How to Sweat Toxins Out

Sweating person

Please read this first: First Steps to Take After Toxic Chemical Exposure

Sweat carries toxins out of your body through both your skin’s oil pores and water pores. And since the skin is the largest organ in the body, sweating is an excellent way to detoxify!

The best way to sweat

Exercise is the fastest, cheapest way to induce sweating. It also has the added benefit of moving your circulatory system and lymphatic system at the same time, which is highly beneficial for moving toxins out of the body.

Historically exercise has been used to detox people addicted to alcohol and street drugs like meth, crack, and cocaine. The key component to this method is sweating while exercising on a treadmill. This protocol was used in conjunction with other treatments for the firefighters that responded to the 9/11 emergency, and for veterans that served during the Persian Gulf Wars.1,2

The Hubbard protocol, a physician-supervised program, is a classic example of an exercise-based detox program. It has been very successful in the recovery of people addicted to street drugs with documented results for mobilizing toxins stored in fat and enhancing their elimination. The protocol has long been established as safe,3 and demonstrates that detoxification reduces body burdens of PCBs, polybrominated biphenyl (PBBs), dioxins, various drugs, and pesticides.4,5,6 Two decades of reports on patient outcomes also show that this regimen can improve memory, cognitive functions, and immune parameters.

How long do you exercise to detox?

The goal is to move the blood, create body heat, sweat/perspire, and breathe hard. The length of time it takes to get there will be different but, if you cannot carry on a conversation while you are dancing, walking up and down stairs, running, biking, etc…. then you are doing it right. It may take some people 5 minutes, and others 40 minutes. But obviously, don’t overdo it, listen to what your body can handle. The important thing is to have a goal to go a little further every time until you get sweaty.

What to do after exercising

Take a shower as soon as you can after exercising. It is important to wash off all the toxins that you have just sweat out of your pores so that they don’t get reabsorbed. This includes washing your hair since your scalp also has pores. If you can’t shower off right away, then take a hot, wet washcloth with fragrance-free natural soap and wipe down as much of your body as you can.


Electrolyte replacement is important when sweating. Some good natural electrolyte “sports drinks” are available, but we caution against drinking sports drinks due to the high sugar content and additives, such as coloring, so always read the ingredients.

A better option for rehydration if you need electrolytes is small packets of effervescent minerals and vitamins that can be added to pure water, in addition to simple “rehydration” powder packets sold at pharmacies. The rehydration powder is created for children who have diarrhea but can be used by adults as well.

Instructions on how to use more complicated methods such as baths, sauna, sweat lodges and many other methods of detoxing can be found in our book: Toxic to Terrific: The step-by-step detox guide to safely remove dangerous toxins from your body and life.

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  1. Kerr K, et al. A Detoxification Intervention for Gulf War Illness: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, 2019, 16, 4143 doi:10.3390/ijerph16214143.
  2. Cecchini M, et. al. Health Status of Rescue Workers Improved After Sauna Detoxification. Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients. No. 523., April 2006.
  3. Hubbard, LR. Clear Body Clear Mind. Bridge Publications, 2002.
  4. Kerr K, et al. A Detoxification Intervention for Gulf War Illness: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health. 2019, 16, 4143 doi:10.3390/ijerph16214143 .
  5. Cecchini, M, Root, D, Rachunow, J, Gelb, P. Use of the Hubbard Sauna Detoxification Regimen to Improve the Health Status of New York City Rescue Workers Exposed to Toxicants. Townsend Letter for Doctors & Patients. April 2006, #273.
  6. Crinnion W. Results of a Decade of Naturopathic Treatment of Environmental Illness: A Review of Clinical Records. Journal of Naturopathic Medicine. Vol 7, No.2, p21 – 27.

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