Weight gain, especially as fat tissue, is an indicator that you may be exposed to too many toxins. Food, drinks and medications need to be detoxified, as do other toxicants to which we are exposed on a daily basis. These include mercury in fish and dental amalgams, chemicals from smoking, estrogenic compounds found in consumer products from plastic bottles to clothes and cleaning chemicals, pollution from the environment, bacteria, and toxins from normal body processes like stress and intense exercise. Toxins lead to premature aging and inflammation and contribute to many chronic and degenerative diseases such as autoimmune diseases, cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Typical signs and symptoms are rather unspecific, so identify a cluster from any of these:
- Brain fog
- Low mood, irritability
- Fatigue / sluggishness
- Excessive recovery time after anesthesia
- Bloating, constipation (or diagnosed dysbiosis and/or leaky gut)
- Skin diseases
- Adverse reactions to processed foods
- Nasal or skin sensitivities (nasal drip/dermatitis, sneezing)
A detoxification nutritional intervention, best known as a “detox plan”, can potentially transform toxicants into molecules that can be safely eliminated thru urine or sweat. Some well-known interventions, like “juicing” or “fasting” can be counteractive and may increase the toxic load. A properly structured plan must include:
- antioxidants from food and high-quality supplements to disable free radicals,
- a balanced amino-acid protein intake to help conversion of toxins into less harmful molecules,
- B vitamins as aids in detoxification
- Gastrointestinal support like probiotics and enzymes to prevent reabsorption of toxins.
Key recommendations are to minimize toxins from food, drinks (do you really want another soda?) and exposure to environmental pollutants at home and work. Avoid processed foods or drinks, eat organic or wild foods, choose from a wide variety of colors in fruits and vegetables, include herbs and spices whenever possible, drink 4 cups of green tea and plenty of water to help flush toxins away, choose lean and high-quality protein, reduce vegetable oils in your diet and avoid gluten, dairy, soy and alcohol, AND be physically active to promote toxin elimination.