The Big 3 Environmental Toxins that Contribute to Inflammation (Anti-inflammatory Series Part 3)

functional wellness holistic nutrition Feb 16, 2024
Toxins that Cause Inflammation

Inflammation in our body can come from sources besides our food.

Often times we get so focused on inflammation caused by the foods we eat, or how we can eat foods that lower inflammation, but we don't consider (or maybe are not aware) that our environment can be contributing to our inflammation as well.

 Toxins from our environment can harm our body in the follow ways:

  1. Oxidative stress which damages our cells and tissues.
  2. Genotoxicity which causes direct damage to our DNA.
  3. Epigenetic disruption which leads to changes in our gene expression.
  4. Endocrine disruption with the toxins mimicking our hormones, blocking their pathways, or interrupting their breakdown.
  5. Enzyme disruption which slows down or disables the function of an enzyme.
  6. Dysbiosis through the destruction of our healthy microbes and the allowance of pathogenic microbes to take over.
  7. Displacing structural minerals in our muscles, bones and tissues making them less functional.

 All of these contribute to stress in our body and result in inflammation.


 There are 3 main types of toxins that are contributing to inflammation in our world today:

 1) Chemical Toxins

Since World War Two, 80,000 new chemicals have been created, with 1,500 new chemicals each year. Testing is insufficient at best. Ten will be tested for their neurotoxic effect and NONE will be tested to see how they react with other chemicals (the synergist effect).

 These toxins are in the air we breath, the water we drink and in the foods we eat. It’s impossible to fully avoid them, which is why supporting regular detox is important.

 While we can’t completely eliminate our chemical exposures, we can reduce the amount of chemicals we are exposed to by the choices we make with our food, in our homes, and in the products we purchase and use.

 We can purchase organic foods and food items that are free from man-made chemicals.

 We can filter the water and air in our home, choose non-toxic cleaning and laundry products, and choose natural fabrics and linens.

 We can also choose the types of personal care products we use on our body, the products we use on our lawn, and the paints we use on our walls in our home.

 Some symptoms you may feel from being exposed to chemical toxins:

 Feeling of being overwhelmed or fearful

 Trouble processing new information

 Word reversal or trouble finding words

 Sensitivity to touch

 Short-term memory loss

 Chronic sinus congestion

 Muscle twitching

 Joint pain

 Difficulty losing weight

 Rashes or rosacea



2) Heavy Metals

Heavy metals are naturally occurring elements in our environment.

 They can enter our body through the gut, skin, or lungs. “Toxic metals have proven to be a major threat to human health, mostly because of their ability to cause membrane and DNA damage, and to alter protein function and enzyme activity.”(1)

 Heavy metals like lead can be found in old paint, gasoline, pipes, and dust.

 Mercury is present in fish, dental amalgam fillings, cosmetic products, and in fluorescent light bulbs.

 Flouride is in our water and in toothpaste, teflon cookware, and pesticides.  It may keep our teeth strong but it’s not good for our body in general.

 There are many other metals like arsenic, cadmium, uranium, chorine, and aluminum that are very present in our every day environment.

 Just like with chemicals, we can’t avoid heavy metals completely but we can make choices to reduce or remove exposures.

  Some symptoms you may feel from being exposed to heavy metals:

 Anxiety & Mood Swings

Anger or rage

Excessive shyness or social phobia




Ringing in the ears

Sensitivity to sound or touch


3) Biological Toxins

Biological toxins or biotoxins are compounds that are produced by living organisms and are harmful to humans. Microorganisms such as plants, fungi and insects can release their toxins into our environment, or we can be exposed to them through consumption or bites.

 A common biotoxin that many of us are unaware of but that inhabits over 50% of US homes are mycotoxins, toxins produced by mold.

 Bacteria and yeast living in our body can also create toxins and release them into our system.

 Another common biotoxin comes from genetically modified plants and foods. Choosing packaged foods with non GMO labels is key as well as choosing organic as often as you can.

 Some symptoms you may feel from being exposed to biotoxins:

 Sensitivity to light, poor night vision or blurred vision

Chronic fatigue or weakness

Shortness of breath with little effort

Poor sleep

Red or watery eyes

Morning stiffness

Excessive thirst and/or urination

Digestive issues


Brain Fog


 Removing and reducing toxic exposures, and supporting the removal of these toxins from our body are an important part of reducing overall inflammation and resolving chronic health symptoms.

 Because of this, I screen my clients for potential toxin exposure by starting with a simple symptoms and toxin questionnaire. If these indicate potential toxic build up, we can look into lab testing to confirm and begin to support detoxification in more specific ways.

 One of the first and most important steps when we suspect environmental toxic build up in our body is to start reducing exposures and removing sources.

 The next step is to open and support the body’s drainage pathways to allow toxins to flow out.

 We can then begin to use foods and supplements, as well as physical modalities, to mobilize the toxins from the cells & tissues.

 If you believe toxins can be part of your health story, I recommend starting with a whole foods based detox at minimum to start. At least once per year but twice is even better. I like the Ultimate Reset (see below).

 In some cases, you will need a deeper level of detoxification and should work with a trained practitioner such as myself to go through that process while getting support with cleaning up your environment.

 Want to discuss your health concerns and whether toxins might be an issue for you?

 Curious about the process of detoxification and best options?

Let’s connect on a complimentary discovery session to talk about your specific health conditions and symptoms and how a detox and nutritional therapy can help!

 Are you ready to nourish and detox your body so that you can finally thrive?  

 Let's get started!

Heather Glenn, FNTP, RWP, HHC


Ready to Reduce Inflammation, Detoxify & Reset Your Body's Internal Systems?

Our environment has become more and more toxic. Our bodies are exposed to pollution and harmful chemicals all our lives, along with the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink. It's not enough just to work out and eat right. 

We need to support regular detoxification and give our body the ingredients it needs to rebalance.

The Ultimate Reset is a comprehensive, no-starvation, inner body tune-up that offers much more than the typical cleanse programs on the market.

The Ultimate Reset not only helps you eliminate waste gently and naturally, it also helps revitalize your body and mind, and fuel your body with the micro- and macronutrients it craves.

You’ll replace the processed foods you’ve been eating with healthy foods. You’ll eat cleanly—possibly for the first time in your life—and take supplements designed to help you reset.



The Ultimate Reset is a complete, three-phase, 21-day mind/body program.  It comes with a nutrition guide with 21 days of recipes and all the supplements you need.

Phase One: RECLAIM your body, accessing its inner chemistry and preparing for change.

Phase Two: RELEASE the unwanted compounds that have been holding your system back and start the detoxification process.

Phase Three: RESTORE your digestive system, along with other internal processes, to maximum efficiency, putting nutrients, enzymes, and pre- and probiotics back into your body.

In just 21 days, the Ultimate Reset can help you gently restore your body to its original "factory settings," to help you:

• Have more energy and feel better

• Experience better digestion and a more positive mood

• Enable your body to function more efficiently

• Lose weight

• Improve your overall health



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