Fall is a great time to naturally detoxify, preparing you for colder, shorter days, less sunlight and therefore, a potentially lowered immune system.
While it’s common practice to seasonally detoxify four times a year, fall is the most important. Removing toxins from the system is about optimizing all systems to help promote greater nutrient absorption, functional detox pathways and supporting the immune system.
If you’re experiencing sluggish digestion, fatigue, skin eruptions, stomach aches, food cravings, joint pain and other pesky symptoms, your body is telling you it’s time to focus on detoxification.
The good news is that certain foods in harvest this time of year can easily be incorporated into a detox protocol to help you expel and ward off invading pathogens, such as parasites.
Pumpkin seeds contain tetracyclic triterpenes, which are released when you chew them. This plant chemical isn’t toxic to you, but it is to any pathogenic invader, such as parasites. It literally immobilizes them, which causes them to release their grip on your intestinal walls.
Eating pumpkin seeds along with beefing up your fiber intake, taking probiotics and/or herbs or foods that have a laxative effect as well as ingesting binders such as diatomaceous earth can help to “catch” these critters and remove them readily from your system.
Beets are high in oxalates, which might be a “no” for those who are sensitive. Oxalates, however, provide some amazing health benefits when it comes to fighting pathogenic microorganisms. If you have no issues with high oxalate vegetables, be sure to eat beets!
Beets are also high in nitric oxide. Nitric oxide also destroys parasites and other invaders. Parasites are anaerobic, meaning that they thrive in oxygen-depleted environments. Being that nitric oxide helps deliver oxygen throughout the body, this creates a place where parasites cannot exist. Nitric oxide helps maintain a solid blood-brain barrier, as well.
But that’s not all. . .One of the antioxidants found in beets is a powerful phytonutrient called betalains. Betalains are the master executioners of systemic free radicals. They also scavenger toxins to help support multiple organs from free radical damage.
Beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A, is found in carrots. Beta-carotene kills parasite larvae, helping to stop their replication and infestation cycle.
It is best to eat carrots on an empty stomach to receive the benefits of their parasitic-killing properties. Simply chop them up and consume them. Coarsely chopped carrots have the added benefit of scraping the walls of your intestines where pathogenic invaders and biofilms love to cling. This will help release them and the toxic mucus surrounding them to rid it from your body.
Research shows that papaya seeds can help destroy at least three strains of fungi, including the pathogen that causes yeast infections. This is due to ethanolic extracts in the seeds.
Other placebo controlled studies show that the combination of honey and papaya seeds eradicated intestinal parasites. Although this was a small study, 23 out of the 30 subjects became cleared from parasites by drinking this natural elixir.
A larger study published in 2007, which focused on Nigerian children with intestinal parasites, showed that papaya seeds eradicated intestinal parasites in 71% of the children.
The entire pomegranate--seeds, juice, peel, flower, bark--all of it--is medicinal. Ellagic acid and hydrolyzable tannins, such as punicalagin, are two of the most important plant constituents providing antibacterial, antiviral and anti-parasitic benefits.
Studies have indicated that less than three weeks of ingesting pomegranate peel extract was able to eradicate cysts in stool by 75.6%. ELISA testing also showed a reduction in parasitic antigens, such as Giardia. By day 28, infection rates were cleared by 97.4%.
Seeds have been shown to be more efficacious in managing a parasitic infection than drinking pomegranate juice. Combining the ingestion of pomegranate seeds with 30 mg of zinc and high dose vitamin C also provided additional benefit.
As the days get shorter and colder and we find ourselves spending more time indoors, less time outside in fresh air, in the sun, and perhaps not leading as active lifestyles as during spring and summer, it’s more important than ever to provide your body with a “fresh start” before facing the winter months. Balance is our greatest defense, and when we are out of balance, we are in a state of "dis-ease". This is why cleansing now is so vital.
Saccharomyces boulardii can help clean your digestive tract and may serve as a vital supplement during a cleanse. As a beneficial yeast, it is transient, meaning that it does not take residence in the gut. Instead, simply passing through your digestive tract, Saccharomyces boulardii as a clean up crew, helping to support homeostasis among your microbiome.
Allowing time for the digestive tract to rest by practicing intermittent fasting can also help to reduce gut inflammation, leaky gut and improve overall digestion.
Juicing is another form of fasting that can help calm the digestive tract and provide a surge of nutrients. Our Vegan GI-Tox can easily be included into a juice fast during a fall cleanse to help support optimal detoxification. Serving as a meal replacement, our organic pea protein also contains vital nutrients to support health and wellness as well as gentle detoxification.
Ensuring that detox pathways work correctly during a cleanse is imperative. Sluggish digestion and constipation can result in the body holding onto toxins and reabsorbing them via the intestines. It can also lead to further issues, exacerbating leaky gut and systemic inflammation.
The four well-researched strains in our Power Probiotic Daily also help maintain a healthy gut microbiome. Studies on these strains demonstrate their ability to increase gut transit time and support a healthy immune system.
During a cleanse, be sure you are drinking lots of filtered water to flush your system and avoid processed foods. Buy organic, and stick with easily digestible foods during the detoxification process.
This is not the time for high intensity exercise, so focus on resting, plenty of sleep, stretching and walking outdoors. Be mindful, too, of what toxins might be in your environment-- laundry detergents, soaps, perfumes, cleaning products--- these are absorbed by your skin and may hinder a detox protocol. Choose natural, non toxic options to reduce your toxic load.
Our bodies have the innate ability to heal once given the proper environment and nutrients to perform this role. Consider your immune system sacred, and honor it.