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Foods and herbs can be used to detox the various organs of the body such as the liver, gallbladder, large intestine and kidneys. What exactly are you detoxing from the body? Our bodies can become a toxic dumping ground for environmental chemicals, acidic build up of foods such as meats and the gumming up our intestines. Even our emotions cause stress and toxicity to the body. Traditional Chinese herbs are a safe and effective way to detox the body without resorting to extreme fastings or purgings.

The liver is considered a gland, and performs a large number of vital tasks including storing vitamins, producing cholesterol, and synthesizing fatty acids from sugars and amino acids. As a detoxifying organ, the liver dilutes toxic substances such as metabolic waste, pesticides, and alcohol, with less toxic substances before sending them to be excreted from the kidneys. Foods that help break down fats and increase liver function are sour or bitter foods such as lemon, broccoli rabe, dandelion greens, immature tangerine peel or fennel. Chinese herbs that help move the liver qi and therefore help its function are dang gui (angelica sinesis), chai hu (bupleurum) & xiang fu (cyperus). Other herbs that detoxify or are in the clear heat category, for example, are zhi zi (gardenia fruit) and ju ming zi (semen casiae).

Next month I will discuss other foods and Chinese herbs for the large intestine and kidneys.

Soothing and Refreshing Taste with a blend of 18 herbs

Sharon McDermott, L.Ac.
Quote of the Day: “Flowers may bloom again, but a person never has the chance to be young again. So don’t waste your time.”
Chinese proverb

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Sharon McDermott

Sharon McDermott, L.Ac., owner of Healthy Healing, specializes in infertility, stress and pain relief. Ms. McDermott creates individualized acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas to address your needs. Healthy Healing is conveniently located in Westbury, Long Island in the heart of Nassau County.

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