Dr. Don Colbert – What does it mean to detox the body?
It means helping the body’s systems that identify, filter and eliminate harmful substances and invaders. These toxins have made their way into the body through digestion, breathing, and cellular functions.
And, it’s never been more needed.
No other generations have been exposed to as many man-made chemicals, toxins, and compounds as the current ones. We breathe toxic air, we drink water with toxic substances and heavy metals, we eat highly processed foods with harmful additives and chemicals, we use medications and antibiotics to fight many conditions and microbes, and many of us have unhealthy bodies from sedentary lifestyles.
It can seem a bit dismal.
However, you can help detox the body. Your body has incredible, high-functions systems made to detoxify itself. And, you can do your part by giving these systems nutrients that fortify them while avoiding ones. Do you know which systems could use your help? The 6 systems that detox the body?
Here’s which ones they are, and what you can do to help them.
The 6 Systems That Detox and Cleanse the Body
1. THE LIVER
The liver is an extremely important organ and is involved in digestion, hormonal balance, and overall functioning of the body. What’s more, it’s at the center of the main detox system for the body (1).
You can think of the liver as the “mailroom” of the body. It takes in packages from digestion, sorts them, delivers usable compounds to the blood, and works to eliminate harmful ones.
The liver helps detox the body by:
- Removing and/or inactivated toxin substances that make their way into the body via digestion. These include toxic components of foods, medications, etc.
- Extracting toxic byproducts found in the blood. These are often the result of cellular breakdown. The liver transforms that for excretion by the kidneys and/or intestines.
- Providing Kupffer’s cells to filter and destroy harmful foreign invaders like bacteria, viruses, fungi, and more.
- Eliminating toxic metabolites that result from intestinal fermentation and putrefaction.
- Producing bile that aids detox in the intestines
And, you can help your liver! Work to reduce the toxic load on this organ by being mindful of what you consume.
2. THE KIDNEYS
Next, the kidneys are a vital part of detoxifying the body. They purify the blood from harmful substances. These substances include toxic compounds from medications and chemicals. The kidneys filter these substances and deliver them to the urine for excretion.
To do this important work, the kidneys must be in good working order. They should not be damaged or dehydrated. They work best when not bogged down with too high a concentration of toxins, especially synthetic ones.
What’s more, high (or low) blood pressure can stand in the way of healthy kidney function. A healthy weight, hydration, and a good diet all support kidney health to detox the body.
3. THE INTESTINES
The intestines are a cornerstone of human body function. They deliver nutrients to the entire body. In addition, they have the important task of eliminating toxins.
Digestion starts at the mouth. From there, substances we ingest go to the stomach and intestines. Incredibly, entire foods are broken down and transformed into simple molecules that our cells can absorb. Once digested, nutrient molecules are absorbed into the bloodstream and transported to the liver. Remember, it’s the body’s mailroom, and it sorts the nutrients it receives.
The liver sends out the goods to the rest of the body and dumps the toxins into the bile. The bile transports the toxins back to the small intestine to continue through the colon and out in the stool. The colon works with bile to further detox the body (2). It utilizes digested and fermented fiber to promote health, uses mucous membranes as finer filters, and forms stools to get rid of the rest.
Yes, the intestines are extremely important to human health and cleansing the body. You can support digestive health by consuming prebiotics, probiotics, soluble and insoluble fibers, fluids, and more. You must also avoid foods that can destroy intestinal health, including some ultra-processed foods, inappropriate antibiotics, and more.
4. THE RESPIRATORY TRACT
Believe it or not, your lungs also detox the body. In fact, they rid the body of carbon dioxide, toxins in the airways and blood, and phlegm.
Healthy alveoli (tissues involved in oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange at the ends of bronchi in the lungs) do not let filter solids wastes from gaseous ones, and work as an emergency exit for toxins when forced out by the body. These toxic substances, such as microbes and their byproducts, can be found in the phlegm pushed out by the alveoli.
5. THE SKIN
Amazingly, the human body has a fifth way of getting rid of toxins. The skin.
The body’s largest organ is a powerhouse for protection and defense. How?
It evacuates toxic waste products through sweat. The toxins are soluble in water and form crystals in the body. They can be pushed out through sweat or uric acid. In fact, many skin problems may be the result of waste products and toxins being cleansed through the skin or an allergic reaction to the toxins (3).
If you suffer from skin irritations, rashes, or more, you may find relief when you detox the body. While the skin may suffer through the process, it may become much healthier thereafter.
6. THE LYMPH SYSTEM
Don’t forget the lymph system. It plays a huge part in detoxifying and cleansing.
In fact, approximately two liters of lymph fluid circulate the lymphatic vessels throughout the body. This fluid is constantly created from the interstitial fluid found between the body’s cells. It penetrates the capillaries and carries away waste products from the cells to the bloodstream for evacuation by other systems.
In fact, the lymph system is responsible for the removal of waste products in the brain during sleep to further detox the body.
The lymph system filters the toxic substances and produces white blood cells to fight invaders. When the lymph system is unhealthy, and the production of lymphocytes is insufficient, it becomes very difficult for the body to fight invaders and toxins.
What Can You Do to Detox the Body?
You can help your body detox and cleanse itself. It was created with these amazing systems, but our current foods, environment, and lifestyles make it difficult.
To help detox the body, eat a healthy diet high in antioxidants, fluids, healthy fats, and greens. You can help your body defend itself!