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Detoxifying the Body

by Trevis Smith |

Ensuring A Healthy Body

Toxins & Toxicants[1]

            Toxins are pathogens, poisonous substances, that damage cells in the body. These pathogens naturally develop inside living organisms/cells e.g. plants, animals, and insects. Unlike toxicants, toxins can be neutralized by cooking, soaking, and/or fermenting.

            Toxicants are either man-made poisons or humans introduced them into the environment. Toxicants are produced synthetically through the food manufacturing process; synthetic toxins damage the organs and affects a person’s well-being.

Toxins and toxicants are small molecules that can cause death, disease, injury, and/or birth defects through absorption (food), inhalation (air), ingestion (water), or an organism’s environment being altered (chemicals).

Where Are They?



Whenever mixed gases (methane) and chemicals (carbon monoxide) are inhaled via car exhausts, smoke, or factory emissions.


By domestic sewage, industrial and agricultural wastewater, and urban runoff. These pollutants (chlorine, bleach, and ammonia) travel from the rivers into the oceans or seep into the groundwater and aquifers into our drinking water.


Through genetically modified and processed foods. Industrialized food producers use preservatives, colorings, pesticides, herbicides, and flavor enhancers. These contaminants help increase shelf life and decrease food perishability.


Used in environments that grow non-organic food. Pesticides, herbicides, and genetic modification are found in fruits and vegetables. Washing before consumption doesn’t fully eliminate pesticide residue.


The bloodstream absorbs alcohol rapidly, so excessive drinking can decrease the liver’s cell efficiency; this leads to liver cirrhosis since the liver breaks down about 91% of alcohol.


Ingesting coffee, tea, soda, and energy drinks can cause an irregular heartbeat, restlessness, dizziness, and sleep disturbances. These symptoms can occur from 250mg (2-7 cups of coffee).


Cigarettes contain carbon monoxide, arsenic, ammonia, sulfuric acid, and cadmium; these chemicals are carcinogenic (cancerous). Carbon monoxide in the bloodstream reduces oxygen to the heart and raises the blood pressure.


Excessive sugar consumption leads to obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, eczema, anxiety, and more.


Saturated fats can cause high cholesterol and blood pressure. Trans fats are processed unsaturated fats and can cause health risks. Unsaturated mono and poly-fats are healthier and derived from plant-based vegetable oils.


From chemical products used on non-organic foods in agriculture. Pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, synthetic fertilizers, hormones, chemical growth agents, and concentrated manure can cause allergic reactions and other side effects. 

Food Chemicals

Through food additives which enhance taste, appearance, and increase shelf-life. Factory-made/processed foods can increase the risk of disease. 

Prescription & Illicit Drugs

By drug toxicity from prescription drugs. This creates multiple health problems and serious side effects. Since the kidneys and liver eliminate these drugs from the body, it stresses and decreases their metabolism rate; this causes toxin levels to rise.

Chronic Stress

Stressful situations increase the heart rate and slows down digestion and nerve functions; the body relaxes after the period passes. The body doesn’t relax during chronic stress, and this can cause health problems to slowly develop.


Body Organs & Digestion[2]

            Detoxification is a process that eliminates toxin build-up in the body’s organs. Excess toxins cause organs to become stressed and overloaded; this leads to organ failure. Toxicity build-up shows signs of weakness, lethargy, chronic fatigue, foul sweat, lack of appetite, and more. Since toxins are stored in the fat cells, high toxic levels lead to obesity. Each individual has their own toxin sensitivity and reaction to detoxifying the body. 




Internal Organs



Informs, regulates, and synchronizes every cell in the body via the voluntary nervous system and autonomic nervous system.


Carries oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to every cell and disposable cellular waste to the lungs, liver, and kidney.


Oxygenates the blood and eliminates unwanted gases (carbon dioxide). Regulates the blood’s pH and obtains nutrients/minerals from the air. During inhalation, oxygen travels through the trachea (windpipe), bronchi, and lungs. Then the bronchioles (smaller airways) and alveoli (tiny air sacs) are absorbed by the capillaries (blood vessels). Carbon monoxide then travels through the capillaries and alveoli to be exhaled.


Is the body’s main detoxing organ. Excretes toxic substances through bile, stored in the gallbladder (the green organ beneath the liver). Produces bile salts which breaks down gut fat. Regulates fat metabolism and turns food energy into cellular energy. Regulates cholesterol body levels by synthesizing cholesterol and producing lipoproteins: high-density lipoproteins (HDL), low-density lipoproteins (LDL), and very low-density lipoproteins (VDL) to transport cholesterol. Excess LDL (bad cholesterol) can cause potential heart disease and stroke. Excess HDL (good cholesterol) cleans blood cells and prevents artery disease.


