Exercise is Crucial

Increase Rate of Elimination to Improve Detox



When animals experience a near miss, they shake themselves, like a pet coming out of a bath. In contrast, when humans handle near misses, our first response is, “I’m okay,” and walk away calmly, as if nothing happened. Only when it is a very big near miss might we cry and find ourselves shaking uncontrollably, but our first instinct is to suppress. By doing so, we miss a great opportunity to discharge stress hormones and risk locking that trauma into our structure.

Stress is the difference between the demands put on a system and the capacity of that system to meet the demands. Detox lets the body’s ability to eliminate environmental stress become greater than the toxins to which it is exposed.

When most people think of detoxing, they think of diet changes and supplements. These are both important ways to restore the body’s optimal functioning, but there is another step to take first. It is crucial to increase the body’s rate of elimination, and exercise is the best at this job.

Here are five channels of detoxification that open with exercise:

1) Lungs. The most obvious way exercise increases elimination is by increasing the respiration rate. Moving more carbon dioxide out and more oxygen in helps shift cellular metabolism and stops the hyperventilation that comes with anxiety.

2) Sweat. Gentle exercise has an important place in aiding detoxification, but mov ing enough to sweat helps move hormones and even heavy metals out of the fat layer stored just beneath the skin. Intervals of intense exercise actually create more mitochondria in the muscle cells. Mitochondria, the power house of the cell for energy production, are also the power house for detoxification. More mitochondria means more capacity to repair damage to the cells that comes from exposure to environmental toxins.

3) Urine. Many toxins present in the body are eliminated through the kidneys. As cells work to meet the energy demands of exercise, they produce lots of byproducts, and the body washes them out in the urine. This not only increases the opportunity to eliminate more waste from the body, the increased water intake that comes with thirst from exercise dilutes toxins, making them less irritating to the bladder.

4) Stool. Exercise is great for regular bowel elimination. The constipation associated with inactivity results from low tone to the abdomen and the pelvic floor, and adhesions that can form. Exercise not only trains the smooth muscle of the intestines to contract and release, aiding elimination, the motion helps keeps the abdomen mobile.

5) Lymphatics. Not one for the treadmill? Try shaking and bouncing around the house to stimulate the lymph system that lies over the muscles, gently moving waste products towards the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract. These brief moments of complex movements help scramble and discharge the waste products and excess hormones that accumulate, before they lock into muscles.

Keri Layton, ND, has been helping people improve their body’s resilience to daily stress since 2006. To learn more about how she can assist with detoxification at her Back Bay practice, visit KeriLayton.com.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

When Our Spirit Aches

The brain can then be taught to alter the patterns and function more optimally, often relieving the struggles of those with anxiety and depressive tendencies and disorders.

The Positive Effects of Hypnotherapy on Pain

Hypnosis is a powerful tool for managing pain, and—depending upon the condition and the individual’s personality—it can eliminate or diminish the pain greatly by rerouting a neural pathway in the brain.

Reiki to the Rescue

Reiki is a complementary health approach that works directly with the energy of the body, enhancing the body’s own ability to heal itself on all levels—physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.

Natural Remedies For Spring Allergies

Instead of suppressing the body’s natural response with anti-histamine/ decongestants, working with the body to help it deal with the allergens appropriately, can lead to relief very quickly and without the unwanted side effects.

Nine Simple Taoist Ways to Boost the Immune System

With flu season not quite gone and allergy season fast approaching, our immune system needs to be in top shape to keep us well.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »This Month

Workshop Introduces Heart-Centered Therapy

Linda Marks, MSM, will be hosting an introductory workshop from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., July 23, on Emotional- Kinesthetic Psychotherapy.

The Ocean’s Healthy Harvest

Small-Boat Fishing is Good for the Community
Seafood is an often overlooked source of sustainable food that is as seasonal and natural as produce.

Pollinate New England Program Set to Launch

Building a network of model pollinator gardens throughout New England filled with diverse, systemic, pesticide-free native plants.

Ozone Therapy Offers Hope to Lyme Patients

An alternative health clinic, LifeWorks Wellness Center, is now routinely offering ozone therapy to Lyme disease patients as part of its treatment program.

Local Musician Releases Second Album and New England Tour Dates

Christina Holmes recently released her second album, Stand Up, a soundtrack of social injustice and change.

Learn Vinyasa Flow Yoga at Beginners Workshop

Revolution Community Yoga, in Acton, will be offering a workshop, Yoga for Beginners, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., July 19.