How do toxins poison your brain and contribute to mental illness?

@ Reduce cerebral blood flow: Blood flow is critical for optimal brain function. Anything that restricts blood flow harms the brain and can negatively impact mental wellness.

On SPECT scans, decreased blood flow has been associated with clinical depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, ADD/ADHD, and more. Research shows that low blood flow is the #1 brain-imaging predictor that a person will develop Alzheimer’s disease.

@ Disrupt the endocrine system: Toxins interfere with hormone production, which can cause serious imbalances. Having low or high levels of hormones—such as thyroid, estrogen, testosterone, or cortisol—can wreak havoc on your brain and body. For example, when hormones are out of whack, it raises the risk of mental health symptoms, such as depression, anxiety, mood swings, brain fog, and panic attacks.

@ Impair the immune system: Your body’s immune system performs two major functions.

When toxins impair immune system function, it increases your risk of physical conditions, such as autoimmune disorders and cancer. At the same time, it raises the likelihood of developing as mental health issues like anxiety disorders, depression, and even psychosis.

@ Disrupt the gut microbiome: Poor gastrointestinal health can lead to a condition called leaky gut. This occurs when the gut lining becomes permeable, allowing toxins to enter the bloodstream.

Leaky gut has been associated with a wide range of cognitive issues and mental health problems, such as mood and anxiety disorders, ADD/ADHD, Parkinson’s disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.

@ Increase the risk of diabesity: Having high blood sugar levels and/or being obese or overweight is known as diabesity. As toxic load rises, so does the risk for this common combination of conditions.

Toxins are also called diabesogens and obesogens because they contribute to both diabetes and obesity. Having one or both of these medical conditions takes a major toll on brain function and mental health.

Obesity is harmful to brain and psychological health and has been associated with increased risk of depression, panic disorder, agoraphobia (fear of going out), bipolar disorder, and substance use disorders.

High blood sugar levels have been linked to shrinkage of the hippocampus, a brain region involved in mood, memory, and learning. Rates of depression and anxiety are two to three times higher in individuals who have Type 2 diabetes compared to the general population. Diabetes is also associated with a higher risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

@ Damage DNA: This can accelerate brain aging and lead to problems with mood, anxiety, irritability, temper, and irrational behavior, as well as memory.

Research shows that many environmental toxins, including herbicides and sodium benzoate, may damage DNA. A 2023 study found that sucralose-6-acetate, a chemical found in sucralose, may also harm DNA.

@ Impair enzyme systems: This disrupts many biological processes, including the ability to produce energy and fight free radicals.

@ Harm detoxification organs: Your body’s detoxification system includes your liver, gut, kidneys, and skin. These organs need to be healthy to do their job.

For example, your liver filters blood to identify and hold toxins. Its enzyme systems break down the toxins, and the liver releases bile to flush them out. Your liver has finite toxin-processing capacity, which means it is highly vulnerable to toxic overload.

Your kidneys filter your blood an astounding 60 times per day. However, kidney function decreases with age by 50 percent from age 20 to 85, so they need your support!

Excessive exposure to toxins can impact the digestive tract, liver, kidneys, and brain. This damage reduces the body’s detoxification system’s ability to do its job, creating an even greater buildup of toxins.

@ Alter gene expression: In some cases, this may turn on harmful gene variants and/or turn off beneficial ones.

@ Damage cell membranes: This can also disrupt communication between brain cells.

If you need help you can click here to review your lifestyle choices and find out what you can do to improve it. Health and Wellness Assessment

We are here for you at the Sundardas Naturopathic Clinic.

Prof Sundardas D Annamalay

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