Healthy Living

Healthy Detox: 5 Power Foods To Detox Your Body Without A Juice Cleanse

Woman buying fresh food
Detox without the juicing by adding these nutritional power foods — from artichokes to onions — to your regular diet. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

We have all tried or either know someone who has been on a juice cleanse, fasted, or lived off raw food. These diets have become a “cool thing” in our fitness-focused society when we want to make a “clean break” after drinking one too many pumpkin spice lattes and after shamelessly indulging in anything and everything with fall’s ubiquitous flavor. Rather than starving ourselves with broccoli, kale, and cucumber smoothies, we can add a few nutritional power foods into our regular diet to boost our energy levels and cleanse our bodies at the same time.

You may think you don’t need a detox diet, but it’s time to reconsider. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each person has over 140 toxic chemicals circulating throughout their body. These chemicals are linked to many chronic problems and illnesses, such as migraine headaches, chronic fatigue, and allergies, among many others. However, these illnesses can be moderated by creating a balance in your lifestyle and environment.

You can cleanse your body and not give up food by adding a few everyday power foods — no juicing necessary. The maintenance of a super-clean diet can help program the body to cleanse automatically using multiple organs that do that on a daily basis.

So, remove what’s unnatural in your diet and add fresh and real foods to nutritionally support your body and naturally detox it. This detox does not require a special diet book or trip to the health food store; these power foods can be found at your local grocery.

1. Apples

An apple a day not only keeps the doctor away but also toxins. Apples are rich in pectin, a soluble fiber that helps remove food additives and metals from your system, according to the Apple Detox by Leslie Kenton, an author and former beauty editor of Harpers & Queen. We all pick up heavy metals such as lead and aluminum from the city air, food, and water.

The buildup of heavy metals in the body can interfere with the body’s metabolic functioning. For example, mercury tends to destroy the levels of white blood cells in the immune system. Cadmium displaces zinc, essential for many of the body’s enzyme systems, and renders them inefficient and even inactive. High levels of cadmium can age people prematurely, interfere with mental processes, suppress immunity, and contribute to depression.

2. Artichokes

Most people’s favorite part of the artichoke is the heart, but the leaves are the source of most of its health benefits and anti-aging properties. Artichokes are ranked as the vegetable with the highest antioxidant levels, says Healthline, specifically high in phytonutrients in the form of cynarin and silymarin. These phytonutrients help aid digestion, liver problems, gallbladder function, and cholesterol levels. Silymarin and cynarin help the liver process toxins and support the liver’s ability to break down fatty foods, respectively.

3. Beets

This brightly colored vegetable is ideal for removing toxins and other harmful substances form the body. This allows it to function without experiencing the side effects many of these toxins can cause. This high-antioxidant vegetable not only contains cancer-fighting betacyanin, but also magnesium, iron, zinc, and calcium to help the body flush out the toxins. Beets are helpful for liver toxicity, and bile ailments such as jaundice, hepatitis, food poisoning, diarrhea or vomiting, according to bodymindetox.com.

Beets are also known as a “blood purifier” and “blood builder,” which helps regenerate and reactivate red blood cells and supplies fresh oxygen to the body.

4. Ginger

Ginger not only gives your taste buds a “kick,” but it can kickstart your metabolism and flush out waist. The spice’s healing and detoxifying properties may be due to its high concentration of gingerol and shoda. These properties help sustain digestive enzymes, which neutralize acids, supporting the digestive process. Chewing on ginger root is one way to reap the benefits of this medicinal spice.

A 2012 study published in the journal Metabolism found ginger consumption may help keep your appetite in check. Ginger did not have any effects on glucose, insulin, lipids, or inflammatory markers. Ginger could play a potential role in weight management.

5. Onions

Onions are a popular kitchen item that are tasty and healthy. This vegetable has sulfur-containing amino acids, which effectively detox the body. They can soak up arsenic, cadmium, lead, mercury, and tin in contaminated foods, according to a study published in the International Journal of Environment and Pollution. Onions can inhibit the activity of macrophages — specialized white blood cells that play a key role in the body’s immune defense system, including the trigger of inflammatory responses.

Add these five power foods to your diet to nutritionally feed your body to good health.

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