Phase III Detoxification

Phase III Detoxification

Learn how to support Phase III detoxification!

đŸ©° Phase III Detoxification 

For actual detoxification to occur, toxins must complete phase III - where there is actual elimination of the toxic by-products!

This follows Phase I & II liver detoxification. In phase III, the conjugate by-products from phase II detoxification are delivered to the bile and the bloodstream.

Now the body must pass the toxins via the gall-bladder into the bowels and excrete them via feces, or filter them out via the kidneys and urine (or sweat them out!). 

Some very general support for phase III detoxification pathways include: 

🌚 Kidneys 

✎ Bile / Gallbladder 

  • Dandelion root
  • Barberry
  • Wormwood
  • Including the sour / bitter flavour in your meal (think adding in some bitter greens, but no need to go overboard) 
  • Gall bladder flushes (research if this is appropriate for you)
  • Lemon in hot water

đŸ€Ž Bowels 

Additionally, supporting circulation and the lymph is also key. Movement, dry brushing, lymphatic massage and saunas are great for this.

đŸ•”đŸ»â€â™€ïž Troubleshooting: What can go wrong with detoxification?

Many many things can wrong in the detoxification process! When detoxification is hindered it can impact homeostasis in essentially any of our bodily systems. Energy levels, sleep quality, skin, hormones, stress levels, mental clarity, fertility and digestion can all be greatly impacted.

☠ Nutrient deficiency 

Nutrient deficiency and poor protein breakdown can result in hindrances in any of the phases of detoxification.

This can result from a lack of eating high-quality, nutrient dense, bio-diverse foods, impacted hydrochloric acid, deficient digestive enzymes, diminished digestive and assimilation capacity or microbiome disturbances (deficiencies or dysbiosis). 

Addressing digestion may be a first step in improving detoxification.

Secondly, certain diets (more so plant-based/vegan) can emphasize phase I nutrients and 'awaken' a lot of waste, while being very deficient in phase II nutrients, and can lead to congested or poor functioning phase III pathways.

In this case, when toxins get through phase I but can't pass into phase II, they actually become more toxic and volatile - as they were previously fat-bound and while they may have been causing problems already, they were more stable. 

The detoxification attempt can then further stress the system.

đŸ„— Cold foods and inadequate macronutrients

The  trends to eat a lot of foods are very 'cold' in nature - like lots of salads during any season (multiple times a day), excess smoothies, juices, raw foods, or diets primarily centred around non-starchy vegetables can tend to awaken a lot of 'toxins', while simultaneously not provide adequate fuel for full phase II and phase III detoxification to take place.  

Additionally, diets that promote the elimination of any of the macronutrients (carbs, protein and fat), can really snuff out the digestive fire and kidneys, and impact the smooth release of bile.

🐣 Further detoxification musings

Learning the phases of liver detoxification provided a huge AHA moment for me!

The best part has been that my food world has EXPANDED, not contracted.

Which really, in Traditional Chinese Medicine is what the liver is all about ~ growth,  expansion and visioning.

Interestingly, in TCM terms the yin liver, the 'wife', is both supported and checked by its yang counter-part, the 'husband', the gall-bladder, which is associated with the energies of clear judgement and discernment.

I think it's fascinating that the liver is inviting us to explore a diverse world of foods, and open ourselves up to a variety of flavours rather than limit and constrict, which  much of the messaging around 'cleansing and detoxification' often has suggested.

At the same time, the gall-bladder energy also wants us to keep things in check with its judging and discerning qualities (which in some cases more of this energy is very much the key to regaining harmony!). 

💚 Going Forward

There are so many factors to consider when thinking about detoxification - this is a huge topic and this is a teensy blog post!

But if there is anything to take away - its that a supportive foundation should be laid before undertaking specific 'hardcore' cleanses - and to support all of your detoxification pathways, so that your body can do complete the job it's already trying to do for you.

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.