It’s spring detox time!

Author: Dr. Michelle Durkin on 11 May 2017

Do you…

  • Feel Bloated?
  • Feel Tired?
  • Have Headaches?
  • Have Aches & Pains?
  • Wake up with a Foggy Head after having enough sleep?
  • Have Bad Breath?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, doing a detox (sometimes called a cleanse) is a great way kick start getting your health back on track.

To get a sense of where your individual symptoms rate on the toxicity scale, you can click here to download a more detailed Detoxification Questionnaire. If you score over 15, a detox is beneficial. If you score over 50, let's just say a detox is long overdue.

Every spring our office offers a 2 week group detox program for any patients, friends, family, and staff who are interested. It consists of dietary recommendations (what to eat, what not to eat), a detox medical food (powder that you make into shakes), and a daily email with different recipes and tips to keep you on track.

This year I'm really looking forward to it because our Naturopathic Intern, Tasha Mumby, will be facilitating the program. I'm going to be able to sit back and just be a participant 🙂 

We would love for you to join us!

When: Tuesday May 23rd - Tuesday June 6th (after the May long weekend)

Make sure you call the office (613-966-9660) or email ( to sign up. The only cost is the purchase of the detox medical food, everything else is free!

Not sure yet? Here are some other FAQs about detoxing:

Q: What is all this hype with detoxing?

A: You are right! There are a lot of cleanses on the market…colon cleanses, juice fasts, water fasts and the latest and greatest supplement cleanse.

While most cleanses are great, many of them miss the essential fact that we need to cleanse our bodies off sugars and processed flours that are creating our food addictions, brain fogs and metabolic disturbances. Most of us are addicted to foods, and the more we eat, the more we are sending our bodies into a cyclic pattern of eat/crave which is hard to break.

Sugar are carbohydrates and are at the root of most of the chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and finally neurodegenerative diseases. More simply stated these foods are making us overweight, tired and depressed.

This is why we focus on eating whole, fresh food as the most important aspect of detox.

Q: I don’t have any of these symptoms. Do I need to detox?

A: Environmental medicine is the study of how environmental factors and pollutants affect our health. This can be anything from the pesticides on food, to the BPA that is still found on cashier receipts, to the mercury and PCBs in fish. Toxicity is partially to blame for every chronic health condition and proper detoxification should be part of every single person’s health regime.

Q: Is this detox safe? I heard I will feel terrible when I detox?

A: Absolutely safe! During the detox you will simply be eating real food - proteins, vegetables, fruits and nuts and seeds. In fact, it is safer for you to detox than eat the standard North American diet full of processed foods and sugars.

Throughout history, detox has gotten a bad rap. You hear the horror stories of people that never get off of the toilet, or spend thousands of dollars to see no benefit, or drink only lemonade for 14 days. These are examples of detoxes gone wrong! Detoxes, for the most part, are easy and inexpensive to do. I am not saying that fasts aren’t beneficial, or that you will not have any side effects but most people need to start with a mild and gentle cleanse as it is not good to move toxins quickly.

When people say they felt terrible from a detox it is because their toxins were being mobilized faster from the fatty tissues than the body could clear them. Many times this causes the toxins to recirculate in your system and you are no farther ahead than before you started. Detoxification is meant be supported properly with specific nutrients to actually create a beneficial effect in your body (that is why we give you a detox medical food).

Q:  I have done a detox in the past and don’t feel any difference

A: Many people will say that they feel so much better after a detox, and then there will be some that don’t notice a huge difference. I always applaud the ones that don’t feel a huge difference as it means that they are doing enough on a continual basis to cleanse their system and therefore not creating a stock pile of toxins in their fat.  When you start to delve into the world of environmental medicine you soon realize that no matter how “clean” you live you are inevitably going to be exposed to toxicity. You realize the magnitude of toxicity and also how exposed we are when there are studies done that find over 200 toxic chemicals in the umbilical cords of newborn babies. No matter how clean we live, the reality is that every single one of us if analyzed properly will test positive for toxic chemicals like PCB, DDT, DDE, phlatates, parabens and volatile organic compounds. It can become overwhelming when you are conscious about the toxic load on your system, and you are still bombarded with toxins.  This is why we need to develop a positive focus for toxicity. Instead of focusing on many of the things that you don’t have control over, it is important to focus on the ways that you can help to keep your body functioning properly. Detoxification is one of those positive ways that is inside your circle of influence.

Q: Where in the body do the toxins have the most negative effect?

A: Toxins have been shown to primarily target three systems.  Your neurological system, your endocrine system and your immune system.  In fact the three most common symptoms of toxicity are low energy, depression and anxiety. The neurological system is the most common system to be affected by toxins, since the brain is primarily a fatty organ and toxins get stored in fatty tissues.  Toxicity has now been documented to have a role in all autoimmune conditions, diabetes, obesity, cancer and infertility to name a few. Considering that all of these conditions are on the rise, one has to question if there could be a contributing common denominator since most of the man-made toxins have appeared in the last 100 years.

Q: Will this detox fix all of my ailments?

A: Detox is also not the be all and end all.  Doing a 2 week detox once a year and then not doing anything the rest of the time is not going to move your health forward.  We are exposed to toxins on a continual basis, so it is important to make sure that you are doing things every day to help reduce your load.  Many people will ask me after I put them on a program if I eat like this. I can honestly and proudly say that I do practice what I preach. The next question I usually get is, “do you ever eat anything that is bad for you”? The answer is, of course!  However, the nice part about living this lifestyle and supporting your daily detox processes is that overtime you don’t crave “bad” foods which makes your choice to eat well much easier.  The more you live this lifestyle, you will also find that when you do stray off the plan that you don’t feel well which again makes it much easier to stay on track. You end up becoming addicted to feeling great, instead of addicted to the sugars, refined carbohydrates and processed foods.

Now is your chance to start feeling great again!

Are you in?

Make sure you call the office (613-966-9660) or email ( to sign up.

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Quinte Naturopathic Centre

173 Church Street

Belleville, ON K8N 3C1


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