You will be more susceptible to carcinogens if the detoxification function of your liver is poor due to overexposure to toxins (the most common form of excessive alcohol and sugar consumption) or due to an underlying imbalance. One of the critical genes that are even thought to make a person more inclined to cancer is responsible for making an important detoxifene enzyme called glutathione transferase.
If you disable this gene in rats (and therefore reduce the level of this enzyme in their bodies) and expose the subjects to cigarette smoke, they develop lung cancer soon. Geneticists will struggle to develop a treatment that will make an erroneous correction; we can bring the level of glutathione transferase in our body to the proper level by taking glutathione (or its predecessor, Nacetylcysteine) and selenium, which helps the enzyme to work.
Of course, glutathione transferase is one of the enzymes used in detoxification. The five main ways the body tracks detoxification of harmful substances are seen in the ‘detoxification process in the liver’. As you will see later, this process depends on the availability of a wide variety of nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, amino acids and phytobesins (found in fennel family vegetables such as garlic and broccoli).
Detoxification in the liver is a two-step process
The liver reveals detoxification in two distinct stages.
Step 1; you may think of a series of preparations (called P450) where the enzyme is acting against the toxins. At this stage, toxins are converted into a form in which they can be neutralized. However, this process itself is often able to produce ‘reactive intermediates’ such as free radicals, which can produce unwanted by-products or even more toxins. In order to avoid such side effects of the 1st step, you need to support your liver with a number of different nutrients, especially antioxidants.
Nutrients that serve as detox:
Step 1 heroes
The first stage of liver detoxification (the next gray area) depends on the abundance of nutrients in which P450 enzymes are involved. Among these items are the following:
• Glutathione and / or Nacetylcysteine are found in onion and garlic
• Coenzyme Q10 is found in fatty fish, spinach, raw seeds and hard-shelled nuts
• Vitamin C is found in broccoli, peppers, citrus fruits and small-grained fruits
• Vitamin E is found in raw seeds, nuts and fish
• Selenium is found in raw seeds, nuts and fish
• Betacarotene is found in carrots, peaches, watermelons, sweet potatoes and honey pudding
These antioxidants are team players. To use your detoxification potential in the best way, you need all of them. You may have seen newspaper reports claiming that antioxidants are not benefiting from a number of current studies. The reason for such claims is that antioxidants are tested on their own; whereas they work best with other synergists with other antioxidants. For example, in one study, betacarotene increased risk of cancer when administered alone to smokers, but decreased when given with other antioxidants.45 Vitamin E is a multivinyl minerals that generally reduces cardiovascular risk, but the same benefit is in the abundance of vitamin E alone and in cholesteatol lowering statin drugs you will not see it.
Because cholesterol-lowering statin drugs disable coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). Coenzyme Q10 is another natural antioxidant and it is necessary to reload the vitamin E in order to detoxify another antioxidant. If there is not enough CoQ10, vitamin E itself is an oxidant; it may become a toxin at its own disposal.
Apart from these, there are also various phytobesins (nutrients from plants) and plants that can help. These include:
DIM (diindolylmethane) is found in vegetables from crucifer family such as Broccoli. Hormone disruption chemicals such as PCB and dioxin, some agricultural chemicals (pesticides) and chemicals that kill foreign plants (herbicides) help detoxify the excess estrogen.
Bioflavonoids This group includes the following: anthocyanins48 in blueberries, resveratrol49 in red grapes, quercetin50 in red onion, polyphenols51 in green tea, and thyme; cilimarin is a powerful detoxifying agent that protects the liver from all kinds of toxins. It has been shown that many of these substances have anti-cancer properties, especially liver.
2. In the course of the reaction, the reactive by-products are rendered non-toxic. This means that enzymes; by binding the toxin to another molecule, making it more soluble in water and less toxic. Here we refer to ‘conjugation’ (ie binding); toxin is ‘married’ with a detoxifying nutrient.
The body detoxifies toxins in the liver using different chemical routes. These pathways (eg, glutathione conjugation or sulfation) require different nutrients for proper processing.