Mystic Banana – Before knowing what detoxification is, we need to know what the toxins are, which we need to detox.
Every day we eat potential toxins into our body, breathe them into our hearts, and track them into our homes and life without ever really knowing where they’ll end up or how much damage they’ll do when they get there! In fact, if you could peek inside your body you’d find fire-retardant chemicals, heavy metals, pesticides, plastic particles, and dozens of other residues of modern life.
Detoxificationis the removal of toxic substances from the human body.
The human body requires detoxing to allow all spiritual energies to flow in and guide us to release trapped and blocked energy emotions, beliefs and thought, detoxification (or detox for short) opens the way for cleansing on all levels – body, mind and soul.
“. . . the reality is that the probiotics in our bodies and in cultured foods ultimately derive from the soil, where an unimaginably vast reservoir of ‘good bacteria’ reside . . .” S Ji
You’ve probably heard the buzz already about the many health benefits of probiotics, a word which literally translates to: pro- “for” + biotics “life” — FOR LIFE. But did you know that these remarkable commensal microorganisms, which outnumber our bodily cells 10 to 1, and contribute over 95% of our body’s total genetic information, also break down highly toxic manmade chemicals which your body is either incapable, or only partially capable, of defending itself from?
Learn about some of the amazing ways in which ‘good bacteria’ help to detoxify chemicals within our body:
This ubiquitous toxicant — linked to over 40 diseases — found in anything from thermal printer receipts, paper money, canned food liners, dental composites, and of course plastics, is a powerful endocrine disrupter now found in everyone’s bodies. Remarkably, two common probiotic strains, Bifidobacterium breve and Lactobacillus casei, have been found in animal research to help the body detoxify it by reducing the intestinal absorption of bisphenol A through facilitating increased excretion.[i] The animals receiving probiotic treatment were found to have 2.4 times higher excretion of Bisphenol A in their feces, suggesting probiotic supplementation could be of significant benefit to humans as well.
Probiotic strains from the traditional Korean fermented cabbage dish known as kimchi have been identified to degrade a variety of organophosphorous pesticides such as chlorpyrifos, coumaphos, diazinon, methylparathion, and parathion.[ii] These nifty organisms actually use these exceedingly hard to break down chemicals as sources of carbon and phosphorous – ‘food’! – and were found to break down the pesticide 83.3% after 3 days and degraded it completely by day 9.[iii] While this test tube study likely does not reflect exactly what happens in our gut when we ingest both chlorpyrifos and Kimchi, it is provocative, and may indicate there is some protective effects in the gut, and certainly cabbage tainted with organophosphorous pesticide which is subsequently fermented as an ingredient in Kimchi would certainly reduce the burden of this chemical in the diet.
Lactobacillus bacteria found in food have been looked at as a potential adjunct agent for reducing metal toxicity in humans. According to one study, “This is because they have resistance mechanisms which are effective in preventing damage to their cells and they can bind and sequester heavy metals to their cell surfaces, thus removing them through subsequent defecation.” [iv] The study differentiates between detoxification and detoxication, the former of which is described as “the ability to remove drugs, mutagens, and other harmful agents from the body,” and the latter of which is the mechanism through which ‘good bacteria’ prevent “of damaging compounds into the body.” Because there is a large body of research on probiotics preventing and/or healing up intestinal permeability, this may be another way in which toxic stomach contents are preventing from doing harm to the body as a whole.
Cancerous Food Preservatives
Another imchi study found it contained a strain of bacteria capable of breaking down sodium nitrate, a naturally and artificially occurring chemical (used from anything to rocket fuel and gunpowder) linked to a variety of chronic degenerative diseases, including cancer.[v] The study found a depletion of sodium nitrate by up to 90.0% after 5 days. Sodium nitrate becomes toxic when it is converted in food products, and even our intestines via microbiota, to N-nitrosodimethylamine. A recent study found that four lactobacillus strains where capable of breaking this toxic byproduct down by up to 50%.[vi]
Perchlorate is an ingredient in jet fuel and fireworks that widely contaminates the environment and our food. Sadly, even organic food has been found concentrate high levels of this toxicant, making it exceedingly difficult to avoid exposure. It is now found in disturbing concentrations in breast milk and urine, and is a well-known endocrine disrupter capable of blocking the iodine receptor in the thyroid, resulting in hypothyroidism and concomitant neurological dysfunction. A recent study found that the beneficial bacterial strain known as Bifidobacterium Bifidum is capable of degrading perchlorate, and that breast fed infants appear to have lower levels than infant formula fed babies due to the breast milk bacteria’s ability to degrade perchlorate through the perchlorate reductase pathway.[vii]
Heterocyclic aromatic amines (HCA) are compounds formed when meat is cooked at high temperatures of 150-300 degrees C, and are extremely mutagenic (damage the DNA). Lactobacillus strains have been identified that significantly reduce the genotoxicity of theses compounds.[viii]
While not normally considered a ‘toxin,’ wheat contains a series of proteins that we do not have the genomic capability to produce enzymes to degrade. When these undigested proteins – and there are over 23,000 that have been identified in the wheat proteome – enter into the blood, they can wreak havoc on our health. Recent research has found that our body has dozens of strains of bacteria that are capable of breaking down glutinous proteins and therefore reduce its antigenicity and toxicity.
