How a Functional Medicine Practitioner Supports the Liver Detox System
We turn to functional medicine practitioner Will Cole often for questions about optimizing our well-being. And we’ve known for a while that he’s a fan of our daily detoxifying superpowder—so we asked him to explain, in his words, why he finds it so useful.
Your liver is responsible for storing and converting nutrients from the food you eat to be used throughout your body. It is in constant communication with the rest of your digestive system, including your stomach, pancreas, and gallbladder, to metabolize fat, protein, and carbohydrates to keep your blood sugar stable and protect you from other metabolic problems.
One of the liver’s primary functions is to filter out toxic environmental and dietary compounds. It clears your blood of these chemicals so that your body uses only what it needs.
If your liver is overloaded with those undesirable compounds because it can’t process them into waste quickly enough, it can lead to chronic inflammation, which further affects your body’s ability to rid itself of these toxic chemicals. It becomes a vicious cycle: Toxic chemicals build up, inflammation occurs, detoxification is inhibited, more toxic chemicals build up, inflammation levels rise even higher, and on and on.
Limiting your exposure to toxic dietary compounds—alcohol is a major one—can help. Additional support from key nutrients and botanical extracts can also help your liver catch up with its detoxification workload.
I use G.Tox Detoxifying Superpowder for a simple reason: It’s designed with key nutrients and botanical extracts that support the liver.* To me, nothing speaks louder than ingredients that have a track record in both the conventional and the holistic health and wellness worlds.
Here’s a breakdown of what’s in every pack—and how each ingredient functions.
MILK THISTLE EXTRACT
Milk thistle extract supports liver function and healthy levels of glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant. Comprised of three amino acids—glycine, cysteine, and glutamic acid—glutathione is found in every single cell of the body, with the highest concentrations in your liver and your skin. By neutralizing reactive oxygen species (ROS), glutathione is the backbone of your body’s detox pathways.
Resveratrol is a clinically studied antioxidant, and preliminary evidence suggests that it may help protect the skin against free radical damage.
Free radicals are produced from excessive oxidation—commonly referred to as oxidative stress—caused by exposure to toxic chemicals, poor diet, and chronic stress. These free radicals damage your cells and lead to visual signs of aging like wrinkles and dull skin. Antioxidants like glutathione, resveratrol, and vitamin C have been studied for their ability to fight free radicals. Because oxidative stress depletes the body’s antioxidant levels, both living a clean lifestyle full of antioxidant-rich foods and supplementing with antioxidants are helpful to stop free radicals from running rampant and can help you maintain radiant cellular health inside and out.
HIGH-POTENCY VITAMIN C
Vitamin C plays important roles in skin health, including aiding synthesis and maintenance of collagen and contributing to the skin’s natural antioxidant systems.
Zinc is a cofactor for enzymes involved in detoxification pathways. It’s also an antioxidant involved in—you guessed it—the maintenance of healthy skin.
Selenium is required for the functioning of enzymes involved in detoxification pathways. And it’s another antioxidant that helps protect cells against oxidative stress.
Pantothenic acid is a vitamin involved in the synthesis of coenzyme A, which plays a role in phase II detoxification. Phase II detox is when a toxic compound is modified in a way that makes it easier for the body to excrete it.
There’s a lot magnesium can help you with—and this supplement is a good source of it. Magnesium is a crucial cofactor for enzymatic processes involved in liver detoxification.
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Note, for the record, that I didn’t say it tastes like juice—there’s a small amount of stevia added, but no sugars or additional flavoring. It’s all business, which is why I love it. You’ll want to mix it in eight ounces of water and knock it back like a shot.
Will Cole, IFMCP, DNM, DC, is a functional medicine expert who consults with people via webcam and locally in Pittsburgh. Cole specializes in clinically investigating underlying factors of chronic disease and customizing a functional medicine approach for thyroid issues, autoimmune conditions, hormonal imbalances, digestive disorders, and brain problems. He is the bestselling author of Ketotarian, The Inflammation Spectrum, and his newest book, Intuitive Fasting. Cole also cohosted the podcast goopfellas, and he now hosts his own podcast, The Art of Being Well.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
This article is for informational purposes only. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice. To the extent that this article features the advice of physicians or medical practitioners, the views expressed are the views of the cited expert and do not necessarily represent the views of goop.
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