasing urination.
  • Parsley:  a potent, natural diuretic herb that can cleanse the kidneys. It works by promoting urine output to help to flush out bacteria and germs from kidneys.

Detox diet does not have to be confusing and should not be a terrible experience. Try to cut down processed and inflammatory foods such as refined sugar, and alcohol. Regularly use food based cleansing and detox diets to treat and support a variety of medical conditions. Here are some benefits of a detox diet to our body :

  • Increased energy throughout the day
  • Managing stress (mental and physical)
  • Stimulating the liver to drive toxins from body
  • Promoting elimination through the intestines, kidneys, and skin
  • Improving blood circulation
  • Control cravings and food addiction