By Cat, Feb 4, 2019; updated Feb 8, 2019, Dec 29, 2019 (image from Organic Consumer’s Association, used with permission)
I am strongly opposed to use of the plant-killer glyphosate, because of the harm it does to our bodies from intake of GMO foods, and from its use as a desiccant before harvesting grain crops. Also because of the harm it does to our soil and environment.
Now I have some good news: you can detox your body from glyphosate, using several methods. This article is mainly about using a simple daily dose of glycine (an amino acid) to detox, and how to test for glyphosate levels in your body.
4/20/23 update: I’ve saved an interesting Mercola article on additional benefits of glycine; see Mercola-Articles / Supps & Herbs > Mercola Articles / Supps & Herbs > Glycine-IncrLongevity-DecrDepression_MCL_042023.pdf. I will add glycine powder to my daily smoothie, to see if it helps me.
- Includes: 1. Glycine and glyphosate, and detox methods; 2. Testing methods for glyphosate levels you body
- See also: 1. Natural Healing Remedies Menu; 2. The EssentiaList articles on Glyphosate (written by Cat)
- Printable pdf version of this article: How to Detox Glyphosate from your Body (pdf, 020919 update)
Glycine and glyphosate
The main way glyphosate harms our bodies, is by substituting for glycine in our body’s peptides and proteins (such as enzymes, collagen, etc.). (1A, 2) That is, glyphosate is an analog of the amino acid, glycine. The chemical formulas are (note the similarities as indicated in purple-bold) (3):
- glycine amino acid is: H‐NH‐CH2‐COOH;
- glyphosate is: H2(PO3)-CH2‐NH‐CH2‐COOH
This similarity allows glyphosate to take glycine’s place in peptides and proteins, causing all kinds of havoc. Glycine is found in all parts of the body; for example, it is part of collagen and gelatin. Substitution by glyphosate can easily explain links with (2):
“diabetes, obesity, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pulmonary edema, adrenal insufficiency, hypothyroidism, Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease, prion diseases, lupus, mitochondrial disease, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, neural tube defects, infertility, hypertension, glaucoma, osteoporosis, fatty liver disease and kidney failure.”
How to detox from glyphosate
The good news: you can detox your body from toxic glyphosate, by increasing your dietary intake of glycine. Your body builds new peptides and proteins every day to replace aging ones, or for new uses. An easy way to ensure your body uses glycine and not glyphosate is by flooding it with glycine. Meanwhile, the aging peptides/proteins containing glyphosate are flushed from your body.
Taking glycine supplementally can be very effective. Here are two suggestions:
- add glycine powder to a smoothie, shake, or fresh veggie juices (such as for a juice fast – see below);
- use it as an alternative sweetener for coffee, tea, and other beverages, because it is slightly sweet.
Per Mercola’s article (1A), “Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt recommends taking 1 teaspoon (4 grams) of glycine powder twice a day for a few weeks and then lower the dose to one-fourth teaspoon (1 gram) twice a day. This forces the glyphosate out of your system, allowing it to be eliminated through your urine.”
Or you can take collagen supplementally, because it is an excellent source of glycine.
CAUTION: Be sure the source of collagen is from grass-fed/pasture-raised meat sources. That is, avoid conventionally raised livestock, whose bodies – and their meat – are heavily contaminated with glyphosate (from Roundup-resistant soy and grain-feed).
IMPORTANT NOTE: Using glycine to detox will not work for other brands of herbicides/pesticides, unless they too contain glycine in their structure.
Cat’s testing note: I have not yet tried this detox method, but I will do that soon, after getting both a hair analysis and radionics tests (see Testing, below) to determine my starting levels, and will report my results over time.
Other detox methods and helpers:
Easy Health Options (8) recommends first doing a pre-detox of your intestines using Miralax to create liquid stools. They also recommend sweating in a sauna, and doing a liver detox with specific herbs and supplements.
A veggie-juice fast such as that offered by Wellness Education Center (WEC) in Kalispell helps with many different detox needs; I would recommend doing this glycine detox along with the WEC fast (add glycine powder to the juices). See also my Veggie-Juice Fast Menu for more about this fast.
Adequate dietary folate (vitamin B9), or a good folate supplement – not folic acid – helps with glyphosate and heavy metal detox (1B)
Bonuses with increasing glycine intake:
Impact on glutathione:
One of the most important peptides containing glycine is glutathione, a major antioxidant and detox agent made by the body, and essential for the liver’s detox ability. Glutathione is comprised of three amino acids: glycine, L-glutamine, and L-cysteine. When you take glycine supplementally, you help increase glutathione production, which improves your ability to detox toxic substances.
