What neutralizes toxins in the body?
Don’t ignore these 5 tell-tale signs that say your body needs a detox!
Our body often gets bogged down due to stress, busy lifestyles and unhealthy eating habits. Recognize the need for a break, and go for a detox!
Yashwani Arora Published: 10 Nov 2021, 08:00 am IST
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Although most people correlate detox with juice cleanses, starvation diets and skinny teas, what is detoxification really? It is a biological process that happens ALL THE TIME in order to eliminate waste through sweat, urine, bowels and our breath. The truth is, we are terribly exposed to a toxin-ridden world. And that can be harmful to our health.
Effect of toxins on health and the need for detox
Nutritionist Ruchi Sharma, Founder of Eat Fit Repeat, explains the effects of toxins.
“Our body has to fight chemicals, smoke, pesticides and preservatives everyday. Along with the increasing pollution around the globe, toxic overload impacts all systems of our body. It may lead to potential damage to vital organs and tissues throughout the body, including our brain as well as jeopardizing mental and emotional stress,” Sharma tells HealthShots.
The body neutralizes or eliminates toxins via liver, intestine, kidney, lungs and skin. When the body is unable to self- cleanse or self-detoxify, it may show signs and symptoms that need immediate attention. That is when you know it’s time to detox!
Five signs which say your body badly needs a detox
Frequent indigestion is a very strong indicator of a body overloaded with toxins demanding for a detox. Sharma says, “Liver is the key organ responsible for detoxification and repackaging of the toxins. Fundamentally, it filters everything that goes in your body. It triggers abdominal bloating, acidity, constipation, diarrhea and resistance to losing weight”. It is when your body prompts for detox on an urgent basis.
2. Constant fatigue
If you’re feeling groggy even after hours of sleep or you’re feeling extremely exhausted at the end of the day, that’s a sign for you. Fatigue often creates a lot of stress for adrenal glands. A long- term toxic load leads to a condition named adrenal fatigue, making your glands function improperly due to excessive levels of cholesterol from toxins. Hence, it calls for an urgent need of detoxification in order to get back on health track.
3. Frequent mood swings, anxiety and insomnia
Do you feel overwhelmed by day-to-day activities, and does that even affect your mood? Blame the toxins in your body! Nutritionist Harleen Gulati, Founder, Selfpledge, tells HealthShots, “Stress takes an ugly shape, causing us to have moodiness, anxiety, depression, headaches and even insomnia. It may be due to an imbalance in your cortisol level.”
Cortisol, as we may know, is a hormone that the body releases (especially in the evening) to relieve stress, causing us to be more energetic in the evening”. Hence, it triggers insomnia. To this, Sharma adds, “Toxins like xenoestrogens cause hormonal imbalances, as it is a synthetic mixture of several hormones that act as estrogens in our body. Also, toxins like aspartame have the ability to kill brain cells which affects the optimal functioning of brain cells”. Your mood swings should ring a bell for your detox time!
4. Body weight oscillation
If your body is oscillating between gaining and losing weight despite the fact that you are calorie counting and exercising, your body is raising an alarm for a detox. Gulati comments, “Adipose tissues also known as ‘fat cells’ have the tendency to hold onto toxins. Our body recognizes it unsafe to break down these fat cells and release the toxins within the body leading to unwanted weight gain. Having rapid changes in food intake, nutrition, alcohol consumption and smoking leads to a situation where the body can’t function properly”.
5. Excessive constipation or diarrhea
Waste removal is an important daily function of the body. Sharma says, “Constipation or not having bowel movement can be due to lack of antioxidants in your diet, and it can lead to toxins getting absorbed into your bloodstream. Also, extreme episodes of diarrhea occur when the body is unable to hold excessive toxins thereby, shedding essential vitamins and nutrients from the body.”
If any of these things are happening to you, you need a cleansing and detox plan to give a break to your gut and help it to restore its natural digestive tendencies.
When you notice a combination of these signs, just don’t ignore it! Instead, go for a proper detox diet in consultation with a dietitian.
About the Author
Yashwani is best described as a voracious reader and ardent writer. She is a techie who enjoys both writing and coding. When she is not engrossed in either of these two, she enjoys exploring new places and trying new foods. . Read More
7 Detox Vitamins & Minerals That Rid The Body of Toxins
By The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake | Editor Melissa Carmona
Medically Reviewed By Dr. Kevin Wandler, MD A licensed behavioral health or medical professional on The Recovery Village Editorial Team has analyzed and confirmed every statistic, study and medical claim on this page. | Last Updated: April 05, 2023
Deciding that it’s time for detox in order to rid your body of toxins can be a big step. However, the detox process can be overwhelming for a lot of people. How do you know what foods to eat? What kind of symptoms can you expect to experience? How long will it last?
