Today Dr. Mark Hyman discusses toxicity, your health and its connection to how well you feel everyday. He says your body is most likely a toxic waste dump. Worried? You should be …
We are exposed to 6 million pounds of mercury and the 2.5 billion pounds other toxic chemicals each year. Eighty thousand toxic chemicals have been released into our environment since the dawn of the industrial revolution, and very few have been tested for their long-term impact on human health. And let me tell you, the results aren’t pretty for those that have been tested …
How can we not be affected by this massive amount of poison?
According to the nonprofit organization Environmental Working Group, the average newborn baby has 287 known toxins in his or her umbilical cord blood. If a newborn is exposed to that many toxins, imagine how many you have been exposed to in your life.
Do you think this may be why so many of us are sick and fat today?
The simple truth is that we are living in a sea of toxins and it is destroying our bodies and brains. The two most important things you need to know to cure disease, create health, and lose weight are:
- The role of nutrition in health and disease.
- The role of toxins and the importance of detoxification in health and disease.
Unfortunately, you probably aren’t going to learn much about them from your primary care physician. Most physicians today are still hopelessly ignorant in these areas. They were simply never taught about nutrition and detoxification in medical school. However, there are many things you can do to reduce your toxic exposures and enhance your detoxification.
The Role of Toxins in Health and Disease
The role of toxins and detoxification in health has been largely ignored by medicine. Thankfully, scientists and practitioners are starting to recognize its importance in health. The reality is that many of you probably have symptoms of chronic toxicity but don’t realize that you’re toxic. The following is a list of the common symptoms of chronic toxicity. If you suffer from any of the following, detoxifying might be critical for you to get healthy and feel good again:
- Muscle aches
- Joint pain
- Sinus congestion
- Postnasal drip
- Excessive sinus problems
- Foul-smelling stools
- Sleep problems
- Difficulty concentrating
- Food cravings
- Water retention
- Trouble losing weight
- Skin problems
- Canker sores
- Puffy, dark circles under the eyes
- Premenstrual syndrome
- Other menstrual disorders
- Bad breath
What are Toxicity and Detoxification?
When you hear the word “detox” you might think drug detox or alcohol detox or wheat grass enemas. That’s not what I am talking about. I am referring to the science of how our bodies get rid of waste. If waste builds up, we get sick. And the key is to figure out how to enhance your body’s capacity to detoxify and get rid of waste while minimizing your exposure to toxins.
This is so important, because many diseases of our society are actually related to toxicity. Here are some of the diseases you may suffer from if you are toxic:
- Parkinson’s disease
- Alzheimer’s diseaseDementia
- Attention deficit disorder
- Depression and other mood disorders
- Heart disease
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Autoimmune disease
- Food allergies
- Digestive diseases like Crohn’s disease, ulcers, and colitis
- Menstrual problems like heavy bleeding, cramps, PMS, menopausal symptoms, mood changes and hot flashes
With so many conditions on that list, it might seem that everyone is toxic.
That may be true to differing degrees …
Problems with detoxification form one of the roots of illness–and signify one of the core systems in the body that must be working well for you to be healthy. If you feel lousy, it’s likely you’re toxic.
To understand toxicity, you must understand the concept of “total load.” Total load is the total amount of stressors on your system at any one time–it’s like what happens when a glass fills over with water. It takes a certain amount of water to fill the glass and then, after a certain point, you put more in and it overflows.
When our detoxification system is overwhelmed, it gets overloaded. That’s when we start developing symptoms and getting sick, but it may take years of accumulated stress and toxins to get to that point.
Here are some, but not all, of the factors that can contribute to your total toxic load:
- Exposure to heavy metals like mercury and lead, petrochemicals, residues, pesticides, and fertilizers.
- Food allergies, environmental allergies, molds, and toxins from molds.
- Eating a standard American diet.
- Mental, emotional, and spiritual toxins — isolation, loneliness, anger, jealousy, and hostility, all of which translate into toxins in our system.
- Medications can sometimes be toxins. Often we need medications, but the reality is that most of us are overmedicated and use medications to treat problems for which there are better solutions, such as lifestyle and diet.
- Internal toxins–things like bacteria, fungus, and yeast inside our gut as well as hormonal and metabolic toxins that we need to eliminate.
That’s a lot of toxins for our bodies to manage. You may wonder: Why aren’t we all sick, given this incredible load of toxins? The answer is simple. It is because each of us is genetically and biochemically unique. Some of us are good at getting rid of toxins and waste, and others are not. Depending on your symptoms, genetic predispositions and environmental exposures, you may need different levels of nutrients and types of treatment. Remember, getting rid of toxins and learning how to optimize your detoxification system is essential for creating lifelong vibrant health.
Want to learn the key steps to detoxifying your body? Are you ready to make a change to get healthy? Are you ready to start a personalized treatment plan that works without the use of pharmaceutical drugs? To learn more about our functional medicine program or to schedule an appointment, please call (304) 263-4927 today. Dr. Terry Chambers is a Board certified chiropractor and acupuncturist, licensed in WV, and trained to perform functional medicine.