Detoxification, as I said a little on social media, is a natural, physiological process that occurs all the time. With every mouthful we favor or hinder the detoxification mechanisms. Food contributes to both the increase in biotransformation enzymes and to overload the body with xenobiotics, everything depends on the person’s dietary pattern.
Having said that, I want to discuss the detoxification protocol today. Obese patients are usually in oxidative stress, with inflammation and an overload of xenobiotics. There is a lot of evidence associating xenobiotics (such as pesticides, environmental contaminants, endocrine disruptors, etc.) with obesity and chronic diseases in general. Therefore, it is necessary that the diet therapy treatment supports the biotransformation and elimination of these molecules.
There is a detoxification protocol to initiate and boost this process. It can be applied to different patients, not only obese people, but certainly obese people are the most benefited. The details of the protocol and how to apply it are in the book I wrote called “Nutrition and Detoxification – Molecular Bases for Clinical Practice”, published by Rubio, so if you are curious, read there! In summary, the protocol consists of temporarily removing foods with allergenic potential from the diet and minimizing exposure to xenobiotics, while consuming nutrients and bioactive substances that modulate the detoxification phase I and II enzymes.
Now, a question I get a lot from my students is about when to apply this protocol.
It is necessary to think the following: certainly the protocol is beneficial, especially in obese patients, but it is necessary to assess adherence. It is a protocol with many restrictions, which despite being temporary, can lead to lack of adherence and abandonment of treatment. If you apply this protocol in the first consultation, the patient may not be able to return.
In Nutrition, patient compliance and commitment are essential. Without them, there is no treatment and / or result. If the patient is faced with this severe restriction intrinsic to the detoxification protocol at the first consultation, there is a high chance that he will not perform and abandon the treatment – even if you explain that it is transitory. Each patient must be evaluated in this way: readiness for change and willingness to follow this protocol.
Thus, individualize the treatment. Done is better than perfect. If your patient needs the protocol, but you feel that he will not be able to continue at the beginning of treatment, postpone it. Do it further ahead, when he is most willing. Adapt the protocol to your clinical practice and to the patient as well.