Naturopathic-Detoxification-200x300Naturopathic medicine emphasizes wellness and disease prevention by natural means, as opposed to waiting for things to go wrong with the body that require drastic surgical or pharmaceutical intervention. The practice of detoxification illustrates this natural medicine philosophy.

Unfortunately we live in a world in which much of our food, water and air contain chemicals and compounds that are not good for the human organism: artificial additives and preservatives in food, harsh chemicals in household cleaners, carbon monoxide in the air and even traces of lead and mercury in our food and water. Not only that, but the body itself produces toxins such as ammonia and lactic acid that are natural byproducts of metabolism. Detoxification assists the body in using its own ability to clean and purify itself by getting rid of such toxins from blood, organs and tissues.

Diet is an important component of detoxification processes. Obviously, you shouldn’t continue to ingest more toxins at the same time that you’re trying to eliminate them from your system. Eating only organic foods during detox minimizes the intake of pesticides and unnatural chemical additives. The foods chosen should also be rich in nutrients and antioxidants, as well as being high in fiber. Drinking pure water and organic juices help the body flush out toxins in urine and stool.

A sampling of foods considered to be especially beneficial in a detox diet include:

  • Blueberries and cranberries
  • Fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C, especially organic grapefruit and lemons
  • Fruits high in the fiber pectin, such as organic apples
  • Garlic
  • Cilantro/coriander
  • Milk thistle seeds
  • Chlorella (a kind of algae)

Exercise is important to the detoxification process, just as it should be in daily life. Exercise not only has direct physical benefits for the human body, it also helps to reduce stress, which hinders the body’s natural self-cleansing processes. Proper breathing during exercise, as well as focused deep breathing on its own or as a part of a yoga or meditation practice, helps increase the supply of  oxygen to cells, which also assists in detoxification. A session in the sauna and some forms of hydrotherapy (water therapy) can be a beneficial part of detox as well.

There are more specialized detoxification procedures such as chelation therapy to remove heavy metals from the blood and enzyme therapy that can help the heart and stomach, and reduce the effects of aging. A trained naturopathic doctor can advise you whether such treatments are right for you.

For those living year-round or part-time in the Phoenix, Arizona area, Dr. Paul Stallone is a respected Scottsdale naturopathic physician  and alternative medicine practitioner who believes in disease prevention through proactive wellness care. Dr. Stallone can recommend the best detoxification program for you as part of an individualized program of holistic health care and treatment. Call the Arizona Integrative Medical Center today at to make an appointment with Dr. Stallone.

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