Your body is naturally detoxing all the time! Your skin, lymphatic system, liver, kidneys and colon are the organs most heavily involved in the detox process to help to rid the body of waste and toxins. Sometimes these organs require assistance and support which is where herbal remedies come in. Detoxifying herbs work with the body systems and help to strengthen the organs with specific nutrients.
1) Burdock (Arctium lappa)
This bitter and alterative herb helps to restore normal balance and function of the body systems. This is exactly what you are looking for when you work with herbs to help your body detox. Recent studies have proven that burdock root contains active ingredients that can remove toxins from the bloodstream. Burdock has been used as a blood purifier in TCM for hundreds of years.
2) Milk Thistle (silybum marianum)
The seeds from milk thistle might be the most well known liver tonic. It contains an antioxidant called silymarin which studies show can lower liver oxidative stress associated with toxin metabolism. This herb is a hepatic that can tone, strengthen the liver and increase the flow of bile from the gallbladder. Excellent in fermented form.
3) Nettle (Urtica dioica)
Nettle is a tonic and extremely high in chlorophyll, phytonutrients, vitamin C and protein. This study shows the vast amount of biologically-active compounds in the leaves and aerial parts of the plant. Nettle is known as a major detoxifier for the body as a whole and helps with degenerative conditions of the musculoskeletal system and skin conditions. Commonly found in tinctures.
4) Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)
You can eat all parts of this yellow flowering herb but the root is the part that helps cleanse the liver. The polysaccharides and many other phytonutrients have been found in dandelion that could help to reduce stress on the liver and support its ability to produce bile as well as filter your blood. Drinking dandelion tea can help your body to rid your liver and kidneys of toxins. Research shows the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds found in all parts of the dandelion plant. Many people take this as a tincture.
5) Yellow dock (Rumex crispus)
Yellow dock is a herb used for detoxification. This plant is a powerful blood, liver and lymph cleaner. Research suggests that there is a high amount of antioxidants in yellow dock to reduce oxidative stress and damage to the liver. Yellow Dock could also help stimulate the action of the lymphatic system in the body to flush out harmful substances.
**This list of common herbal supplements to help detox is for informational purposes only. Talk to your Doctor, Naturopath or Health Care Provider to discuss specific medical conditions or symptoms or if you are taking prescriptions.
Photo credits: Brooke Lundmark