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Detoxification and Preconception Care

Detoxification and Preconception Care

One of the quickest and most effective ways of getting both the male and female ready for conception is to cleanse the mind and body through detoxification.

Increasing levels of toxins in the environment and therefore what we are exposed to can lead to complications such as hormone imbalance, poor liver function, decreased circulation, inflammation, tiredness, mental fogginess, poor sleep, irregular bowel function, decreased nutrient absorption and irritability and depression.

By following a detoxification program prior to falling pregnant you allow your body, mind and spirit to rebalance and give you the very best chance for a healthy conception, pregnancy and ultimately a healthy baby.

Our body primarily stores toxins in fat cells, the brain, bone, liver and in organs. The liver is a primary store of toxins and an organ where the body’s own natural detoxification takes place, particularly for alcohol, drugs, hormones and oestrogen.

Detoxification encourages the release and excretion of toxins, and this will give rise to detoxification symptoms and much higher circulating levels of toxins. Therefore, it is important to detoxify prior to conception, not when conception is being attempted, or during pregnancy or breastfeeding.

Detoxing helps with:

Toxins to be removed from the cells
hormones to be rebalanced
The liver to metabolise any excess hormones floating around the body such as xenoestrogens (found in chemicals, plastics and pesticides which create an imbalance with natural estrogen levels)

During a proper detox with your naturopath some people have noticed the following benefits:

Inflammation is decreased (some people have reported less body or joint aches and pains)* The immune system is boosted
Nervous system is rested – getting your body healthy, and ready for pregnancy

*Disclaimer: Please know that the results are a typical and may vary from person to person.

Our children are facing increasing rates of allergies, eczema, autism, ADHD, obesity, Type 2 diabetes, autoimmune disease and even cancer.

Evidence from environmental health studies has led to growing knowledge that environmental toxins are playing a role in the incidence and prevalence of these and other health conditions.

From conception our babies are getting a constant stream of chemicals, through the maternal-fetal transfer, that we have accumulated throughout our lives and which we are exposed to in pregnancy.

During pregnancy we mobilise our fat stores which is where our body stores chemicals and heavy metals. Some of these can cross the placenta and get to the baby, while other chemicals are endocrine disruptors which can affect the way our hormones function in our bodies.

What can you do to encourage your body’s natural detoxification?
There are 4 main areas to consider when detoxifying.

1. Food and digestion
2. Environment
3. Personal care products
4. Social recreational drugs (including alcohol and caffeine)

Ensuring that you eat well and are digesting your food adequately are the corner stone of detoxification. This ensures adequate uptake of all necessary nutrients for your body and efficient elimination.

My top tips include:

· Eat organic as much as possible. If you can’t afford to buy all your food organic then focus on the dirty dozen vegetables and ensure that you wash your vegetables and fruit well before eating them. Choose grass fed meat and eggs.
· Eat a plant-based diet, rich in leafy green vegetables (kale, collards, broccoli), good quality protein, healthy oils (olive oil, coconut oil), organic berries (fresh or frozen), nuts, seeds, and a small amount of complex starches from whole grains.
· Drink at least 2 litres of clean, filtered water, or herbal tea every day.
· Eat only low mercury fish.
· Avoid alcohol, coffee, black and green tea, caffeine containing drinks, smoking, recreational drugs.
· Eliminate sugar, refined food, trans-fatty acids and “junk food” from your diet.
· Drinking organic roast dandelion root tea is an excellent detoxifying habit, through its herbal action on the liver.
· Daily dry skin brushing, exercise and Epsom salt baths are all good at encouraging your body’s natural detoxification.

From an environmental and personal care perspective it is important to try and reduce your exposure as best you can.

So….
· Choose organic, natural cosmetics, essential oils and body products.
· Choose environmentally friendly products for laundry, cleaning and dishes.
· Avoid air fresheners, scented candles, fragrance oils and perfumes. Instead use essential oils.
· Avoid pesticides, fertilisers, exposure to heavy metals and plastic food &drink containers.
· Keep mobile phones and computers away from your body. Stand clear of microwaves & photocopiers when in use. Avoid unnecessary nuclear imaging and x-rays.

In addition to all of these diet and lifestyle changes it is also important to:
· Achieve a healthy weight.
· Practice stress reduction such as meditation, yoga, tai chi and any exercise that you enjoy doing.
· Ensure adequate sleep so that your body has the chance to rejuvenate and repair.

When and How to Detoxify

A programme of detoxification should ideally be started 3-6 months before trying to conceive – and Ideally much longer before. If you are unsure on any aspects of carrying out a detoxification programme seek advice from a qualified health practitioner specialising in this area. Sometimes it is necessary to perform additional testing for heavy metals and minerals to support the body in detoxification. An ideal programme will gently help the removal of stored toxins over a period of time.

While the issue of environmental toxicity and its impact is not only about our health but also the health of future generations can feel overwhelming, we can all decrease the chemical burden on our body by making smarter choices for us and future generations health.

Nikki Haak, has had many years experience with both Natural Fertility and IVF support methods. After further studies and working in one of the leading Natural Fertility clinics in Melbourne; Natural Fertility, Preconception Care, IVF support, Pregnancy Care and Mother and Baby Health are Nikki's special areas of interest. This not only includes female reproductive health but also male reproductive health. To find out more book a free 10 minute phone chat with Nikki or book your appointment today by calling on 1300 21 44 25.

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