Detox Plan: how to remove toxins from your body
Especially after periods of copious meals, we need a ‘body cleanse’. If you have ever wondered how the body eliminates toxins, you should know that it is not only protected by means of one mechanism, but with several. The liver, kidneys, intestine, lungs and skin comprise the five filters that help our body get rid of toxins. We are focusing below on the liver and the kidneys to understand the importance of detoxification, also known as detox.
These magnificent ‘natural body cleansers’ are directly responsible for our quality of life. Do you know how the liver and kidneys work? What foods and habits are their enemies? How to clean your kidneys and liver naturally?
What is the function of the liver?
The liver is in the abdominal area and it is divided into two lobes: the right lobe of the liver is larger than the left lobe. The liver weighs about 1.4 kilos in an average adult and plays a key role in health. After all, it is the second largest organ in the body and the only one that can regenerate.
Blood and bile circulate through the liver. Blood enters the liver from the digestive tract with nutrients, drugs and in some cases viruses, bacteria, parasites and other elements containing toxins. Substances that enter the liver can be processed, stored, or modified to get back into the bloodstream or into the intestine where they will be removed. The liver selects what to do with each substance by filtering, reconverting, or disposing of them. It is the chemical plant that allows us to feed and detoxify ourselves.
The liver has many functions and metabolic activities with carbohydrates, proteins and fats or lipids. If we had to summarize them, we would say that some of the most important functions of the liver are:
- Filters blood coming from the intestinal tract before returning to the bloodstream.
- Detox effect of chemicals and drug metabolism.
- Bile secretion.
- Forms and regenerates blood. It can store up to 1.5 litres.
- Turns nutrients into substances that our body can assimilate, store and provides to cells when they need them.
- Breaks down fat molecules and transforms them into energy.
- Monitors that the level of glucose in blood is adequate. If the glucose level is high, it will remove the sugar from blood and store it in the form of glycogen. If it is low, it will break down the glycogen and release sugar.
- It can store vitamins and minerals, such as iron or copper and release them when your body needs them.
What is the function of the kidneys?
The kidneys are two organs, part of the urinary system, and are located above the waist. Each kidney approximately has the size of your fist and weighs about 150 grams. Cleaning the kidneys is crucial for good health. The major functions of kidneys are:
- Disposing of waste and toxic substances through the urine.
- Maintaining levels of water, sugar, salt or potassium in blood despite changes in our diet.
- Separating what is useful to be returned to the bloodstream; what is rejected passes into the urinary system. This process is done several times to ensure that nothing necessary is wasted. Approximately every hour, the kidneys filter all the blood in the body, purifying 180 litres a day and sending 1.5 litres of urine to be expelled. The daily amount of urine is a good evidence of the kidneys’ health.
What harms the liver and kidneys?
Red meats, fats, alcohol, fast food, soft drinks, excess protein, salt, whole dairy products, industrial pastries, tobacco, drugs and insufficient water intake are the main enemies that may harm the liver and kidneys.
Especially alcohol abuse can cause some of the most common liver diseases such as hepatitis, cirrhosis, liver cancer or liver failure. Fatty liver disease is also remarkable and is not associated with alcohol consumption, but with obesity. In the case of kidneys, as they are closely related to the heart, the two main causes of kidney conditions are diabetes and hypertension.
Best ways to detox your body naturally
Nature provides us with foods and supplements that help kidneys and liver “cleanse”:
Artichoke is very good for detoxifying the liver. Detox or toxins cleanse diets count on artichokes because they facilitate the intestinal transit, colon cleanse, elimination of liquids and have satiating power despite their low caloric value.
Beetroot and liver are positively related. Beetroot betaine is a powerful antioxidant. The natural pigment in red beetroots helps dilate blood vessels and allows good blood flow, regulating blood pressure and favouring the control of cholesterol.
Vitamin B12 is one of those responsible for something as elementary as the production of energy for our body. It also helps generate red and white blood cells, protect and care for nerve terminals and control cholesterol.
Choline is such an important health supplement that it is found in many foods, although in small quantities. It is essential for calcium absorption, sports performance and good brain and heart maintenance. Choline is very good for the liver, helping it to eliminate fat that may cause the fatty liver disease.
Inositol, also known as Vitamin B8, comes from brown rice and it is present in all our body cells. Inositol helps in the biochemical processes of the brain, as well as in the amount of calcium in cells and the elimination of fat.
Vitamin E is also known as tocopherol. It protects us from the free radicals responsible for the degeneration of tissues and contributes to maintaining defence cells.
Rosemary has traditionally been used for digestive problems, monitoring blood pressure, improving memory, and as a natural antibiotic.
Juniper promotes health and is a powerful antioxidant. It has been used in pharmaceutical indications such as pain-killing, expectorant, antiseptic and diuretic agent.
Milk thistle protects the liver as it stimulates the effect of liver cells responsible for detoxification and liver tissue, in addition to having diuretic effect.
Black radish contributes to bile production, maintenance of the level of lipids in blood and helps in the liver function.
Lemon contributes to the improvement of health. It is very good for purifying, alkalinizing and moisturizing, in addition to its vitamin C content.
If your social or work routine is full of copious meals and dinners, or it involves eating out many times, remember these foods and supplements that naturally help detoxify the liver and cleanse the kidneys, since both organs perform vital functions and maintain good health conditions.