In medical terminology, detoxification means removing poisons or the accumulation of toxic substances, when large amounts have been taken or have come into the body through inhalation or skin exposure.
It’s only needed when there is a large amount or type of substance that our body’s natural detoxification systems are unable to cope with.
Fortunately, our body is well-equipped to eliminate toxins and doesn’t need special diets or expensive supplements to do so.
Our body’s detoxification system uses the skin (via sweat and sebum), liver and gallbladder (bile), kidneys (urine), lungs, lymphatic system (lymph), and intestines (feces) to get rid of toxins.
The toxins may be from internal or external sources. Internal sources are the by-products of usual physiological processes and cell waste products. The process of breaking down food components to produce energy uses oxygen and can result in unstable molecules called free radicals. These molecules must be neutralized or converted to avoid the accumulation of toxic levels.
External toxins can come from food and beverage-related compounds – molecules resulting from baking, deep-frying, and char-grilling, as well as alcohol and additives in processed foods. Medication, tobacco smoke, and exposure to environmental pollutants can also be the source of toxins.
Why is it important to detox?
When we get an unhealthy buildup of toxins in our body, it’s not pretty. These excess toxins will cause physical and mental health issues like chronic fatigue, headaches, insomnia, and diseases. It improves our physical and mental health.
Boost immune system
Increase energy level
Clear your blood, and help it circulate better.
Increase physical activities
Five ways to detox your body:
Detox by sleep:
Recent researches show that a newly discovered mechanism that removes waste products from the brain is mainly active during sleep. This revelation could transform scientific understanding of what sleep is for, and how it works and offers new directions for brain disease treatments.
The brain has different functional states when asleep and when awake. The restorative nature of sleep appears to be the result of the active clearance of the by-products of neural activity that accumulate during wakefulness.
Sleeping allows your brain to reorganize and recharge itself, as well as remove toxic waste byproducts that have accumulated throughout the day.
One of those waste products is a protein called beta-amyloid, which contributes to the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
Detox by food:
Eat Antioxidant-Rich Foods. Antioxidants protect your cells against damage caused by molecules called free radicals. Oxidative stress is a condition caused by excessive production of free radicals.
Your body naturally produces these molecules for cellular processes, such as digestion. However, alcohol, tobacco smoke, a poor diet, and exposure to pollutants can produce excessive free radicals.
By causing damage to your body’s cells, these molecules have been associated with a number of conditions, such as dementia, heart disease, liver disease, asthma, and certain types of cancer.
Eating a diet rich in antioxidants can help your body fight oxidative stress caused by excess free radicals.
Examples of antioxidants include vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Berries, fruits, nuts, cocoa, vegetables, spices, and beverages like coffee and green tea have some of the highest amounts of antioxidants.
Eating a diet rich in prebiotics keeps your digestive system healthy, which is important for proper detoxification and immune health.
More than 90% of alcohol is metabolized in your liver.
Liver enzymes metabolize alcohol to acetaldehyde, a known carcinogen.
Recognizing acetaldehyde as a toxin, your liver converts it to a harmless substance called acetate, which is later eliminated from your body.
Excessive drinking can severely damage your liver function by causing fat buildup, inflammation, and scarring.
When this occurs, your liver cannot function properly and perform its necessary tasks — including filtering waste and other toxins from your body.
So limiting or abstaining entirely from alcohol is one of the best ways to keep your body’s detoxification system running strong.
Drink More Water
Water does not only quench your thirst but also regulates your body temperature, lubricates joints, aids digestion, and nutrient absorption, and detoxifies your body by toxins.
Your body’s cells must continuously be repaired to function optimally and break down nutrients for your body to use as energy.
However, these processes produce wastes in the form of urea and carbon dioxide which cause harm if allowed to accumulate in your blood.
Water transports these waste products, efficiently removing them through urination, breathing, or sweating. So staying properly hydrated is important for detoxification.
Decrease Your Salt Intake
Too much salt intake can cause your body to retain excess fluid, especially if you have a condition that affects your kidneys or liver.
This excess fluid buildup can cause bloating and make clothing uncomfortable. If you find yourself consuming too much salt, you can detox yourself of the extra water weight.
Potential side effects include low energy, low blood sugar, muscle aches, fatigue, feeling dizzy or lightheaded, and nausea.