Every day our bodies are exposed to toxins from many sources, both from things in our control and those we have no control over. Toxins may come into our bodies from the foods we eat, the air we breathe, the numerous body-care products we use, and even from our household cleaners. Luckily, our bodies are built to protect us from all these toxins using an efficient detoxification process through our liver, intestinal tract, lungs, kidneys and skin. Sometimes, it would be nice to give our bodies a bit of help by reducing our toxic burden. Here are five simple ways to reduce toxins in your life.
1. Decrease pesticide and chemical exposure from your food.
Every year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes a list of the fruits and vegetables found to have the most and the least pesticide residues, which they refer to as the ‘Dirty Dozen’ and ‘Clean Fifteen’. It is not necessary to go completely organic, but at the very least, invest in consuming the ‘Dirty Dozen’ foods only from organic sources. Here is this year’s list.
2. Decrease exposure to off-gassing and other indoor chemicals in your home.
Many new furniture and home textiles come with chemicals that can be harmful for your health. Always air out new furniture and wash new sheets and other textiles before using. The best way to avoid such chemicals is to purchase those made with no chemicals or alternative healthier materials. A good air purification system inside your home can also clean your air and give you a breath of fresh air.
3. Decrease the use of toxic household cleaners.
There are a multitude of ways to safely keep your home clean without resorting to harsh chemicals. You can find a lot of healthier options at health food stores or even the natural foods aisle at various grocery stores. Making your own cleaning concoction with baking soda, lemon juice and vinegar can be easy! Here are some nice recipes to try.
4. Decrease exposure to chemicals found in skin-care products, hair-care products and make-up.
Even though each product may contain only a ‘minute’ amount of toxic chemicals, with the number of these products we use, we accumulate a toxic load harmful to our health. Seeking out healthier products to use directly on our bodies is a proactive way to minimize future harm. EWG has a great Cosmetics Database where you can find out how ‘toxic’ a product is and what healthier products are available.
5. Follow a well-designed detoxification program at least once a year.
Specific nutrients are great at encouraging and supporting the detoxification process to minimize any toxins that may have accumulated over the months and years. Ask our Naturopathic Doctors how a detoxification program can help you address some of your health concerns and leave you feeling better overall.