Part Five. How to Take Care of Your Immune System and Reduce Your Risk of Disease.





The Easiest and Cheapest Health Care

Your body is always working to detoxify itself from metabolic waste created in the course of normal physiological function and to cleanse itself of external chemical pollutants and contaminants. Metabolic detoxification is a normal, healthy physiological function necessary for well being. Your body is perfectly equipped to do this work efficiently. It is unhealthy habits, neglect of the basic health habits and the increase of chemicals in our environment, homes and food that places an unbearable burden on our natural system of cleansing.

The basic health habits: sleep, nutrition and digestive health, breathing, water, physical activity, positive mental attitude, sweating and sunshine are the best way to immune system health, disease prevention and essential for the detoxification of the body. Long term neglect of basic health habits impair this lifesaving, health-promoting function. When our body is overwhelmed by toxic material and contaminants and deprived of the essentials to function normally, favourable conditions for disease and harrowing medical intervention are created.

There are natural detoxification products available to facilitate a deep cleanse but they are pointless, wasted and may even be dangerous if not preceded and supported by basic health habits. 



How Does Our Body Detoxify?

The liver is the main detoxifying organ involved in metabolic detoxification. The liver inactivates and filters chemicals, harmful substances, drugs and hormones as well as dead and damaged cells in the bloodstream and eliminates these waste products through the gastrointestinal tract, kidneys, lungs, lymph and the skin.

Signs That The Liver Needs Detoxification
An overload of toxins can leave the liver overworked and exhausted, allowing toxic and waste material to remain in the blood and body, causing symptoms such as hormone imbalances, fatigue and weakening the immune system. Physical symptoms such as allergies, indigestion, bloating, skin damage, aging and spots, eye problems (spots, red or watery eyes), headaches, hot flushes, insomnia, PMS, muscular pain, head pain and neck tension can occur.

The Liver Produces Bile, Important For Digestion
The liver is a major blood reservoir, filtering over 1.4 liters of blood per minute, which it receives from two sources: the hepatic artery which delivers oxygenated blood from general circulation and the hepatic portal vein which delivers de-oxygenated blood from the small intestine.

The liver also plays an important role in fat, carbohydrate and protein metabolism and in vitamin and mineral storage. Each day it manufactures and secretes almost a liter of bile, which is necessary for the absorption of fat-soluble material from the intestines, including many vitamins.

Foods to Eat for Liver Health 

There are certain foods that help to protect and detoxify the liver itself so that it can perform better to detox the entire body:

  • Apples contain pectin which helps to bind and excrete heavy metals right off the intestines. This directly helps to reduce the load of filtration on the liver.
  • Beets, carrots, red onions and aubergine contains flavonoids and beta-carotene which are potent antioxidants.
  • Garlic contains allicin, an antioxidant and the mineral selenium. It assists the removal of heavy metals from the liver.
  • Eggs, brown rice and whole grains, broccoli and spinach contain B-complex vitamins which improve liver function and promote liver decongestion. Vitamin B12 helps to metabolize fats and improves liver health.
  • Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and lettuce contain glucosinolates which help the liver produce enzymes for detoxification.
  • Grapefruit is rich in antioxidants and help in natural detoxification of liver.
  • Bitter vegetables such as bitter gourd, dandelion greens, mustard greens and chicory promote the production and flow of bile.

Many factors determine whether the liver performs its critical functions well. Neglect of basic health habits, medical treatments, pharmaceutical medications, surgery, unhealthy fats, processed food, environmental stresses, overwork or emotional stress, and unhealthy addictions can cause liver overload or malfunction, leading to a decreased ability to clear toxins and hormones and manufacture bile. Foods which contain high levels of antioxidants help to protect the liver and keep it healthy while other foods cleanse the liver.



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Liver Detox Herbs  
Herbal elixirs, containing combinations of the listed herbs, support liver function and are available at health markets: Milk Thistle - Dandelion Root - Astragalus - Artichoke - Liquorice Root - Black Walnut Hulls - Chamomile - Turmeric - Neem - Chicory
  
Liver Detox Vegetables
Vegetables are a rich source of minerals and vitamins essential for normal organ function, and are necessary to maintain a healthy digestive system. Vegetables also contain antioxidants that help in detoxifying the liver of harmful toxins. Organically cultivated vegetables are always recommended: Asparagus - Spinach  - Broccoli - Eggplant - Green Peas- -Green Beans - Spirulina - Garlic - Carrot - Whole Beets - Spinach - Yam - Brussels Sprouts - Cauliflower - Tomatoes - Cabbage - Arugula - Wheatgrass - Kale

Liver Detox Fruits
Consumption of fresh fruit is one of the best ways to detox your liver. Fruit is a paragon of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and regular intake of fruit prevents liver congestion by lowering the level of cholesterol. Fruit also improves the circulation of blood in the liver. Organically cultivated fruit is always recommended: Pomegranates - Acari berries - Grapes - Papayas - Cherries - Avocado - Blueberries - Blackberries - Cranberries - Grapefruit - Black Cherries - Bananas - Lemon - Peaches - Pears - Kiwi -Apples

