What is a Detox?
What is a Detox? Short for detoxification is the body's natural, ongoing process of neutralizing or eliminating toxins from the body. Toxins are anything that can potentially harm body tissue, including waste products that result from normal cell activity, such as ammonia, lactic acid and homocysteine, and human-made toxins that we are exposed to in our environment, food, and water. The liver, intestines, kidneys, lungs, skin, blood and lymphatic systems work together to ensure that toxins are transformed (chemically) to less harmful compounds and excreted from the body. Although the best detox diet is primarily thought of as a treatment for alcohol or drug dependence, the term is also used to refer to a program of diet, herbs, and other methods of removing environmental and dietary toxins from the body.
There are many different types of detox diets. Generally, a detox diet is a short-term diet that:
- Minimizes the amount of chemicals ingested (for example, by eating organic food).
- Emphasizes foods that provide the vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants that the body needs for detoxification.
- Contains foods, such as high fiber foods and water that draw out and eliminate toxins by increasing the frequency of bowel movements and urination.
Is Detox Diet Right for you?
If you are considering the detox diet, it’s important to consult with your doctor prior before starting. People with certain health conditions such as anemia, diabetes and kidney disease, should either avoid this diet or perform detox only under the supervision of a health care provider. The detox diet is also unsafe for pregnant or nursing women.
How to Detox:
Body detoxification starts with a good cleansing diet that fuels cells with the necessary nutrients to detoxify your body naturally. A best detox diet is a short term diet, and can go for 3-21 days focused on removing toxins from the body. A detox diet allows our body to focus on self-healing to raise energy levels, stimulates digestive health, clears headaches, removes bloating, improves concentration and mood, avoids getting allergies, regains our natural ability to ward off colds and flu, and prevents premature aging and disease.
The best detox diet can be followed for 3 days, 5 days, 7 days or longer. People can continue with this diet with their normal lifestyle. The best detox diet eliminates dietary allergens, dietary toxins and chemicals, and foods that have inflammatory effect in the body. Processed foods are also minimized.
There are some points that you should keep in mind before starting the detox diet …
If you drink caffeinated beverages on regular basis, you may experience caffeine withdrawal at the start of your detox diet. To prevent headache, fatigue and other withdrawal symptoms, decrease your caffeine intake at least a week prior to start your detox diet. Switch to lower caffeine, like green tea or white tea.
What is a detox with drinking plenty of water to flush out toxins during your diet? Drinking lots of water keeps you hydrated and helps to flush out toxins. At least eight, 8oz of glasses of water per day.
Give your diet a mini-makeover. Some foods can interfere with the liver’s ability to detoxify your body, which could spoil your detox efforts. For the best detox diet results, practice on eliminating sugar, artificial sweeteners, trans-fats, refined carbohydrates, gluten, processed soy foods, alcohol and canned food products.
Plan your menu for the week and make time to grocery shop. If you don’t normally buy organic, look for local farmers’ markets, health food stores, or grocery stores with a good selection of organic foods.
Foods Include on a Detox Diet:
- Fresh or frozen fruits
- Unsweetened, natural juices.
- Dried fruits, unsweetened in limited amounts such as, cranberries, dates, raisins, gojiberries.
Vegetables thought to be particularly good detox foods include broccoli, cauliflower, broccoli sprouts, onions, garlic, artichokes, beets and dark green leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens and Swiss chard.
Some people are sensitive to family of vegetables, which includes tomatoes, bell peppers, egg plants and potatoes and may wish to avoid them.
Grains and Starches:
- Rice especially brown rice.
- Wild rice
- Whole wheat pasta, noodles, breads.
Beans and Legumes:
- Split yellow and green peas.
- Adzuki beans
Nuts and Seeds:
- Sunflower seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Sesame seeds
- Chia seeds
- Choose unsalted raw nuts and seeds.
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Chia oil
- Almond Oil
- Avocado Oil
- Coconut Oil
- Safflower, sesame, sunflower oils in limited amounts.
- Milks made from allowed foods such as rice milk, almond milk, and fresh coconut milk.
- Herbal teas.
- Green Tea
- Lemon water
- Unsweetened juice from allowed fruits and vegetables.
- Brown rice syrup
- Real maple syrup
- Raw honey
- Black strap molasses
- Apple cider vinegar
- Bragg’s Liquid amino
- Black olives
- Lemons and limes
- Fresh and dried herbs and spices
- Carob powder
- Sea salt
- Wheat free tamari (in small amounts)
- Organic Turkey
- Organic chicken
- Cold water fish
- Wild game such as venison, buffalo, ostrich.