When we think of detoxification, images of green juice and water fasts may come to mind – but it is much more exciting and interesting than you might think…
Our bodies are constantly detoxifying from both internal and external ‘toxins’ we don’t need – it’s a common misconception that our bodies only need to detox from external sources such as pesticides, cigarette smoke and petrol fumes, yet this is not the case. Just by breathing, creating energy and existing alongside our hormones – we are producing toxins as by-products of everyday life.
What is a toxin?
At its heart, a toxin is any substance that does not serve us.
As you may know, our liver is the main site of detoxification (or biotransformation) – in a highly tuned, sophisticated process, our liver ‘changes the shape’ of toxins so they can be eliminated in the urine, sweat or stool. This is why it’s important to drink enough water and exercise regularly – these activities support our natural detoxification processes.
If our bodies cannot keep up with our toxin levels, challenges can manifest such as hormonal imbalances, headaches, brain ‘fog’, fatigue and gut issues. Indeed, “we are what we eat, drink, touch, breathe and can’t eliminate”.
We may not be detoxifying optimally because of our genetics, low vitamin and mineral levels or if we are experiencing long-term stress. So, what are some quick tips to takeaway that support our natural biotransformation?
- Enjoy vitamin-rich cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts once a day
- Exercise for 150 minutes a week – work up a sweat if you can!
- Drink 2L – 3L water per day, this includes other drinks such as tea
- Include plenty of fibre in the diet such vegetables and wholegrains
- Sauna, if appropriate for you
- Practice mindfulness, medication and find time for relaxation and fun