Ensures electrolyte balance which helps every organ, including the nervous system, function normally. Excretes urea, controls blood pressure, and maintains adequate hydration. Filters waste from the blood but retains the body’s essential elements. Maintains the body’s proper balance of salts and acids. Produces red blood cells and helps maintain blood composition, pH levels, and mineral balance.


Provides an acid barrier which destroys parasites and bugs. Stores food and prepares food for digestion. Uses acid to dissolve the food and then adds enzymes to start digestion.


Is an exocrine and endocrine gland. Exocrine: produces digestive enzymes which are secreted into the small intestine to further break down food. Endocrine: produces insulin which is secreted into the blood; regulates the absorption of sugar into cells.

Small Intestine

Uses its villi to ensure adequate nutrient absorption into the lymphatic and vascular systems. An immune barrier which creates antibodies against foreign substances.

Large Intestine (Colon)

Provides a storage facility for the digested food/waste. Absorbs fluids, electrolytes, and poisons left in the waste.


Digestive System

            Breaks down food/drink for the body to use as energy and to nourish/build its cells. This system mixes the food with digestive juices, which travels through the digestive tract, and breaks down food from large to small molecules. The system starts with the mouth (consumption) and ends with the anus (excreting waste).

  • Organs:
    • Mouth
    • Esophagus
    • Stomach
    • Small Intestine
    • Large intestine
    • Rectum
    • Anus


Popular Detox Diets & Fasts[3]

            Purpose: to remove toxin build-up from the body. These diets either focuses on specific organs or the entire body. Fasts are used differently because they focus on calorie intake. Diets and fasts lower stress on the body’s organs; low stress enhances the body’s detox abilities. The following diets and fasts below is to help encourage healthy eating. It isn’t necessary to complete any of these diets/fasts if you start/continue eating a fruit and vegetable-rich diet. This along with daily exercise, adequate rest (7-8hrs), and low sugar, caffeine, and alcohol intake keeps the body healthy.

Detox Diets:

  • Master Cleanse/Lemonade Diet
  • Raw Food Detox Diet(s)
  • Liver Cleansing Diet(s)
  • 21 Day Cleansing Diet(s)
  • 9 Day Liver Detox
  • 7 Day Colon Cleanse (“Colon Irrigation”)
  • Fiber Cleansing Diet(s)

Overview& Weight Loss

  • Master Cleanse/Lemonade Diet: Dissolves and eliminates toxins throughout the entire body. Targets the kidney, glands, cells, and the organs used in the digestive system. Relieves pressure in the arteries, nerves, and blood vessels. Eliminates waste in the joints and muscles. Weight Loss: Yes, but it’s mostly due to fluid and waste reduction.
  • Raw Food Detox Diet(s): Gives the body maximum energy and improves digestion. Reduces carb cravings, rebalances eating habits, and removes toxins from body fat and cells.Weight Loss:Yes
  • Liver Cleansing Diet(s): Increases the liver’s effectiveness and improves its health. This diet helps minimize toxins entering the body. Weight Loss: Havinga healthy and effective liver aids in weight loss.
  • 21 Day Cleansing Diet(s): Addresses toxin buildup and encourages optimal body function by reducing stress on the digestive system and strengthening the liver and intestines. Improves a person’s energy, mental clarity, digestion, mood, and long-term dietary changes. Weight Loss: Occurs but when the diet ends, the weight reappears.
  • 9 Day Liver Detox: Focuses on cleansing the liver of toxins without doing a drastic fasting regime. Toxin accumulation signs: frequent headaches, itchy ears, ear infections, sinus problems, acne, skin rashes, excessive sweating, abdominal bloating, itchy/sticky eyes, and dark circles. Increases the person’s vitality and creates clearer skin. Weight Loss:Yes
  • 7 Day Colon Cleanse (“Colon Irrigation”): Supposedly removes toxins, eliminates constipation, gas, and cramping. Boosts the immune system, energy, and vitality. Meant to enhance nutrient absorption and increase colon efficiency. Weight Loss: Yes, but the weight reappears.
  • Fiber Cleansing Diet (s): Cleanses the colon’s toxins naturally and remove toxins in the intestine. A fiber-rich diet helps with weight management, lowers cholesterol, balances blood sugar, aids in digestion and elimination, and improve overall health.Weight Loss: Effective, significant amounts of excess body fat can diminish by increasing the dietary fiber amount. (Note: soluble fiber specifically)