While the role of probiotics in degrading gluten proteins sounds great, a word of caution is in order. Since modern wheat is not a biologically compatible food for our species – having been introduced only recently in biological time, and having been hybridized to contain far more protein that our ancient ancestors were ever exposed to – it would be best to remove it entirely from the diet. Also, the aforementioned research showing bacteria in the human gut are capable of breaking some of these wheat proteins revealed that some of the species that were capable of doing this for us are intrinsically pathogenic, e.g. Clostidium botulinum and Klebsiella. So, relying on the help of bacteria to do the job of digesting a ‘food’ we are not capable of utilizing on our own, is a double-edged sword. Again, the best move is to remove it entirely from the diet as a precuationary step.
What Probiotic Should I Take?
While plenty of probiotic pills and liquids exist on the market, and many of which have significant health benefits, it is important to choose one that is either shelf stable, or has been refrigerated from the place of manufacture all the way to the place you are purchasing it from. Moreover, many probiotics are centrifugally extracted or filtered, leaving the nourishing food medium within which it was cultured behind. This is a problem in two ways: 1) without sustenance, the probiotics are in ‘suspended animation’ and may either die or not properly ‘root’ into your gastrointestinal tract when you take them. 2) the ‘food matrix’ within probiotics are grown provides a protective medium of essential co-factors that help them survive the difficult journey down your gastointestinal tract.
With that said, another option is to consume a traditionally fermented, living probiotic food like sauerkraut, kimchi, or yogurt (focusing on non-cow’s milk varieties, unless you are lucky enough to find a source that has the beta-casein A2 producing cows). There is always goat’s milk which is relatively hypoallergenic.
About the author: Sayer Ji is an author, educator, Steering Committee Member of the Global GMO FreeCoalition (GGFC), advisory board member of the National Health Federation, and the founder of GreenMedInfo.com – an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. His writings have been published and referenced widely in print and online, including Truthout, Mercola.com, The Journal of Gluten Sensitivity, New York Times and The Well Being Journal. Visit GreenMedInfo online and on Facebook, or sign up for GreenMedInfo’s Newsletter.
“Intestinal cleansing is also important to remove pathogens from the system. Focus on a high fiber diet with additions such as organic psyllium husk, flaxseed, chia seed and beetroot. Likewise, bentonite clay and activated charcoal help absorb and escort parasites out of the body.” C Wright
Linked with cancer, seizures, asthma and more, parasites are an invisible, yet very real, threat to health. Difficult to diagnose, physicians and medical personnel often miss the connection between a parasitic infection and serious disease. It is estimated that a majority of Americans harbor parasites contracted from food, water, pets and even the air we breathe. Herbal antiparasitic detox programs are an excellent solution and should be undertaken annually along with a weekly maintenance protocol, even if one enjoys good health.
Cleansing herbs and nutritional support
Parasites can infiltrate any system in the body, including the lungs, liver, heart, brain, spinal cord, blood, pancreas, skin, eyes, kidneys and uterus. The pathogens contribute to diabetes, poor cardiovascular health, chronic fatigue and a host of other disease. Due to the widespread problem of parasites, it’s essential that healthy individuals undergo a parasite cleanse at least once per year, or more if diseases are present. The following is a list of the top antiparasitic herbs and oils available: Continue reading “Detoxing The Body Of Parasites”→
I can’t tell you how many people have told me that a “detox” protocol made them feel extremely ill. They take detox supplements, pills or tinctures, and within a few hours they suffer dizziness, diarrhea, chills, outbreaks or even vomiting. These symptoms range from mild to severe, depending on the person and what they’ve taken. Such is the legacy of what I’m calling “extreme detox supplements” that seem to be designed to cause as much suffering as possible while framing it all as a “healing crisis.”
