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Toxins in the Body
The need to detoxify the body regularly may be a prerequisite for optimal health. Environmental pollutants, cancer-causing chemicals, plastics, preservatives, pesticides, heavy metals and industrial waste may overwhelm the body’s natural detoxification pathways. Toxic cloud plumes from burning coal cover most of the United States and lace even our organic vegetables with heavy metals. Pesticides and preservatives have infiltrated their way into almost all the food consumed in America and can store in the body’s fat, including the brain, for years. Industrial wastes have permeated our groundwater and can enter our bodies by simply washing our organic veggies with tap water. Over time these stored chemicals undermine our immunity, render us susceptible to disease, infection and premature aging.
Recently the EWG, Environmental Worker’s Group, reported on the number of pesticides in our fruits and vegetables. Celery (non-organic) was found to have 67 pesticides in it even after being power-washed. EWG came up with two lists:
- The Dirty Dozen – fruits and veggies with 47-67 pesticides in them.
- The Clean Fifteen – a list of clean veggies that are usually safe to eat even if they are not organic.
Fortunately, the body was designed to detoxify these toxic chemicals naturally. As we age and endure higher levels of stress, our detox and digestive system weaken and a toxic world can propose a real threat. While detoxifying these chemicals regularly is critical, it is not enough. To solve this problem, we must also restore the body’s natural detoxification pathways. If we only detox chemicals from fat stores into the bloodstream, where do they go? They were likely stored because the body’s natural detoxification system had already become inefficient. Just doing a “detox” may only relocate these chemicals from one fat cell to another. This is not only futile but dangerous as the fat located in the brain and organs is a vulnerable storage site for such toxins.
Household Toxin Report
These 5 Dangerous Household Toxins are in Every Room!
Learn how to avoid the five most dangerous household toxins found in every home. These toxins are linked to sexual, nervous system and behavioral problems like Attention Deficit Disorder and cancers. These chemicals find their way into breast milk in infants and fetuses which makes their impact far greater than previously believed, according to CNN and the Environmental Workers Group.
Toxin #1: Bisphenols (BPAs)
Plastics are found in water bottles, baby bottles, cans and other plastic products. If the plastic bottle has a recycle number of 7 it is toxic.
–> Solution: Drink out of stainless containers and use BPA-free Tupperware to store food.
Toxin #2: Phthalates
These are fragrances that are not required to be listed in the ingredients of personal care products like creams, shampoos and lotions. These are also hormonal disruptors that store in the body for years.
–> Solution: Use only 100% preservative-free products, such as our completely natural skincare line.
Toxin #3: Perfluorooctanic acid PFOAs.
These are found in Teflon and water-resistant clothing.
–> Solution: Use cast iron or stainless pots.
Toxin #4: Formaldehyde
Found in pressed wood and glues – a known carcinogen.
–> Solution: Buy only whole wood furniture and avoid particleboard.
Toxin #5: Polybrominated diphenyl ethers
These are flame retardants and are everywhere: in clothes, bedding, carports, TVs, electronics, etc. They end up in the dust we breathe and make their way into children, infants and fetuses. They damage the liver and kidney and – like the rest – affect brain function and behavior.
–> Solution: Dust and vacuum regularly.
These 5 Most Toxic Household Chemicals are found in almost every room in most homes in:
- storage containers
- food wrap
- shower curtains
- personal care products
The Dirty Dozen
*Revised and updated to show the EWG 2015 Lists*
While the FDA tells us that all fruits and veggies have safe and harmless levels of pesticides, The President’s Cancer Panel recommends consumers eat produce without pesticides to reduce the risk of cancer and disease.
While long-term studies have not been completed, some studies link pesticides with cancer, ADD, nervous system and immune disorders.
The Dirty Dozen were power-washed before testing. Washing is important to remove bacteria but obviously has little effect on removing pesticides. If you are going to buy any of the fruits or veggies listed in the Dirty Dozen we highly recommend buying only organic.
The Clean Fifteen
To ensure that you and your family are safe and healthy, eat organic whenever possible. The Clean Fifteen (listed far right) are fruits and vegetables that are considered safe by the EWG to eat even when not organic.
Nature’s Natural Detox
Every spring and fall certain foods are harvested that naturally provoke a cleansing response in the body. Sadly, most of us eat the same foods 365 days of the year and miss out on this seasonal detoxification. Today – in a world that has become more toxic than ever – seasonal detoxification may be required.
