What do trampolines, lemons and red clovers have in common? They can all help your kids get rid of chemicals in their bodies. Pound for pound, children are exposed to more toxins than adults are because they eat more, breathe more, and have a greater skin surface area. More toxins get into their bodies and their immature organ systems make them more susceptible to damage (infants are 10x more susceptible and children 3x). Toxins can easily be found in our water, food, air, personal care products, household items and medications. Regularly supporting detoxification in children is strongly recommended, especially in children who:
- have taken medication for prolonged periods (1 week+)
- have required a general anesthetic
- regularly consume processed foods
- are living in large urban areas or in/near farming communities where herbicides and pesticides are used
- have lived in a home during a significant renovation
The immune system, neurological system and hormones are most susceptible to disruption by toxins. Symptoms of toxic buildup can vary depending on the type of toxin and the stage of development. In kids, look for fatigue, lymph nodes that stay swollen, joint pain, chronic runny nose, difficulty concentrating, hyperactivity, itchy skin, eczema or psoriasis.
Key tips for detoxing your kids:
- Before you start, make sure their bowels are moving regularly – aim for at least one easy-to-pass, banana-shaped stool (poop) a day. Many toxins are removed from the body through the stool. Mobilizing toxins without giving them an escape route means they’ll get relocated elsewhere in the body. Also make sure they’re hydrated – dark yellow urine is a sign that more water is needed (room temperature is easiest on the body). Many toxins need to be carried out through the urinary system.
- Make it FUN! Jumping on a trampoline helps to move fluid through the lymph nodes and this aids with the removal of toxins. Small trampolines (or rebounders) are affordable, easy to find, super fun. While bouncing, get them to run in place, do jumping jacks, pretend they on cross-country skis, swing and circle their arms and kick legs out to the side. When conditions allow, dressing kids in hoodies and long pants can encourage sweating which further assists with the elimination of toxins.
- Cover your bases. Many nutrients are required for the body to neutralize and remove toxins. Eating a wide variety of fresh whole food helps to ensure that the nutrients required for this process are available. Be creative with what you add to soups, fresh juices and smoothies.
- Decrease the doses. Chemicals are found everywhere! Help their little bodies out by opting for natural alternatives when buying food and personal care products whenever possible. Reverse osmosis water filters and houseplants can make a big impact on the quality of the water and air at home (15 plants of different varieties is recommended by NASA scientist B.C. Wolverton for a 1800 square foot home).
- S_l_o_w it down. Rest and relaxation is required to maximize detoxification so be strategic with timing. If your child experiences nausea, headaches, or irritability, encourage rest and hydration and slow down the detox (make it less of a change from every day).
If you are unsure if your child should undergo a detoxification, consult with your naturopath. Mamas – if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, delay your detox to avoid passing your toxins on to your baby. For additional details and other ideas on how to include detoxification activities into daily family activities, click here.