I have worked closely with Metagenics—the best high-quality nutritional supplement company in the industry, according to many alternative healthcare providers—for many years to provide my clients with the best advice when dispensing recommendations. The following is an excerpt from an article by Cynthia Zurolo, my contact at Metagenics and a highly informed source on the subject of toxicity and our bodies.
I thought this would be a timely read as we all wind down from the holidays and get ready to make our New Year’s Resolutions.
And great news—there is now an easy way to purchase Metagenics products directly through me and over the Internet.
— Andrew Castellanos, L.Ac.
By Cynthia Zurolo
In recent history, mankind has managed to drastically change the chemistry of the environment in which we live. To compound the problem of our toxic environment, we have refined away much of the nutritional value of our food and replaced it with artificial colorings, preservatives, flavorings, conditioners, etc.
This poor quality diet—combined with extensive use of antibiotics in medicine and agriculture—may have predisposed many of us to experience a kind of “internal” pollution. Internal pollution occurs when toxins enter the body from the environment or are produced by unhealthy bacteria in the intestine. Internal pollution negatively impacts many aspects of our overall health.
Eating Right to Eliminate Toxins
It is very important to eat a good diet with plenty of fresh, wholesome foods.
- Avoid eating excess fat, refined sugar, and foods high in additives and preservatives.
- Eat moderate levels of protein (approximately 15% to 20% of your calories) and fat (approximately 20% of your calories), while increasing levels of complex carbohydrates (approximately 60% of your calories).
- Consume meats from organically raised animals and select organically grown fruits and vegetables whenever possible.
- Drink plenty of purified water (ideally, eight 8-ounce glasses a day).
Complete Support for Detoxification
The clinical approach to detoxification is to nourish the body thoroughly, fueling its natural detoxification mechanism with the nutrients needed to achieve optimal detoxification activity. By providing high quality protein, complex carbohydrates and essential fats, the body gets what it needs to prevent muscle and organ breakdown and depleted energy resources.
But that is just the beginning. Nutrients are needed to support and protect the function of the organs directly involved in detoxification: the liver, the intestinal tract and the kidneys—which measure out the chemicals to keep in the body and the ones to excrete through urine. Intelligent application of nutrition may help in the following ways:
The intestines support regular bowel movements, eliminate the build-up of unhealthy microorganisms and internal toxins, and provide a strong and intact barrier to prevent the leakage of toxic materials from the intestines into circulation. The nutrients zinc and pantothenic acid, the amino acid L-glutamine, carbohydrates known as fructooligosaccharides, and beneficial microorganisms known as lactobacilli and bifidobacteria are a few of the substances that support the health and integrity of intestinal function.
The liver filters out and transforms toxic substances that have entered the blood into harmless substances that can be excreted in the urine. Vitamins A, B3, B6, C, and E, beta-carotene, the amino acids L-cysteine and L-glutamine, along with compounds known as glutathione and phospholipids, are some of the substances that support liver function. Also, it appears that the ratio of dietary protein to carbohydrate may be a very important factor in determining the ability of the liver to detoxify certain substances.
The kidneys are a vital component in detoxification of metabolic waste received from the liver and provide a route for toxin excretion via the urine. Vitamins B6, B12, and folates (including folic acid and L-5-methyl tetrahydrofolate) support folate deficiencies and lower homocysteine levels typically found in patients with considerable renal concerns. N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) is an amino acid derivative that is well known for its highly potent antioxidant activity in reducing free radical activity to support the structure and function of the kidneys.