What Is Detoxification And How Is It Related To My Eczema?
Detoxification is the process where the body gets rid of substances that are no longer beneficial or even harmful to your body functioning properly. This can be a metabolized pharmaceutical drug, heavy metals or digested food.
Your body developed this system of elimination so that is could safely interact with a complex world.
A caveman 7 thousand years ago could have eaten a poisonous berry or inhaled some burning brush; those foreign molecules needed to be removed from the body so as not to damage DNA or impede biochemical processes.
Unfortunately, a modern society has increased the burden of foreign material that your body needs to eradicate. However, there are ways to naturally support detoxification and encourage safe removal of the offending substances.
The organs of elimination are the liver, kidneys, lungs, colon (digestive tract) and skin. The skin is the largest organ of elimination, which helps your body to remove metabolic waste, noxious chemicals and excess heat.
If the skin is not doing this job efficiently or too much burden is being placed on your organs of elimination, diseases can develop. Eczema in particular is a skin disease of inflammation and immune system disruption.
Read on to discover ways to detoxify your body, which can improve your eczema.
In this article detoxification and cleanse will be used interchangeably although detoxification is more specifically describing the physiological process of elimination and cleanse is a term to describe diet, supplements and therapies to encourage that elimination.
Hydrotherapy And Saunas To Encourage Detoxification
1) Low Temperature Saunas
Low temperature saunas increase sweating and the elimination of toxins by the skin. To get an even greater benefit, use dry skin brushing prior to getting into the sauna.
Dry skin brushing opens the pores, removes epithelial tissue for easier secretion of toxins and promotes circulation and lympathic flow. A low temperature sauna should be between 110 and 120 degrees.
The frequency of saunas should be 3-5 times per week for around 30 minutes during a cleanse. Do not use sauna for detoxification if you are pregnant, have a heart condition or are under the age of 16.
Always consult your health care provider before beginning a detox program with saunas.
2) Drink Adequate Water
Drinking adequate water is essential for proper detoxification. Not only does water carry toxins metabolized by the kidney through formation of urine, it also produces the sweat which removes toxins via the skin.
This is crucial for eczema sufferers whose skin needs proper elimination of toxins. The general rule for water consumption is to drink half your body weight in ounces per day.
If you are a 200-pound person, you should drink 100 ounces of water per day. IF you are a 150 pounds person, you should be drinking 75 ounces of water each day.
3) Wet Sheet Pack
Be warned that the application of the wet sheet pack is not the cushy comfort of a spa treatment but it will reap the rewards of efficient detoxification.
Hydrotherapy using a wet sheet pack will require two full size or larger flat sheets (not fitted) and 1-2 wool blankets depending on the person’s size. Saturate the sheets with cool water and wring them out.
Wrap yourself first in the two sheets and then in the wool blanket(s). Make sure that the wool completely covers the entire sheet. Do not wrap your head.
Stay wrapped until the cool sheet is warmed; your body will dilate blood vessels and open your pores, which will encourage the removal of wastes through the skin.
The wet sheet pack should only be applied if your body is warm prior to its application, a person who is feeling chilled should not utilize this type of hydrotherapy.
Often the wet sheets will change color to reflect the material being expelled. Smokers often have a brownish tinge to their warmed sheets.
4) Epsom Salt Baths
Epsom salt baths have long been used to help alleviate joint pain and muscle cramps.
Epsom salts are made from magnesium sulfate, a mineral complex that can be absorbed into the skin and is strongly anti-inflammatory, by manipulating the NFkappaB pathway.
Both magnesium and sulfur are necessary for biotransformation, the body’s process of changing toxins to make them easier to excrete.
Magnesium sulfate has also been demonstrated in animal studies to reduce stress-induced oxidative damage. Use 2 cups of Epsom salts in a bathtub of water.
Artichokes help support proper liver function. The liver is responsible for biotransformation; the process of making substances more polar and therefore easier for the body to eliminate.
Artichoke leaves have also been shown in research to lower cholesterol levels. They also have benefit in treating indigestion and have evidence for repairing diseased liver when used in conjunction with milk thistle.
Lemon can influence the pH of your body, prompting secretion of alkalinizing molecules that then make your body overall more alkaline and improve the function of certain enzymatic reactions. These reactions are crucial to detoxification.
Garlic has been shown to increase the elimination of heavy metals in Chinese coal miners. It also contains sulfur, a component necessary for certain pathways of liver elimination of toxins. Eat 1-2 cloves per day.
4) Rice Bran
Rice bran has been shown in published data to bind to fat-soluble toxins, promoting their elimination. It acts much like a fiber, ushering the potentially hazardous chemicals out of the body via the bile and stool.
5) Oolong Tea
Oolong tea has benefits for elimination of fat-soluble toxins. The polyphenols in the tea inhibit your body’s pancreatic lipase, which increases the fat content in the stool.
Fattier stool can bind with fat-soluble toxins and excrete them when you have a bowel movement. Animals studies have shown better excretion of PCBs with intake of tea polyphenols.
Nutrients For Detoxification
1. Magnesium– Methylation is one of the primary channels for biotransformation, adding a methyl group to the toxic substance so that it can be more easily eliminated.
Methyltransferase enzyme is partially dependent on magnesium, so magnesium deficiency can decrease methylation.
Dosing of magnesium for detoxification is 150mg twice daily, preferably in the magnesium citrate or magnesium glycinate forms.
2. Vitamin C –this famous vitamin is necessary for proper function of Cytochrome P450, which is the first step in elimination of hazardous materials from the body.
Vitamin C reduces the toxicity of heavy metals such as lead, hydrocarbons, PCBs, pesticides and some pharmaceuticals, such as Tylenol (acetaminophen) poisoning.
3. Selenium– this mineral is essential for the formation of glutathione, the foundation of the enzyme glutathione peroxidase, which is crucial for biotransformation of fat-soluble toxins.
Logistics Of Cleansing: How Often And For How Long Should I Do A Detox Or Cleanse?
A cleanse should help a patient to feel better and improve symptoms of eczema. Occasionally, a person will experience a brief exacerbation of eczema as the toxins are leaving the body and aggravating tissues on the way out.
A lower intensity detox will prevent aggravation in most individuals. An overall healthy person would benefit from a yearly 7 to 14 day cleanse.
A person experiencing symptoms of toxicity, including skin eruptions like eczema, should expect to do an initial 3 week cleanse followed by repeat cleanses every 2-6 months depending on the body burden and their living environment.
If a person is able to restore health and clean up their lifestyle, working conditions and living space; he or she may not need to have periods of cleanse.
Instead, incorporating in nutrients and food to support biotransformation and elimination may be sufficient enough to maintain health.
Read the ebook Eczema Free for additional nontoxic, natural methods of clearing up your eczema.
The simple steps tell you what to avoid as well as what to include in your diet and lifestyle.