Integrative Nutrition Blog
How to Detox Your Body of Heavy Metals
Have you ever felt fatigued or anxious despite all your best efforts to lead an overall healthy lifestyle? If so, you are not alone –the culprit many overlook is heavy metals.
The number of individuals with unsafe levels of heavy metals in their bodies is rising. In fact, the CDC estimates that nearly half a million young children have dangerously elevated levels of lead in their blood.
Heavy metals, like mercury, lead, chromium, cadmium, and arsenic, are shown to lead to adverse health outcomes associated with everything from impaired fertility to death (depending on the level of exposure). Although the body needs small amounts of some metals, like copper, to function properly, overexposure can lead to toxicity and can be dangerous.
It’s not difficult to become exposed to heavy metals - they can be found in the air, food and water. It is important to educate ourselves and discover where exactly these metals are hiding. For example, mercury can be found in water, stored in the meat of fish and it was commonly used for dental fillings. Lead can be found in old pipes and drains and can make its way into the water supply. Even things like deodorant and cookware may be source of heavy metal exposure.
Although it is difficult to rid the body of heavy metals, there are certain steps that can be taken to remove them. Below are a few methods that may help to support detoxification.
Once called the “poor man’s chelation therapy,” cilantro may help body release built up neurotoxins such as heavy metals. If you’d like to add more cilantro to your diet, try blending up cilantro into smoothies or juices. It also makes for a delicious salsa!
Chlorella is a water-grown algae full of chlorophyll that may also help to reduce heavy metals in the body. However, chlorella may reduce the effectiveness of some medications, so check with your doctor if you’re curious about it.
Unlike regular saunas, infrared saunas raise your core temperature which enhances the metabolic process. By doing so, the sauna has the power to help support natural elimination systems to help release toxins stored in the body.
While avoidance of heavy metals is nearly impossible, there are many things you can do to minimize your risk and further your detox efforts. If you suspect you are frequently exposed to heavy metals in your environment, you should speak with your physician to develop a full detox plan.