We are exposed to toxins every day, from the air we breathe to the food we eat, and everything in between. This means the body is working around the clock to rid toxins and prevent their buildup. So, how do toxins leave the body naturally? This is achieved through the work of several organs including the:
- Liver filters the blood
- Lungs filter toxins from the air, such as cigarette smoke and pollution
- Intestines destroy parasites and other harmful organisms
- Kidneys filter excess toxins and waste and release them through urine
Since the liver is one of the body’s largest organs, it’s considered the most vital when it comes to detox treatment. The liver is able to break down toxins by changing ammonia to urea, eliminating excess waste from the breakdown of red blood cells, and producing immune cells to eliminate bacteria and harmful toxins. It also processes nutrients and contains thousands of lobules, which produce and release bile from the body.1
The body’s natural detox system is constantly working. However, when there’s an influx of toxins, the organs may not be able to filter as quickly or effectively. Factors such as dietary imbalances and problems due to the growth of cancerous tissue can impair your body’s ability to remove the toxins. When there’s toxin overload, it can weaken your immune system and negatively impact your overall health.
Fortunately, there are several types of treatments and methods that promote detoxification and give your organs the filtering support they need. While we can’t avoid toxin exposure, there are ways to clean the blood, prevent toxin buildup, and create stronger immune support and overall well-being. To learn more, we’ve also written in detail answering the question, “what is blood purification?”
IV Chelation Therapy
IV chelation therapy is an alternative type of detoxing treatment. It involves the infusion of chemical substances that bind to excess toxic substances like heavy metals and minerals found in the bloodstream and the removal of them from the body. The treatment may involve an IV drip with ethylene diamine tetra-acetic acid (EDTA), a synthetic amino acid that helps to remove common environmental toxins absorbed by the body, such as lead, copper, and iron.
Another route for this type of detox treatment may include an oral supplement of vitamins and minerals or an IV infusion. IV chelation therapy and other alternative detox treatments vary based on your specific needs and symptoms.
The central idea behind a juice cleanse is to feed the body adequate amounts of fiber, vitamins, and minerals through drinking the juice from fruits and vegetables. For many, a short-term juice cleanse is meant to work as a reset to their diet followed by incorporating whole, blood cleansing foods, high in antioxidants, into their detox diet more regularly. Reading food labels can help to limit the number of processed food toxins being ingested every day.
While a juice cleanse doesn’t remove toxins from the body, it does limit the amount of them being ingested through junk food, sodas, and other processed foods high in sodium and sugar. It provides some relief to the organs and gives them a chance to catch up on filtering out all the other toxins from the environment.2
Activated charcoal is a natural remedy used to remove harmful toxins from the body. Previously, activated charcoal was mainly used by physicians to reduce the adverse reactions of certain poisons. In today’s world, this ingredient has spiked in popularity and has been added to drinks to help detoxify the body. Claims are that charcoal binds to the toxic load in your digestive system and removes them from the blood.
It’s important to note with this type of detoxification method that certain medications may lose their effectiveness and too much activated charcoal can cause adverse side effects. Though there are many that tout the benefits of activated charcoal, it’s always best to seek medical advice prior to consuming it.3
Similarly, detox teas have also seen a rise in common use as an alternative detox treatment method. These teas contain specific herbs, such as dandelion, that are known for their diuretic purposes. Since toxins leave the body through urine, these teas can help with the detoxification process in that way, though drinking standard green tea or black tea can also do the trick.
Additionally, proper hydration with water can also keep the organs in good working shape and allow the body’s natural filtration process to continue uninterrupted. Though they can help you feel better, detox teas or a temporary juice cleanse won’t offset the number of toxins the body is susceptible to on a daily basis.
A colon cleanse is a way to improve digestive tract health. If you regularly experience constipation or irregular bowel movements, it prevents how often and how many toxins leave the body. A colon cleanse can be administered by a doctor, if necessary, or it can be done at home with the right combination of water intake and high-fiber foods.
One suggestion is to drink six to eight glasses of lukewarm water per day and eat foods high in water content like watermelons, tomatoes, and lettuce. Another option is to increase the number of fibrous foods in your diet, such as nuts, grains, and other plant foods. This in combination with eliminating foods and beverages high in sugar, salt, and preservatives can help clean out the colon.
It’s a short-term approach to aid toxins in leaving the body without adding more. As with other detoxification methods, colon cleanses aren’t for everyone and should be guided by a doctor to get the best results and err on the side of what’s safest and most effective for your health.
