• Emily Corley

Toxic Load and Emotional Imbalance



A patient was talking about her brother who is chronically rageful, depressed, and suicidal. This brother, now in his thirties, has been smoking pot since middle school and became a heavy consumer of alcohol in his late teens. The first thing that came to mind listening to her story of him is toxic overload.

Habitual consumers of marijuana and alcohol often forget that both substances are toxic. Alcohol is poisonous to our body. Smoking anything is toxic to our lungs and our blood. Our liver and lung’s jobs are to filter toxicity. The emotional manifestation of a toxic liver - which filter’s blood - is chronic anger, irritation, and frustration, either overt or covert. Toxic lung emotion is depression.

The shocking news today is that 58,000 people died in the US of opioid overdose last year. This number belies are a far, far bigger number of drug users. We can simply look around our ordinary lives to see the enormous quantities of toxic substances many people regularly consume.

We often get involved with the emotional realities of heavy substance consumers without recognizing that these emotional experiences can also be signs of toxicity. Long term prescription medication use causes toxicity. People who undergo chemotherapy in cancer treatment experience cumulative toxicity. Likewise, the potent medicines used to manage end of life care can have a toxic impact. All these toxic situations can dramatically affect emotion.

To re-balance our emotional reality, we must clear our internal toxicity. How do we do this? We stop using, except for necessary prescription meds. We support our body’s natural capacity to filter toxicity by eating healthy food including lots of greens and drinking lots of non-carbonated water. We can further this effort by taking sugar (including white flour), fried and processed foods, and animal fat (beef and pork) out of our diet. These foods both create and exacerbate toxic conditions. If we reduce or eliminate dairy and wheat, we preserve internal viscosity facilitating our body’s capacity to filter toxic overload. And finally, we can support this effort by taking herbs that support organ function, such as dandelion, burdock, milk thistle, and many others.

With situations of toxic load that are out of our control - like chemo, end of life, and even PMS, an utterly normal 'toxic' hormonal infusion - we add a large measure of patience, compassion, and understanding to our filtering protocols.

There is a potent link between the substances we consume and our emotional experience. The first that comes to mind is sugar and anxiety. Try cutting out sugar - for at least three weeks - and see if your anxiety changes in any way. I’d love to hear what you discover.

#ThoughtoftheDay