Stressor Spotlight: Toxic Stress

masked man spraying pesticides on plants

From chemicals and pesticides to food additives and water contaminants, there are a variety of substances in our environment that can be toxic to the body. Although we can try our best to avoid exposure to these substances, we can’t eliminate them from our lives altogether.


Our detoxification system is responsible for removing the toxins we encounter. However, when more toxic substances enter the body in greater amounts than the body can handle, significant health problems can occur.


How toxins enter the body

Substances that cause toxic stress may enter the body through inhalation (breathing), skin or eye contact, ingestion (eating & swallowing), or by injection.

  • Many of the toxic substances we encounter can easily enter our bodies when we breathe in oxygen from the air. This is commonly how we get viruses and bacteria, as well as exposure to other toxins such as chemicals, herbicides, and cigarette smoke.
  • Toxic substances can also enter the body directly through the skin. Common sources include creams, lotions, soaps, sunscreen, household cleaners, and impure water. Electromagnetic fields are another area of concern, as they are capable of penetrating the skin and affecting the body’s cells, tissues, and organs.1
  • A wide range of toxic stressors can also enter the body when we swallow food, take medications, or drink water. Chemicals, pesticides, and herbicides can not only be present in the air, but can also be commonly found in our food and water supply. Substances that are added to our food or beverages can also be toxic.
  • Injection is another way that toxic substances can enter the body. Vaccines are a concern for many people, as they contain toxic substances such as aluminum and formaldehyde. Though these and other toxins are only included in very small amounts, they may contribute to toxic stress in the body.


The effect of toxic stress on the body

young girl covering face in front of computer

Our bodies have an efficient detoxification system to deal with toxic substances. However, excessive exposure to toxins in high amounts can overwhelm this system, leading to acute and chronic health issues. Additionally, if our detoxification system isn’t in a healthy state to begin with, it may have a more difficult time processing the everyday toxins it encounters.


Because many toxic substances are fat-soluble, they can also be difficult for the body to excrete. Toxins may be stored in our fatty tissues for several years. When they are finally released through activities like exercise or from stress or fasting, they can cause a range of symptoms, including headaches, nausea, fatigue, and dizziness. 2


Along with the release of toxins causing negative health symptoms, a buildup of toxins in the body can cause acute symptoms as well. Some of the most common symptoms of body toxicity include:

  • Brain fog
  • Fatigue
  • Digestion problems
  • Aches and pains
  • Skin issues
  • Headaches
  • Food cravings
  • Sinus congestion

These and other acute symptoms can lead to chronic health issues down the road. For example, heavy metal toxicity is linked with increased risk of cardiovascular and heart disease,3 and depression has been linked to excessive pesticide exposure.4 Other prominent diseases associated with prolonged body toxicity include Alzheimer’s, insomnia, autism, cancer, autoimmune disease, and arthritis.


How to reduce toxic substance exposure

Due to the amount of toxic substances in our modern-day environment, it’s more important than ever to find ways to limit your exposure. Doing so will ensure that your detoxification system is efficient and doesn’t become overburdened with excessive toxins.


Your diet is typically the best place to start when it comes to reducing your toxic stress load. First, make sure to drink pure water. Tap water and even bottled water often contains several contaminants, so filtered water or alkalized water may be your best option. Additionally, choose certified organic foods that are free of pesticides and herbicides. Avoid processed foods and stick to foods that are in their raw, natural state as much as possible. And avoid caffeine, nicotine, and sugar as well.

organic spelled on scrabble tiles next to leaf

Your home is another place where toxic exposure can be high. To clean up your home environment, swap out your chemical cleaners, soaps, lotions, and sunscreens for natural, organic products. Consider adding potted plants and air purifiers as well to help remove dust, dander, mold, and allergens from the air. If you are concerned about electromagnetic fields, limit your exposure to electronic devices. This includes removing electronics from your bedroom and turning your WiFi off at night.


Hygiene is also important to reduce your risk of getting a virus or bacteria. Keep both your home and your body clean. Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth when your hands aren’t clean. You should also regularly clean surfaces in your home or at work (using natural products of course). Additionally, try to avoid people who are sick.


Reducing toxins in the body

Along with reducing your exposure, there are a number of things you can do to help your body eliminate toxins as well:

  • Get enough exercise – Exercise has been shown to help the body remove harmful chemicals and alleviate depression as well.5 While toxins that are released during exercise can cause acute side effects, your body will be better off once you’ve eliminated them.
  • Eat detoxifying foods – Foods such as leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, blueberries, apples, avocados, and lemons are great for helping your body detoxify. You can also add detoxifying herbs like ginger and turmeric.
  • Drink more water –Drinking plenty of pure water is one of the best things you can do to assist the detoxification process. Most people don’t drink enough water, and the water they do drink is probably not the best option for their health.

Other things you can do to detoxify your body daily include getting enough sleep, taking herbs such as milk thistle and dandelion root, and practicing deep-breathing techniques.


Toxic Stress Virtual Item

Toxic Stress is one of the key lifestyle areas scanned in the ZYTO Balance biosurvey. By scanning the digital signature representing Toxic Stress, you can see whether the body had a normal, or in-range, response to this item, or an out-of-range, or imbalanced, response.

screen shot of toxic stress responses on wellness report

Additionally, the Balance Wellness report also shows the specific products that may assist with the body’s toxic stress load. Not only that, but it also scans specific digital signatures within the Toxic Stress category, including:

  • Bacteria
  • Chemicals
  • Electromagnetic
  • Endocrine Disruptors
  • Food Stressors Additives
  • Glyphosate
  • Heavy Metals
  • Herbicides
  • Pesticides/Insecticides
  • Viruses
  • Water Contaminants

With the more advanced Select and Elite software, you can dive deeper into these areas by scanning for specific parasites, viruses, food stressors, and so on.


Toxic Stress Balancer Virtual Items

A balancer scan is typically done after a scan of the Toxic Stress Virtual Item, as well as the other biomarkers that are scanned. A balancer scan determines which wellness products or lifestyle options bring the out-of-range stressors back into range. These products may include supplements, oils, or foods. Wellness services that the body responds to strongly, such as fasting and exercise, may also assist the body in handling toxic stress.

Emotional health also plays a large role in the body’s ability to handle toxic stress. This is where ZYTO EVOX perception reframing can help. The EVOX addresses emotional issues that may be related to toxic stress. Through a patented biofeedback process, you can change the perceptions that are rooted in emotional issues, which can lead to less toxicity and greater overall wellness.


Dr. Vaughn Cook ZYTOAbout Dr. Vaughn Cook
Dr. Vaughn R Cook is the Founder & CEO of ZYTO. An Oriental Medical Doctor (OMD) and licensed acupuncturist, he has worked in the complementary and alternative medical field for more than 30 years, specializing in applications that integrate Western and Eastern medicine.


1. Kaszuba-Zwoinska, J., J. Gremba, et al. “Electromagnetic field induced biological effects in humans.” Przeglad Lekarski 72, no. 11 (2015): 636-641.

2. “Liver Detoxification Phase II Support: Overview.”

3. Preidt, Robert. “Even Low Levels of Toxic Metals Put Heart at Risk.” WebMD LLC.

4. Beseler, C., L Stallones, et al. “Depression and Pesticide Exposures in Female Spouses of Licensed Pesticide Applicators in the Agricultural Health Study Cohort.” Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 48, no. 10 (2006): 1005-1013.

5. “Exercise detoxes body of depressive chemicals, scientists find.” Telegraph Media Group Limited.


The information provided in this article is intended to improve, not replace, the direct relationship between the client (or site visitor) and healthcare professionals.

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