There is not a day or week that goes by in our clinic when a patient tells us they are on a detox. It is such a buzz word these days, but what does it really mean? What is detoxification?
Detoxification = transformation of toxic substances into a neutral form.
Heavy metals, organopullutants, medications, and even our own hormones can be toxic, and have been associated with chronic diseases and cancers. Why?
Most chemicals undergo a two-step detoxification in the liver, whether they are external substances from the environment, or by-products of our own body chemistry. The first step is often transformation to an even more toxic compound, before the second step then creates a neutral, or less toxic chemical. Our livers need specific nutrients to process these efficiently. These include amino acids (proteins), glutathione, sulfur, and many critical vitamins and minerals. And, of course, probably the most neglected nutrient, water.
Detoxification is a process that goes on in our body all the time, every moment of every day. It is not just something that you do for one day or a week-end.
Once substances are transformed, they still must be eliminated through our kidneys, bladder, lungs, gut and sweat.
Chronic disease or cancer can develop when the capacity of the body to transform and eliminate toxins is exceeded. The same amount of toxins may be manageable for one person, but overwhelming for another. Why? One of the most critical factors is the capacity of the liver detoxification enzymes. These are controlled by the genetic code of that individual. There are a handful of genes that controls 80% of the substances that are metabolized by enzymes. In fact, most people have one or more genes that have errors’, SNP’s, that can affect how these enzymes function and ultimately impact one’s health.
How do you know what YOU need? Are you predisposed to detoxify certain substances less efficiently, or to actually increase the formation of more toxic chemicals? Do you need extra nutrients for some pathways that may not function as well? Are there things you need to avoid?
There are now tests available through 23andme, that allow us to look more closely at these critical pathways and evaluate the mutations and SNP’s. Then based on history and symptoms develop a very personalized treatment program to assist your body in optimizing methylation and the 250 body reactions that take place because of this process. This can reduce the risk of chronic disease and along with diet and lifestyle changes minimize symptoms.
One of the goals of the methylation pathway is to make glutathione. The major antioxidant in the body. It is a free radical scavenger and extremely important in the removal of heavy metals such as mercury. If production of glutathione has been affected by a MTHFR, CBS, MTRR or MTR gene variant or a B6 deficiency due to Pyroluria we an identify the source and help replenish this all important antioxidant that recycles itself within the body.
Let us know if you would like more information about personalizing and optimizing your health.