Posted on Sat, 19 Sep 09
Most, if not all, people carry a significant body burden of environmental pollutants including chemicals from plastics and pesticides commonly found in our food (1). In recent years research attention has turned to the discovery that many common pollutants may actually contribute to altered metabolism and weight gain. These pollutants, aptly named environmental obesogens, are known to be present at levels high enough to contribute to weight gain in a large percentage of the general population (2).
Detox for weight loss
While the human body can detoxify environmental pollutants it may prudent to consider a supervised detoxification program to enhance or improve your detoxification ability as these chemicals harbour in fat cells and may be difficult to eliminate (3). A study conducted at the National College of Naturopathic Medicine, Portland Oregon found a 23% improvement in detoxification after just 7 days of a supervised nutritional support program, a finding that is supported by a number of other clinical studies (4-6).
Clean up your environment
To improve daily detoxification consider eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, choosing organic foods, drinking filtered water and reducing exposure to chemicals including air pollution, cigarette smoke, household cleaning products, cosmetics and plastic food containers and drink bottles. Also Japanese researchers have found that the super food Chlorella may improve toxin elimination (7,8).
1. Environmental Working Group. EWG/Commonweal Study #1, industrial chemicals and pesticides in adults. www.ewg.org Accessed online: 08-2008
2. Grun F, Blumberg B. Environmental obesogens: organotins and endocrine disruption via nuclear receptor signaling. Endocrinology. 2006 Jun;147(6 Suppl):S50-5.
3. Müllerová D, Kopecký J. White adipose tissue: storage and effector site for environmental pollutants. Physiol Res. 2007;56(4):375-81.
4. MacIntosh A, Ball K. The effects of a short program of detoxification in disease-free individuals. Altern Ther Health and Med; Jul 2000; 6, 4; 70-76.
5. Bland JS, Bralley JA. Nutritional upregulation of detoxification enzymes. J App Nutr. 44; 3-4. 1992
6. Bland JS et al. A medical food supplemented detoxification program in the management of chronic health problems. Altern Ther Health and Med. 1995. Vol 1; 5: 62-71.
7. Nakano S et al. Chlorella (Chlorella pyrenoidosa) supplementation decreases dioxin and increases immunoglobulin a concentrations in breast milk. J Med Food. 2007 Mar;10(1):134-42.
8. Nakano S, Noguchi T, Takekoshi H, Suzuki G, Nakano M. Maternal-fetal distribution and transfer of dioxins in pregnant women in Japan, and attempts to reduce maternal transfer with Chlorella (Chlorella pyrenoidosa) supplements. Chemosphere. 2005 Dec;61(9):1244-55.