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Detoxification: A New Approach

© 2014 Dr. Sharon Norling

Do you have fatigue, muscle aches, headaches, concentration and memory problems, fibromyalgia, chemical sensitivities, negative reactions to certain foods, sensitivity to medications or a family history of a neurological disorder? If so, your body may be toxic and crying out for help. To approach illness and disease, one must begin with the health of the cell membrane.

The two most important things we need to know to create health and cure disease are:

1. The role of food and nutrients
2. The role of toxins and the importance of detoxification

The poor nutritional value of our food is further complicated by the extraordinary amounts of toxic chemicals in our food and bodies. Toxins are substances that have harmful effects on the body. As our external environment has radically changed, so has the internal environment of our body.

Extensive research shows that it is not a question of if we are carrying a burden of these toxins, but rather how much and to what extent they affect our health. Exposure to toxins as chemicals, heavy metals (lead, cadmium, mercury) and bugs as parasites, viruses, bacteria and fungi have become part of our world that are hard to avoid and challenging to remove from our tissues. These toxins can affect every part of our body, including our brain.

Consider this…

  • According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, more than 4 billion pounds of chemicals were released into the ground in 2000, threatening our natural groundwater sources.
  • Over 260 million pounds of chemicals were discharged into surface waters (i.e., lakes, rivers and oceans).
  • Nearly 2 billion pounds of air emissions were pumped into the atmosphere.
  • We ingest more than 30 to 50 tons of food in a lifetime. Like air and water, most food is laden with numerous chemicals that need to be detoxified properly — otherwise they are deposited in various tissues.
  • Several thousand food additives are intentionally added to our food supply and thousands more slip into our food supply unintentionally during harvesting, processing or packaging. In fact, the average American consumes about 124 pounds of food additives a year!
  • More than 400 pesticides and herbicides are currently licensed for use on food and crops, and every year more than 2.5 billion pounds are dumped on crop lands, forests, lawns and fields.

Thankfully, though, the human body has an extraordinary capacity for resiliency, regeneration, repair, recovery and renewal. Detoxification is about resting, cleaning and nourishing the body from the inside out. The effectiveness of detoxification is dependent on the cell’s membrane and the structure of specific lipids (fats).

Patients, like many others suffering from toxicity, often experience tremendous discomfort, confusion and pain in their illness. Healing the body and brain requires precise nourishment and targeted detoxification to release the burden of toxicity. Taking good care of oneself is an important part of the healing process, especially in states of toxicity.

While there are numerous ways to detoxify and new detoxification programs added daily, the basic principles remain the same and must always involve detoxification on a cellular level to be effective, restore health and have long-lasting results. To be effective, detoxification must include the cell membrane.

When the cell membrane is healthy, fluid and active in the detoxification process, the restoration back to health and decrease in symptoms is dramatic. Of the tens of thousands of molecules that make up the life of a cell, phosphatidylcholine (PC) stands apart; it is the most important part of the cell membrane. The membrane is the structural skin that surrounds the cell. It is far more than an outside layer ― it is literally the essence of life. You may damage other parts of the cell, even the nucleus and the DNA, and the cell will still carry on. But damage the membrane and the cell is gone.

This membrane is the lining of every nerve cell that carries our signals. It manages the production of energy. It manages all of our senses. The sheer volume of the membrane in the body is mind-bending. The liver alone has about 300,000 square feet of membrane. That’s more than 4 football fields — 4.63 to be exact.

Basically, detoxification means cleaning the blood. Detoxification occurs on a cellular level. It does this mainly by removing impurities from the blood in the liver, where toxins are processed for elimination. The body also eliminates toxins through the kidneys, intestines, lungs, lymph and skin. However, when this system is compromised and impurities aren’t properly filtered through the cell wall, then every cell in the body is adversely affected and the organs cannot detoxify.

Dr. Patricia Kane, PhD, has developed an international reputation for her expertise in detoxification, essential fatty acids and their effect on membrane function. Translating tens of thousands of papers and through her clinical experience with thousands of patients, Dr. Kane has created an innovative and clinically effective series of interventions.

Her specialty is in the area of brain research concerning pervasive developmental delay, chronic fatigue syndrome, Lyme disease, heavy metal toxicity, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and motor neuron disease, and neurotoxicity. She focuses on challenging health conditions ― hypoglycemia, fatigue, weight difficulties, balanced lipid therapy, addictions, fibromyalgia, cardiovascular disease, skin conditions such as eczema and gastrointestinal difficulties, as well as neurological disorders.

Although she has presented her work to Harvard, Columbia, Johns Hopkins, the NIH, Stanford, MIT and the Royal Society of Medicine, she excels in instructing selected practitioners in the practical aspects of fatty acid and cellular function. Her life’s work has been computerized, allowing an individual’s biomarkers to be fed into a huge database of over 30,000 research papers and in the blink of an eye, the exact nutrients they may need to their improve health can be identified.

The work of K. J. Gundermann, PhD, MD, is also noteworthy in his book, The Essential Phospholipids as a Membrane Therapeutic. It covers extensively the use of PC in toxicity, hematology, alcohol and diabetic fatty liver, lung, psoriasis, elevated lipids and atherosclerosis.

The PK protocol, based on more than 20 years of research, is an intravenous administration of PC, folinic acid (the bioavailable form of folic acid) and glutathione. Glutathione strongly aids liver detoxification. Vitamin C and selenium support glutathione production. Glutathione can be very effective given intravenously but is very poorly absorbed orally. Each protocol can be customized to the individual based on their medical history, symptoms and data from the lab analysis.

Genes + Environment = Disease

Some of us are better detoxifiers than others. Individuals may have genetic detoxification impairments which can be tested for and minimized. We know that many things affect how our genes work ― our diet, vitamins and minerals, toxins, allergens, infections, stress, lack of sleep, exercise and more.

We also know genes are not our destiny. They are like light switches. You can boost your ability by turning on the right genes and turning off the wrong ones. About 20 percent of the population carries the apo E4 gene which may affect mercury detoxification. Having an inefficient GST gene can result in lower levels of glutathione, the body’s main detoxifier and antioxidant. A DNA test, MTHFR, can determine the body’s ability to methylate, an important part of detoxification.

Detoxification Steps

  • Lighten up your toxin load. Eliminate alcohol, coffee, cigarettes, refined sugars and saturated fats, all of which act as toxins in the body and are obstacles to your healing process. Minimize use of chemical-based household cleaners and personal health care products (cleansers, shampoos, deodorants and toothpastes) and substitute natural alternatives.
  • Eat plenty of fiber, including brown rice and organically grown fresh fruits and vegetables. Beets, radishes, artichokes, cabbage, broccoli, spirulina, chlorella and seaweed are excellent detoxifying foods.
  • Take vitamins, minerals and amino acids as needed.
  • Drink at least eight glasses of water daily.
  • Breathe deeply to allow oxygen to circulate more completely through your system.
  • Exercise.
  • Eat less.
  • Transform stress by emphasizing positive emotions.
  • Use a sauna so your body can eliminate wastes through perspiration.
  • Use specific intravenous protocol individualized for you for faster and more effective detoxification.

Remember, life is on the membrane. Nourishing our cells heals the body and heals the brain.

Written By: Dr. Sharon Norling, MBA