In our most recent blog article, we discussed ways to love your liver. In today’s article, we will explore the major detoxification pathways and highlight ways to support them all. To begin, let’s review the major detoxification pathways in our bodies:
Each of these organs or systems plays a major role in keeping us well. When even one begins to suffer, illness and dysfunction ultimately follow. Today we will look at ways to keep all of these systems working in top order.
The ability to eliminate waste is perhaps the most important factor in wellness. The colon is part of the digestive pathway and is designed to remove toxins we ingest in our food and drink. If elimination becomes sluggish, the toxins that were meant to be removed can be re-absorbed by our colon. This can lead to a whole host of problems, including but not limited to colon cancer.
Signs that you may be experiencing constipation include:
- Three or fewer bowel movements per week
- Dry or hard stool
- Difficult or painful bowel movements
- Feeling unable to empty the bowels fully
Ways that you can improve constipation include:
- Increase the amount of water you drink per day – a general guideline would be 8 to 10 glasses per day. Keep in mind that caffeinated beverages promote the loss of fluid in the body, so they should not be included in your water total. If chronic constipation is an issue for you, we recommend gradually eliminating caffeine from your diet.
- Increase fiber intake – Recommend fiber intake for women under 50 is 25 grams per day and 38 grams per day for men under 50. Whole grains are an often-recommended addition to the diet for people who struggle to get enough fiber. However, if you are a person that feels better grain-free, increasing your vegetable intake is an ideal way to get your fiber in.
- Colonic treatments (1) (2) – Colon hydrotherapy can be very beneficial for those with chronic illness, many of whom suffer from chronic constipation. Colonics should only be performed by certified technicians. Incorrect application of this treatment could result in serious health consequences. Ask Katie Hallquist or Dr. Marcy Ziska for technician recommendations.
- Regular exercise – any kind of regular movement including daily walking can promote regular elimination.
- Optimize magnesium levels – a magnesium deficiency is a common factor in chronic constipation. Any supplementation should be done with the supervision of a trained practitioner. At Body in Harmony, we specialize in supplement programs designed just for you! Contact us today to discuss magnesium intake or any other supplementation needs you may have.
- NUCCA – When your spine is misaligned, the nerves that control proper elimination are working at a disadvantage. Proper alignment allows each part of the detoxification pathway to function at its very best. Please contact us for a consultation if you are interested in beginning NUCCA Care.
Like the colon, the kidneys filter toxins we take in by food, drink, or medications. The kidneys have a big job to do, so when they begin to suffer, the effects can be wide-ranging. Symptoms of kidney distress may include:
- Poor sleep and fatigue
- Itchy skin
- Swollen face or feet
- Muscle cramping
- Shortness of breath
- Foul breath
- Dark or foamy urine
The number one thing you can do to support kidney health is drink clean water. The additives in city water supplies such as chlorine, chloramines (a combination of chlorine and ammonia, which is used in most city water these days), and fluoride, can all be taxing to the kidneys. In addition, most water supplies are contaminated with a long list of chemicals used in industry and farming. Typical sanitation practices are unable to remove the majority of chemicals found in the water supply. Solutions for clean water include:
- Purchasing Filtered or Spring Water
- Installing a Reverse Osmosis System
- Countertop or Pitcher Filtration Systems
We covered liver health extensively in last month’s blog article, but in summary, this little-understood organ performs more than 500 tasks in the body. Signs of liver distress may include:
- Bad breath or white tongue coating
- Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
- Chemical sensitivities
- Food cravings
- Hormone imbalance
- Gallbladder dysfunction
- Frequent illness
- Abdominal pain
- Poor digestion
- Weight gain
- Skin problems
You can support your liver with the following actions:
- Reduce dietary sugar
- Eat nutrient-dense foods
- Reduce medications when possible
- Reduce toxins in your life
- Supplementation (Ask Katie for recommendations)
Most who suffer from lung dysfunction will know that the signs are obvious and hard to ignore. Many lung illnesses are categorized under the family of COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) and include emphysema, chronic bronchitis, asthma, and cystic fibrosis. Typical symptoms of lung dysfunction may include:
- Lack of energy
- Shortness of breath
- Unexplained weight loss
- Chronic cough
- Chest pain
- Grey cast to the skin
Supporting lung health before there is a problem is essential. Ways you can support your lung health include:
- Breathing exercises – deep breathing and timed breathing can increase lung capacity, as well as yield a host of other benefits.
- Walking – is any form of exercise more protective of health than walking? Even a few minutes a day of fast walking can make a huge difference in lung health, as well as weight, energy levels, and sleep, just to name a few.
- Aerobic activity – activities that increase your heart rate and keep it up will yield stronger lungs and increased lung capacity.
Skin’s role in detoxification is primarily fulfilled by the sweat glands. Sweating is a natural and necessary process in the body, so anything that prohibits the body’s ability to sweat may be doing more harm than good. To that end, we recommend using natural deodorants rather than antiperspirants.
Another very effective way to support skin health overall is dry brushing. Dry brushing exfoliates, boosts energy, reduces the appearance of cellulite, and even cleans and shrinks your pores. In addition, dry brushing is a great way to move the lymph located under your skin.
Far infrared sauna has numerous health benefits, but for detoxification purposes, the primary benefit is in getting the body to sweat. Many of us go days at a time without ever sweating, in fact, we do everything we can to prevent it. If that describes you, a regular sauna practice can be very beneficial.
An integral part of your detoxification pathways, the lymphatic system has no “pump”. In order to circulate your lymph, you must move your body. Any type of exercise is helpful for moving the lymph; the most important factor is finding an exercise that you enjoy doing and can stick with.
For those who don’t want to pay to go to the gym, or who have trouble getting regular exercise during the winter, we think rebounding is a great solution. It is one of the best ways to move the lymph, as well as improve constipation. In addition, it increases balance and muscle tone.
Massage is another way to get the lymph moving and to increase skin and muscle health and relaxation at the same time. Ask Dr. Ziska for recommendations.
Supplements to Support Detoxification:
For the month of May 2022, we would like to feature the following supplements that support your detoxification pathways at a 10% discount:
- Spanish Black Radish – Helps reduce gas, bloating, yeast or fungal overgrowth, liver, and gallbladder problems, constipation, or bowel toxicity. A key part of detoxification programs.
- Parotid PMG – Support for those with parotid gland problems such as too much or too little saliva; metal toxicity or thyroid problems.
- Antronex – Support for those with food or environmental allergies; headache; high blood pressure; hand hyperthyroidism. Helps the liver break down histamines and toxins.
- Lactic Acid Yeast – Helpful to reduce bloating, gas, constipation, yeast infections, gut inflammation, and more.
At Body in Harmony, our whole-person health philosophy includes proper detoxification support. If you would like to look further into supplementation, nutrition, or NUCCA programs to increase your detoxification, contact our office today!