“Helping you change the things you can control so you can worry less about the things you can’t.”
-Lara Adler, Certified Holistic Health Coach & Environmental Toxins Expert
In my part I of this detox series, I talked about how toxins can enter the body and accumulate over time. As we saw from various studies, the result of this exposure and accumulation poses some potentially significant health risks to us and our families. We also talked about all the body’s organs and mechanisms involved in detoxification. It’s quite a well-orchestrated process! Despite its miraculously coordinated defenses, it can become overwhelmed, clogged up and run down.
Your Detox Program is Over and You’re Feeling Fabulous….. Now How Do You STAY this way?
Now let’s say you’ve gone through a detox program, you’re feeling lighter, clear headed, energetic and well-rested. Maybe you’ve lost a few pounds, your skin is clear and glowing and you have regular bowel movements worth celebrating. In order to maintain this new-found radiance and wellness, we need to reduce the amount of toxins we’re exposed to on a daily basis. We should be able to maintain this clarity and health between regular detoxification periods (maybe implementing a detox program once or twice per year). This is where avoiding re-toxing comes in.
Let’s looks at the things we can’t control vs. the things we can control:
|Out of Our Control||Within Our Control|
|Traffic exhaust||Personal care products and make-up|
|Landfill leaching||Household cleaners|
|Mining and process facility air pollution||Cookware|
|Hazardous toxic waste disposal||Plastics|
|Industrial waste water||Food quality/pesticides|
|Secondhand cigarette smoke||Water quality|
Although the items on the left under ‘Out of Our Control’ are important issues and we can band together to slowly move towards positive change at the corporate and government levels, there isn’t much we as individuals can do about it immediately. We CAN, however, control what we allow into our personal environments and our homes starting immediately. This can dramatically reduce our chronic, low-dose exposures to the many chemicals and toxins found in most modern-day homes.
Your Homework Assignment
Remember Sally from my last post? A modern day working woman, doing what she can for her health: drinking smoothies, getting fresh air, batch cooking her meals and keeping a tidy house. TOTALLY relatable. She represents most of the ladies in my personal circle, including me! We went through Sally’s typical day and examined it for potential exposure to toxins, task by task. This resulted in a list of just 7 exposures.
Now that you’re enlightened and you know what types of exposures to look for, I want you to go through your own day from the moment you wake up to the moment you fall asleep and make a list of the different substances you’re exposed to regularly. Remember, toxins enter the body through absorption, inhalation and ingestion. Don’t freak out, I know there’s a lot and your list might be long. Just know there’s something you can do about it! We’ll get there.
After you’ve got your list, I want you to visit these online databases and plug in your products to view their scientifically evaluated safety ratings. Some of your products might be just fine! Let’s swap out the others.
- Food Scores: http://www.ewg.org/foodscores
- Cleaning Product Scores: http://www.ewg.org/guides/cleaners
- Cosmetic Scores: http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/
Now, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to slowly replace the products you’ve found to contain questionable ingredients as they run out. There’s no reason to chuck them all into the trash right away (throwing your hard earned moola down the drain) and head out for new products. Of course, you CAN do this, and it would be very admirable, but this is about taking small steps towards big change and it doesn’t have to cost you a fortune in the process.
The very same website you initially visited to examine the safety rating of your products, www.ewg.org, offers excellent suggestions for better-rated, safer products. Companies and product manufacturers often request to have their products EWG (Environmental Working Group) verified to signify to consumers that their ingredients are scientifically proven to be safe for use. The EWG make it pretty easy to verify your products too; just download their app, scan the barcode of any product and it will instantly tell you its safety rating. HOW COOL IS THAT!? If you’re a fellow Canadian, you do have to actually type the name of the product into the app, but that isn’t too difficult.
3 Simple Changes that Make a Big Impact on Toxin Accumulation in the Body
Now, if this all seems like too much work, you’re not too tech savvy, or you’re completely overwhelmed, DON’T WORRY! I’ve got your back. To make the biggest impact on toxin exposure and accumulation, I want you to focus on the following three areas:
- Pesticides – switching to organic food makes a positive impact quite quickly (1, 2)
- Household cleaners – become familiar with a few of the larger companies who offer a variety of safer products so you can easily spot them at the store (see our free guide for my suggestions)
- Fragrances – always choose the fragrance free personal care products, cleaners and make-up
Our Free Mini Detox Guide
In the free guide Katie and I are giving away, I’ve included some trusted companies who offer safer products that REALLY work. I’ve also added clickable links leading to their websites where you can buy directly from them, purchase their products from Amazon or you can find out which local stores sell their products. These products are often found in health food stores and, as the demand for these safer products rise, you’ll likely be able to find them in your regular grocery store! If you’re a REAL keener, I’ve also included an awesome resource for DIY household cleaners and beauty products. In the guide, you’ll also find four of Katie’s yummy DIY detox drink recipes and two detailed detox practices that will jump-start your journey to your best health!
Lastly, if you’re a nerd like me and interested in learning more about the science behind toxins, I highly recommend taking one of Lara Adler’s courses on toxins.
Here’s to your thriving health,