We recently had the opportunity to dialogue with Dr. Terry Willard—a leading clinical herbalist—and he shared about the health benefits surrounding alkalizing and detoxification. For over 35 years, Terry Willard, Cl. H., Ph.D., has studied the medicinal properties of plants. He is recognized as one of North America's leading clinical herbalists and appears regularly in print and electronic media as an advocate of responsible herbal use. Here’s what he had to say:
I have practiced as a clinical herbalist since 1975 in a very busy urban clinic—the Wild Rose Wholistic Clinic in Calgary, Alberta. During this timeframe, I have also run clinics in several other cities. Even though I am in general practice as a senior practitioner, I mostly concentrate on patients with severe and critical health issues as well as specializing in cleansing and detoxification. Besides using a wide range of botanical medicines and natural food supplements, I do research and use medicinal mushrooms and flower essences.
It’s important to point out that botanical medicine is well keyed into the human system, as we’ve used them for several millennia. Plant-based medicines are the basis, or starting point, of over 50 percent of the modern pharmaceuticals used, and worldwide, still over 80 percent of humans use herbal medicines as part of their primary healthcare system. Herbal remedies are good at initiating the natural processes of the body to heal itself. Typically, herbals are gentler on the human system, but have a profound effect on the body, giving it energy.
And when it comes down to natural remedies, small batch, organic cultivated is always the best way to go. This assures high quality, letting the farmers to processors concentrate on the details that we want our medicines and foods to have. By doing this, we can make our foods our medicines and vice versa.
It is difficult to fully emphasize the importance of alkalizing and detoxifying the body on a regular basis. In my clinical practice, I can easily say that many of the most critical healthcare issues are at least partially caused from the body being too acidic and having an accumulation of toxins. The best way to alkalize and detoxify the body is slowly and on a regular basis—and it’s important not to wait for dramatic health issues to start this process. When in a devitalized state, the body cannot eliminate as easily. I agree with what’s often been said: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
Our busy, modern lifestyle has left many people in these acidic states. Most of my patients have built up acidic metabolites over the years—and this even includes people that eat a pretty good organic diet.
There are many foods that can alkalize the body. One of the best categories is leafy green vegetables and their juices, but there’s also organic ripe lemon juice, coconut water and a range of antioxidants. Many of these play multiple roles as well by detoxifying and alkalizing.
In short, a quality detoxifying blend has botanicals that have a long history of being used for cleansing as well as being backed up with modern scientific studies. That’s why it’s easy for me to say that those kinds of foods aid in the ongoing process of alkalizing and detoxifying the body.
It is great to see raw foods that can be both medicine and food at the same time.