Time to tidy up
“Spring cleaning” is behind us as we merge into the summer adventures. We are all busy planning family vacations, enjoying seasonal foods and finding more ways to get outside. Even though you may have just spring cleaned your home it is important to remember that the body can also become cluttered and congested and now is a great time to tidy up.
Toxins come from countless sources and accumulate in the body creating an increasing toxic burden over time. Particularly when sedentary habits, viruses and heavy foods are most prevalent. In addition, we are constantly exposed to a steady stream of environmental toxins that can get lodged deep within. There are countless pollutants in our air, soil and water. Pesticides, food allergens and chemicals in our personal products and household cleaning products. Our bodies often need help keeping up with the onslaught.
Fortunately, there are a number of solutions that can help remove accumulation of toxins, prevent reabsorption and boost overall health and vitality in the process.
Long term exposure to everyday toxins have been linked to a number of common health issues and bothersome symptoms:
- Fertility & Fetus development in utero
- Auto Immune Diseases
- Hormone imbalances
- Fatigue & the list goes on and on
#1 – Is your skin care affecting your toxic burden? – According to the EWG (Environmental Working Group) before you leave the bathroom every morning you have already exposed yourself to over 126 chemicals that are known carcinogens: Formalin, Formaldehyde, Parabens, Phthalates, Petrochemicals, GMO’s, Triclosan, Color Dyes, PEG/propyl glycol, SLS/sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Synthetic Preservatives & Fragrances, Mineral Oil, Silicone, etc., all found in your skin care products, shampoos, conditioners, toothpaste, lotions, shaving cream, nail polish, etc.
Also don’t forget to clean up the cosmetics according to the EWG many cosmetics and personal care products contain potentially toxic ingredients. Major cosmetics companies have not publicly committed themselves to removing harmful ingredients.
#2 – Remove Household Cleaning products – Start removing all toxic chemical based cleaners and start converting to all cleaners, you can find a list on the EWG website, (http://www.ewg.org/), or make your own. Do not forget to replace your laundry soap that is loaded with chemicals that absorb into your skin daily.
#3 – Learn the dirty dozen list and reduce your pesticide load – Shop for clean foods, buy NON-GMO and organic to reduce your exposure to pesticides. Learning the dirty dozen list will help you identify the ones most important to buy clean.
#4- Eliminate foods that increase toxic load & Emphasize ones that enhance detoxification – To jumpstart a cleanse start with elimination of animal protein for at least 3 to 5 days, if that is not practical then switch to organic, pasture raised meats and avoid dairy products. In addition, avoid inflammatory foods and beverages that are loaded with sugar, caffeine and alcohol. Definitely eliminate all processed foods that are high in salt, sugar and a host of chemical ingredients. Stop ingesting toxins! Emphasize lots of organic fruits and vegetables as well as vegetable based proteins. I recommend green leafy and cruciferous vegetables that are highly nutritious and in particular full of detoxifying nutrients. To reduce stiffness, pain and inflammation reduce acidity which can impair our immune system. Emphasize alkalizing foods, such as cucumber, kale, sprouts, spinach, avocado and broccoli. These veggies can help restore our PH balance as well as eliminate toxins. Try to soak spouted grains, legumes and nuts for better digestibility, less acidity and higher nutritional content.
Fiber rich foods also help remove toxins out of the digestive track among other crucial benefits, including immune support. I am a big fan of chia seeds and flax seeds.
#5 – Drink Plenty of Clean water, get good bacteria & Get Moving – It is very important to stay hydrated! Drinking a least 64 ounces of filtered water, herbal teas and low sodium homemade vegetable broths daily will help keep toxins flushed.
Don’t forget your friendly flora, (good quality probiotics), it is very important to have beneficial bacteria which aides in detoxification and keeps harmful microbes at bay – it is important that you eliminate daily to remove the trash. Probiotic rich, cultured foods may be the best way to help maintain our natural flora in particular, homemade sauerkraut, kimchi, miso to help keep your GI track and the rest of your body on healthy ground. Adding a good multiflora probiotic daily is also excellent idea.
Lastly get moving, it will improve circulation keeping the sludge moving – start walking, gardening, biking, swimming, hiking, get outside and enjoy the warm summer weather!
The truth is that toxins are everywhere. But removing them and preventing their accumulation doesn’t have to be complicated. By emphasizing a healthy diet, targeted supplements, clean skin care, removing hazards in the home and of course regular exercise and clean water will not only help keep toxins out but also will do a great deal to bring more health into your life.
Alternative Medicine – August 2015
Environmental Working Group- skin deep