Types of Toxins
When we talk about toxins we usually put two concepts in the same basket: toxins and toxicants.
The first ones are naturally produced within living cells (commonly referred as biotoxins).
The second ones are introduced into the environment by human activity.
What binds them together is that both of them are poisonous substances that harm your body by interacting with enzymes or cellular receptors.
They can be divided into 3 main categories:
Endotoxins – produced by the body as a byproduct of biochemical processes.
Exotoxins – absorbed into the body from external sources, including food, water, air, contact, etc.
Autogenous toxins – sometimes considered to be exotoxins, these are transferred from the mother to the baby in the womb, as pathogens or toxic compounds, mostly from environmental/dietary exposure over generations.
Exotoxins can come from a variety of sources. Your body is exposed to over 200 different synthesized chemicals per day.
Some of them are not highly toxic, but tend to stick to cell membranes and interfere with biochemical processes.
Exotoxins can be divided into 2 main groups:
- Heavy metals like mercury, arsenic, cadmium, etc.
- Ammonia (from cigarette smoke)
- Preservatives, like nitrites. Sodium Nitrite is a preservative in cured meats (bacon), processed meats (like sausages) and also in dairy products. When exposed to high temperatures, the rate of formation of nitrosamines in meat increases. These are linked to bowel cancer.
- Artificial colorings, stabilizers and thickeners.
- Burning of organic compounds, like incense, produces tar which damages the lungs
- Trans fats from baked and fried foods
- Toxins in laundry detergents
- Carcinogens formed by deep frying or burning foods
- Synthesized and naturally occurring drugs, like THC or LSD
Sources of exotoxins can be found everywhere. They range from traffic fumes to amalgam fillings.
You are absorbing toxins every day from drinking tap water, taking antibiotics or other drugs (and abusing OTC remedies), eating junk food and fried food, ingesting aluminium and cyanide through your apparently harmless table salt, inhaling household cleaners, smog, skin products, deodorants, vaccinations and many other ways…
Regarding endotoxins, gut flora in the intestinal tract is comprised of bacteria and yeast. It takes care of digesting most of the foods we consume.
Unfortunately, overgrowth of specific strains can be harmful, since they absorb nutrients and produce waste that could be absorbed directly into your blood.
Long-term exposure to these toxins weakens your immune system, inflames your intestines and slows your metabolic rate.