by Philemon kwizera, RN

Cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, dementia, osteoporosis, and autoimmune are increasingly prevailing conditions. I am sure you know at least one person suffering from one of those medical conditions. Most likely, you know more than one. The reason for this unfortunate situation: environmental toxins!

The term “toxin” in the context of detox diets is loosely defined. It typically includes pollutants, synthetic chemicals, heavy metals, and processed foods which all negatively affect health.

Toxins are everywhere in our modern world which makes us to be exposed to more than 100 000 toxins every day. Those toxins are in our water supply, food, in the air we breathe outdoors from cars and mining and industrial processes, plus the air inside our homes from cleaning products, gasses emitted from things like carpet and paint, and dust and mold particles, we can’t escape them Over time, they build up in our bodies, which deplete, suppress our organ function, and cause nutrient deficiencies. Unfortunately, those toxins are passed down to the babies in utero. Consistently, babies are born with more than 250 different types of toxins in their blood. You probably know pesticides are linked to health problems and environmental issues. But you may not realize they can disrupt your cells’ mitochondria, your biological batteries. Your mitochondria generate energy, help you detoxify, and support your immune system. Pesticides can throw a wrench into all those functions and more

Poisons produced by mold can cause illness that extends beyond common mold allergies. Mold allergy symptoms tend to be limited to your respiratory tract, eyes, and skin, such as a runny nose and itchy eyes. Allergies happen when your immune system overreacts to mold spores. Those are dormant forms of the fungi that float into the air.

There are 23 heavy metals of concern for human health because of residential or occupational exposure: antimony, arsenic, bismuth, cadmium, cerium, chromium, cobalt, copper, gallium, gold, iron, lead, manganese, mercury, nickel, platinum, silver, tellurium, thallium, tin, uranium, vanadium, and zinc.

  • Aluminum: Cookware and utensils, food additives, medications, toothpaste, nasal sprays, anti-antiperspirants, dental amalgams, cigarette filters, vaccines, and pesticides
  • Arsenic: Pressure-treated wood, wood preservatives, insecticide, wine, well water, seafood (shellfish), poisons, pigments, and more.
  • Barium: Occupational exposure, groundwater contamination, environmental pollution, cigarette smoke, and even certain medical procedures
  •  Beryllium: Portable electronics, cell phones, industrial machinery, medical devices
  • Cadmium: Evaporated milk, shellfish, cigarette smoke, water from galvanized pipes, sewage sludge, paint, pigments, air pollution, and more
  • Chromium: dyes, pigments, air pollution, dental crowns, pressure-treated wood, synthetic vitamin supplements, and more
  • Cobalt: Pigment, dyes, jewelry, utensils, dental plates, hair dyes, antiperspirant 10. Copper: Sewage sludge, copper plumbing, beer, swimming pools, inorganic or synthetic mineral supplements, dental crowns, copper cookware, and more
  • Cyanide: Pollution 12. Gold: Dental crowns and fillings, jewelry, injections for arthritis, and more
  • Iron: Inks, dyes, paints, pigments, poor inorganic minerals in food, and more
  •  Lead: Paint, car exhaust, plumbing canned foods, hair dyes, newsprint, tap water, and more 15. Lithium: Pollution
  •  Manganese: Ceramics, antiseptics, dyes, medications, steel products, air pollution, water supply
  •  Mercury: Dental fillings, mercury vapor lamps, fluorescent light bulbs, vaccinations, sewage sludge, skin lightening creams, seafood (shellfish), polluted water, power plant emissions
  • Nickel: Dental crowns, braces, cigarettes, and more 19. Platinum: Soil and river sediments, air, jewelry
  • Polonium: Seafood, tobacco 22. Radium: Pollution in the air, soil, and water 23. Silver: Jewelry and dental fillings
  • Thallium: Air pollution and foods
  • Tin: Canned food
  • Titanium: Implants, dental crowns, tap/well water, preservatives in medications, pigments in paint
  • Zinc: Poor quality inorganic supplements, synthetic vitamins, and food

The Good news: You Can Do Something about it!

Your body has a sophisticated way of eliminating toxins that involves the liver, kidneys, digestive system, skin, and lungs. Still, only when these organs are healthy, can they effectively eliminate unwanted substances. However, some diseases, vitamin deficiency, exposure to tobacco smoke, alcohol, and drugs may upset the balance between detoxification enzymes.

Nutrients for Proper Detoxification

The essential detoxification vitamins and minerals include vitamins A, B2, B3, B5, B6, folate (B9), B12, C and E, iron, calcium, copper, zinc, magnesium, and selenium. Some research suggests that nutrients like zinc, calcium, iron, and magnesium might also reduce the absorption of toxic heavy metals. According to some studies, their depletion results in enhanced toxic metal uptake from the gut.

These are usually considered “detox foods.” Here’s a summary of these foods:

  • Apiaceous vegetables (carrots, celery, parsley)
  • Apples
  • Berries (raspberries, blueberries)
  •  Black tea
  • Black pepper
  •  Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables (Brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale)
  • Caffeic acid (found in plants, especially high levels in thyme, sage, spearmint Ceylon cinnamon, star anise, and yerba mate)
  • Celery
  • Chili peppers
  • Cinnamon
  •  Citruses
  •  Curcumin/Turmeric
  •  Dandelion – Ellagic acid (found in blackberries, cranberries, pecans, pomegranates, raspberries, strawberries, walnuts, wolfberries, and grapes)
  •  Fish oil
  • Garlic
  •  Ghee
  • Ginger
  • Grapefruit
  • Green tea
  • Honeybush tea
  • Lycopene
  •  Olives and olive oil
  • Purple sweet potato
  • Quercetin (found in many plants, high in red kidney beans and capers)
  • Resveratrol (found in peanuts, grapes, and red wines)
  • Milk Thistle
  • Probiotics

Other ways you can enhance your body’s natural detoxification system.

Restrict alcohol

More than 90% of alcohol is metabolized in your liver, Excessive drinking can severely damage your liver function by causing fat buildup, inflammation, and scarring When this happens, your liver cannot function adequately and perform its necessary tasks — including filtering waste and other toxins from your body.

Drink Enough Water

You needn’t guzzle gallons a day, but do make sure you stay well hydrated. Urine and sweat are important ways your body removes toxins, and adequate hydration is necessary for moving stool. A good barometer is the color of your urine.

Get active

Regular exercise  regardless of body weight, it  is associated with a longer life and a reduced risk of many conditions and diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and certain cancers

Focus on sleep

Ensuring adequate and quality sleep each night is a must to support your body’s health and natural detoxification system, Sleeping allows your brain to reorganize and recharge itself, as well as remove toxic waste byproducts that have accumulated throughout the day

Reduce the sugar , salt consumption and food processing

Obesity and other infectious disorders, such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, have been related to high intake of sugar and heavily processed diets, and these diseases impair the capacity of the body to spontaneously detoxify itself by destroying organs that play an essential role, such as the liver and kidneys.

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