Detoxification Therapies for Better Health

Detoxification Therapies for Better Health

The more toxic we are, the faster we age. "Everyone needs detoxification," says Susan Lombardi, founder and president of the We Care Health Center in Palm Springs, California, and author of Ten Easy Steps for Complete Wellness. "I am vegetarian, and I take care of myself. Do I still need detoxification? Yes, because the air that we breathe is polluted, the water that we drink is full of chlorine, the clothing we wear is made of artificial fabrics and chemicals, the lotions and shampoos that we use all contain chemicals. Once these chemicals are inside us, we never fully eliminate them unless we go through a detoxification procedure." Lombardi recommends rejuvenating the system from the inside out by limiting food intake to fresh raw vegetable juices once a week, along with the following simple, yet effective, detoxification therapies:

Juice fasting promotes healing

Juice fasting gives the digestive system a rest and speeds up the growth of new cells, which promotes healing. (If you have any medical problems, do not fast without medical approval and supervision.) On a juice fast, a person abstains from solid foods and drinks juice, water, and herbal teas throughout the day. "We should be drinking every half hour to an hour," advises Lombardi. "If we go for long periods of time without drinking anything, then a little glass of juice will not be able to sustain us. But if we are constantly drinking, the day will go by very smoothly."

Lombardi recommends a combination of the following:

Carrot juice. High in the antioxidant beta carotene and full of wonder enzymes.

Celery juice. HIGH IN SODIUM -- not the artificial type poured from the salt shaker, which is bad for you, but the good, natural kind that promotes tissue flexibility.

Beet juice. Beets nourish the liver, one of the most important organs in the body, with hundreds of different functions. If your liver is functioning well, most likely everything else in your body will be too.

Cabbage juice. Cabbage juice is high in vitamin C.

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Mix the juice from each vegetable in equal proportion and drink this combination throughout the day. A little cayenne, which increases circulation, sending blood to every corner of the body to promote healing, can be added for flavor. Lemon juice in water and different herbal teas -- some good ones are parsley and dandelion tea for the liver and kidneys and pau d'arco for blood purification -- can be added for variety. "Any herbal tea free of caffeine will be good," Lombardi says. "Since you need to drink on an hourly basis, you don't want to drink the same thing over and over."

Chelation therapy increases life span

Martin Dayton, M.D., of Florida, who is board-certified in family medicine, chelation therapy, and clinical nutrition, says that chelation therapy has multiple benefits, and long life is one of them: "Dramatic increases in life span are found with chelation. While there are no longevity studies per se, this conclusion is implied indirectly by studies which show a lessening of killer degenerative diseases. In fact, chelation favorably impacts all four major causes of death in the United States [heart disease, cancer, cerebrovascular disease, and lung disease]."

During the chelation process many beneficial changes occur at the cellular level. A synthetic amino acid called EDTA is administered to the patient via intravenous drip. Once in the bloodstream, EDTA attaches itself to heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, and mercury and holds onto those toxic substances until they exit the body through the urine. Dr. Dayton explains why removal of these substances is vital to good health: "The toxic material prevents normal function and repair. For example, lead prevents normal enzymatic processes so that the body cannot function properly and repair itself.-? This leads to premature aging and the premature development of disease. Removal of toxic material through chelation keeps the body functioning optimally."

Iron excess accelerates free radical production

Dr. Dayton notes that an excess even of iron, which is necessary for life, accelerates free radical production and causes harm: "Periodic purging of iron from the body via menstrual bleeding is thought to protect women from hardening of the arteries. However, this protection is lost at menopause with the cessation of menstruation. At this time, arterial clogging accelerates. Chelation removes this excess iron."

Since modern people are overwhelmed by pollutants, Dr. Dayton recommends chelation therapy for anyone over thirty. "Lead is found everywhere, in the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food supply. It is even found at the North Pole. Lead and other toxic pollutants are hard to avoid in today's world. As a matter of fact, the concentration of lead found in the human skeleton now is several hundred times greater than that found in our pre-industrial revolution ancestors. In one study, where lead was thought to be involved, 18 years following chelation therapy a 10-fold decrease in cancer death rate was found for those who had the treatment versus those who had nothing."

