It seems like our "New Normal" includes a lot of extra cleaning and sanitizing products. I am a fan of cleanliness, but is there a chance that all of these extra cleaning agents might be overworking our bodies detoxification systems? I would say there is a pretty good chance of that. Let's dive in and take a closer look.
Our livers are very important organs. They are not often talked about or glamorized, but they truly have an important job and most people don't realize how many things can be impacted by the health of the liver. For example, allergies and hormone balance just to name a few!
You might be wondering how your liver could possibly influence allergies?! Whenever you experience allergy symptoms like runny nose, watery eyes, itching, and even hives, that is being caused by a chemical called histamine. It's made when your body creates an immune response to something like pollen, mold, or even a food you are sensitive to. Your liver is what helps to eliminate this histamine and clear it from the body. If your liver is not doing the job it is supposed to do, you can have issues where you don't break down this histamine the way you should. When this happens, you notice that your symptoms hang around longer. Not cool! It's also the same with hormones. Your liver is one of the ways your body naturally manages hormones. If your liver is sluggish, you can have trouble clearing excess hormones.
Since your liver is what cleans the body (think of it as your body's filter), it would make sense that if this organ is over-worked, you might experience other issues that depend on the liver to function at top end. That explains the allergies and hormone balance issues.
If we start to expose ourselves to more toxic cleaning agents (like bleach) and hand sanitizers with questionably safe ingredients, we place more of a burden on our liver to filter these out. Over time, if the liver has trouble keeping up, you might notice that allergies are getting worse, or you have more headaches than usual. I have seen an increase in food triggers lately that I believe are related to this. Before the excess exposure to cleaning products, the body was able to cope, but now with the increased load, symptoms are showing up. I've seen this particularly with individuals exposed to high levels of cleaning products like students, teachers, etc.
So, what can we do about this?! First of all, I think washing your hands with a natural soap should be sufficient in most situations. Using hand sanitizer every time you turn around may actually be causing more harm than good, in my opinion. If you feel like hand sanitizer is a good option, look for brands that use minimal ingredients like alcohol, maybe some aloe vera gel and essential oils if they have a fragrance. You can easily make your own using at least 60% alcohol and simply putting in a spray bottle. If you want some moisturizing properties, use a bit of aloe (juice for a spray or gel for a pump) and make it smell wonderful with essential oils. Lavender will help soothe and oils like lemon and/or thieves have anti-microbial properties.
I also think we should be cleaning with natural products that do not contain toxic ingredients. I know that we want our homes to be clean and germ-free, but we also want to limit the exposure to things like bleach and ammonia. There are a number of seventh generation brand cleaners that have been shown to kill corona viruses. In addition, you can make a non-toxic solution with alcohol and/or 3% hydrogen peroxide to clean the whole house. You can mop floors with Vinegar and water. Norwex cleaning products are also a great way to clean without any chemicals (visit www.norwex.biz) and I absolutely love Thieves Cleaning concentrate by Young Living to clean everything from mirrors to floors to bathrooms.
Using non-toxic beauty care products can also help a lot by reducing the amount of toxic chemicals the liver has to clear out. Some brands I love for soap/shower gel and lotion are the Everyone brand. I also really like Beauty Counter and Mineral Fusion for skin care and cosmetic products.
We can also support our liver's ability to detoxify by feeding it foods that help with this process. Great choices here include greens like spinach, kale and cruciferous foods like brocolli and cauliflower. These foods help support the liver's ability to filter out the toxins we come in contact with.
Of course, avoiding toxins to the best of our ability is also a good idea. In addition to cleaning and beauty care products, we should be aiming to eliminate toxins from the foods we eat. Processed food ingredients like preservatives, food coloring and additives should be avoided. Alcohol is another substance that should be used in moderation, if at all. The use of any kind of medication (whether prescription or over the counter) requires your liver to process. So, make sure you talk to your doctor about natural ways to improve your health with as few medications as possible.
Part of my intake process with clients is to evaluate their toxicity status, along with there unique deficiencies with respect to critical nutrients. I have seen health improve tremendously when root causes of disease like these are evaluated and addressed. For more on this, please feel free to schedule a free consult to discuss your unique situation. You can do that here. We can do this in person or virtually.
To your liver!