If this is your first time detoxing, chances are you’ll have a lot of questions and concerns. One of the most common questions we get focuses on the additional vitamin and mineral supplements you should be taking. There are so many to choose from it’s hard to decipher which ones are going to be critical to the success of your recovery.
Below we highlight the seven most common and useful vitamins and minerals, as well as the foods and herbs they are found in, that will assist your body in the removal of toxins during detoxification.
1. Iron and Riboflavin
Iron and riboflavin are commonly referred to as vitamin B-2 and offer a lot in terms of detox support. Iron helps in supporting your liver breaking down toxins. Riboflavin also helps to improve the liver detox function.
Some foods that are high in both iron and riboflavin include meat, fish, lentils, tofu, almonds, and milk.
2. Vitamins A and D
Vitamins A and D help to support your body during a time of detox, as well as, help to support your body on a day-to-day basis. Vitamin A and D help to nourish and improve the skin. This will help support your body during wound healing, and give you additional protection from the harmful UV rays of the sun.
Foods that are high in both vitamin A and D include sweet potatoes, kale, spinach, carrots, eggs, and fish with a high healthy fat content.
3. Vitamins E and C
Vitamins E and C give your body antioxidant protection. This means they help to neutralize free radicals, which can end up doing damage to healthy cells and DNA. Consuming these vitamins are crucial during a detox phase and also for your long-term health.
Some foods that are high in both these vitamins include oranges, strawberries, red peppers, olive oil, almonds, and hazelnuts.
4. Liver Support
Your liver is going to be doing a lot of toxin processing. Fat-soluble toxins will need to be processed by the body before they can be excreted. For this reason, you’ll want to give your liver extra support with vitamin and mineral supplementation and by eating the proper foods. Common vitamins and minerals that assist in liver detoxification include vitamins A, C, E, K, B1, and B6. Beta-carotene and biotin can also be helpful.
Additional liver support can be found by ingesting the following herbs: dandelion, schizandra, milk thistle, garlic, and rosemary.
5. Lymphatic System Support
The lymphatic system is responsible for cell cleanup and the detoxing of the blood. Proper lymph system functioning is necessary for a healthy body. During a detox, this system will need extra support.
Vitamins that support the lymphatic system include, vitamin A, C, E, and B-6. Common herbs that also help include goldenseal, echinacea, and poke root.
Giving your body antioxidant support is crucial during and after the detox process. Vitamins A, E, and D are all antioxidants, along with the minerals copper, zinc, selenium, and zinc.
A herb that has antioxidant properties is grape seed.
7. Elimination Support
Once your liver has metabolized toxins it’s crucial that these toxins are removed from the body. Some of the ways your body removes toxins are through the kidneys via urinating, through the skin via sweating, through the lungs via exhalation, and through the intestines via feces.
Whether a medical or natural detox, it’s important to give your body elimination support during the process. Common foods that assist in your body’s elimination abilities include dandelion, goldenseal, cascara sagrada, yellow dock, cayenne, and yarrow.
Getting Professional Help
If you’re detoxing for the first time it can be helpful to consult with a drug detox and treatment professional. They’ll be able to recommend the best course of action and give you guidance and support throughout the process. If it’s time to start taking your bodily health seriously, then reach out to our treatment team today. We have a proven track record of caring and successful detox at our facility in Palmer Lake, Colorado.
Editor – Melissa Carmona
Melissa Carmona puts years of writing and editing experience to work helping people understand substance abuse, addiction and mental health disorders. Read more
Medically Reviewed By – Dr. Kevin Wandler, MD
Kevin Wandler holds multiple positions at Advanced Recovery Systems. In addition to being the founding and chief medical director at Advanced Recovery Systems, he is also the medical director at The Recovery Village Ridgefield and at The Recovery Village Palmer Lake. Read more
Resources related topics:
“Getting your vitamins and minerals through diet” Harvard Health Publications, October 13, 2020. Accessed October 29, 2021.
NIH. “Vitamin and Mineral Supplement Fact Sheets.” National Institutes of Health, 2021. Accessed October 29, 2021.
