Spring has finally sprung in Vancouver!! Sun is shining, birds are singing and I couldn’t be happier! Spring is the perfect time to detoxify the body. According to TCM, the 5 elements theory shows that the liver is related to the wood element, which is associated with spring (you can learn more about TCM here)! The main organ that is focused on when doing a detox is the liver but you don’t want to forget the kidney too!!! The whole purpose of doing a detox is to give the body a break and eliminate toxins allowing you to feel AMAZING!!!!

What is Detoxification

The process of detoxification is the removal of toxins from the body. Every human body contains more than 250 toxins no matter where you live. There are several different emunctories that the body removes toxins. Emunctory is an organ or body part that carries off waste from the body. The emunctories include:

  • Respiratory — through the lungs and mucous secretions
  • GI — through the liver and colon
  • Urinary — through the kidney and bladder
  • Skin — through swats and sebaceous glands (sweat glands)
  • Lymphatic — through lymph nodes and lymphatic channels
  • Uterus — this is an extra emunctory in women each month

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Why Detox

  • Boost energy levels
  • Support digestion + weight management
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Promote healthy skin
  • Strengthen the immune system
  • Improves mood

Symptoms Suggesting Detox

  • Fatigue (this is a big one!!)
  • Low mood + anxiety
  • Inflammatory skin conditions (eczema, acne, psoriasis)
  • Multiple allergies
  • Edema
  • Menstrual symptoms
  • Infertility
  • Difficulty losing weight
  • Body aches + pains

Understanding Detox

When it comes to detoxifying the liver there are a few things to consider. The liver detox process occurs in 2 phases. Phase 1 focuses on the transformation of the toxins to make them less harmful toxins via cytochrome P450, which uses vitamins + minerals. Phase 2 focuses on conjugation of the less harmful chemicals to put them into a water-soluble form that will make them easier to eliminate. Phase 2 requires more amino acid support to aid in the conjugation process. The master antioxidant glutathione works on both phase 1 and 2!

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Types of Detox


The liver is important as it functions to detoxify and conjugate drugs, aid in metabolism, produces clotting factors and albumin, produces biles, and stores vitamins and minerals. A liver cleanse is indicated when an individual has GI symptoms, jaundice, inability to lose weight, mood disorders, chronic fatigue, excessive sweating, easy bruising, etc, etc. When the liver is working properly you will have an increase in energy levels, clearer skin, regulated menstrual cycles, increased immunity, BETTER MOOD! The benefits are endless 😊


The kidneys are very important as it functions to excrete waste, balance electrolytes, and water levels, excretion of drugs and hormones, regulation of blood pressure, and glucose production. A kidney cleanse is indicated when an individual has a poor diet, poor digestive function, shallow breathing and is stressed. Why is this important?! When the kidney is unable to filter excess acids they will borrow alkalizing minerals such as magnesium, calcium, and potassium from the bones and muscles resulting in stiff muscles and joints, osteoporosis, low back pain and increased risk of kidney stones and infection.

7 Favorite Detox Tips

Toxin removal from the diet 

  • This means the elimination of processed foods + convenience foods, saturated fats, high sugar foods, alcohol, and smoking
  • These foods will increase inflammation in the body and put more stress on the liver

Fiber + Water 

  • Fiber binds excess toxins, steroid hormones, xenobiotics, and cytotoxic unconjugated bile acids — this helps with toxin removal once they get pulled out!
  • Fiber helps to fuel the beneficial microbes in the gut
  • Make sure you take adequate water to ensure you do not get constipated from all the fiber
  • Water also helps to flush out all the excess toxins that are going to get pulled out during the detoxification process


  • Helps to clear wastes + move lymph
  • Helps to increase circulation — this increases processing of blood through the liver and kidney
  • Prevents toxicity symptoms
  • Helps to move the bowels

Milk Thistle  

  • Milk thistle is the ultimate liver detoxification herb!
  • Helps with the regeneration of the liver cells and protects them from toxins
  • Helps to clean up toxicity and even reverse the effects of toxicity


  • The leaf is a potassium-sparing diuretic — this helps to increase elimination through the kidneys
  • The root is stimulating to the digestive system (mainly the liver)

Castor oil

  • When applied over the liver and abdomen topically it is a great natural additive to detoxification
  • Helps to stimulate the bowels to help eliminate
  • Helps to increase lymphatic production and circulation of lymphatic system — this helps removal of toxins, infections + heavy metals
  • Note: Make sure to buy organic!

Juicing + smoothie 

  • Juicing allows you to get more servings of vegetables and fruits, which are needed to cleanse the liver
  • Juicing vegetables makes them easier to digest and the nutrients are readily available for absorption
  • The best vegetables for a liver cleanse are cabbage, cauliflower, and brussel sprouts —  I know these sound gross but mix them with citrus, apples, beets, carrots, and greens anything you like to help get it down 😉


  • Constitutional hydrotherapy is such an amazing treatment for detoxification
  • The alternation between hot and cold helps to:
    • Reduce inflammation
    • Remove toxins via increased circulation
    • Increase energy levels
    • Improve digestive function
    • Improve sleep
    • Decrease stress levels


Detox Reaction

  • If a detox reaction occurs (headache, fatigue, irritable, nausea, worsening of symptoms, joint pain, body aches, the return of old symptoms) it means that the elimination pathways are blocked!!! Make sure all the emunctories are open😊



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