Chealtion therapy improves brain function

Aside from its overall benefits, chelation therapy specifically helps aging individuals by improving brain function. Dr. Dayton cites the following evidence: "Research shows that circulation improves greatly in the brain and to the brain. One study of 15 patients who had 20 infusions of chelation therapy found that 14 out of 15 demonstrated significant cerebral blood flow. Some showed dramatic improvement in cognitive abilities.

"In another study, 30 patients with carotid blockages were given 30 chelation treatments over a 10-month period. The carotid artery extends from the chest through the neck to the brain. It is the brain's main source of blood flow. Blockage decreased between 20 and 40 percent.

"Unclogging carotid blockage is vitally important because the American College of Physicians states that patients with an obstruction of 70 percent of greater are at a high risk for stroke. They even recommend chelation therapy as a preferred treatment. I take that to heart and use chelation therapy on these individuals. People who have carotid artery disease improve as their arteries open up. I see this happen over and over again."

Colon cleansing

Colon cleansing is an ancient and time-honored health practice for rejuvenating the system; it was used in Egypt over 4,000 years ago. Later, Hippocrates taught these procedures in his health care system. The large intestine, or colon, is healed, rebuilt, and finally restored to its natural size, normal shape, and correct function.

Colon therapist Anita Lotson explains the procedure and some of its physical and psychological benefits: "There are several stages of therapy. The first segment involves cleansing, a thorough washing of the large intestine. The colon is irrigated by a technique whereby water is gently infused into the large bowel, flowing in and out at steady intervals. Through this method, water is allowed to travel the entire length of the colon, all the way around to the cecum area. The walls of the colon are washed and old encrustations and fecal material are loosened, dislodged, and swept away. This toxic waste material has often been attached to the bowel walls for many, many years. It is laden with millions of bacteria, which set up the perfect environment for disease to take root and entrench itself in the system, wreaking havoc. As this body pollution is eliminated, many conditions -- from severe skin disorders to breathing difficulties, depression, chronic fatigue, nervousness, severe constipation, and arthritis -- are reduced in severity, providing great relief, especially when augmented with dietary changes and other treatment modalities.

"The next phases are healing, rebuilding, and finally restoration of a healthy colon, functioning at maximum efficiency for the final absorption of nutrients, and the total and timely elimination of all remaining waste materials. During the healing phase, we begin to infuse materials into the bowel that will cool inflamed areas and strengthen weak sections of the colon wall.

"Flaxseed tea, white oak bark, and slippery elm bark all soothe, lubricate, and introduce powerful healing agents directly into the large intestine. These herbal teas may be taken orally as well. Simple dietary changes have been made by now, such as the addition of water. This simple measure spells the difference between success and failure in alleviating many bowel conditions. I ask all my clients to double their intake of water.

"I love to see people's change in attitude from the time they come in to the time that they leave. Sometimes people are very irritable when their bowels are backed up. They're often depressed, and sometimes nasty. By the time they leave, you can see a smile and a bounce in their step. It's a different person altogether."

Detox Drink: An excellent formula for colon cleansing is a drink made from ground flax seeds, psyllium seeds, and bentonite, which is a liquid clay. "Clay absorbs toxins," says Lombardi. "The seeds expand in the water and become like a brush. They brush the interior tubing, our pipe system. When the pipe system is completely clean, foods are absorbed through our digestive system."

Enzyme therapy

Nina Anderson, author of Over Fifty, Looking Thirty: The Secrets of Staying Young, attributes slow aging to sufficient enzyme levels: "Many scientists say that people get old before their time due to enzyme exhaustion. Some people are old at 40 because of the lack of enzymes, while others are young at 80 because of an abundance. Above all else, I would advise anybody who is trying to avoid looking and feeling older as they get older to take supplemental enzymes."