Outline& Duration

  • Master Cleanse/Lemonade Diet: Ingredients: Spring water, Freshly squeezed lemon juice (2tbs), Organic maple syrup (2tbs), Cayenne Pepper (1/10thtsp). Instructions: Drink 6-10 glasses of this blended/mixed concoction. No food is allowed, and drink laxative tea (2x a day).Duration: 4 days to 2 weeks
  • Raw Food Detox Diet(s): Eat up to 100% raw and ripe organic fruits and vegetables (e.g. green veggies, beets, carrots, apples, berries, hemp, flax, lentils, and oats). Raw fruit/veggie juices and herbal tea are allowed. Mild forms of exercise (walking/light jogging) is suggested. Vegan varieties restrict intake to fruits, veggies, nuts, sprouts, seeds, fresh juices, and sea vegetables. Duration: 3 days to 5 weeks
  • Liver Cleansing Diet(s): Consume only organic foods, plenty of fiber (whole grain(s), fruits, and vegetables) and mostly raw vegetables (kale, onion, broccoli, leafy greens, and more). Small portions of lean meats broiled in stew/soups are allowed. Intake omega 3 and 6 fatty acids (found in fish, olive, and grapeseed oil). Duration:8 weeks
  • 21 Day Cleansing Diet(s): No dairy, gluten, caffeine, or alcohol. Only drink juices, soups, water, and green tea. Eat 3 meals a day but no eating after 7:30pm or snacking in-between. Have liquids for breakfast and dinner and some solids for lunch; wait 12 hours between breakfast and dinner for optimal digestion. Some recommended foods are mango, pineapple, raspberry, blueberry, almond milk, brown rice, rice milk, quinoa, lentils, beans, and carrot. Daily sunlight exposure for 15min, gentle exercise, and plenty of rest. Take olive oil (2tbs) and a garlic clove before bed. Duration: 21 days
  • 9 Day Liver Detox: Based on the 5 “Superfoods”:Raw seeds (pumpkin, flax, sesame). 2. Cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, kale, and brussels sprouts). 3. Dark green vegetables (spinach, watercress, basil, parsley, avocado). 4.Vegetables with sulfur (onion, spring onion, garlic, shallots). 5. Freshly-made juices (blueberry, strawberry, raspberry). All 5 superfoods and/or fruit/vegetables high in antioxidants must be consumed every day.Duration:9 days
  • 7 Day Colon Cleanse (“Colon Irrigation”): Don’t consume any solid food(s) for 7 days. Eat some solid food(s) on the 6thday, and protein (cottage cheese, almond, and hazelnuts) on the 7th Exercise gently and do daily colon massages. Duration: 7 days
  • Fiber Cleansing Diet(s): Eat up to 35g of insoluble/soluble fiber a day. Insoluble fiber, found in the plant cell wall’s structural parts, prevents constipation, hemorrhoids, and adds bulk to feces. Insoluble fiber sources: wheat bran, corn bran, rice bran, fruit and vegetable skin, nuts, seeds, dried beans, and whole grain foods. Soluble fiber, found in plant cells, lowers cholesterol and absorbs water in the intestines. Soluble fiber sources: fruits, vegetables, oat bran, barley seed husks, flaxseed, psyllium, dried beans, lentils, peas, soy milk, and soy products. Drink plenty of water.Duration: 2-4 weeks

Notes & Grading:

  • Master Cleanse/Lemonade Diet: Don’t take if pregnant or nursing. Before starting, read The MasterCleanserby Stanley Burrough. When the diet ends, eat light foods (e.g. soup) and then fruits/veggies before introducing the body to solid food. Grading:A difficult fast, but after the first few days it gets easier.
  • Raw Food Detox Diet(s): Not encouraged for pregnant women, elderly women, diabetics, and people underweight or with illness. Each person’s detoxifying reactions vary. Some symptoms are headaches, fatigue, muscle/joint pain, skin eruptions, or digestive disturbances. Other diet variations recommend ingesting a nutritional supplement, a daily cooked meal of vegetable pasta, or moderate amounts of egg, chicken, and fish. Grading: Difficult and requires dedication. Isn’t for everyone.
  • Liver Cleansing Diet(s): Avoid eating foods with additives, preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, refined carbs (white flour, pasta, cake), deep fried foods, junk foods, artificial sweeteners, colorings, tobacco, caffeine, seafood, processed foods, and food/drinks high in sugar.Grading: Fairly easy
  • 21 Day Cleansing Diet(s): Detoxification only happens after the digestive system is complete. Difficult digestive foods cause the digestive system to have toxic build-up, so an elimination diet must occur and last up to 3weeks. Prohibits wheat, diary, sugar, processed foods, caffeine, alcohol, and common allergens (peanuts, bell peppers, tomatoes, soy, and eggs). Can result in protein deficiency, so this is not recommended for pregnant/breast-feeding woman, diabetic, cancerous, or medicated patients.Grading: Reasonably easy
  • 9 Day Liver Detox: Drink 8 glasses of clean filtered water every day or more if you’re exercising (yoga and physical exercise aids the detox). Don’t consume alcohol, bad fats (saturated/hydrogenated), caffeine, dairy, wheat, spelt, rye, and barley. Supplements (probiotics, glutamine, vitamin C, multi-vitamins) are recommended.Grading:Reasonably easy
  • 7 Day Colon Cleanse (“Colon Irrigation”): Should be used completed under a medical professional/qualified nutritionist’s guidance. Involves twice daily coffee enemas. Avoid drinking prune, tomato, apricot, and peach juice. Apple juice is suggested. Grading: Requires absolute dedication and professional support
  • Fiber Cleansing Diet(s): Highest fiber foods/fruits/vegetables: legumes, unrefined grains (oats, brown rice, and whole wheat), apples, avocadoes, oranges, bananas, grapefruit, berries, spinach, endive, broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower. Psyllium husk powder, a dietary fiber, can be added t to meals or taken separately (1tsp) 10-20 min prior eating. WARNING: some people may react negatively to psyllium powder. If this occurs, stop instantly. Grading: Effective, needs dedication.

