Demystifying detox

January is here- and with it, the familiar post- Christmas urge to clean up our act- erase the festive season’s debauchery, eat well, exercise more, kick start a healthier routine, DETOX, DETOX, DETOX- but hang on, what does ‘detoxing’ actually mean?

It can be quite confusing stuff. And as a layman you are bombarded with a multitude of mixed messages. On one hand- ‘magic pill’ type solutions, that promise to rid your body of the accumulated toxicity, crash diet packages that promise to turn you into a lean god or goddess, detox creams, detox baths, detox foot patches, 14 day herbal detox drinks, you name it. On the other hand, the pragmatic approach- and the medical world’s old argument that your body as a complex organism that has evolved over thousands of years is perfectly equipped to detox itself.

So where does the truth lie? As usual, somewhere in the middle.


Our bodies are complex organisms with highly refined mechanism, that will always aim to bring us back to equilibrium, or a state of optimum health and balance. However our bodies are also natural, organic in nature and as such are not designed for polluted, synthetic environments that we live in in the 21st century. One could say that nowadays our optimum bodily function is compromised from the day we are born, with an assault of chemicals and synthetic drug cocktails packaged as vaccinations, systematically altering natural bacterial balance of our bodies and compromising their strength and integrity. Furthermore this is aggravated by contemporary diets far from naturally fit for a human body, largely processed and lacking in essential nutrients and enzymes. Misunderstanding and suppression of processes such as fever, which are body’s natural self-regulating and cleansing mechanisms- and as such welcome and beneficial to the body, combined with our fear of bacteria and viruses, leads to excessive use of sterilisation practices and antibiotics -which further disturb the bacterial flora of our bodies, making them weaker and more prone to disease. Environmental toxicity and modern high stress lifestyles disconnecting us from our bodies natural circadian rhythms add to our toxic load…and of course alcohol, recreational drugs and sugary foods do not help….so yes, the answer is, we do need to detox. Or rather, we need to aid our bodies in detoxing more efficiently. Just like sometimes we need glasses even though our eyes were designed to function without them.

Detoxification is what your body does naturally to neutralize, transform or get rid of unwanted materials or toxins. It is a primary function of the body, constantly working and interacting with all other functions of the body. So when we talk about detoxification, it is really about improving and optimizing the function of your body’s own detoxification systems. This is done by decreasing the amount of toxins we put into our bodies while at the same time supporting our body’s detoxification and elimination systems with the nutrients it needs to function properly.

Although it is mostly ignored by our current medical system, the detoxification system is a key component of our body’s functioning. Most of the molecules made by our bodies every day, are for getting rid of waste products. We need hundreds of enzymes, vitamins and other molecules to help rid the body of unwanted waste products and chemicals. We need to manufacture these molecules to help take the good from what we ingest and get rid of the unwanted.

If and when our own detoxification systems (predominantly the liver and the gut) become overloaded and do not function properly, toxins get stored in various tissues in the body, including fatty tissue. This prevents our system from functioning at optimum strength and efficiency and is a factor in the development of various chronic diseases, including cancer. It is also one of primary factors in accelerated aging.

A well functioning detoxification system that is supported nutritionally is essential to maintaining good health. An effective, natural, gentle detox program can help your body’s natural cleansing ability and put you on the road to rejuvenation.


Decrease The Number Of Toxins Going In

Limit external toxins by decreasing or removing the amount of irritants that we put into our bodies. This means eliminating the foods that often cause sensitivities or reactions, like gluten and dairy, irritants to the gut like alcohol and caffeine and sugar and all processed foods that also trigger inflammation.

Assist The Body’s Capacity To Neutralize And Eliminate The Toxins:

-Support Gastro-Intestinal Function

 The intestines are the body’s primary channel of elimination and need to be prioritized during any detox programme. If the intestines are not working properly a lot of toxins will be eliminated through the skin in a form of rashes, acne, eczema, psoriasis and odorous sweat. Also unexpelled feacal matter accumulated in the large intestine will cause bloating, malodorous gas and negatively impact on your energy levels. Colonic hydrotherapy is an invaluable tool in cleansing and improving the function of the gastro-intestinal tract.

  • Give the digestive system a rest by decreasing the amount of food and supplying key nutrients via juices and or powders. A periodical rest from digestive effort in a form of complete or partial fast is one of the best things one can do to rejuvenate the body .
  • Help balance and maintain healthy gut flora by eliminating abnormal bacteria, yeast and parasites that release toxins into the bloodstream and overload the liver’s capacity to detox.
  • Aid digestion with digestive enzymes, which assist the body in breaking down food properly ensuring fewer negative effects from undigested foods and better nutrient absorption
  • Increase foods rich in fruit and vegetable fibre to “sweep” the intestines. Fibre binds to toxins which helps to prevent their absorption and facilitate their elimination. It also decreases G.I. tract inflammation. Moreover humans are biologically herbivores, which means that fruit and vegetable fibre should form at least 60% of the diet for optimum health.

-Support Liver Function

Assist liver function, as it is the main organ involved in transforming toxins into metabolites that are easier to excrete. Nutritionally supporting the liver boosts it’s function during detox preventing the accumulation of toxic products in the tissues. Consuming high amounts of healthy fats and cruciferous vegetables is essential for an optimum liver function, as well as supplying adequate amount of vitamins, minerals and enzymes.

Additionally, periodical liver and gallbladder cleansing or flushing is one of the most powerful health boosting procedures known to man- and everyone could do with it at least twice a year, more in cases of people with compromised liver function or hormonal disorders. You can learn all you need to know about liver and gallbladder flushing here:


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