Natural body detoxification is part of normal physical functioning. Your body is designed to cleanse your itself of waste and toxins on a continual basis. And yes, you can help it do its job by what you do and don't put in and on yourself.
Several organs of elimination remove toxins produced from normal metabolic processes. They also break down, store, or eliminate toxins taken in from the environment or foods.
The body cleans itself of waste and toxins through organs of elimination and systems within the cells and the body.
The lungs remove carbon dioxide from the blood and replace it with oxygen. When you exhale, they excrete carbon dioxide and other gasses, along with water and heat resulting from cell respiration.
Skin is a major organ of elimination. When you sweat, heavy metals and chemicals can be excreted from your body. If other elimination channels are overloaded, the skin may have to deal with extra toxins.
Two kidneys filter drugs, heavy metals and metabolic waste products carried by the blood from body tissues. This liquid waste is passed to the bladder where it is removed when you urinate.
The liver plays a major role in natural body detoxification. This three pound organ is the largest in your body. It is responsible for approximately 500 functions in your body, including detoxification and immune health.
One and a half quarts of blood flow through the sieve-like liver every minute. Certain hormones, chemicals, drugs and metabolic waste are processed and eliminated from the blood during the liver's three phases of detoxification. If the toxic burden is too great, they are recirculated through the blood before heading back to the liver. Bile from the liver carries waste and toxins to the feces for elimination.
Toxins that can't be broken down are stored in the liver or fat cells. It’s especially vital to keep your liver in good health if you want to protect yourself from cancer and other diseases brought on by toxicity.
Organs of elimination are just part of the body detoxing system.
Even though your body is adept at healthy detox and cleansing naturally, channels of elimination sometimes get overwhelmed. When toxins build up in your cells, certain illnesses or unpleasant symptoms occur. When one channel is burdened, others become challenged as well.
Intentionally support natural body detoxification. Because we are exposed to so many toxins, it is helpful to intentionally support your natural body detoxification system and your detox pathways as part of your long-term wellness plan. This is the best overall first line of defense includes eating healthy cleansing foods, avoiding toxic foods and products, getting adequate exercise, quality sleep, and plenty of clean water on a daily basis.
Periodic short term detox cleanses may be beneficial. Some people find it helpful to fast or go on a mono-diet of organic apples for a day. Others may use binders such as clay or activated charcoal with psyllium for a week or more per month to trap and release toxins in the colon. There are many options. If you follow a sensible plan, periodic cleanses may reduce the typical burden on your system and give it what it needs to release some stored toxins. They can also get you back on track if you backslid with your eating and other health habits. Most of these cleanses will not get rid of heavy metals already trapped in the cells.
Except in cases of toxic poisoning, which requires immediate treatment, the benefits of doing cleanses is hotly debated. Some experts swear by them, others consider them of no use or even health-harming. Depending on which types of cleanses you choose and for how long, both of them may be correct.
For optimal physical health and a lasting effect, it is in your best interest to think and act long term. Support your organs of elimination with healthy living and eating habits. Be mindful of minimizing incoming toxins and give your body what it needs to cleanse itself naturally.
Natural Body Detoxification page updated 12/2020
For Educational Purposes Only: This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Please consult your health provider before using herbs or supplements if you are pregnant, nursing, or you are being treated for a medical condition. Be aware that certain herbs and supplements interact with medications.