Avoid Toxins To Improve Your Health

All of us are exposed to toxins every day, but no matter how common, they can still create real problems in our overall health. The greater your exposure to different toxins, the greater your risk of health problems.

Some level of exposure to toxins is unavoidable, but there are moments when we can make different choices to reduce our exposure. Why does this matter? Because the more toxins you’re exposed to, the more they can build up and wreak havoc on your system.

For some people, stress doesn’t come from family, work, or emotional difficulty – instead the biggest form of stress for many people comes from the toxins that place an unnecessary burden on their body.

Take a look at these two areas where you may be encountering toxins everyday so that you can make the best choices possible.

1.  Food – Your food has more toxins than you may think. The biggest culprit for toxic exposure is processed foods, which are full of chemicals and additives that can create symptoms ranging from cravings and weight gain to poor digestive health and food allergies.

But it’s not just packaged food to avoid. Conventional produce is also full of pesticides. In fact, over one billion pounds of pesticides are used on food in the US alone. These pesticides have been linked to symptoms ranging from muscle cramps and heart rate changes to irritability to emotional instability.

To reduce your exposure to food toxins: Choose whole foods instead of processed foods. In addition, choose organic fruits and vegetables. Organic produce is grown without harmful pesticides and even better, the soil is more mineral rich. Eating organic, whole foods is a great step you can take toward health and wellness.

2.  Water – Do you know the source of your water? These days, knowing where your water comes from is of the utmost importance. Your body is between 70 – 90% water and the water you drink is critical to hydrating your body at the cellular level.

Tap water is teeming with toxins. The Environmental Working Group found over 140 contaminants in tap water.  In addition, over the past few years, studies have shown that pharmaceuticals, like prescription and over the counter drugs, are being found in tap water. Some of the most common drugs found in water are: antibiotics, anti-depressants, birth control pills, seizure medication, cancer treatments, pain killers, tranquilizers and cholesterol-lowering compounds.

Many bottled waters have been shown to be just as bad as tap water in most cases, not to mention toxins that leach from the plastic bottles themselves.

To reduce your exposure to water toxins: If you have only tap water in your home, you might consider getting an whole house water filter or an Aquasana sink and shower filter, to reduce your exposure to the major toxins.

3.  Environment – Whether inside your home or outside your home, the environment is also a major source of toxins. Pollution from manufacturing, cars and second hand cigarette smoke can be challenging to avoid. However, you can avoid a lot of the toxins inside and around your home.

Too many people use harsh household cleaners containing bleach, ammonia and other toxic chemicals that can cause health problems ranging from nausea to skin destruction, fluid in the lungs and wheezing.

To reduce your exposure to environmental toxins: Some people choose to live in rural locations for the clean air and land. However, short of moving, you can do several things to avoid environmental toxins. You can choose the non-smoking section of restaurants and public places. At home, you can also switch your cleaning products to those with all-natural ingredients, like Seventh Generation brand cleaning, laundry and dishwashing supplies.

You can also choose “green” or chemical free products, like fabrics for furniture, which often have flame retardant chemicals on them; or paint that does not have VOCs (volatile organic compounds).
– via All Body Ecology Articles

Internal Toxins

Every person is exposed to external and internal toxins. We just looked at two of the external toxins in our everyday lives.

Stress is perhaps the most dangerous internal toxin that we all experience on a regular basis. Here are just some of the ways that stress poisons our bodies and lives.

This is a vicious cycle and one that’s important to understand – stress is toxic on your body, and toxins are inherently stressful on your body. This is why it’s important to address both the internal and external causes to find the best balance for your own life and health.

1. Stress changes gene expression.

The chemicals your body produces when you are under stress turn on or off of genes that change everything from how much fat you store, to how well your immune system works, to how fast you age, to whether or not you will develop cancer.

2. Early life events determine your set point for stress.

Research shows that even very early childhood events “set” your CRH, or corticotropin releasing hormone, at a high or low level. CRH is like the foot on the gas turning on your adrenals, and therefore your stress levels.

3. Stress causes brain damage.

High levels of stress hormones damage critical parts of the brain, such as the hippocampus, the area responsible for memory. One reason people experience “adrenal burnout” after long term chronic stress, is because the brain, in order to save itself, turns off the adrenals.

4. Stress shuts down the immune system and increases inflammation.

From slowing wound healing, to diminishing the protective effects of vaccines, to increasing your susceptibility to infections, stress is the ultimate immune-modulator. Stress can also reactivate latent infections — people who get cold sores know this from experience.
– via mindbodygreen

Do you try to reduce the toxins in your life?