Detox Naturally: How to Rid Your Body of Toxins Using Natural Remedies
Every day, the average person is exposed to 700,000 toxic chemicals. In the umbilical cord of babies at birth, you can find an average of 287 chemicals.
Unfortunately, these toxins are not passive bystanders. Most of these toxic chemicals are carcinogenic, nerve toxins, or teratogenic (causing birth defects or developmental delays). They can easily disrupt the body’s protective barriers, like the gut and blood-brain barrier.
To detox naturally and rid your body of toxins using natural remedies, you need to understand a few detox basics.
Your body naturally detoxes, every single day. It primarily detoxes chemicals and toxins through the urine, stool, and sweat.
The word “detox” has come to represent a lot of different treatments and processes. Some people call an elimination diet a detox while others think that sweating is the best form of detox. While neither of those things is completely false, they don’t address the complexities of a true full-body detox.
Boulder Holistic Functional Medicine in Boulder, Colorado, has spent many years supporting our patients through various types of natural detoxification. We use detox to support the body as it heals from various chronic illnesses and diseases, to eliminate mycotoxins from mold exposure, to balance the gut, and to return your body to optimal health.
This article explores how to rid your body of toxins using natural remedies so you can support your body’s detox processes and live a healthier life overall.
How the Body Naturally Eliminates Toxins
Your body has an amazing ability to detoxify itself. The gallbladder, liver, kidneys, lymph system, and GI tract all play a role in your body’s natural detoxification processes.
The liver neutralizes toxins, everything that we are exposed to from the outside world as well as our own hormones and neurotransmitters. By neutralizing these toxins, the liver prevents them from causing cancer or oxidative stress that can lead to heart attack, strokes, etc.
The kidneys filter waste products from the blood and balance fluid and electrolytes in the body. The gallbladder brings systemic toxins into the GI tract to get out in the stool and the GI tract (and the colon in particular) gets rid of toxins through the elimination of waste with fecal matter.
The lymphatic system removes toxins, cellular debris, and waste products. Your lymph fluid also carries white blood cells and supports healthy immunity. Meanwhile, when you sweat, you release excess salt and toxins through your pores.
This is only just the tip of the iceberg because detoxification also happens at the cellular level. All of the cells in your body (of which you have about 37.2 trillion) also detox regularly to prevent toxins from building up in the body.
The problem isn’t that your body doesn’t know how to detox, it’s that sometimes your system gets overwhelmed by the amount of toxins in your body.
Every day, toxins are released into the environment during manufacturing. Toxins live in our kitchens, perfumes, cleaning products, plastics, and hide in damp basements or walls. Toxic chemicals like bisphenol A (BPA) are found in everyday items, phthalates in personal care products, and perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) in our environment.
When our bodies are exposed to an excess of toxins, our system gets overwhelmed. The natural systems can’t properly dispose of all the toxins, and the result is toxic overload.
Symptoms of toxic overload include:
- Brain fog
- Neurological disorders
- Headaches and migraines
- Weight gain
- Skin issues
- Digestive problems
- Chronic illness
- Mental health problems
Many people start a detox protocol to meet specific health goals like weight loss, smooth digestion, better cognitive function, or healthy skin. But more and more often, detox is a necessary step to optimal health.
If you have a high toxin load, you may have symptoms all across the body. You may find that detox can help, but then become overwhelmed with the options. Detoxes range in complexity from simple diet plans, to supplement regimens, exercise programs, and so much more.
For those of you who are experiencing symptoms of toxin overload and want to know if detox is the right choice for you, we suggest that you speak with a functional medicine doctor like Boulder Holistic Functional Medicine who can help you choose the best type of detox for your symptoms and body.
What is a Full Body Detox?
A full body detox addresses toxins throughout the body, from toxins inside your cells to the ones in your digestive system and liver.
Boulder Holistic Functional Medicine starts with a comprehensive assessment to help you choose the most appropriate detox plan. Your full body detox will probably involve a blend of treatments including dietary changes, nutritional support, lifestyle adjustments, detox support, gut health optimization, and regular check ins.
We may also test for heavy metals, environmental toxins (including plastics, pesticides, and glyphosate), or mycotoxins from mold. Since your gut plays a crucial role in helping your body detox, a stool test will help us assess the health of your gut.
How to Naturally Detoxify Your Body
When it comes to a full body detox, you want to go slowly. Toxins released from your cells all at once will not be a comfortable experience. That’s why it’s so important for you to work with a provider who can support you and help you address any unusual symptoms or reactions that might come up.
Here are a few ways to naturally detoxify your body.
During intermittent fasting, your body receives fewer calories which allows your body to activate a cellular clean-up mechanism that removes damaged components and toxins. This process is called autophagy.
Longer fasting protocols – some of which last between 24 and 48 hours – may also have detox benefits. After 24 hours, your body moves past autophagy and may start to eliminate even more accumulated toxins.
You should always talk to your healthcare provider before you try fasting for your health to ensure that it’s safe for your individual health goals and conditions.
Detoxifying Herbs and Supplements
Certain herbs and supplements are crucial for a full body detox, including those that support liver function, lymphatic drainage, and gastrointestinal health.
Here is a list of some detoxifying herbs and supplements to detox naturally.
- Pekana’s Kidney, Liver, and Lymphatic Drainage remedies support and open your detoxification channels.
- Binders like charcoal or clay. For example, Chlorella 2 times a week can bind environmental toxins in the system.
- Methylation support
- Milk thistle and other liver-supporting herbs
- Liposomal glutathione
- IV Phosphatidylcholine followed by IV glutathione is one of the most powerful ways to detox neurotoxins
ExerciseSweating is one of your body’s natural detoxification systems, so moderate to intense workouts that make you sweat can help your body naturally eliminate toxins. Exercise also supports healthy lymph fluid movement since the contractions of the muscles force your lymph fluid from your extremities to the lymph nodes for detox. Regular exercise maintains a healthy heart and improves circulation, which helps your body eliminate toxins faster. Overall, exercise is one of the top ways to naturally detoxify your body.
Detox Baths and Therapies
You can also try detox-specific therapies like baths with Epsom salt and baking soda, infrared saunas, or lymphatic drainage massage.
Epsom salt baths may provide the body with an increase in magnesium, an essential mineral involved in various biochemical reactions that can support the body’s detox processes.
Infrared sauna encourages your body to sweat out toxins. You should always drink plenty of water and electrolytes ahead of time to prevent dehydration.
Lymphatic drainage massage manually moves lymph fluid from your extremities to the lymph nodes for filtration and disposal of toxins. Go gentle with this detox therapy, it can be very powerful.
Your ideal detox strategy will depend on your unique health goals and concerns. However, these natural detoxing processes are an easy way to support your health every day.
If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed, let’s take a step back. After all, detox isn’t a diet that you start one day and finish a week later.
You can never truly get rid of all the toxins in your system, even after you undergo a comprehensive full-body detox protocol. The toxins in our food, environment, cleaning products, beauty products – they aren’t going away.
Your best defense is to learn how to support your body’s natural detox systems. That way you can prevent toxin overload and maintain your health regardless of toxin exposure.
Work with Boulder Holistic Functional Medicine
You don’t need to wait until you are chronically ill or seeing an imbalance to detox. Regular systemic detoxes can support healthy immunity and digestion, give you energy and clear skin, and even help you lose weight.