The body has a natural detox system that uses both the kidneys and liver to rid your body of toxins. What should you do if you want to help your body and make eliminating toxins easier? Most detox diets encourage starvation or diuretics. These can be unsafe and can cause things like electrolyte imbalances.
You don’t have to take drastic measures and risk your health in order to cleanse and detox your system. If you’d like to help your body detox here are some important steps you can take. Remember, before starting any new diet or exercise regimen it is important to consult your physician.
Whole Food Diet
A clean diet is your best detox plan. Nutritious whole foods provide your body with what it needs and eliminating processed foods with artificial colors and flavors, fast food, fried food, alcohol, sugar and white flour helps heal the body and supports its natural detox processes.
In an interview with Elle magazine, Dr. Woodson Merrell, MD, chairman of the department of integrative medicine at Manhattan’s Beth Israel Medical Center says, “We detoxify by eating nutritious whole foods and by avoiding those laden with pesticides, preservatives, excess sugar, or saturated fats.” “Detox is not some condition of metabolic grace attained via extreme penance; it’s a process that unfolds in our cells every second of our lives, most obviously in the liver.”
A good detox starts with drinking water. It’s important to stay hydrated so your kidneys have plenty of water to process out toxins. Hydration also supports healthy bowel movements and digestion. The more water you drink the faster your kidneys can expel toxins. If you’re urinating every hour , it’s a sign that your level of hydration is good enough to gently cleanse your kidneys.
Electrolytes are minerals and salts that are responsible for many cellular processes. The primary electrolytes are sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium and these nutrients provide hydration for the body that in turn supports natural detoxification processes. If you’re not consuming a varied and balanced diet, you may develop one of the many electrolyte disorders.
Fresh Lemon juice
Lemon water or lemon tea is a primary ingredient featured in many detox diets. One reason for this is the high amount of nutrients that fresh lemon juice contains. One cup of fresh lemon juice has 9% of daily potassium, 8% of daily folate, 4% of daily magnesium, and 4% of fiber.
Lemon juice also gives you 187% of your daily vitamin C, a key antioxidant that fights free radicals and promotes healthy immunity. Since lemons are full of antioxidants, you may notice an increase in your skin clarity and a boost to your mood and energy.
Drinking warm water with fresh lemon juice upon waking provides key hydrating electrolytes, (more important upon waking since the body becomes dehydrated during sleep) and lemon juice promotes the production of key enzymes in the liver that assist in healthy digestion and supports the liver in purging toxins.
Along with containing vital nutrients, the acids in lemon juice allow your body to digest good food more slowly.
World of Tea
“Not only is tea full of antioxidants, it hydrates you (especially if it’s herbal) and fills you up,” says Ashley Karr, a research psychologist and wellness coach. “This means you will be less likely to overeat or eat the wrong things!” Keep in mind, the caffeine in tea is different from the caffeine in coffee—it’s gentler on your system. It’ll also give you a pick-me-up minus the jitters.
Exercise, a sauna, or a steam filled bathroom retreat helps you sweat toxins from your body.
Forbes Riley, creator of fitness product SpinGym who you may also remember co-hosting Jack LaLanne’s juicer infomercial, is a big fan of detoxing. It’s how she lost her pregnancy weight gain at the age of 42 after giving birth to twins. She suggests you use a sauna regularly. “There’s nothing more detoxing than sweating it out,” she says.
Soaking for 20 minutes in a hot bath with Epsom salts allows your skin to absorb the magnesium and other minerals and nutrients in the salt that promotes the body’s natural detox process.
Kale, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, collard greens, and cauliflower are high in antioxidants that support the body in fighting toxins
Berries And Colorful Fruits
The bright colored, red, blue and purple fruits and vegetables contain high levels of key antioxidants that help fight free radicals and activate key liver enzymes that help to “knock out” harmful substances in the body.
Vegetables are high in fiber that supports digestion, provide nutrients that support liver health and improve digestion. Give the fresh vegetable smoothies a try, your body will love it.
Garlic and onions are high in antioxidants that help the body fight free radicals and repel toxins,
Fibrous, non-leafy vegetables are rich in sulfur. Examples include:
- Cruciferous veggies7 such as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, mustard greens
- Alliums such as onions, shallots, garlic and leeks
- Edible stalks and stems such as celery, fennel and asparagus
By jump-starting these important detoxification enzymes, compounds in crucifers provide protection against cell mutations, cancer and numerous other harmful effects that would otherwise be caused by these toxins.
Turmeric and Green tea
The spice turmeric and 100% pure green tea supports the body’s detoxification pathways. And turmeric kills it in the detox game, thanks to its main antioxidant—curcumin, which lends the spice its golden color. Curcumin is also responsible for the countless benefits turmeric is associated with, such as detoxifying the liver, fighting inflammation and free radicals, boosting brainpower, and lowering cholesterol.
Eat Lean Protein
Protein helps maintain healthy levels of glutathione in the body, which is its main detoxification enzyme. Turkey, skinless chicken breasts and beans are good lean protein options.
Yogurt, kimchi, kefir, and sauerkraut contain natural probiotics, or good gut bacteria that help promote healthy digestion and help the body release toxins from microbes that dwell in the gut.
Love The Fibers
Fiber supports the body’s digestive systems and helps keep you regular, which in turn supports the body in its natural detoxification and cleansing processes, it comes in two forms.
The soluble fiber variety dissolves in water to form a gel in the digestive tract.
Main Types Of Soluble Fiber
- Beta glucans – obtained from barley, rye and oats
- Pectin – vegetables, fruits and legumes
- Natural gums – found in gum acacia, seaweed, and certain types of seeds
- Inulin – obtained from wheat products, vhicory, onions, and artichokes
Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and passes through the gut relatively unchanged.
Sources Of Insoluble Fiber
- Oat bran
- Flax seeds
Milk Thistle Herb
Silymarin in the milk thistle has been shown by research to help protect the liver from various industrial toxins, such as carbon tetrachloride. Milk thistle promotes healthy liver function because it helps to remove toxins.
If your diet lacks a well-rounded balance of vitamins and minerals, consider taking a multivitamin, as nutrients are key in supporting the body’s detoxification processes.
There are other herbs and vegetables that can be used for effective detoxification, but the above will give you an excellent results by holistically supporting your liver and kidney to get rid of toxins in your body.