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  • Julie Allesch, IHP

What Even Is A Detox?

Maybe at the mention of the word detox, the only thing that comes to mind is the Betty Ford Center, and you quickly dismiss any further attention to the topic. But please read on, that is not what I am talking about here. By just living in our Westernized, fast-paced lives, and consuming foods and using household products which are sold in grocery stores everywhere, we are exposing our bodies to now over 77,000 man-made hazardous toxins on a frequent basis. I used to not really care. I didn’t think it really mattered.


Until one day I got a strange skin rash that wouldn’t go away, and then I certainly did care about getting rid of that rash! I eventually got to the root cause of the rash through lab testing, which revealed that dangerous heavy metals had been accumulating in my body. Dr. Stephen Cabral, author of The Rain Barrel Effect, uses the great analogy of our bodies being a rain barrel. As we live our bodies are quietly filling up with the various chemicals we are exposed to, until our barrels are filled up. We may not experience any symptoms for years, but one day when our rain barrel is full and begins to spill over, any number of symptoms can occur. If you suffer from weight gain, bloating, acne/skin rashes, allergies, headaches, joint pain, fatigue, brain fog, mood disorders, hormone imbalances or autoimmune disorders, your rain barrel is full and overflowing!


I encourage you to get a copy of the Rain Barrel Effect to understand this more, not only what chemicals and how we are exposed, but also how to reduce our exposure to them as much as possible.


If you have any symptoms mentioned above or other “dis-ease” in your body, a Functional Medicine liver detox can help empty your rain barrel so that you can begin to feel better. It does this in two steps, first taking fat-soluble toxins that have been stored in your body and turning them into an intermediate form, and then converting that to water-soluble waste that your body can eliminate through urine, stool, sweat and breath. Your body is at work right now detoxifying substances you are exposed to through the air you breathe, food & drink you consume, and what you put on your skin. But when our liver can’t keep up, often because it lacks the nutrients that it needs for this process to occur, then our bodies get out of balance and we develop symptoms.


Beware of products that advertise the word detox. A true Functional Medicine detox has to have all the nutrients for Phase 1 and Phase 2 liver detoxification to be safe and effective. It is very important for the toxins to be converted and then eliminated. Dr. Cabral has formulated an excellent product through Equilibrium Nutrition, but any good local Functional Medicine provider near you will have one as well.


The benefits of a liver detox are: reduced inflammation, less bloating, weight loss, increased energy, improved sleep and a rebalancing of the body that can help you get started on a journey to make other changes that will lead to a healthier, happier, productive life!

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