The detoxification enzyme systems

The human body is exposed to a wide array of xenobiotics in

one s lifetime, from food components to environmental toxins

to pharmaceuticals, and has developed complex enzymatic

mechanisms to detoxify these substances. These mechanisms

exhibit significant individual variability, and are affected

by environment, lifestyle, and genetic influences. The

scientific literature suggests an association between impaired

detoxification and certain diseases, including cancer,

Parkinson’s disease, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue/immune

dysfunction syndrome. Data regarding these hepatic

detoxification enzyme systems and the body s mechanisms of

regulating them suggests the ability to efficiently detoxify

and remove xenobiotics can affect these and other chronic

disease processes. This article reviews the myriad

detoxification enzyme systems, their regulatory mechanisms,

and the dietary, lifestyle, and genetic factors influencing

their activities, as well as laboratory tests available to

assess their functioning.

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