She goes on to explain that enzymes allow nutrients to be used. For example, you have enzymes in the heart that allow magnesium to be used. Without those enzymes, magnesium cannot not get to the heart: "Enzymes are molecule catalysts found everywhere in your body. In fact, there are over 1,300 different ones. They make everything happen. In my book I use this analogy: minerals are building blocks of your body. They are the nose, eyes, ears, bones, all the things that hold you together. Something has to build this. Enzymes are the construction workers that facilitate everything in the body going together."

Anderson recommends eating more raw foods, mineral supplements, and digestive plant enzymes to increase enzyme levels. Raw foods are loaded with enzymes. Fruit and vegetable juices are filled with enzymes. When food is processed, the first things taken out are enzymes. Why? Because the enzymes are what allow the food to ripen. However, if the food becomes too ripe, it rots. To stop it from ripening and rotting so that it can be sold longer, these enzymes must be destroyed. But if you destroy the enzymes, you destroy the food's life force. It will have carbohydrates, vitamins, fats, and minerals, but not its life force.

"The mineral supplements to take", Anderson adds, "should be in crystalloid form, with electrolytes. The crystalloid form goes right into the cell walls. This fortifies your body.

"Plant enzymes assist in the digestion of food right on through the intestinal tract. You want to help the digestive process for the whole length of the digestive tract. With supplemental enzymes, you won't have an upset stomach anymore or feel bloated and exhausted after a big meal. The skin will start to improve too. The skin manifests everything that happens inside. If your inner organs start to degenerate, if they are not functioning properly, this kind of stress shows up on your face. The first thing people do when they start getting older is look in the mirror and go, 'Oh my God, I've got wrinkles.' They spend millions trying to get rid of them. But what they have to realize is that wrinkles start from inside. You have to work on the inside to get the outside to reflect that good health.

"Without the proper enzymes, none of the other good things you do matter. For example, the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K require fat for absorption. That fat has to be broken down by an enzyme, lipase. If lipase is not present in sufficient quantities, that fat will not be broken down. If the fat isn't broken down, the vitamins will not be released. Therefore, you can spend a fortune on vitamin pills, and if you don't have the proper enzymes to release those vitamins into your system, they are just going to be flushed out."

Enzymes can be used externally as well as internally for youthful effects: "There are amazing enzyme treatments for the skin. Papaya enzymes are wonderful. Or you can mix a plant enzyme powder and put it on as a mask. Not only does it take the lines out of your face, but it fills them in and builds up collagen. It can also get rid of age spots and shrink moles. When you use enzymes as a mud pack when you come in from the sun, it fights free radicals that otherwise might foster melanoma."

Exercise and other techniques

When we exercise, we detoxify as we sweat through our skin and exhale from our lungs. Some good exercises include jogging or daily brisk walks, yoga stretches, and jumping on a minitrampoline, which exercises every cell in the body. Exercise slows down the aging process because it stimulates detoxification.

Chiropractor Dr. Mitch Proffman says that traditional cultures have appreciated the connection between physical fitness and longevity, making athletic activities a part of women's ritual ceremonies: "In traditional Navajo society women would run three times daily as a formal part of the four-day rites of passage after the onset of menstruation. The first run was at dawn, and each subsequent run would be for a longer distance. It was believed that the total distance a woman could run would determine her longevity."

He goes on to state that recent research supports the connection between exercise and a longer life: "The Journal of the American Medical Association has reported that exercise increases people's life spans. Women walking forty to fifty minutes, three to four times per week, live longer. The same article claims that exercise decreases the chance of dying from all known diseases. This can be attributed to the fact that most major diseases, such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, are stress-related, and exercise reduces stress.

"Another important function of exercising is that people's mental abilities improve. In a recent study at the University of Illinois, Dr. William Greenboro, Ph.D., studied four different groups of rats. One group led a sedentary life. Another group played aimlessly on wood and plastic in their cages. A third group was on a special motorized wheel, and a fourth group walked through intricate mazes and ropes. The finding was that all rats that exercised in any manner had more capillaries in their brains and better brain function. This suggests that exercise fuels the brain with more oxygen and increases natural growth factors, in humans as well as in rats."

