Detox and Maximize Your Body’s Immunity

by, Christine Coe

She drew the soft towel lovingly over it’s back-end drying beads of water in a gentle caress boasting about the purity of the soap she was using to wash it.   I looked down at the bright-red Porsche in the driveway and thought of the time and expense my neighbor invested in it’s care asking aloud,

Do you fill her up with regular grade?” 

The reply?

Are you kidding me?  You can’t put junk into a baby like this?  If you want it to last, if you want her to perform, you have to stick to premium.”

2012-NAIAS-Red-Porsche-991-convertible

IMAGE SOURCE: Wikipedia

In The Tank and Down The Drain

It’s interesting to me, after all the years I spent as a nutrition counselor, how many people instinctively understand that what they put into their cars or even down their kitchen sinks matters, yet doubt the vital link between consumption and output in the human body.   Most people would not expect to throw grease down the drain, or sugar in the gas tank and get away with it, yet they do far worse with their own bodies.  The reality is, the chemical and physical reactions we observe around us are just as real within ourselves.   What we consume has very real consequences on our bodies ability to function to full capacity.   Substances may have deleterious effects or enhance our systems own ability to repair and fight off disease.   I am writing this because today, more than ever, this knowledge is essential.

The Daily Bombardment 

The reality is our bodies are constantly bombarded with disease-causing substances.  We literally swim in an ocean of germs and bacteria, and our environment, from the foods we eat to the very clothes we wear, and even the things we take for granted such as the couch you’re sitting on right now are all heavily laden with chemicals.  Medical studies suggest that on any given day our body produces thousands of cancerous and mutated cells and spontaneously destroys them

The fact is, we usually don’t succumb to these stressors because of the body’s incredible capacity to heal and correct itself.  The take-away should empower us, and make us bolder in participating in our own health.  But health maintenance can be overwhelming when faced with today’s threats which seem insurmountable and leave us feeling helpless and without defense.  In fact, it is the constant exposure to toxins in our environment that cause our systems to weaken, and defenses begin to breakdown.

It is a persistent toxic overload that is more damaging to the body than a single large dose.  Toxins, chemicals and radiation have a cumulative effect.  When all sources are taken into account, our bodies are exposed to large amounts of these on a daily basis, however, the human race is now faced with greater threats than ever before.  The single greatest threat may be the aftermath of Fukushima.  In an article on Fukushima, Helen Caldicott says,

“Hazardous radioactive elements being released in the sea and air around Fukushima accumulate at each step of various food chains (for example, into algae, crustaceans, small fish, bigger fish, then humans; or soil, grass, cow’s meat and milk, then humans). Entering the body, these elements – called internal emitters – migrate to specific organs such as the thyroid, liver, bone, and brain, continuously irradiating small volumes of cells with high doses of alpha, beta and/or gamma radiation, and over many years often induce cancer”. ~ Helen Caldicott, Fukushima: Nuclear Apologists Play Shoot the Messenger on Radiation, The Age,  April 26, 2011

While most of us cannot avoid areas affected by spreading Fukushima radiation and may question our ability to sustain health in the face of today’s obstacles, we can take active steps to minimize the assault and nurture our own innate healing defenses.  This knowledge is the first basic step, because only when we understand our own empowerment will we be prepared to accept the hard work and discipline required, and the most basic place to start is our diet.

Where In Our Bodies Do The Toxins Live?

Long before Fukushima, I used to explain to my clients that the worst toxins seem to be largely fat soluble and concentrate in animal products.   Indeed, after Chernobyl, the Swedish government monitored radiation levels in food and found that radiation levels were much higher in animal based foods such meat and dairy rather than plant-based alternatives.  A second study in Russia illustrated the power of fiber, to protect against the assaults of radiation.  ‘The authors concluded that concentrated dietary fiber can be used in human nutrition to accelerate the elimination of nuclides or radioactive elements.”  

Additionally, foods rich in sulfur containing antioxidants such as garlic, onion, cabbage, broccoli and kale may offer protection and be detoxifying.   Deep leafy greens, especially bitter ones such as parley, arugula, mustard and cilantro and dandelion leaf stimulate increased bile production by the liver, which in turn carries toxins out through the intestines.  Drink alkaline water and do add lemon, lime and green which increase necessary enzymes in the liver.

Supplements that topped my list for decades,  are still at the forefront.   Spirulina and chlorella have been shown to reduce toxins in the body  while the reishi mushroom may provide support for your bodies own defenses against the effects of radiation.

Organic For Organ Health

organic-food-radiation-detox-health-fukushima

IMAGE SOURCE: growingorganicfoodathome.com

Finally, since we are attempting to address toxic overload and nurture our bodies to the fullest extent, choose organic whenever possible whenever possible. According to an LA Times article, researchers in Europe and the United States that reviewed 343 studies on the topic, concluded that, 

Organic crops and organic-crop-based foods contained higher concentrations of antioxidants on average than conventionally grown foods.  At the same time, the researchers found that conventional foods contained greater concentrations of residual pesticides and the toxic metal cadmium.” 

While a diet rich in organic fruits and vegetables takes effort and can be more expensive, our immune system and vital organs need the extra attention in today’s toxic world.  Broken down; disease literally means “without ease.”  A body in disease is a body in distress.  The best way to fend off illness then, is to help prevent the state of distress. 

We will have to start treating our bodies like Porsche.

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