Home / Causes of Aging / Toxicity

Toxins and Aging

Without question, the greatest issue challenging healthy aging is toxins. Toxicity is a term used to describe the presence of certain substances or elements that can cause harm to humans, animals, and the environment when they are present in substantial amounts. The Theory of Toxic Aging proposes that aging is a toxic process, and some age-related functional changes mimic toxins. Aging is associated with alterations in your body’s normal function; many aging changes resemble those induced by toxicants. Toxins can come from natural sources like bacteria and fungi or manufactured germs such as industrial and agricultural waste.

Toxins enter our bodies directly through our lungs, gut, and skin. Toxins can also enter indirectly through food and water supplies contaminated with toxins or by contacting surfaces exposed to toxicants. Once inside our bodies, toxins cause various health issues ranging from minor irritation to serious long-term consequences such as cancer and organ damage.

As we age, we accumulate greater amounts of toxins due to our decreasing ability to eliminate them as fast as they enter. Many toxins encountered by our body did not exist when our detoxification pathways were being developed, and our body has no mechanism to remove these new toxins.


Getting to the Root Cause of Toxicity

Toxins are a public health hazard as many never degrade but remain in the environment forever. These toxins have been linked to cancer, liver damage, asthma flare-ups, and even death. These substances negatively affect our developmental processes and cause hormonal dysfunctions and reproductive problems.

Types of Toxins

Toxins come in various forms, some more dangerous to humans than others. Heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, and mercury are common environmental toxins. Petrochemicals (found in motor fuel and industrial solvents) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) used as coolants and lubricants are also toxic. The most significant toxins include:

  • Fluorinated Chemicals – Used in cookware, clothing, outdoor apparel, carpeting, and food packaging to provide oil and water-resistant properties.
  • Anti-microbials – Used as a preservative in many personal care products, paints, and cleaning supplies.
  • Flame Retardants – Flame retardants like asbestos, polyurethanes, and solvents are liquid and aerosolized.
  • Plasticizers & Endocrine Disruptors – Phthalates and Bisphenol-A are found in plastics and can function as endocrine disruptors.
  • Solvents – Used in paints and coatings, glues, cleaners, and degreasers.
  • Heavy Metals – Toxins in the form of heavy metals, petroleum products, plastic products like herbicides, pesticides, medications, and their metabolites, gases like fluoride and radon, antimicrobials like triclosan and triclocarban,

From mild, passing side effects to extreme life-threatening issues such as seizures and cardiac arrhythmias, the toxicity of antimicrobial products can have a variety of consequences. Flame retardants meant to increase fire safety carry risks like neurological harm, hormone disruption, and even cancer. Furthermore, these chemicals bioaccumulate in humans over time, leading to chronic health complications due to continually increasing levels.

Plastics have become a staple in our daily lives, yet we must be mindful of their exposure due to the possible harmful effects of BPA on unborn babies, infants, and children’s developing brain and prostate glands. Furthermore, there is evidence that suggests plastic can negatively impact child behavior as well. Studies also indicate plastics may further elevate risk factors, including hypertension levels, type 2 diabetes prevalence, and cardiovascular disease probability. At the same time, certain solvents utilized in consumer products are linked to neurological conditions plus heightened chances for cancer occurrence.


Causes of Toxicity

Toxicity can come from various sources, but mainly it is us, humans. We are developing the poisons which we then allow into our environment. In addition, poor air quality, poor nutrition, medications, stress, and more contribute to the accumulation of toxins in our bodies.

Unfortunately, most people are unaware of their accumulated toxicity levels until it is too late. People ignore symptoms like rashes, fatigue, headache, and brain fog. It’s only when faced with a life-altering diagnosis that toxicity is considered a serious health concern that can have long-term effects on our bodies.

To further protect ourselves, we must be aware of potential sources of toxins such as industrial pollutants, pesticides, medications, radiation, and more, and take steps to limit our exposure when possible. Additionally, reducing stress levels and ensuring a balanced diet is crucial to optimizing health and avoiding the buildup of toxins. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to be mindful of their environment and make conscious choices to reduce their exposure to toxicity.

As providers of Longevity, we take a proactive, individualized, and evidence-based approach to care that looks at the root causes of disease, not just the symptoms. If we only treat the symptoms, we will never eliminate the problem.

Treating Toxicity

Dealing with toxicities is no easy feat. Generally, individuals are afflicted by multiple contaminants simultaneously – a circumstance that has only become more pervasive in recent decades. Whereas 20 years ago, our physicians detected one out of every ten patients having toxicity issues, the ratio has increased to nine out of ten, and most display physical symptoms at the time of testing.

Treating toxicity in the body requires identifying, removing, or limiting the source. This can be done through lifestyle changes and avoiding certain foods or activities that may cause an increase in toxic levels. Diet modification may also be necessary to reduce levels of toxin exposure.

Eating a healthy diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables, limiting the consumption of processed foods, and avoiding consuming foods high in fats, sugars, and artificial additives can help reduce the risk of toxicity. Additionally, reducing alcohol and caffeine intake, quitting smoking, and avoiding exposure to environmental toxins like air pollution can also assist in detoxifying the body.