I’ve always had a problem with the idea that such symptoms are routinely explained away as a healing crisis; as if you must suffer before you can heal. In this must-read article, I’m going to blow away detox myths and reveal why many people suffer such extreme illness during a detox. I’m also going to teach you how to detox safely and get away from the serious health risks found in extreme detoxing protocols.
Also, I urge anyone reading this who is considering a liver detox, kidney detox or heavy metals detox to pursue such activities only under the supervision of a licensed naturopath or integrative medicine M.D. who can guide you with a personalized protocol that’s right for you. Don’t “wing it” when it comes to the serious business of an aggressive detox.
Detox basics: Your liver dumps toxins into your small intestine
To understand why an extreme detox can make people feel so sick, you first have to understand how detox really works. This is an oversimplified explanation, but the fundamentals are correct: Your liver filters toxins out of your blood, including pharmaceuticals, heavy metals, ammonia and chemicals.
We live in a toxic environment, being exposed to an estimated 2.5 billion pounds of chemicals each year. Once these toxins accumulate in the body, they may manifest in an array of symptoms.
It is impossible to escape this continuous bombardment of harmful chemicals; we come into contact with substances that can negatively impact our system several times a day. We breathe toxic chemicals in the air, ingest them in our food and absorb them through our skin.
Synthetic ingredients are found in fragrances and lotions, and sodium laurel sulfates are present in some toothpastes, soaps and shampoos. And the chemical assaults in the home don’t end there.
Our homes are laden with the toxins found in household cleaning products, “air fresheners” and pesticides, and some clothing, furniture upholstery and carpeting are even treated with toxic, hormone disrupting flame-retardants.
And our food? Well, it’s no secret that our food is loaded with chemical additives such as MSG, dyes and sucralose, while food containers can contain BPA. OUCH!
When we think of a detox, most of us think of a slightly unpleasant and restrictive period marked by frequent bathroom visits, all done to rid the body of toxins built up overtime. While many detoxes can be unpleasant, they are ultimately helping to improve your health. Still, there are several things you can do that will encourage consistent and gentle detoxification, things that you can add to your daily routine to ensure your body is working to stay healthy and un-phased by the toxins in the environment and in your diet.
Our body becomes laden with toxins primarily from the things we consume through food, water, breathing, and the things we come in contact with. These toxins– in the form of pesticides, pollutants, heavy metals, and more—can have seriously negative consequences on our bodies, leaving us feeling lethargic, ill, and even encouraging disease.
In its natural and healthy state, the body works to rid itself of these toxins. From filtering the blood, to sweating, and eliminating through digestion, the human body is a fine-tuned detoxifying machine when left to its own devices. Still, encouraging the healthiest state for detoxification can only help the process along.
Through sweating and regular exercise, you activate the lymphatic system which in turn affects digestion, immune health, and circulation. Because the lymphatic system doesn’t have a pump (like the heart) to move lymph throughout the body, it depends on your activity levels to keep things in motion.
In addition, sweating is perhaps one of the best ways to detox. Some heavy metals detox better through sweat than they do through urine or blood. Also, it clears toxins from the pores and encourages healthier skin.
2. Fast with Juicing
Juicing fresh organic vegetables and fruits is a great way to give your digestive system a bit of a break while speeding the delivery of healthful nutrients including antioxidants. Juicing gives your body a chance to “reset” itself and find that natural detoxifying balance—where it works effectively to naturally rid the body of contaminants.
3. Drink Plenty of Water
Hydration is important for all of your body’s natural functions, including detoxifying. If you aren’t drinking enough water, the toxins you take in through food are lingering in your digestive system until they are pushed out. Like fiber, water helps you keep things moving, so to speak. Filtered water is the best choice, as tap water often contains the very things you are trying to get rid of, like fluoride.
4. Incorporate These Foods
Some foods and herbs have natural detoxification properties. Including these in your diet is easy and can create an environment where toxins aren’t welcome. Parsley, cilantro, chlorella, apples, and dark green vegetables including kale and spinach can all help you on your detox lifestyle.