If glyphosate has taken glycine’s place in glutathione, that lessens your body’s ability to detox, not only from glyphosate, but from many other toxins as well. By flooding your body with glycine, you have a double-impact: restoring glycine to peptides/proteins, and restoring glutathione’s ability to detox your body from the damage created by glyphosate.
Impact on glycine/methionine balance in our bodies:
According to Chris Masterjohn, PhD. (10), “maintaining proper dietary balance between [glycine and methionine] is also important because too much methionine represses glycine. The former is “especially abundant in eggs, dairy, meat, poultry, and fish. Glycine is especially abundant in skin and bones.” Unfortunately many of us avoid skin and bones in our meals; “for example, skinless, boneless chicken breast is rich in methionine, but the glycine-rich skin and bones have been removed.”
For those who don’t eat enough skin and bones (as in stock and bone-broth), increasing glycine intake can help restore the balance and benefits of both, noting that (10):
— Methionine helps prevent fatty liver disease and improves mental flexibility. It can help cool our anxiety or lift us from depression;
— Glycine helps stabilize our blood sugar, and helps to prevent us from drifting into endless distractions. It promotes healthy sleep, and it revitalizes our skin and bones.
Glycine supplement examples
Here are a few you can check out. Go to iherb(dot)com (link disguised), and search for the following codes:
- NOW-00225 for NOW-brand glycine powder
- CAR-06835 for Carlson’s-brand glycine powder
- NOW-00107 for NOW-brand glycine in capsules
- THR-51202 for Thorne-brand glycine in capsules
- SOL-01370 for Solgar-brand glycine in capsules
I recommend the powder because it is easier to adjust the amount you take.
Another form of glycine is its salt form, such as magnesium glycinate, but I am still researching its ability to detox glyphosate.
Testing for glyphosate levels in your body
We are all exposed to glyphosate – it’s unavoidable because it is everywhere. Even certified Organic foods are contaminated by drift from nearby spraying. We were safe from major drift, here in NW Montana, until local farmers started growing GMO canola. However, if you or your neighbors use Roundup as a weed killer, that is another source. So you may as well assume you have enough glyphosate to be concerned.
You can minimize your exposure to glyphosate by preparing all your meals using foods you grow/raise yourself, but in this day and age, that is difficult.
There are several recommended tests for your body; each provides information for a specific range of exposure over time (4a,5,6):
- Hair Testing shows your exposure to pesticides over a period of 90-120 days;
- Urine Testing shows your exposure for approximately 14-21 days; and
- Blood Testing shows your exposure for 2-3 days.
- Breast Milk Testing if you are nursing (exposure time not provided) (7)
Hair Testing has several advantages (6):
- Easy collection
- Easy transport
- Enables continuous cost effective bio-monitoring over a year: 4 samples vs 100 for blood vs 26 for urine
You can also have your water tested, as it is one source of exposure close to home.
- Detox Project offers:
- hair testing (Glyphosate test includes glyphosate, AMPA, and glufosinate); other pesticide tests are also available (4b),
- food and water testing (4c)
- Great Plains Lab offers both urine and water testing (5)
Energy testing methods for glyphosate toxicity:
These methods are controversial and declared as shams by conventional medicine practitioners, but I have found them to be helpful and accurate, and will use them to evaluate my glyphosate toxicity, in addition to the more conventional hair test (above).
- Radionics, a form of energy testing available at our local Swan Valley Herbs store. It doesn’t provide the level in p.p.b. (parts per billion) like the hair, urine or blood testing; rather in relative numbers. The higher the number, the heavier the load of glyphosate.
- Body Talk and/or NAET (Nambudripad’s Allergy Elimination Techniques) and/or use muscle testing to determine if a substance is a problem, and if yes, how serious the problem might be. This too is not measured in p.p.b.; rather in whether your arm muscles are strong or weak to the substance or question asked. My acupuncturist (9) practices NAET.
- Journal of Biological Physics and Chemistry: tonu.org/tonu/MyFiles/MF021-Glyphosate-V.pdf
- Detox Project:
- Five Things You Need to Know About Glyphosate Testing: detoxproject.org/5-things-you-need-to-know-about-glyphosate-testing
- Testing for pesticides in hair: detoxproject.org/testing/pesticides-in-hair
- Testing food and water: detoxproject.org/testing/glyphosate-test-home-food
- Great Pains Lab: greatplainslaboratory.com/glyphosate-test
- Sott: sott.net/article/398589-Human-hair-testing-finds-high-levels-of-glyphosate
- Natural News: naturalnews.com/050658_glyphosate_testing_Roundup_contamination_carcinogen.html
- Easy Health Options: easyhealthoptions.com/testing-treating-body-glyphosate/
- Steve Martinez Acupuncture, Kalispell MT: stevemartinezacupuncture.net
- Christ Masterjohn: chrismasterjohnphd.com/balancing-methionine-and-glycine-in-foods-the-database/