From a chemical perspective, much of what goes on in the body is that substances are broken down, built up and turned from one thing into another. A good 80 per cent of this involves detoxifying potentially harmful substances. Much of this is done by the liver which represents a clearing house, able to recognise millions of potentially harmful chemicals and transform them into something harmless or prepare them for elimination. It is the chemical brain of the body - recycling, regenerating and detoxifying in order to maintain your health.
These external, or exo-toxins represent just a small part of what the liver has to deal with; many toxins are made within the body from otherwise harmless molecules. Every thought, every breath and every action can generate toxins. These internally created or endo-toxins have to be disarmed in just the same way as exo-toxins do. Whether a substance is bad for you depends as much on your ability to detoxify it as its inherent toxic properties.
Instead of thinking of certain substances as 'bad' for you, or provoking a reaction, think of them as exceeding your capacity to detoxify them. It's as if the body's metabolism represents a fire. The fire generates smoke that needs to be got rid of. Our metabolic fire - the burning of glucose to form energy - burns slowly and generates plenty of smoke. That's what the liver has to deal with - it's this smoke, not the substances themselves that often causes problems.
Skin problems are just one aspect in which a poor detoxification capacity may show up in the body. Chronic fatigue, multiple allergies, frequent headaches, sensitivity to chemicals and environmental pollutants, chronic digestive problems, muscle aches, autism, schizophrenia, drug reactions and Gulf War syndrome are just some of the other conditions that can be caused by a break down in the body's ability to detoxify.
Testing your detox potential
Here’s a simple questionnaire to test your detox potential:
- Do you often suffer from headaches or migraine?
- Do you sometimes have watery or itchy eyes, or swollen, red or sticky eyelids?
- Do you have dark circles under your eyes?
- Do you sometimes have itchy ears, earache, ear infections, drainage from the ears or ringing in the ears?
- Do you often ......
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