Toxins are poisonous substances that interfere with normal physiology and negatively impact bodily function.
Where do toxins come from?
Inside the Body
Toxins are produced inside the body through normal and abnormal processes. Some toxins are by-products of metabolism and imbalances in the digestive system. Abnormal processes often occur due to accumulation of toxins over time.
Toxins also enter the body through exposure from the outside environment.
- Contaminated water
- Contaminated food
- Indoor and outdoor pollution
- Sun exposure
- Smoke and tobacco use
- Excessive alcohol
- Heavy metals
- Pharmaceutical drugs
- Infectious diseases
- Chemical dependencies
- Chemicals and radiation
- General surroundings
- Other substances
What is detoxification?
Detoxification is the process of ending accumulation of and actively eliminating toxins in the body. The link between detoxification and cancer therapies is an important topic to learn about when creating an integrative cancer care plan.
Does detoxification occur naturally?
The body has natural built in functions for detoxification. But, naturally occurring detoxification may not adequately eliminate toxins in the body for a number of reasons.
What are some of the factors preventing natural detoxification from occurring?
- Extended and abundant exposure to toxins
- Unhealthy lifestyle choices
- Genetic abnormalities related to detoxification capacity
What is the relationship between toxins, detoxification and cancer?
People are constantly exposed to toxins. If the body cannot adequately detoxify, the accumulation of toxins often creates inflammation and other health problems that may result in diseases such as cancer.
What is the relationship between the mind, body and toxicity?
Toxicity may be associated with suppressed and stuck emotions and thinking. A lack of expression may cause depression, anxiety, other unhealthy feelings, stress, and physical ailments. Toxic relationships may also contribute to toxicity in the body.
What are the major channels of detoxification in the body?
Major channels of detoxification play very important roles in the balance between sickness and wellness.
Learn about these channels to better understand detoxification and cancer.
Blood moving through the cardiovascular system is the key transportation system in the body bringing nutrients and oxygen to the cells and flushing away waste products and toxins.
The colon is the final place in the body where waste travels before being eliminated by the bowels. A healthy digestive tract is necessary so toxins do not leak through to re-circulate and instead are expelled from the body.
The kidneys provide an advanced filtering system to eliminate waste through urine, including dissolved acid wastes that impact blood chemistry.
The liver serves as the manager of the entire detoxification process. Key functions include clearing chemicals produced inside the body and toxic molecules that invade from outside the body.
The lungs dispel toxins with every exhalation. Chief among these toxins is carbon dioxide, a byproduct of respiration. The lungs’ lining of mucus and cilia (small hairs that capture airborne particles) help prevent toxins from entering the body. The lungs introduce oxygen into the bloodstream. The muscular contractions involved in breathing help to transport lymph and blood, as well as balance the nervous system.
Lymph, a clear fluid filled with immune cells called lymphocytes, moves around the body in a series of vessels that parallel the paths of the veins. Lymph delivers nutrients and collects cellular waste to help destroy disease-causing substances.
The elimination organ with the largest surface area, skin is a protective shield that keeps toxins from entering the body and eliminates cellular waste.
What are some detoxification strategies?
Many detoxification strategies are available in an integrative whole person health care model. The following areas are only some of the ways in which you can support ending accumulation of and actively eliminating toxins in your body.