3 Fasting Diet(s):

  • Mono Fast
  • Water Fast
  • Fresh Juice Fast

Overview& Weight Loss:

  • Mono & Water: Supposed to help rejuvenate cells, eliminate toxins, invigorate the mind, and have anti-aging properties. Weight Loss: Yes, after 3 days, but the weight returns when the fast ends.
  • Fresh Juice: Supposed to help break addictive behaviors and effective against chronic pain, cancer, depression, arthritis, autoimmune diseases, and more. Believed to cure organs and organ systems.Cleanses the body deeply, rejuvenates the body’s cellular level, breaks down acidic waste matter, and creates mental clarity. Prohibits consuming any other food but fruit and vegetable juices. Weight Loss: Yes, after 3 days, but the weight returns when the fast ends.

Outline& Duration:

  • Mono:Only eat ONEspecific food and nothing else is allowed. The fruit or vegetable of choice should be eaten raw. It could be either grapes, papaya, apple, and/or grapefruits. Eat the fruit every 2hrs and eat 500g of the fruit on the 1st Increase the amount (500g) daily until 3kg is reached. Duration: 10 days
  • Water:Drink at least 7-10 large glasses of fresh, clean spring water every day. On a longer fast, introduce some fruit juices. Rest frequently. Gentle exercising like yoga and meditation or a light walk. Duration:2-30 days
  • Fresh Juice: Only drink freshly squeezed fruit and vegetable juices. Juice fruits/vegetables with a high-water content and are hard. Some of these are: carrots, beets, tomatoes, lettuce, sprouts, cabbage, cucumbers, apples, celery, zucchini, ginger, melons, oranges, lemons, grapefruit, and most leafy greens. Soft fruits (e.g. banana and avocadoes) have low water content. Fruits and vegetables can be mixed, so split it 50/50. Drink plenty of water.Light exercise is doable. Duration:2 days to 2 weeks




Notes & Grading:

  • Mono:Clean the fruits thoroughly to ensure the pesticide residue is gone. Some symptoms will be vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, headaches, migraines, backache, and other body pains. These symptoms mean that the body is going through the cleansing process. Refer to the Grape Curefast as an example. Grading: Difficult
  • Water:When the fast ends, drink grapefruit juice first and then slowly eat apples and other fruits. Then you can eat yogurt or whole grain vegetables. Side effects: headaches, dizziness, and nauseaGrading:Difficult
  • Fresh Juice: Juicing fruits/vegetables removes. Wash the fruits/vegetables thoroughly and for some fruits/vegetables, peel them before juicing. You can follow with the raw food diet after completion. Salt deficiency which causes headaches, nausea, weakness, and light-headedness, may occur. Grading: Effective but intense


Water as A Detox Tool[4]

Overall, water makes up about 60% of the human body. More specifically, there’s 70% in the brain, 90% in the lungs, 22% in the bone, 10% in body fat, 75% (by weight) in lean muscle tissue, and 83% in the blood. Water is also the most vital because it flushes out toxins, carries nutrients, and creates a moist habitat for the ear, nose, and throat tissues. Water deficiency causes dehydration which the body from carrying out its functions and causes energy/vitality drainage.

