By Dr. Justin Marchegiani
Types of Toxins
There are two main types of toxins that we are regularly exposed to, called endotoxins and exotoxins.
Exotoxins are toxic materials that come from the outside world and make their way inside us, for example, by eating or breathing them in. They include foods, cleaning agents, car exhaust, makeup, as well as much of what we ingest both topically and internally. They also include less-visible sources, such as radiation and electromagnetic stressors from cell phones and towers.
Endotoxins are toxins produced within our bodies, such as those produced by our gut bacteria or those formed when our organs incorrectly or incompletely perform a task.
Light to moderate exposure to the stressors listed above is normal, and improves the body’s ability to react to stress. However, too much exposure can throw our processing of these stressors into overdrive, which allows the toxins to hurt the body.
Modes of Detoxification
The human body has many modes of getting rid of toxins naturally; here are some of the main players in the human detoxification system:
- Skin: Sweating expels toxins through the skin. Detoxification the body leads to beautiful, glowing skin!
- Liver: The liver plays a major role in detoxification by preparing toxins to be expelled as urine or as bile.
- The Gut: A healthy gut is crucial for properly getting rid of toxins, otherwise, toxins may be reabsorbed through the intestines.
- Kidneys: Our kidneys filter our blood, diverting waste to the bladder to be expelled as urine.
- Lungs: The lungs bring in oxygen into the bloodstream while dispelling carbon dioxide out of the body.
Detox Through Lifestyle and Supplementation
There are many ways to enhance your body’s natural detoxification systems, both by being conscious of your lifestyle and by adding in supplements.
Lifestyle awareness includes:
1. A Healthy Diet:Avoiding toxins in your diet, as well as keeping inflammation low, does wonders for keeping things running smoothly. Grains, sugars, bad fats, and processed foods are all toxic to your body. Grass-fed meats, healthy fats, non-starchy vegetables, and fermented foods are your friends!
2. Juicing: Juicing cruciferous vegetables can help the gut function at the top of its game, you can even add a little pineapple, green apple, or carrots! Just go light on the fruit, as it can be high in sugar and too much of that creates a fungus-friendly environment!
3. Consuming fat: “The solution to pollution is dilution;” well, in terms of toxins within our body fat, anyways! Most toxins are fast soluble so the body has a propensity to shuttle toxins into these fat cells. The body will then be more resistant to burning up this toxin-filled fat until it has the capacity to do so. By ensuring we consume enough high-quality fats, we can bind to the toxic fats so that our bodies are able to burn off and get rid of the toxins.
4. Infrared:Infrared lights and infrared saunas are great ways to detoxify.
5. Exercise:Exercise kickstarts your respiration and perspiration, and mobilizes body fat where many toxins reside.
6. Hydration:Drink at least half your body weight in water each day. Add lemon or apple cider vinegar to enhance the detoxifying effects.
Supplementation can also assist in getting rid of toxins:
1. Glutathione:Liposomal glutathione is the optimal source of this master antioxidant. Grass-fed whey is another great addition to your diet, as it is a precursor to producing your own glutathione within your cells!
2. Alpha Lipoic Acid:ALA has the power to regenerate antioxidants, and protects the mitochondria from toxicity. It is both fat and water soluble, meaning it can get to those pesky toxins hiding in fat cells that most other nutrients can’t reach.
3. Superoxide Dismutase (SOD):Breaks down superoxide free radicals, and is available either as a supplement or in foods such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, and wheatgrass.
4. N-Acetyl Cysteine (N.AC): Helps reduce the effects of chemicals and toxins in the liver, the recommendation is about two grams.
5. Chlorella and Spirulina: The chlorophyll in these two binds to toxins and improves the body’s ability to bring oxygen to the cells, which means the cells produce more antioxidants to fight toxicity.
6. Activated Charcoal:Charcoal binds to toxins on a molecular level, meaning they are unable to escape and are expelled through the stool. It’s so powerful that it’s used in emergency rooms for drug overdoses!
7. Selenium:There is a strong link between being deficient in selenium and developing autoimmune disorders. Selenium binds to heavy metals, such as mercury, and can help flush them out of the body.
8. Milk Thistle:Boosts our 2 major antioxidants, glutathione and superoxide dismutase. It also protects the liver, thyroid, and immune system from radiation stress.
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