Today’s Poll

It’s cleansing time: A column by Dr. Brenda Gill

Nelson Daily Editor
By Nelson Daily Editor
May 13th, 2011

The following is the first column (of many) by Nelson naturopathic doctor Brenda Gill for The Nelson Daily.

Using nutrition, herbs, supplements, exercise therapy, homeopathy and physical medicine, Dr. Gill treats the underlying malfunctions and imbalances of the body and outward signs of disease.

She has been practicing in Nelson for several years and her columns have been printed in the Nelson Daily News and the Rossland Telegraph.

After three years of pre-medicine, and four years of naturopathic medical school, Dr. Gill graduated from NCNM (a naturopathic medical college in Portland). Dr. Gill is licensed by the ANPBC and is a member of the B.C. and Canadian Naturopathic Association in British Columbia.
You can reach Dr. Gill at

By Dr. Brenda Gill

Now that the weather’s trying to get warmer and there are lots of fresh fruit and vegetables around, it’s time to start thinking of a rejuvenating cleanse. 

It’s important that we try to eliminate the accumulation of toxins that have gathered over the year. External toxicity can be acquired by breathing, eating or having physical contact. 

We are exposed daily through chemicals; in the air and water, electromagnetic radiation, on our food, using pharmaceutical drugs and other medications, eating refined, packaged, processed foods, as well as using stimulants and sedatives. 

We also produce internal toxins called free radicals through normal everyday functions of our cells in biochemical and bodily functions. Microbes, such as intestinal bacteria produce wastes that must be eliminated and our thoughts and emotions also generate biochemical toxins.

If our body is working well, with good immune and eliminative functions we can handle everyday exposure to toxins. Cleansing helps to prevent build-up of toxicity and degeneration. It’s like spring-cleaning your body.

We detoxify through the respiratory, gastro-intestinal, urinary, skin, lymph, thought and spiritual systems. Detoxification/cleansing can occur on many levels. Drinking an extra litre of water, eating more fruit and vegetables and less meat and dairy products is a form of cleansing, since it helps to clear toxins from our body. 

Be careful about over-elimination or over-detoxification. Some people go to extremes with fasting and herbal laxatives and diuretics. An imbalance can be created, such as vitamin/mineral deficiencies and over-loading the liver, which makes the person feel sick and fatigued. 

It’s important to set up a cleansing program individually, with knowledge of a person’s history, diet, vitamin/mineral levels, health and lifestyle.

General guidelines are:

  • Hypo-allergenic diet (whole grains, veggies, fruit, fish)
  • Increased fibre (oat bran, veggies, fruit)
  • Increasing purified water intake
  • Using herbs such as garlic, red clover, cayenne, ginger, dandelion root, yellow dock, burdock, licorice and parsley
  • Include saunas and sweats
  • Reduce fats (fried foods, beef/pork, cow dairy and peanuts)
  • Regular exercise to induce sweating
  • Colon support/stimulation (fibre-psyllium, herbal products, aloe, betonite clay and acidophilus)
  • Regular bathing and brushing of the skin and lymph massage, resting, relaxation exercises, breathing exercises, yoga

The next level of a detox diet is one made up of fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains, especially brown rice and quinoa, seeds and almonds and fish along with homeopathic detoxification drops. 

A raw foods detoxification diet is also an option for some. Other specialized detox diets treat specific problems, like the Candida diet. Then, there are liquid cleanses or fasts using juices, vegetable broths and teas. Miso or chlorella is often added. 

I also have people detoxify by using “Medi-Clear,” which is like a meal replacement with detoxification nutrients added. This method supports the process so well that people feel energized, can work and exercise as usual and don’t feel deprived or hungry. 

So, whatever method works for you, try a detoxification cleanse to continue on the process of healing.

For those wishing to try a specific cleanse tailored to you, consider an appointment with Dr. Brenda Gill at 352-3150.

Categories: Health

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