Dr. Joseph Pizzorno, N.D., president of John Bastyr College of Naturopathic Medicine in Seattle, Washington, says that strengthening exercises are the best defense against the increased frailty women face as they age: "It turns out that the majority of the debility of old age is simply due to people not using their muscles. The full strength of what one had at twenty and thirty is almost completely returned with weight strengthening exercises. There are a lot of different weight training programs out there. I have been doing some research. The one I find most effective, and am now using personally, is something called Super Slow. Weights are used in a very, very controlled, very, very intense way to get maxi- mum effects from the exercise. I am quite impressed with what I have seen."

"In my personal opinion, the single most important factor influencing aging and disease is stress," says DL Morris. "We need to control emotional anxieties and tensions, and learn how to not let life get to us. It is important to learn to let go and enjoy life."DL Morris suggests to overcome stress include deep breathing exercises, tai chi, yoga, meditation, qi gong, mantras, massage, Reiki, and biofeedback. "These are things I recommend that all of us do in the pursuit of health, longevity and wellness." Although exercise strengthens muscle and increases suppleness, sometimes bad patterns of movement or chronic tensions create problems in the joints or muscles. One practice that helps eliminate the problem of poor movement habits is the Feldenkrais method.

Since exercise increases oxygenation, it also has the potential to foster free radical damage. To prevent undesirable effects, women may want to combine exercise with sufficient amounts of antioxidants in the diet and/or as dietary supplements.

Breathing exercises

Breathing exercises combined with physical activity increase the action of lymphatic cleansing. Detoxification expert Susan Lombardi explains: "For lymphatic cleansing, you want to synchronize your breathing with the movement of your legs and arms. When you are walking or jumping on the trampoline, inhale four times and exhale four times. Move your arms and legs each time you take a little breath. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your nose or mouth.

"This breathing technique was learned from the Taromaro Indians, who live in the northern part of Mexico. They are famous for their fantastic health, They have no need of hospitals or homes for the elderly. They have no disease, no police force, no jails, and no mental institutions."

Skin brushing

Using a natural brush on dry skin removes dead cells and leaves pores open, so that more toxins can be expelled. Lombardi explains why this is so important: "We are supposed to eliminate two pounds of toxins through the pores of the skin. Due to pollution, smog, the creams we use, the clothes we wear, and so forth, our pores are more closed than open. Always brush toward the heart.'"


The sauna is a good follow-up to dry skin brushing because it pushes toxins out through the skin. The main thing to remember with saunas is to be prudent. You want to perspire but not remain there for too long. Nor do you want too much heat. "Follow the directions," says Lombardi. "And wear a cooling drape on your head. You don't want to heat up the brain area."

There are multiple benefits from sauna detoxification, explains Lombardi: "You will look and feel better. Your skin will be clear and you will not have constipation. Your nails will improve as well as your heart and digestive system. It will clear your mind and improve concentration. Nothing will de-stress your body like a sauna."

Magnetic healing

Susan Bucci is a holistically trained nurse who has spearheaded the development of magnetic healing products. "Magnets oxygenate tissues and allow cell walls to absorb more oxygen," she explains. "They promote mental acuity and normalize pH balance by increasing alkalinity. Restorative sleep is enhanced. Therapeutically, they stop pain, fight infection, and reduce inflammation and fluid retention. Over time, fatty and calcium deposits dissolve and the circulatory system opens up. Put that all together and you've got healing from A to Z. Take that a step further: If you achieve optimal well-being, you can actually live a long, productive life."

In addition to promoting overall well-being, magnets can eliminate many specific signs and symptoms of old age. Bucci reports these antiaging benefits from her own use of magnetic healing techniques:

"My energy level has increased. I used to have chronic fatigue in the worst way, but now that's gone. My immune system is functioning much better, so my susceptibility to viruses and colds has decreased dramatically. Allergies are basically gone, and there are no more killer sinus headaches. My circulation has improved so that I withstand weather a whole lot easier. Wounds heal quickly, and my spider veins have disappeared. Also, I was headed for an early menopause, but now my menstrual cycle is very much on track, very regular.