Why Detoxification Is Important
There’s no question that regular detoxification is important for your overall health. Though your body is designed to naturally remove toxins from the body, there’s still the question of how do toxins leave the body when organs aren’t functioning correctly?
Different detox therapies can help clear the body from the lingering harmful bacteria, germs, heavy metals, and other pollutants that work their way into your system and stay there. Too many toxins can cause symptoms such as:
- Feeling sluggish or tired all the time
- Bloating and poor digestive health
- Constipation or irregular bowel movements
- Trouble focusing
- Problems sleeping
- Mood changes
In addition to speaking with your doctor about a detox method that works for you, it’s also important to protect your organs so they can do their job well, especially the liver.
Protecting the Liver from Toxins
Detox treatment is a helpful way to maintain good health and rid your body of the overload of toxins it’s exposed to. However, it’s also beneficial to practice everyday health habits that help protect the liver and allow it to function at its best.4 A few of these ways include:
Eat a balanced diet. Juice cleanses and detox foods and drinks can be temporary ways to help you on your way to optimal health, but overall, eating right every day is what’s best for your body. Adjust your diet to include healthy fibers and fats and avoid processed foods and refined carbohydrates. Also, make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day, which naturally helps flush toxins from the body.
Be mindful of the products you use. Although it’s impossible to avoid all toxins, using all-natural cleaners, beauty products, and other household items can help limit the number of toxic chemicals and heavy metals you’re exposed to everyday. Toxins enter the body by consuming certain foods and drinks, but also through air pollution and other products that are prevalent in regular life.
Work up a sweat. Regular exercise is beneficial to your overall health and it also helps you to sweat out toxins. Exercising in addition to eating healthfully helps to boost your immune system, keeping your body in top shape to naturally ward off toxins through the liver and kidneys
Use alcohol in moderation. Alcoholic beverages can damage or destroy liver cells and deter their filtering functionality. Consuming too much alcohol can also cause fat to build up in the liver and lead to symptoms such as inflammation, pain, and fatigue. Since the liver is a key component of the body’s detox system, it’s essential to keep it in good working order.
Harmful toxin overload can wreak havoc on your body and can be especially damaging if you need a strong immune system to fight off chronic disease or cancer. Though the body does an exceptional job of natural toxin elimination, a specialized detoxification treatment may be necessary depending on the symptoms you’re currently experiencing and the effects of toxins on your current health.
The best path is to speak with your doctor to put together a plan that’s customized for you, one that addresses your specific needs and is administered in a way that’s most effective. The type and frequency of treatment are different based on each situation. Though these may vary, everyone can benefit from fewer toxins in their life. Sometimes the body needs an extra boost to function optimally. The number of alternative treatments available today allows people to focus on a holistic approach toward a healthier life.
Additional questions? Call Immunity Therapy Center today.
Written By: Dr. David Alvarez
Dr. David Alvarez is a Board Certified Medical Doctor from Universidad Xochicalco and Certified by the American Heart Association (Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support).
Dr. Alvarez has been collaborating with Dr. Bautista as an Assistant Medical Director at the Immunity Therapy Center for over 6 years. He provides daily on site patient care and participates on the medical board on research and development of patient treatment plans and programs. Dr. Alvarez is a knowledgeable and compassionate Doctor committed to helping patients get to where they want to be health wise through a more holistic and comprehensive approach.
- Healthline.com. How to Clean Your Blood. https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-clean-your-blood
- UCLA Health – Explore IM. Juicing: Body Cleansing or Nutrient Depleting? https://exploreim.ucla.edu/wellness/juicing-body-cleansing-or-nutrient-depleting/
- Healthline.com. Natural Colon Cleanse: 7 Ways to Try at Home. https://www.healthline.com/health/natural-colon-cleanse
- American Liver Foundation. Healthy Liver – 13 Ways to a Healthy Liver. https://liverfoundation.org/13-ways-to-a-healthy-liver/
At Immunity Therapy Center, our goal is to provide objective, updated, and research-based information on all health-related topics. This article is based on scientific research and/or other scientific articles. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by Dr. Carlos Bautista, a Board Certified Medical Doctor at Immunity Therapy Center. All information published on the site must undergo an extensive review process to ensure accuracy. This article contains trusted sources with all references hyperlinked for the reader's visibility.