A variety of “detoxification” (“detox”) diets and regimens—also called “cleanses” or “flushes”—have been suggested as a means of removing toxins from your body or losing weight. Detoxification may be promoted in many settings and may also be used in naturopathic treatment.
Basically, detoxification means cleansing the blood. This is done by removing impurities from the blood in the liver, where toxins are processed for elimination. The body also eliminates toxins through the kidneys, intestines, lungs, lymphatic system, and skin.
Detoxification or detoxification (detox for short) is the physiological or medicinal removal of toxic substances from a living organism, including the human body, which is mainly carried out by the liver. Our bodies naturally detoxify every day, "Detoxification" is a normal body process of eliminating or neutralizing toxins through the colon, liver. Basically, detoxification means cleansing the blood. Detoxification is done by removing impurities from the blood in the liver, where toxins are processed for elimination. The body also eliminates toxins through the kidneys, intestines, lungs, lymphatic system, and skin. So, while detox diets don't do anything that your body can't naturally do on its own, you can optimize your body's natural detoxification system. Internal cleansing may empty your wallet, but is it good for your health?
Spring usually makes us think of cleaning — putting our records in order for the tax season, emptying our closets of winter coats, and readying our gardens. As if those chores aren't enough, we're now hearing that our bodies need a thorough internal cleansing as well. A growing number of infomercials, Web sites, and print articles are urging us to eliminate the systemic buildup of toxins that supposedly results from imprudent habits or exposure to hazardous substances in the environment. Such toxins, we're told, will sap our vitality and threaten our health unless we take measures to "detox" ourselves.
This message isn't new. For thousands of years, human beings have been trying to rid their bodies of perceived toxins. Native Americans have long used various forms of ritual cleansing and purification, such as the sauna-like sweat lodge. Bloodletting, enemas, and fasting were regarded as legitimate medical therapies until the early 20th century. Today's renewed interest in self-administered detoxification reflects concern about a variety of things, such as emerging pathogens, lead in toys, mercury in fish, smog in the air, pollutants in rivers and lakes, tainted beef, pharmaceuticals in the water supply, and synthetic chemicals with unknown properties. But do detox practices really offer the benefits claimed for them?
What is detox?
Before it was co-opted in the recent craze, the word "detox" referred chiefly to a medical procedure that rids the body of dangerous, often life-threatening, levels of alcohol, drugs, or poisons. Patients undergoing medical detoxification are usually treated in hospitals or clinics. The treatment generally involves the use of drugs and other therapies in a combination that depends on the type and severity of the toxicity.
The detox programs now being promoted to the health-conscious public are a different matter. These are largely do-it-yourself procedures aimed at eliminating alleged toxins that are held responsible for a variety of symptoms, including headache, bloating, joint pain, fatigue, and depression. Detox products are not available by prescription; they are sold in retail stores, at spas, over the Internet, and by direct mail. Many are advertised as useful for detoxifying specific organs or systems; others are portrayed as "whole body" cleansers. Here is a review of some of the most widely promoted procedures and products.