Are organ detoxifiers necessary for good health?

Natalie Castro-Romero, MS, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
There is a lot of misleading information that says detoxifiers are needed for cleansing organs. Some say that common problems like fatigue can be caused from “toxic overload,” a buildup of everyday pollutants. This toxic-overload theory is largely unproven. The liver, for instance, is the body’s filter. Its main role is to remove toxins from our bodies.

Assuming the liver is functioning normally and you have not been abusing alcohol or drugs (prescribed, over the counter, or street), the liver will work just fine at removing toxins like alcohol from the body without any supplements, fasts or special foods. The same is true for other organs, in that no supplement, fast or special food will detoxify the colon or kidneys.

There are many supplements on the market that claim to detoxify some organ in the body. The supplement labeling act does not allow a "detox" health claim. Unfortunately, people working in health food stores often make recommendations without any basis on current research or knowledge of nutrition. 

Continue Learning about Dietary Supplements

Dietary Supplements

Whether you're visiting the drug store, grocery or natural food shop you'll likely find an aisle where there are jars and bottles of things for you to put in your body that are neither foods nor medicines. Ranging from vitamins an...

d minerals to fiber and herbal remedies, these supplements are not regulated in the same way as either food or medicine. Some of them are backed by solid research, others are folk remedies or proprietary cures. If your diet does not include enough of certain vitamins or minerals, a supplement may be a good idea. Natural treatment for conditions like constipation may be effective. But because these substances are unregulated, it is always a good idea to educate yourself about the products and to use common sense when taking them. This is even more true if you are pregnant or taking a medicine that may be affected by supplements.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.