Your liver was designed to keep your body as free of toxins as it can. You can either help or hinder this process of detoxification by your diet + lifestyle. While many detoxification 'plans' can be harsh, our goal is to simply use the nutrients + foods that help gently + effectively support your liver's detox pathways. Your liver actually has six individual different pathways already set up to keep moving + clearing toxins out. We've outlined below how to best support each pathway.
Methylation pathway: activated by lipotropic agents, those responsible for the breakdown of fat in the liver; choline, methionine, betaine, folate + b12. You've likely hear me discuss methylation before if you've been following us. So many of us carry a genetic mutation that affects our body's ability to methylate meaning we absolutely need to be sure that we are getting methylation support on a regular basis to keep this pathway functioning most optimally. This pathway detoxes estrogens, histamines, metals like mercury, aluminum, tin, + more! This pathway becomes sluggish and doesn't detox as it's meant to when your folate + b12 levels are low, this is why I am constantly talking about ensuring that we take a high quality multivitamin (or prenatal) containing the methylated forms of both folate + b12. And that your little's multi has them too! Best food sources supporting this pathway are eggs, meat, fish + beans, leafy greens and all other animal food (as the only source of any b12).
Sulfation pathway: sulfur + cysteine support this pathway best which is responsible for detoxifying hormones, neurostransmitters, basic drugs like acetaminophen (Tylenol) and chemicals like dyes + phenols. Keep those out as best you can and increase foods rich in sulfur + cysteine like egg yolks, alliums (onions, leeks, garlic) + cruciferous veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage, bok choy).
Glucuronidation pathway: also detoxes common drugs, biochemicals + food additives and is induced by fish oil (🙌 another one you all know we're crazy about!), limonene (citrus peel) and nutrients like calcium + SAMe.
Glutathione pathway: body's most abundant + powerful antioxidant. High exposure to toxins depletes glutathione levels and somewhat surprisingly so does extensive fasting. Cruciferous + limonene double up here, while you can also build up your glutathione levels with undenatured whey (vanilla or chocolate), sulfur + cysteine rich foods (👆), vitamin C and methionine. Asparagus, avocado and walnuts support glutathione levels too!
Amino acid pathway: the amino acid glycine does most of the work in this pathway. Glycine is rich in proteins + bone broth! No wonder we love both so much. A low protein diet will inhibit this pathway.
Acetylation pathway: this pathway is dependent upon vitamin c, b2 and b5 all of which are in the right doses and forms in our recommended multi's. This pathway detoxes caffeine, so the momma who loves coffee needs to keep it flowing or that caffeine could have some negative side effects.
If you're a mom who wants the most simple way to support all six pathways of your body's detoxification system then we recommend using this Detoxification Support Kit (not while pregnant or breastfeeding). You keep your diet clean and take two packets daily for one month. Each packet contains a beautiful blend of nutrients, amino acids, antioxidants + herbs for optimal liver detoxification. They cover nearly everything we mentioned above ;)
Xo Dani and Whitney