After a long winter of heavy, insulating, warming and holiday foods, the intestinal tract can become boggy and congested in the spring. The hair-like villi become compromised at the end of winter and early spring because of these heavy foods. These villi drain fat-soluble toxins and nutrition off the gut wall into the lymph and bloodstream. Spring is a wet, rainy and muddy time of year that can add to the congestion of the intestinal tract, further bogging down the villi and stagnating the lymph drainage around the gut where 80% of the body’s immune system lives.
In the fall, after a long hot summer, similar imbalances occur in the digestive system. Because summer heat tends to dry the mucus membranes in the gut, they compensate by reactively producing excessive mucus which bogs down the villi and congests the lymph. The lymphatic system pulls toxins off of the intestinal lining and neutralizes them with white blood cells. Lymph vessels act as drains for the entire body. Without a lymphatic system, we wouldn’t have an immune system and would be dead in 14 hours. Therefore, optimal lymphatic flow is essential. Let’s look at how nature cares for this precious system.
Spring and fall harvested roots cleanse and pull toxic mucus off the gut wall and villi. Roots like dandelion, turmeric, goldenseal, Oregon grape, ginger, fenugreek, phyllanthus and picorhiza are great intestinal villi mucus pullers.
In the fall, seasonal fruits like apples and pomegranates act as detoxifiers for the gut wall and villi. These and other fall-harvested fruits are great lymph movers and help to de-stagnate the lymphatic system, which commonly becomes congested.
In the spring, shortly after the roots are harvested, the chlorophyll-rich sprouts surface and the valleys turn fluorescent green. These spring greens provide the fertilizer to regrow the good bacteria on the intestinal villi. These good bacteria that line all the villi control the efficiency of digestion, assimilation and detoxification. Every spring and fall after the bitter roots remove excess mucus congestion in the gut, the greens – if eaten in abundance – will seed the villi with essential good bacteria and flush the lymphatic system.
Once the villi have been cleansed with roots and then fertilized with greens each spring and fall, nature moves to cleanse the lymph that surrounds the outside of the gut wall. In the spring this is done with leafy greens, berries and cherries which are harvested towards the end of season. In the fall the lymph is cleansed by more leafy greens, apples, pomegranates, and other seasonal fruit, as well as by beets, cranberries and assorted wild berries that are also fall harvested. The main herbs that I use for de-stagnating the lymphatic system are Manjistha and Red Root.
Each spring and fall, if these foods are eaten in abundance, natural detoxification will result. Many of us, however, like myself, never seem to get around to eating enough of these seasonal roots, greens, fruits and berries. So I detoxify twice a year with herbs and a cleanse to make sure I am not accumulating dangerous toxins in my lymph, liver and fat. Please don’t miss nature’s opportunity to detoxify each spring and fall.
Some Cleansing Options
If you want a deeper cleanse that includes clearing the detox pathways and improving digestion, sign up for the Colorado Cleanse. During the Colorado Cleanse, I personally guide you each step of the way.
I Can’t Eat Fat!
Now, let’s say you have not been cleansing twice a year and your body is toxic. How does the body deal with this? Unfortunately, after the lymph and villi become congested – which is extremely common – the toxins default back to the liver. The liver, which is usually overwhelmed, will often redirect these toxins back into the blood to be stored in fat cells somewhere in the body or the brain. Along the way, liver function and bile flow slow down and it becomes more challenging for the body to metabolize fats. This is a primary reason for high cholesterol, weight gain and an inability to digest fatty or greasy foods. Without the ability to digest fats well, we also lose the ability to make energy last. Fat metabolism helps to stabilize blood sugar and create a calm mood in addition to balancing a healthy weight. Many people attempt to fix this problem by eating small, frequent meals that are easier to digest but unfortunately do not address the cause. We must heal the intestinal villa and restore normal lymphatic flow.
I Can’t Eat Wheat or Dairy
When liver function and bile flow decrease, the bile is not able to buffer stomach acids when they leave the stomach and enter the small intestine, which can cause heartburn and indigestion. The stomach responds by turning down its fire, resulting in the inability to break down hard-to-digest proteins like gluten in wheat and casein in dairy.
Without a strong digestive system, tough cancer-causing toxins and parasites now pass right on through the stomach and become irritants to the intestinal mucosa. As the intestinal mucus membranes inflame, the villi become further compromised and the lymph becomes more stagnant.
This cycle continues until we repair these digestive and detox pathways and then detoxify the cancer-causing fat-soluble toxins that hide deep in our fatty tissue. As we age, these chemicals often rear their ugly heads as provoking agents for disease and illness.
This is why here at LifeSpa we are so dedicated to cleansing – but only if it is a program that also restores optimal digestive and detox pathways so that the body can naturally protect itself from a toxic environment in the future.
- EWG, Environmental Working Group
- CNN:Toxic America. May 31, 2010