Toxins: What are they and how do they end up inside us?

A toxin is simply a poison or any substance that is dangerous to our bodies. Well-known toxins are heavy metals, pesticides, industrial chemicals, and pollutants, but toxins can also be found in things like home cleaning products, body products, and even makeup. Another type of toxin is mycotoxins, which are organic compounds released by certain types of mold.

Even if you think you live a clean lifestyle, you’re exposed to toxins through the air you breathe, the water you drink, and the food you ingest as well as the products you use in your everyday life, which are absorbed through your skin. Think of how many beauty and personal care products you use every day. Most of those contain about 125 different ingredients that have very little safety testing.

How toxins interfere with our immunity

Think of your body like a cup and toxins like drops of water. A few drops here and there may seem harmless, but soon enough your cup will be full and overflow. When it does, you could experience full-fledged autoimmune disease.

A few theories that explain why toxins cause autoimmune disease and disorders exist:

- Certain toxins physically damage your tissues, and your immune system attacks them as if they were invaders.

- Toxins inflict damage that causes the immune system to react with an inflammatory response, and it soon begins to attack everything, including your own tissues.

Whichever theory is true; it is clear that toxins play a role in interfering with the way your cells work and communicate with each other, causing a breakdown that leaves you looking and feeling unwell.

3 toxins linked to stubborn weight loss

We’re learning that weight loss is more than a balance of a healthy diet and exercise. A third factor is at play, and that is our exposure to chemicals. A group of chemicals called obesogens promote fat retention and change our metabolism. Three of the top obesogens are:

1. Atrazine: One of the most widely used herbicides in the United States and found in 94% of our drinking water tested by the USDA. Atrazine disrupts how our cells work and can lead to insulin resistance, an increase in body weight and abdominal fat, and fat accumulation on the liver.

2. Phthalates: A chemical used as a solvent and to fix and hold colors and scents. They are found in makeup, personal care products, nail polish, shampoo, and more. Phthalates interfere with normal hormone signaling in the body, are synthetic estrogens, and are directly linked to obesity and insulin resistance. Since phthalates are found in nearly every personal care product we put on our bodies, 98% of people tested had levels of them in their bodies.

3. PFOA (Perfluorooctanoic Acid): This chemical is used to make things heat, stain, and water resistant, and it doesn’t break down in the body or the environment. It’s found in carpet, cookware, food package, and more. PFOA’s disrupt your thyroid function, which regulates your metabolism.

Prevention & Solution

While all of this may seem scary and overwhelming, being informed is an important first step to taking action to removing toxins from your life and your body. You’ll always be exposed to toxins, but you can use these tips to lighten your toxic burden and get your immune system functioning properly again.

- Eat organic food, especially meats, and cook on non-toxic cookware

- Use an HEPA filter in your home and drink plenty of water

- Install water filters on your sinks and showers and don’t drink plastic-bottled water

- Replace your personal care products with cleaner options

- Take organic coconut oil for gut inflammation

Avoiding toxins, cleaning up your lifestyle, and detoxing your body the right way can help your body work as efficiently and healthy as possible. Knowledge is power, especially when it comes to our beauty biology and chemical awareness.

For additional toxins within your everyday household, head here!

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