Are You Toxic? Reducing Common Toxins that Drain Your Vitality
By Camille Gallinger, CN
Two wise lifestyle strategies for self-care that you can apply immediately include reducing exposure to common toxins and detoxifying your body periodically and consistently. When you consider the the barrage of chemicals we are exposed to on an almost daily basis, it makes sense. What are some of these chemicals and where are they found? I will list a few here but for more extensive information you need to know about toxins in order to take care of yourself, please go to the Environmental Working Group's website at www.ewg.org. Familiarize yourself with this site and make it a habit to check the safety ratings of your personal and household items on this site. Here we go:
Bisphenol-A: The chemical found in plastic that is so strong that it disrupts the body's hormonal balance. Maybe you are thinking, “I'm relatively safe since I don't drink from plastic bottles, store my oil or tomato based foods in plastic or microwave in plastic containers.” Do you touch store receipts? Many thermal store receipts are coated with BPA! And if you use hand sanitizers now provided by some of the grocery stores and later grabbed a store receipt, your absorption of the BPA was significantly increased. Exposure to BPA is linked to inflammation, obesity, hormonal imbalances, thyroid and immune dysfunction and more. One should even make sure that anything a baby puts in his mouth (like a pacifier or toy) is absolutely BPA-free.
Teflon from non-stick cookware: These are coated with perflourinated chemicals (PFCs) which have been implicated in immune system dysfunction, abnormal thyroid function, liver inflammation and more. Even inhaling the teflon if you accidentally overheat your food or preheat at a high heat can cause flu-like symptoms. PFCs are found in stain-resistant materials, new carpet, and new furniture.
Phthalates: This is an industrial chemical used to give plastics flexibility. They, like Bisphenol-A, also disrupt hormones and are linked to male reproductive problems. The use of phthalates has been phased out by many companies but their use in cosmetics, synthetic fragrances, air fresheners, soft babies' toys, soft plastic teethers and food containers are still prevalent.
The Dirty Dozen: This is a list of the non-organic fruit and vegetables that are the highest in pesticide residue. See www.ewg.org for a complete list but for now know that the top fruit and vegetable are strawberries and celery. Yes, avoid non-organic celery and non-organic strawberries! They top the list as the most pesticide-laden vegetable and fruit respectively. If you eat these regularly, always buy ORGANIC without exception.
There are so many more chemicals and of course, it's impossible to avoid all chemicals and contaminants. It's therefore important to incorporate important lifestyle strategies that can lessen the toxic burden on your body. Here are a few suggestions: a) Don't handle glossy coated receipts; rather have them sent to your email or have the cashier place them in your envelope b) Have plenty of air-filtering plants in your home c) Store, eat from and cook in containers that are glass, stainless steel or cast iron rather than plastic d) Avoid non-stick cookware e) Use a nutritionally dense and safe detoxification program to cleanse your body at least twice a year f) Exercise until you sweat g) Eat plenty of green vegetables which are quite detoxifying and h) Support daily protection against oxidative stress with acritical antioxidant supplement. This will get you off to a good start!
Wisdom Source: Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance (Proverbs 1:5 NIV)