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How to Detoxify Your Body

Everyone is doing it. Should you be detoxing too?

By
Monica Reinagel, M.S.,L.D./N,
September 23, 2009
Episode #062

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Today’s show is the second of two parts on cleansing and detox regimens, something that many of you have written to ask me about. In last week’s podcast, I talked about colon cleansing. This week, I want to talk about products and programs that are designed to detoxify your liver, kidneys and other organs.

Do You Need to Detoxify Your Liver or Kidneys?

There’s no doubt that we live in a somewhat toxic world and a lot of people believe that you need to periodically “detoxify” your liver or kidneys. These organs are, of course, on the front lines of the body’s detoxification campaign, so this would seem to make sense. But let’s stop and think about how these organs actually work.

Many people think of the liver as a sort of filter which traps toxins, much the way a lint filter traps lint. But actually, the liver isn’t so much a filter as a converter. It detoxifies foreign compounds or chemicals by converting them into harmless substances that can be eliminated or recycled. 

The kidneys don’t trap toxins, either. The kidney filters the blood and sorts compounds into those that are worth keeping, which are returned to the bloodstream, and those that need to be gotten rid of, which are dumped into the urine and eliminated.

So toxins don’t really build up in your liver or your kidneys. Yet many detox programs include herbal supplements that are supposed to support these organs. Are these helpful?

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