Water leaves the body through breath, perspiration, urine, and bowel movement. So, water is replenished through methods of beverages and foods containing water; most foods contain about 20% of water. Now the adequate intake for men is about 3L (13c) and for women, 2.2L (9c). Drinking extra water daily improves health, boosts metabolism, accelerates toxins, eliminates fat, and stimulates the kidney, liver, and digestive system’s functions. The BEST drinking water is natural spring water. Plastic bottled water causes toxins to seep into the water, lacks essential minerals, and is mainly purified city water.


Detoxing the Body with Natural Vitamins & Minerals[5]

  • Vitamin A:supports cell growth and maintains a healthy heart, kidney, and other organs. Found in liver/fish oils, milk, eggs, leafy green vegetables, orange and yellow vegetables, fruit, and tomato.
  • Vitamin C:an antioxidant that protects the cells from free radicals. Improves iron absorption from plant-based foods and boosts the immune system. Found in citrus fruits, broccoli, strawberries, cantaloupe, pepper, and kiwi.
  • Vitamin D:helps the body absorb calcium, this maintains strong bones. Found in fatty fish, mushrooms, cheese, and egg yolks. The body produces Vitamin D when the skin is directly exposed to the sun.
  • Vitamin E:Boosts the immune system by fighting invading bacteria/viruses. Helps prevent blood clotting. Found in wheat germ, sunflower and safflower oil, nuts, seeds, and green vegetables.
  • Magnesium:The fourth most abundant mineral in the body and the bones contain about 50% of magnesium. Found in kale, spinach, beans, peas, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.
  • Calcium:Preserves the bones, release hormones/enzymes, and helps move blood throughout the body via blood vessels. Found in milk, yogurt, cheese, kale, broccoli, fish, and most grains.
  • Potassium:and sodium work together to maintain water balance. Found in leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, eggplant, pumpkin, root vegetables, and other vine fruits.
  • Omega 3 Fatty Acids:Vital in brain function and normal growth and development. Since the body can’t make omega 3 fatty acids, they are consumed through salmon, tuna, algae, and some plant/nut oils.
  • Antioxidants:Protects the cells from free radicals, unstable molecules made from the oxidation process during metabolism. Helps prevent cancer, heart disease, stroke, and ageing. Beta-carotene, lycopene, vitamins A, C, and E are natural antioxidants.
  • Dietary Fiber:found in plant food and divided into soluble and insoluble fiber. Found in fruit, dark green vegetables, orange vegetables, legumes, starchy vegetables, and whole grains.
  • Activated Charcoal: A detoxifier for the entire body and an effective antidote for poisons. Naturally derived from certain woods and coconut and can be taken as a tablet or mixed in water.

Natural Foods that Detox the Body[6]

            Certain fruits, vegetables, seeds/nuts, grains, and oils are good for detoxifying the body. Brown rice, quinoa, fennel, alfalfa, parsley, barely grass, wheat grass, blueberries, tomatoes, cranberries, acai berries, apples, lemons, ginger, garlic, coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil, hemp oil, flaxseed oil, pumpkin seeds, almonds, salad greens, watercress, sesame seeds, black walnuts, onions, artichoke, radishes, and many more. Certain fruits/vegetables are high in antioxidants, dietary vitamins (A, B, C, D, and E) and minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, fiber, and protein. Using fruits, vegetables, seeds/nuts, grains and oils cleanses the body, lower bad cholesterol (HDL), nourish the body, aid in digestion, kill harmful parasites, lower blood pressure, rids toxins from the body, and fights various forms of cancer. Eating these antioxidant, vitamin, and mineral enriched foods protects the body from excessive stress and allows each organ to maintain its healthy state and function properly. The main organs: lungs, kidney, liver, and intestines are important for extracting these amino acids from the food we eat, delivering them into our bloodstream, and carrying them to our organs.



            Since the body already eliminates toxins naturally, eating certain foods aids the body with natural toxin elimination. Excess toxins can damage our bodies and affect each organ from functioning properly. This can lead to organ failure and other detrimental illness. Yet, a healthy diet, can aid the body in toxin elimination, decrease organ stress, and strengthen the body.


[1]Mager, Stefan. "What are Toxins?" In Detox Guide. 2018.


[2]Mager, Stefan. "Body Organs and Digestion." In Detox Guide. 2018.


[3]Mager, Stefan. "Overview of 10 Popular Diets & Fats" In Detox Guide. 2018.

[4]Mager, Stefan. "Organic vs. Conventional Food" In Detox Guide. 2018.

[5]Mager, Stefan. "Vitamins and Minerals for Detoxing" In Detox Guide. 2018.

[6]Mager, Stefan. "Top 36 Naturally Detoxing Foods" In Detox Guide. 2018.