"Hair skin, and nails have definitely improved. My hair grows faster and has a much better quality to it. Within two weeks of using magnets on a daily basis, I was able to see new, thick, dark hair growing. My grays started falling out and disappearing. I was going to color my hair about four years ago, and I still haven't touched it with an ounce of anything. My skin definitely looks and feels younger. And my nails grow so well that if I break one, it doesn't upset me. I know that it will grow right back."

How can magnets do so much? Simply stated, magnets confer a wide range of benefits because we are magnetic beings who derive energy from the earth's magnetic field. Bucci explains: "One reason we get sick is that the earth has lost a good deal of its magnetism, which leaves the body in an unbalanced state. Additionally, we are bombarded by unhealthy energies." Magnets create overall benefit by restoring internal harmony.

It is important to realize that not just any old magnet will do. The negative pole restores health and good energy to the system, while exposure to the positive pole is detrimental. This has been proved repeatedly in studies where a variety of creatures, from earthworms, mice, and chickens to larger animals, live twice as long as untested control groups when exposed to negative field magnets, and half as long when exposed to positive fields.

Bucci recommends unipolar magnets, marked by the Davis and Rawls system with an "N" or the word "negative" and a green label. "That's the healthy side, and that's the one we face toward the body." Negative field ions support biological systems, which help the body to heal itself "The body is an amazing machine with a remarkable capacity to cure itself," Bucci says. "Give it a boost in the right direction and it does the rest on its own. The negative field is completely safe and risk-free."

Bucci finds that magnets work best when worn on a daily basis. During the day she wears a magnet over her heart to improve circulation and oxygenation. "It keeps the heart open and flowing and sends all that wonderful oxygen throughout my body," she says. At night, she takes the magnet off and sleeps with her head on a magnetic mattress pad. She does this because the most important benefit while sleeping is increased melatonin production from the brain's pineal gland: "People are running out to buy melatonin, but guess what? We can encourage our own melatonin production.

"People ask me how long magnets should be worn. Generally speaking, the longer you wear them, the more healing takes place. You can wear them all night and during the day. Generally, the body will tell you when it has had enough. It also will tell you when a condition has healed, although you should check with a physician just to make sure."

Live cell therapy

Live cell therapy involves using living embryonic cells to regenerate tissues. Dr. Lance Morris notes,

"Research is being performed on Alzheimer's patients to regenerate brain cell tissue. This is very exciting work. There is also work being done using thymus gland tissue to reverse the aging process. Thymus glands that you get in the health food store are useful in supporting immune function and in helping with the aging process. That's a simple thing that you can do on your own, and it's very safe to do."

Live cell therapy enhances immune response by increasing stem cells, cells that can differentiate into a wide variety of immune and blood cells throughout the body.

For Women Only! Your Guide to Health Empowerment by Gary Null & Barbara Seaman. This article was excerpted from the book:

For Women Only! Your Guide to Health Empowerment, ©2000
by Gary Null & Barbara Seaman.

Reprinted with permission of the publisher: Seven Stories Press.

Info/Order this book

Gary Null, Ph.D.Gary Null, Ph.D. is one of America's leading health and fitness writers and alternative practitioners. Trained as a nutritionist, he is the author of dozens of books and hundreds of medical articles. His one-hour health radio program airs daily on WBAI in New York City, and is carried weekly to 32 stations nationwide over the Virtual Radio Network. Null is a former faculty member of the New School for Social Research and a National TAC Master Champion Racewalker. Among his many best-selling books are Get Healthy Now!, Healing Your Body Naturally, and The Ultimate Anti-Aging Program. He lives in New York City.

Barbara SeamanBarbara Seaman has been cited by the Library of Congress as the author who raised sexism and health care as a worldwide issue. Her The Doctors' Case against the Pill is credited with influencing the FDA to require informational inserts in packages of oral contraceptives and other medicines. She also wrote Free and Female and Women and the Crisis in Sex Hormones. The New York Times wrote that these three books "triggered a revolution, fostering a willingness among women to take issues of health into their own hands." A founder of the National Women's Health Network and a contributing editor to Ms., Seaman lives in New York City.

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