In this modern world, we are all exposed to toxins all the time, so we must be able to detox well. Pesticide residue on our food, heavy metals in the soil, mold from a water damaged building, and plastics from our cookware are just a few examples. Before you decide to run into a cave and hide, consider this: the best things we can do are 1) support the body’s natural ability to detoxify and 2) learn how to reduce exposure to harmful substances.
I’ll outline a few things you can do before having any more detailed information about your unique circumstances. You can read more about mold, mycotoxins, and histamine here. If you are feeling bogged down with allergy-like symptoms, fatigue, and digestive problems, consider a functional test like the Organic Acids Test or GI Map, while HTMA may give insight into heavy metal exposure and mineral status. Looking at objective data alongside symptoms is ultimately the best way to know what is truly going on. My approach is to test, rather than guess so we can build an effective healing plan.
I’m sorry to say a five day juice cleanse is not going to support detoxification in the ways your body needs. We are led to believe a “detox” happens acutely – in a 5 day cleanse or only in the spring. In fact, it’s happening for us day in and day out. And there are steps we can take to facilitate this consistent process.
- Support digestion by eating organic, fiber-rich, and colorful vegetables. You must be able to properly break down and assimilate food as well as eliminate 1-3 times daily. Common digestive problems occur with inadequate stomach acid, low digestive enzymes, increased inflammation from food sensitivities, and sluggish liver function.
- Stabilize blood sugar by focusing on balanced meals. A diet composed of refined carbohydrates, sugar, caffeine, and processed foods places the burden on the liver and adrenals.
- Drink enough pure filtered water for your body and replenish electrolytes. Minerals can become depleted from chronic stress, medications/NSAIDs, acute infection, inflammation, and more.
- Daily movement encourages good circulation through the bloodstream and lymphatic system, which is crucial for moving wastes out. Besides eliminating through the bowels, sweating is a great way to get rid of toxins. Infrared sauna has been shown to provide many of the benefits of exercise as well as encourage detox through sweating. Be sure to hydrate!
- Prioritize sleep with good hygiene habits. Set up your room to be cool and very dark at night with some white noise like a fan. If you take caffeine, aim for a window of 90 minutes after waking and finish 12 hours before bedtime to avoid disrupting your circadian rhythm.
If you can check these off the list of daily habits, you’ll have the foundations set up for success in detoxifying.
A great place to start is looking at labels. Not just your food labels, but household and beauty products, gardening and pet supplies, etc. Avoid products with BPA, phthalates, parabens, phenols, PFAS, formaldehyde, mercury, titanium dioxide, fragrance, and others. Check out Environmental Working Group for more on what to avoid.
Below is a list of non-toxic swaps that I’ve come to know and love!
- Branch Basics – food safe cleaning supplies for the whole house
- BeautyCounter – truly high quality makeup & skincare
- Tom’s of Maine – aluminum-free deodorant
- Dr. Bronner’s – organic soap
- Organyc – organic cotton tampons, pads, & liners
- Lumineax – non-toxic mouthwash
- Boka – fluoride-free toothpaste
- Acure – organic face wash, skincare, & hair care
- Last Object – reusable cotton facial rounds
- Bee’s Wrap – reusable beeswax wrap
- Stasher bags – reusable silicone food bag
- If You Care – compostable & unbleached parchment paper & muffin liners
- Produce bags – cotton or hemp
If you keep an eye out, you’ll start to see more companies and brands that are choosing non-toxic. For the health of the individual and generations to come, I hope this trend continues! With this understanding you can vote with your dollar. You have the choice to avoid the companies who do not have your best interest at heart and support the ones who do.
Fruit + Veggie Wash
- 2 cups filtered water
- 1 cup distilled white vinegar
Pour into a spray bottle and keep at the kitchen sink for an easy way to wash your fruits and veggies. Consider scrubbing root vegetables or peeling the skin.
- 3 cups distilled white vinegar
- 1 cup witch hazel
- 3 teaspoons essential oil*
*Essential oils effective at killing mold include eucalyptus, tea tree, thyme, rosemary, cumin seed, clove, holy basil leaf, scotch pine, cedar leaf, and ajwain seed.
Be sure to book a call if you have questions or are interested in functional testing!