Detox diets are becoming ever more popular in these days of intense concern over harmful chemicals that may be assaulting our bodies. The trouble is that proponents lump every single harmful (and harmless sometimes) substance into a single poorly defined category of “Toxins”. “Toxins” like “Chemicals” are the generic bogyman of the new age, the fact that they are vague and potentially mis-leading is all to the good for what most who use the words in this way have in mind. Everything is made up of chemicals, to say that something is chemical free is to say that it is content free. In the same vain almost anything could be a toxin in the right dose.

Treating everything as being equally harmful and using a one-size-fits-all approach to cleansing only serves to induce undue paranoia and pave the way for the proponent’s own brand of cure. These plans may take the form of fasting or, more usually, to sell you the perfect diet supplement that will help rid your body of those pesky chemicals and toxins. Our body has developed very sophisticated systems over our long history that can handle a staggering variety of contaminants. This system is quite generalised and can usually take care of completely novel compounds with ease. This fact is exploited every time you take a newly developed medicine.

Bottom line is that if your body is functioning normally and nobody is intentionally poisoning you (in my case a possible hazard) then you probably have no reason to fear the dreaded Toxins. If you are concerned about your health consult a doctor. A Real one. With a Degree and everything.

Resources:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18595886/

http://skeptico.blogs.com/skeptico/2005/06/detox_diets_don.html

http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/detox.html

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