Demystifying Detox - The Why, Process & Best Approach

October 08, 2020 4 min read

Demystifying Detox - The Why, Process & Best Approach

Demystifying Detox

Detoxification, or detox, in short, is a dietary phenomenon that has become quite popular in recent years. However, it's not a modern invention. Traditional medicine in different cultures promoted detoxification as a way of curing ailments and maintaining good health.

Detox is a natural process the body carries out which involves eliminating toxic substances from the body. The toxins in our body come from the environment- what we eat, drink, breathe, and touch. All these toxins accumulate in the body and sometimes overwhelm the body's natural detox processes. This is where you come in.

How the Body Eliminates Toxins

The primary organ in the body that removes toxins in the liver. It first converts toxins into very reactive metabolites, after which it excretes them out of the body.

The lungs, kidneys, skin, and the gastrointestinal system also play a role in detox. Constant exposure to toxins can eventually slow down the natural detoxification process. This can affect your health in various ways:

  • Chronic, unexplained fatigue
  • Sudden, unexplained allergies
  • Constant low-grade infection. 
  • Irritated skin and rashes.
  • Slow elimination of food from the gut.
  • Bloating and gas.
  • Puffy eyes or eye bags.

What Does Detox Involve?

Since the body has a natural detoxification system, the idea is to help it out and make sure it doesn't get bogged down by too much toxicity. When you detox, you make work easier for your body. Detox essentially involves two main things:

  • Eliminating toxic substances from your diet that slow down the body's natural detoxification system.
  • Eating foods that help the body detox better.
Some of the most common ways of detoxifying the body include:
  • Fasting for some time. Fasting isn't for everyone though, so before getting into it, you need to consult your doctor.
  • A diet of veggies, fruit, fresh fruit juices, and water.
  • Herbal teas.
  • Supplements
  • Eliminating environmental pollutants containing heavy metal toxins and other chemicals.

How Does Detox help the Body?

  • Fasting rests the organs
  • Nutrients in a detox diet help the body eliminate toxins.
  • It improves blood circulation.
  • Some types of toxins slow down metabolism, which makes weight loss harder. Detox makes it easier for you to lose weight.
  • Some allergic reactions occur due to toxins in the diet. Eliminating the offending toxins stops the allergic reaction.
  • Some types of toxins lead to gastrointestinal problems like bloating and gas. Detox restores digestive health.
  • Toxins in the system can bog you down and lead to chronic fatigue. Detox revitalizes you by eliminating the toxins that cause this.

Foods that Contribute to Toxicity

Detox is a two-step process: eliminating toxins from our environment and eating foods that help the body cleanse itself. Foods which slow down detox or contribute to toxicity include:

  •  Refined sugars
  •  Too much alcohol
  •  Too much caffeine
  •  Gluten
  •  Dairy
  •  Soy
  •  Saturated fats

Demystifying Detox - The Why, Process & Best Approach

Foods like caffeine, alcohol, dairy, gluten, and soy don't have to be completely eliminated from the diet. Three to four weeks without them will give the body time to get rid of toxins that cause sensitivities toward them, after which you can reintroduce them slowly back to your diet. Now, let's look at foods that help your body get rid of toxins.

Foods that Detox

  • Vegetables

Non- starch vegetables contain a lot of useful fiber and compounds which provide the body with the nutrients necessary to eliminate toxins. Here are some of them.

Sulfur- High-sulfur foods like broccoli, garlic, and onions helps in the excretion of heavy metals such as cadmium. They also enhance the function of the antioxidant glutathione, which is a major player in detoxification.

Spirulina and chlorella- These freshwater algae are rich in nutrients that promote the elimination of toxins from the body. You can get a combination of these super-nutritious greens in Synergy Natural Organic Super Greens Powder 500g, which is a combination of nutrient-rich spirulina, chlorella, barley grass, and wheatgrass.

Synergy Natural Organic Super Greens Powder 500g

Antioxidants- Antioxidant-rich veggies like beets, radishes, and broccoli eliminate toxins called free radicals which are responsible for body ailments such as premature aging, oxidative stress, and tumors.

  • Fruits

Fruits have many different phytonutrients with powerful antioxidants. This helps eliminate waste. Fruits also have lots of water and fiber which help with digestion.

  • Protein

Protein is a major player in the detoxification pathway in the liver. Use protein from organic, grass-fed, and wild-caught animals and fish because a lot of commercial animals are pumped with antibiotics to prevent disease; and hormones to promote growth.

These find their way into your food and contribute to the body's toxin load. Legumes provide amino acid precursors to help in cleansing, and they contain a lot of fiber which helps in digestion and movement of food in the gut. You can also get protein from supplements like Eden Healthfoods Super Lean Thermogenic Protein Powder 400g.

Eden Healthfoods Super Lean Thermogenic Protein Powder 400g

  • Fats and Oils

Natural fats and oils provide the body with the energy it needs for the elimination of nutrients. Healthy fats like omega 3 fatty acids found in avocadoes and fish prevent chronic inflammation leading to fewer toxins in the body.

  • Nuts and Seeds

Seeds such as sunflower and flax seeds and nuts such as walnuts are high in fiber, which helps in digestion and elimination of foods.

  • Herbs and roots

Herbs and roots such as green tea, ginger, garlic, turmeric, burdock, and dandelion root contain lots of antioxidants that cleanse and protect the body from inflammation.

A lot of detox supplements like Eden Healthfoods Super Lean Thermogenic Protein Powder 400g combine different whole and organic herbs to promote detoxification. This supplement, for example, contains burdock root, fennel seed, parsley leaf, and dandelion leaf, which promote liver and kidney detox.

Other Detox Methods

In addition to eliminating bad food and eating detox- promoting food, other stuff you can do to support your body's detox process include:

  • Drinking a lot of water- at least two liters a day- to flush out waste material from the gut.
  • Exercising regularly to improve circulation and sweat out impurities.
  • Regular, wholesome sleep.

Demystifying Detox - The Why, Process & Best Approach

Final Words

Unless you live on some tropical, non-polluted island, you're exposed to toxins everywhere you go. detox is a health practice you can't afford to do without.