Toxic world

In the past 50 years over 85,000 industrial chemicals have been created. These chemicals find their way into our cells through direct exposure, our food chain, and environmental exposure. These chemicals directly effect our health by influencing the production of energy in our cells. It is essential we understand the implications of our exposure to these chemicals, the effect on our health, how to minimize expose and periodically eliminate the total cellular burden.

A largely ignored cause of disease is our cells ability to produce energy. Every single cell within our body contains smaller organisms called mitochondria. These mitochondria are responsible for producing energy from the food we consume. Now here is a very important piece of information to remember –

“If a cell cannot produce enough energy for its function, it will become diseased”

Every chronic disease, irrespective whether it is arthritis, heart disease, cancer or diabetes is the result of the cells inability to produce adequate energy to function optimally and repair itself. There are a wide range of reasons why the cells are unable to produce enough energy; however the single most important factor is the accumulation of toxins.

The following diagram illustrates how toxins accumulate in the cells and inhibit their function. It also shows a how as the toxins are eliminated a cell can return to normal function after guided detoxification.

Toxins accumulate from a range of sources; environmental chemical exposure, food, internal metabolic waste, cosmetics, poor bowel and liver function. It is impossible to avoid these toxins, however we can minimize the exposure and accumulation through following a few simple tips;

Eat organic; Eat healthily

Our food chain has become increasingly toxic over the past 50 years due to unsustainable farming techniques using highly toxic pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers. If the food we eat has been exposed to these chemicals, so too will we. Eating organic food is the only way to avoid being exposed to these chemicals. All commercially grown food will contain residues of these chemicals. The more people eat organic, the cheaper it will become and the healthier the planet will become.

It is not just enough to eat organic. It is essential you consume healthy, unprocessed foods. Modern day food is all processed. Rarely do we prepare food from the beginning and rely upon prepackaged and processed ingredients. The further a food is removed from the way nature intended, the greater degree of additives such as preservatives, colors and flavors are added. All these chemicals need to be metabolized and excreted. If the liver and bowels are not effective then the toxins accumulate in the cells and disrupt energy production.

Maintain healthy bowel function

If the bowels do not eliminate effectively, wastes will be re-sorbed into the circulation and deposit in cells. It is essential to ensure enough soluble fiber from fruits, vegetables and grains are consumed to add bulk to the stools and encourage regular movements. Taking acidophilus yoghurt regularly will also ensure the bowels maintain a healthy bacterial balance.

Avoid chemical rich cosmetics and toiletries

It is frightening to read the ingredients in common cosmetics and toiletries. Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, phenyl phenol and propylene glycol are all common ingredients which are toxic to the body. Many people believe the skin is an impenetrable barrier. This can be disproven by the effectiveness of administering pain killers and hormones through skin patches. Sun screens and pest repellants are also common sources of toxin absorption we do not consider. Always look at the ingredients in any skin application first to determine whether it is chemical free.

Avoid cleaning chemicals

Common cleaning chemicals are a dual source of toxicity. Most household items contain a wide variety of toxic, harmful chemicals. We absorb these chemicals whilst using them and then gain another exposure through touching surfaces where these chemicals have been applied. Pesticide surface sprays are a common source of this type of chemical exposure. It is a good idea to conduct a chemical audit in your home and dispose of any toxic products. A wide range of natural alternatives exist which are just as effective without the dangerous chemicals.

The level of toxins we are exposed to on a daily basis is only going to increase as science develops new chemicals. Most of these chemicals are untested on human beings and can take years to breakdown, if at all. Women and children are particularly sensitive to these chemicals which affect the nervous and hormonal systems. As individuals we need to make the conscious decision to be aware of the dangers of these toxins and protect ourselves as best we can. This means taking a holistic approach to life, being more eco-conscious and regularly detoxifying the cells knowing it is impossible to totally avoid these chemicals in the world we live. It is not about becoming paranoid, more about becoming proactive in taking responsibility for your health. The rewards are increased energy, vitality and wellbeing.

