Detox cleanses are very trendy these days. I’ve done a detox cleanse (or three) myself. Unpleasant as it sounds, liver toxicity may be behind the symptoms that could potentially be resolved by a detox cleanse.
The human body is pretty neat. It comes with an internal detoxification process that eliminates waste through the liver. However, when the liver becomes overloaded with too many toxins, it can have a hard time flushing them from the body. Over time, this the overload can lead to liver toxicity. Though you may not always realize it, changes in your body may be trying to let you know when liver overload has become liver toxicity.
Poor diet is a primary factor that leads to liver overload. However, even those of us who focus on eating right and exercising regularly still face many outside factors that can also create overload. From stress, to some medicines, to chemicals in our food and personal care products, to those sprayed on lawns and trees, our bodies are ingesting more potentially harmful toxins today than ever before.
Warning Signs of Liver Toxicity
Several of the warning signs of an overloaded liver can also arise from other causes. You should consult with a professional health care provider about these issues before starting a detox program, especially if you have a recurring health issue. (If any of them occur suddenly, contact a healthcare provider right away.) With that said, it may be time to consider a detox when these symptoms have become your norm:
* You can’t make it through the day without a power nap. The liver is what stores glucose (in the form of glycogen) for energy. When the liver is overloaded, that process can’t occur as easily, which is why exhaustion and sluggishness are among the most common signs of liver toxicity. For me, this is one of the primary signs of when it may be time for a detox cleanse.
* You catch up on all of your favorite shows while the rest of the world is asleep. Insomnia is one of the most common signs of liver disease. This could possibly mean that you and your late night texting buddies are all in toxic wasteland.
* It takes you twice as long to complete simple tasks. When the liver can’t store glucose for energy or properly detox the blood, it may lead to an inability to focus, also known as brain fog. (Dear Husband, if you are reading this, please take this bullet point as a big giant hint.)
* Your friends have stopped calling, because they have had enough of your crappy moods. Irritability is another big hint that the body may be in toxic overload.
* Your never sure when (or if) you are going to get your period. The liver plays a key role in manufacturing, regulating and using hormones. Therefore, hormone imbalance and liver function are strongly connected, and either can be thrown off when the other is out of whack.
* Your stomach is a mess. Poor digestion (constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating, indigestion) may mean that your body is trying to tell you something other than eating that second burrito was not a great idea.
* You are craving foods like a pregnant lady. The liver is meant to metabolize proteins and fats, along with storing vitamins and minerals. If the liver can’t perform those functions, you may begin to crave the foods that contain what your body is lacking.
* The scale is not your friend. The liver plays an important role in the metabolism of fats. Losing weight may be substantially more difficult when the liver is overloaded.
* Neither is the mirror. Skin problems such as acne, psoriasis and eczema, puffy eyes and dark under eye circles can all be signs of liver toxicity.
* Every snotty kid within a twenty-foot radius gets you sick. Poor immunity, sinus congestion, respiratory problems and allergic rhinitis may be more common in people with unhealthy lifestyles.
* You feel like you now have an “Achy Breaky” body. The liver is responsible for metabolizing protein and fats, as well as storing vitamins A, D, K, B12 and folate. It also synthesizes blood-clotting factors. When liver toxicity exists, headaches, joint pains, and muscle aches can all occur more often.
* You stink. Literally. Body odor and bad breath may come from more than your cleansing and bathroom habits (or lack thereof, in this case). These can be signs that your body is having trouble cleansing itself from the inside out.
Though these potential liver toxicity issues may be your norm, before heading into full detox cleanse mode, you may want to consider making a few changes to your lifestyle:
* Lower the caffeine intake. Coffee does have some health benefits, but too much may be a problem.
* Drink more water. Those toxins need a way to get out of your body, and let’s just say that they prefer to go with the flow.
* The same goes for alcohol. Red wine has health benefits too, but it should still be consumed in moderation.
* Keep WiFi off at night and move devices far away from you.
* Go organic and GMO-free. One of the best ways to eliminate toxins is to stop ingesting them.
* Reduce your added sugar intake. (If you are unsure that sugar can be the cause of liver toxicity, just watch That Sugar Film and you’ll see the difference it can make.)
* Add green tea to your diet. Green tea has been shown to increase detoxification enzymes.
* Cut out all trans fats, meaning anything that says “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” on the ingredient label. Read the ingredients (rather than the front of the box) for hidden trans fats.
* Take a daily probiotic, which can be helpful for reducing inflammation – and a whole bunch of other issues.
* Take walks barefoot on (unsprayed) grass or on sand at the beach. It has been said that electrons from the earth may be helpful for maintaining the body’s natural frequency.
While the occasional detox may be helpful for clearing up certain issues, you don’t want to rely on them while continuing to live an unhealthy lifestyle. Focus on avoiding chemicals and toxins, fueling your body with nutritious foods, drinking lots of water, exercising, sleeping regularly, and going for your check-ups.
Here’s to a healthy liver!
This post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent diseases. Please consult with your health care provider before making any changes to your routine.
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