Stice, Camilla P, and Xiang-Dong Wang. “Carotenoids and alcoholic liver disease.” Hepatobiliary surgery and nutrition, 2013. Accessed October 29, 2021.
The Recovery Village at Palmer Lake aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.
The 8 super foods that naturally cleanse your liver
Did you know that your liver performs over 500 functions? It’s important to keep it healthy. Learn the top 8 superfoods that naturally cleanse your liver.
5 mins to read
Did you know that the liver is responsible for over 500 functions in the body?
As the biggest gland in the body, the liver does many vital jobs to keep you alive and at peak health. Most notable among those 500 jobs are: storing vitamins and iron, converting stored sugar to usable sugar when the body’s sugar levels fall below normal, destroying old red blood cells, and producing bile to break down and digest fats.
Those 500 jobs take energy, so your liver cells are packed with mitochondria.
Mitochondria are like tiny power plants providing energy to our cells. When our mitochondria start to decline with age or illness, our livers can sometimes bear the brunt of this. There are as many as 2000 mitochondria in every liver cell and, without them running at 100%, our livers aren’t able to effectively detoxify our blood or properly metabolize the food we eat.
Luckily, those functions can be supported by choosing the right diet and supplementing it with MitoQ Liver, a formulation containing MitoQ, Siliphos® Milk Thistle, Selenium, and Vitacholine®. MitoQ recharges our mitochondria with targeted CoQ10 antioxidants, which help to neutralize free radicals and reduce the damage they can do to our cells.
The liver helps to detoxify the blood to get rid of harmful substances – and that’s where the right superfoods can help.
These harmful substances are most commonly due to lifestyle factors such as alcohol, tobacco, beauty products and processed and fried foods, especially when consumed in large quantities. Other taxing chemicals are harder to avoid, like pollution, prescribed drugs, viruses and the natural by-products of metabolism. The liver requires large amounts of micronutrients (vitamins, minerals and antioxidants) to be able to perform its processes — and many of those micronutrients can be found in common foods.
Incorporating a selection of superfoods to your diet, you can naturally cleanse and protect this hard-working organ.
Here is our list of the top eight super-foods to naturally detox and cleanse your liver.
Tea is widely considered to be beneficial for health, but evidence has shown that it may have benefits for the liver. A study based in Japan found that drinking 5-10 cups of green tea a day was associated with improved blood markers of liver health. This may be down to a compound known to assist liver function named catechin. Green tea is packed full of this plant antioxidant. Just be mindful of green tea extract as it can have a negative effect.
2. Cruciferous vegetables
This includes, but is not limited to, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage and kale. These vegetables are a major source of glutathione, which triggers the toxin cleansing enzymes of the liver. Eating cruciferous vegetables will increase production of glucosinolate in your system, which helps flush out carcinogens and other toxins.
In addition to its use as a spice and pigment, turmeric has been used in India for medicinal purposes for centuries. Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric, and it has powerful biological properties. This spice helps the enzymes that flush out toxins and contains antioxidants that repair liver cells. It also assists the liver in detoxing metals, while boosting bile production.
While also providing a big hit of vitamin C, citrus fruits stimulate the liver and aid the synthesizing of toxic materials into substances that can be absorbed by water. Grapefruit is particularly beneficial as it contains two primary antioxidants: naringin and naringenin. These may help protect the liver from injury by reducing inflammation and protecting the liver cells.
Beets also contain vitamin C and a healthy dose of fiber which are both natural cleansers for the digestive system. But more impressively, beets assist with increasing oxygen by cleansing the blood, and can break down toxic wastes to help them be excreted quicker. They stimulate bile flow and boost enzymatic activity.
Garlic is loaded with sulphur, which activates liver enzymes that help your body flush out toxins. Garlic also holds high amounts of selenium. Selenium is an essential micronutrient that has been shown to help boost the natural antioxidant enzyme levels in our livers. Supplementing with selenium gives our livers even more ammunition in the fight against the damage caused by oxidative stress. + Want to know more? Read our article about ‘Supporting your liver with the stresses of a modern lifestyle.’
Walnuts are a good source of glutathione, omega-3 fatty acids, and the amino acid arginine, which supports normal liver cleansing actions, especially when detoxifying ammonia.
8. Olive oil
Although it is a fat, olive oil is considered a healthy fat. Cold-pressed organic oils such as olive, hemp, and flaxseed offer great support for the liver, providing the body with a liquid base that can suck up harmful toxins in the body. It has also been shown to decrease the levels of fat in the liver.