new year. This article will hopefully allay any fears of detoxification that our medical friends sometimes like to put forward, often in an attempt to bring disrepute onto the natural health industry.

The unfortunate truth is there are bad detoxification programs out there (such as the lemon detox diet), developed by unskilled but clever marketing people. The information in this should put your fears to rest and help you to work out if a detox is for you.

If you are showing any signs of ill health, even if these symptoms are not particularly bad or debilitating, this may be your body informing you that things are not going as tickerty-boo as they should be. You might have some muscle ache, a slight skin problem, maybe some excess fatigue, some digestive irregularities, or infertility issues.

Although the human body is much more complex than a machine, the motor car provides a good analogue. Your motor car needs a regular service to keep it functioning and giving optimal performance. It needs the oil filters changed, new breaks pads applied, maybe some anti-rust in the radiator. The point is that the human body, despite its ability to filter out and excrete some toxins, does not always have the ability to eradicate unwanted material – instead it deposits it in our adipose tissue.

Over time different toxins (whether they be those produced by the body or those from the external environment, go deeper and deeper into the tissues. It may be at this point that you start to feel not so good. It might be at this point that you take yourself off to the doctor, who may tell you everything is normal. This is because changes are taking place at a sub-clinical level and it is only when the toxins are so deeply imbedded that they produce pathologies that can be measured by your doctor.

Obviously as a preventative health practitioner, I do not want you to progress to that point.
To get the real story on how well your liver is functioning, I recommend that my clients have a Liver Function Test. This should not be confused with the liver blood tests (LFT’s) that medical practitioners perform – these are more a measurement of liver damage. When there is liver damage, certain enzymes are produced by the liver cells and that is what is being measured by a medical liver function test.

A real Liver Function Test is performed by a private pathologist will provide you with both a panadol and a caffeine tablet which are to be taken at a specific time. Over the following few hours, urine or sputum specimens are taken at designated intervals and these are used to test the performance of Phase 1, 2 and 3 of your liver function. Without going into great details here, if any of those phases are under or over functioning, chances are your body is not eradicating toxins effectively.

So you have decided that a detoxification program is a good idea – now how do you work out what is a good program. These days we know that a healthy detoxification eating plan eradicated the main allergy foods, excess caffeine and alcohol, encourages plenty of water and possibly cleansing teas. It should basically be a good healthy diet that still provides all the necessary nutrient and protein that the body requires.

For proper liver function, some protein is required especially for phase 2 liver function. Without adequate protein during your detoxification, it is possible that the body will lose its ability to process toxins adequately.

A proper detoxification program will firstly work on creating good gut integrity because if you haven’t done this initially, the toxins that are being mobilized by your liver will simply be reabsorbed by the gut. The most recent valid detoxification programs have also recognized the importance of getting another excretory organ, the kidney, to work effectively also.

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