Common environmental toxins table

Environmental Toxin Health Risks Sources
 PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls): This industrial chemical has been banned in the United States for decades, yet is a persistent organic pollutant that’s still present in our environment. Cancer, impaired foetal brain development. Farm-raised salmon. Most farm-raised salmon are fed meals of ground-up fish that have absorbed PCBs in the environment.
Pesticides: According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 60 per cent of herbicides, 90 per cent of fungicides and 30 per cent of insecticides are known to be carcinogenic. Pesticide residues have been detected in 50 per cent to 95 per cent of U.S. foods. Cancer, Parkinson’s disease, miscarriage, nerve damage, birth defects, blocking the absorption of food nutrients. Food (fruits, vegetables and commercially raised meats), bug sprays.
Mould and other Fungal Toxins: One in three people have had an allergic reaction to mould. Mycotoxins (fungal toxins) can cause a range of health problems with exposure to only small quantities. Cancer, heart disease, asthma, multiple sclerosis, diabetes. Contaminated buildings, food like peanuts, wheat, corn and alcoholic beverages
Phthalates: These chemicals are used to lengthen the life of fragrances and soften plastics. Endocrine system damage (phthalates chemically mimic hormones and are particularly dangerous to children). Plastic wrap, plastic bottles, plastic food storage containers. All of these can leach phthalates into our food.
VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds): VOCs are a major contributing factor to ozone, an air pollutant. According to the EPA, VOCs tend to be even higher (two to five times) in indoor air than outdoor air, mainly due to the levels emitted from carpets and furnishings. Cancer, eye and respiratory tract irritation, headaches, dizziness, visual disorders, and memory impairment. Drinking water, carpet, paints, deodorants, cleaning fluids, varnishes, cosmetics, dry cleaned clothing, moth repellants, air fresheners.
Dioxins: Chemical compounds formed as a result of combustion processes such as commercial or municipal waste incineration and from burning fuels (like wood, coal or oil).They are also derivatives of herbicides and pesticides which find their way into animal meats. Cancer, reproductive and developmental disorders, chloracne (a severe skin disease with acne-like lesions), skin rashes, skin discoloration, excessive body hair, mild liver damage. Animal fats: Over 95 per cent of exposure comes from eating commercial animal fats.
Asbestos: This insulating material was widely used from the 1950s to 1970s. Problems arise when the material becomes old and crumbly, releasing fibres into the air. Cancer, scarring of the lung tissue, mesothelioma (a rare form of cancer). Insulation on floors, ceilings, water pipes and heating ducts from the 1950s to 1970s.
Heavy Metals: Metals like arsenic, mercury, lead, aluminum and cadmium, which are prevalent in many areas of our environment, can accumulate in soft tissues of the body. Cancer, neurological disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, foggy head, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, decreased production of red and white blood cells, abnormal heart rhythm, damage to blood vessels. Drinking water, fish, vaccines, pesticides, preserved wood, antiperspirant, building materials, dental amalgams, chlorine plants.
Chloroform: This colourless liquid has a pleasant, nonirritating odour and a slightly sweet taste, and is used to make other chemicals. It’s also formed when chlorine is added to water. Cancer, potential reproductive damage, birth defects, dizziness, fatigue, headache, liver and kidney damage. Air, drinking water and food can contain chloroform
Chlorine: This highly toxic, yellow-green gas is one of the most heavily used chemical agents. Sore throat, coughing, eye and skin irritation, rapid breathing, narrowing of the bronchi, wheezing, blue coloring of the skin, accumulation of fluid in the lungs, pain in the lung region, severe eye and skin burns, lung collapse, reactive airways dysfunction syndrome (RADS) (a type of asthma). Household cleaners, swimming pools, drinking water (in small amounts), air when living near an industry (such as a paper plant) that uses chlorine in industrial processes.




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