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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Detox 101

by Karen Gilman

Registered Holistic Nutritionist

Why detox?

The basic idea behind a ‘detox diet or cleanse' is that the modern world puts so much stress on our bodies that the natural detoxification mechanisms in place in our bodies cannot keep up the demands.  "Detoxing" refers to taking extra measures to ensure that your body rids itself of this ‘toxic load’.

What is a toxin?

"A toxin is a chemical or poison that is known to have harmful effects on the body. These toxins can come from food, water or the chemicals used to grow the food or even the air we breathe. Our bodies process these toxins through the liver and kidneys and eliminate them in the form of sweat, urine and poop."

A ‘toxic’ food is one that is processed or genetically modified and contains additives, refined sugar and flour, food dyes and artificial sweeteners.

The body itself produces toxins or waste through biochemical and cellular activities and eliminates them through everyday functions.  These toxic substances are called free radicals and an accumulation of them in the body is considered a common factor in disease.

What to avoid when detoxing:

Processed foods that contain additives or sugar that can interfere with metabolism and blood-sugar levels.

Common allergens like dairy, eggs, soy, shellfish and nuts.  Also avoid less common allergen foods like the nightshade family of vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers and eggplant as they may have an inflammatory effect on the body.

Gluten grains such as wheat, spelt, barley and rye may have an inflammatory effect on some people and should be eliminated for a few days. 

Caffeine, alcohol, drugs or over the counter medication that place additional stress on the liver.

For more information on which foods to choose to help your body detox consider a consultation with Karen Gilman at the Pinewood Natural Health Centre.

Dedicated to healthy eating for more than 25 years, Karen Gilman is passionate about helping others eat well and love what they eat. Karen graduated from the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition in 2011 where she received a diploma in Natural Nutrition. Karen is also a certified food handler and a member of the Canadian Association of Holistic Nutrition Professionals.
You can make an appointment at the Pinewood Natural Health Centre with Karen Gilman by emailing



Phone: (416) 656-8100 

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