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Feeling Toxic? Considering a Detox? Wait! Read this First



So, how you feeling today?  Did you make smart food choices over the recent holidays?

A few too many Christmas cookies? Too much Eggnog? Did you actually eat that Fruitcake? Consume all that Hanukkah Gelt?

How did those conversations around the dinner table about the current political landscape go?

Did you even have family to visit?  Where you alone?  Was December not even holiday time in your culture?

Did you over spend?

Feeling sluggish and “toxic”?  Profoundly uncomfortable?  Just want the discomfort to stop?

Thinking about doing a detox or cleanse?

Wait!  Don’t do it.  Step away from the juicer.  Put that Master Cleanse kit away. Don’t rush into some elimination diet!

Ridding the body of “toxins” – enduring a “detox diet” or drinking nothing but juice for several days to “cleanse” – has become a popular trend in the health/dieting world.

A Google search for “detox” retrieves 70 million hits, and the designer-juice industry now tops $5 billion annually, growing 4-8% a year, with much of the appeal based on juice’s supposed cleansing benefits.

But how effective are these detox programs in cleansing the body of harmful substances?  The “detox” fad needs a reality check.

So what is the history of detoxing the body and it’s connection to illness anyway?


“The concept of toxins as the origin of disease can be found in the Egyptian medical texts and was inherited by the Greeks.

The Hippocratic physicians believed that the body ‘cooked’ the ingested food in the stomach, much like a cook would prepare food in a pot.

They called this process ‘coction.’  Different kinds of food were identified by their ‘humors:’ bitter, sweet, bland, sour, salty, acrid, and sharp or pungent.  As they were cooked they lost their individual properties and were mixed into a bland concoction that was sent to the members of the body for nutrition.

If ‘humors’ were incompletely cooked in the stomach they would have to be ‘cooked’ or ‘cocted’ in the tissues of the body. This would cause sickness, particularly inflammation, which was a sign of cooking occurring in the wrong parts of the body.

The conventional name for metabolic impurities in English, when the North American colonies were established, was ‘humors in the blood,’ or just humors.

The words humor and canker lingered in the American vernacular until the middle of the nineteenth century, but they were replaced by the terms ‘impure blood’ and ‘bad blood.’

The former word came from German, but the latter almost certainly was a contribution of the American Indians, who didn’t have a word for impure.

In the twentieth century the term ‘toxins in the blood’ came to substitute for ‘bad blood’ because environmental toxins became widespread.

Since the liver is the organ that ‘cleanses the blood’ this condition was also called ‘toxic liver.’

These terms are extremely widespread at the present time and probably as many products for ‘detoxification’ are sold today as were sold for ‘bad blood’ a hundred years ago. ~Mathew Wood.


Our bodies have a highly effective system for removing toxins.
Detoxification is an ongoing function carried out by the numerous emunctories of our very complex body.

Our cleansing tissues and organs that excrete toxins from the body include the liver and gallbladder (bile excretion), the kidneys (urination), the lungs (carbon dioxide), the colon (defecation), and the skin (perspiration).

Our sovereign organ for detoxification is the liver.

The liver is the chief organ responsible for breaking down both endogenous and exogenous toxins every second of our lives. It works in concert with the kidneys and colon as well as the lungs and skin to ensure that toxins leave the body as quickly and efficiently as possible.

The liver filters blood, removing chemicals, excess hormones, viruses and bacteria.

Additionally, the liver is called upon to metabolize drugs and chemicals and to break down alcohol. It also plays a key role in the digestion of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, and acts as a storehouse for vitamins, minerals and sugars.


Maybe but we live in challenging times.  Wars rage across the globe, climate change no longer deniable, the social landscape demonstrating profound injustices and condoned hate.

It’s toxic out there…lots of bad blood. No wonder we feel a need to detox.  Our hearts, our souls, our minds, our bodies are continually processing our environment. Our environment that has become increasingly toxic, not just the soil, but in the ways we relate to the earth and to each other.

I believe we are all connected, deeply connected.  We can’t be optimal until our world is optimal. Healing involves much more than a green drink or some supplements to cleanse the liver.

Healing involves community and vulnerability. It involves connection. It requires that we sit with the discomfort, not try to fix or change it.  We need to get to know and understand our discomfort.

If we could have healed (not just fix) on our own, we all would have.

That’s where Functional Wellness Minneapolis comes in. I’m here to offer you expert support and a sustainable healing plan.

You want to feel better, to be as vital as possible.

Skip the cleanse or detox and reach out.  We can get you healthy without some extreme fad.

Side stepping the discomfort has never been the answer.

Together we can address what is really making you uncomfortable.

Bodywork + Nutrition + Homeopathy = Deep Sustained Health

Let’s get healthy together.  The world needs us healthy now more than ever!