If lifestyle changes are insufficient to reduce toxicity levels, additional treatments may be necessary. Chelating agents may be prescribed to help remove heavy metals from the body. Activated charcoal supplements can also be used to absorb and eliminate toxins. Additionally, herbal remedies like milk thistle, dandelion root, and turmeric can help flush out toxins from the body. Natural detoxifying methods such as sauna therapy or yoga can also be beneficial. Finally, Therapeutic Plasma Exchange holds promise for removing those toxins which were believed to be unremovable.

Our programs provide all forms of detoxification necessary for each patient while teaching them how to protect themselves from future contamination. Review the various Advanced Testing which we perform in our office. Read about the varied approaches with have in offering you real Solutions.

Advanced Testing

There are many advanced tests for toxins that our providers keep in their toolboxes. The critical thing to remember is that you, as a unique individual, may require more or fewer tests than others. Your provider will determine which test is necessary after an in-depth evaluation of your personal and family health history.

Our comprehensive method of Testing for Toxicity:


There is more to resolving toxicity than eating well and pooping regularly. It is looking at you as a whole person — body, mind, and soul — to determine WHAT to eat, WHY you should exercise, and HOW to optimize other factors to help you recover.

There are many therapies that our providers keep in their toolboxes. The critical thing to remember is that you — as a unique individual — may undergo a different treatment plan than someone else. Your provider will determine which therapy is right after thoroughly reviewing your test results.

Our comprehensive Solutions for Toxicity:

FAQ & Sources

We value fact over opinion. Please refer to our FAQs for the most commonly asked questions. In addition, we have listed the medical references for the facts stated on the website.

To review the articles and references cited on this topic of Toxicity, click here


How harmful are toxins?

Thousands of toxins in our environment were not there 10,000 years ago. Some we have dug up, some we made by burning, but most we have made by our hands. There is little doubt in the scientific community that toxins harm our health. But how harmful that is difficult to say. We know that the more toxins you accumulate, the more oxidative the toxin is, and the less efficient your body is at removing it, the more harm it will do.

What diseases and illnesses do toxins cause?

In short, the answer is everything terrible. From disrupting the quality of your life through fatigue or GI distress to heart disease, neurologic decline, and cancer, toxins play a role in making everything worse.

Where are the toxins in your body located?

Toxins can “hide” anywhere in your body, inside cells, membranes, proteins, fluid, and even deep within your bones. Your body often puts toxins into tissue because it does not know what else to do with those toxins it cannot remove.

How are toxins removed from the body?

Removing toxins from the body requires many systems, including the lymphatic system, the lungs, the liver, the kidney, the colon, and the skin. A specific series of steps metabolize each toxin known to the body. However, the advent of new toxins previously unknown to the body often disrupts these processes, trapping both the new toxin and previously metabolized toxins.

What is the best way to detox?

There are many methods of detoxification. The best and easiest detox is fasting. Since all food adds to the detoxification load, fasting allows the body to “catch up” on detoxification. Many people advocate water only, but the data suggests that a light blend (not juiced) drink of green vegetables helps the body detox. The fiber acts as a sponge in the GI tract absorbing toxins, and the fiber also acts as a scrub brush, cleansing the walls of the GI tract.

Which chelation removes mercury and lead the best?

DMPS and DMSA are considered the preferred chelation for Mercury, while EDTA is regarded as the preferred chelation for Lead. Natural chelation, such as Pectin and Fiber, also binds heavy metals in the GI tract but is less effective than DMSA and EDTA.

Does an Environmental Toxins panel tell me where the toxins I am exposed to are coming from?

Many of the substances being measured come from multiple possible sources of exposure. The Environmental Toxins panel does not discern the source of the toxicant but can explain the most common sources, and, working with your healthcare provider, you can rule in or out how you may have been exposed.

What is the difference between Environmental Toxins and Food Additives panels?

The Vibrant Environmental Toxins panel measures direct exposure to 40 known environmental toxicants commonly found in industrial, manufacturing, fuel, smelting, and other industries. These typically result in household, cosmetic, pest-control, and other consumer products. The Vibrant Food Additives panel is an antibody test to indicate immune system reactivity and provocation by commonly used food additives such as binders, emulsifiers, dyes, sweeteners, and pesticides. We recommend combining these tests to assess the full spectrum of possible sources of immune reactivity and toxicity.


  1. Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. “Health Effects from Chemical Exposures.”
  2. Saghir, S. “Rethinking toxicity testing: Influence of aging on the outcome of long-term toxicity testing and possible remediation.”
  3. Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “Health risks of widely used chemicals may be underestimated.”
  4. Mandell, Lionel. Oxford Academic. “Antimicrobial Safety and Tolerability: Differences and Dilemmas. “
  5. Safer States. “Toxic Flame Retardants.”
  6. H. Vasken, Aposhian. Mobilization of heavy metals by newer, therapeutically useful chelating agents.” Toxicology. Volume 97, Issues 1–3, 31 March 1995, Pages 23-38