Some More Liver Detox Foods
Apart from fruits, vegetables and herbs there are many more foods that can support your liver detoxification functions. They are also rich in vital nutrients and aid in releasing harmful toxins from body: Chlorella - Asparagus - Flax seeds - Sesame seeds - Hemp - Walnuts - Pumpkin seeds - Sunflower seeds - Oregano - Green tea - Olives - Caraway oil - Brown rice - Yogurt - Chickpeas - Oats - Mung beans


Green Tea 
    
Benefits of improved metabolic detoxification
  • Healthier environment for cells
  • All physiological functions improve
  • Reduce toxicity and risk of disease in the body
  • Reduce and eliminate allergies
  • Improve digestion and nutrient assimilation
  • Reduce and eliminate pain and inflammation
  • Lower cholesterol
  • Improved hormone metabolism
  • Reform addictions






Is it Time to Detox? 
Symptoms that you may be experiencing if you are overdue for a cleanse:
  • Frequent fatigue
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Sleep disturbances 
  • Low energy
  • Depression
  • Flatulence, gas and bloating (also at issue: food combining, see Part Two: Nutrition)
  • Excess weight
  • Food allergies
  • Decreased libido
  • Impaired digestion
  • Irritability, mood swings
  • Bad breath and foul-smelling stools
  • Parasites in stool
  • Frequent colds
  • Recurring headaches
  • Chronic constipation
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Protruding belly
  • Powerful food cravings
  • Skin problems, rashes, acne etc.
  • Impaired wound healing 
  • Metallic taste in mouth
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Mental fog
  • Inflamed joints
  • Physical aches and pains 




 


Simple ways to start cleansing your body
  • Reduce and eliminate unhealthy habits
  • Improve basic health habits
  • Eat organic
  • Physical activity 
  • Reduce and eliminate processed and refined foods from your diet
  • Reduce high fat dairy, unhealthy fats and meat 
  • Increase water intake
  • Fresh air 
  • Eat more fresh vegetables and fruit 
  • Increase the fiber in your diet 
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Green tea 
  • Drink fresh-squeezed lemon water
  • Broccoli and cabbage aid liver function
  • Fruit
  • Seaweed and kelp
  • Sweat
  • Sleep 





Food additives to avoid

Artificial sweeteners and high fructose corn syrup
Most artificial sweeteners contain aspartame, a carcinogenic substance known to induce migraines, headaches, dizziness and seizures.  Other popular artificial sweeteners contain saccharin, a substance that could be linked to bladder cancer, or Acesulfame-K, which is linked to kidney tumors. Evidence that artificial sugars contribute to weight gain have been revealed in recent research.
High fructose corn syrup can contribute to liver disease, raise cholesterol levels and can lead to leptin resistance. When leptin doesn’t function properly, you continuously feel hungry, no matter how much you eat. HFCS can also be contaminated with mercury and lead, adding to your toxic burden and have been linked to metabolic syndrome.  



Monosodium glutamate
Labeled MSG, autolyzed yeast extract, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, meat tenderizer, accent or simply as spices, monosodium glutamate is probably the food additive that is the most difficult to avoid. Not only the variety of names can be confusing, this amino acid is added to almost any savory packaged foods. MSG is a substance called an excito-toxin. This substance disturbs neurological pathways, is addictive, affects our saiety response and increases the insulin production of the pancreas and causes obesity. MSG has also been linked to headaches, migraines, diabetes, autism, ADHD,  and alzheimer’s disease.

Propylene glycol
Propylene glycol is a viscous substance that is used to enhance texture in liquids. Known to be linked to cancer, it is still used as a carrier for artificial flavors in an array of drinks and dressings.



Hydrogenated oils
Oils that have been hydrogenated are transformed into trans fat, the kind of fat that leads to heart disease, LDL (bad) cholesterol and cancer. 



Food dyes

Artificial colorings found in candies, fruit drinks and dressings, have been linked to developmental and behavioral problems in children and to cancer development.



Sulfites
Used to preserve foods, sulfites are among major food allergens. Sulfites have been linked to asthma, and can lead to headaches, skin rashes and respiratory complications.
Found in: wine (white wine contains a higher percentage of added and naturally occurring sulfites compared to red wine), dried fruits, cured meats.



Sodium nitrite/nitrate
Found mostly in processed meat, sodium nitrite and nitrate are used as a preservative. Several research have linked nitrate to cancer, but it’s still commonly used in food products.



BHA and BHT
Used to preserve color and flavor, BHA and BHT are used in a variety of processed foods. Those substances can disturb the neurological function, alter behavior and cause cancer.



DO YOU KNOW?

Toxin A toxin is a poisonous substance produced within living cells or organisms; man-made substances created by artificial processes are therefore excluded. Toxins vary greatly in their severity, ranging from usually minor and acute (a bee sting) to almost immediately deadly snake venom or botulinum toxin.







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