Detoxifying for life, a healthier life.
Detoxifying for life, a healthier life.
Let’s admit, detoxing has become trendy, especially with vegan and plant-based eating on the rise, people are definitely opening up more and more to all the channels of ‘health hacking’, especially with all the different fasting formulas and superfoods that are out there. Although detox was coined and primarily understood 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.
While we understand that these detox diets and programs have a seductive appeal, your body is fully equipped to handle toxins and other unwanted substances, it is a part of the natural functioning of the body. Detoxification starts in your liver, to simplify it is done in two phases: first, it converts toxic substances to highly reactive metabolites and then secondly, excretes these toxins from the body. This detox process is also supported by the lungs, kidneys, gut system and our largest organ, the skin.
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, including human-made toxins that we are exposed to in our environment, food and water. These toxins can impact these organs both acutely and cumulatively. More dangerous are the persistent, low-grade toxins such as residue consumed regularly on conventionally grown fruits and vegetables, the air we breathe and prescription drugs — can make those toxins accumulate, overwhelming your body’s defenses. Since the majority of reactions aren’t immediate it can be challenging to see the connection between chronic low-grade toxicity and struggle with weight loss, for example.
Effective detoxification to improve overall health demands reducing or eliminating what creates a toxic load on the one end, on the other is to support that natural body function by giving your body everything it requires to optimally detoxify.
Food is the paramount way to do that since we detoxify constantly and we eat several times daily and the very organs responsible for healthy detox and balance requires a good amount of diverse macro and micronutrients that are not accessible in variety through supplementation, so food!
So, where to begin:
Before we even begin to add foods, it is imperative to remove foods that interfere with detoxification, make you more toxic, increase inflammation and/or result in food sensitivities- which can also stall weight loss, and exacerbate toxicity by making your gut more permeable and allowing toxins to enter the bloodstream. Gluten, dairy, caffeine and soy are among the common food sensitivities.
What to cut down or cut out:
Foods high in fructose, like fizzy cooldrinks, candies, commercial fruit juices and cleanses. Research shows this simple sugar can become a key contributor to chronic diseases including obesity. Fructose heightens problems including chronic inflammation and oxidative stress, which both contribute to disease.
Alcohol is another exacerbator since 90% of alcohol is metabolized in your liver. Excessive or regular drinking has been shown to lead to an endless amount of health complications since it
can severely damage your liver function by causing fat buildup, inflammation, and scarring. The liver is then unable to function adequately and perform its necessary tasks, including filtering waste and other toxins from your body.
Avoiding trans fats and damaged fats, found in processed foods with “partially hydrogenated” in the ingredients, deep-fried foods or foods cooked in unstable oil- mostly found in fast food outlets.
What to eat to support the process:
Natural fats and oils like extra virgin olive oil and organic coconut oil provide energy for the detox and biotransformation processes, like the B-well Extra Virgin Olive Oil, B-well Cooking Olive Oil and B-well Canola and Olive Blend Oil. Unsaturated clean oils like the non-GMO B-well Pure Canola, which also have a boost of Omega-3 fatty acids which help with detox due to its excellent anti-inflammatory properties.
There are numerous studies showing whole foods including cruciferous vegetables, berries, garlic, and spices like turmeric can help your body detoxify through various pathways. Foods high in antioxidants help protect the body from oxidative stress from free radical production, especially amplified by pollutants like alcohol, tobacco smoke and poor diet, all of which hinder natural detoxification too.
Paired with protein and quality fat, these whole foods create an optimal food plan to detoxify and lose weight, especially organic plant foods. It is also highly recommended to always select the highest-quality animal foods whenever possible.
So here is a list of some of the best detoxifying foods and food groups to assist in achieving just that:
- Berries (like blackberries, Goji berries, cranberries, raspberries, blueberries)
- Citrus (like lemons, grapefruit, oranges, limes)
- Cacao (dark chocolate)
- Spices like Turmeric, cloves, cumin, ginger and garlic
- Root Veg (like Beetroot, Onions, Carrot, butternut, pumpkin)
- Leafy greens (like broccoli, kale, spinach, cabbage, bok choy)
- Superfoods (moringa, spirulina, chlorella, kelp, baobab)
Natural oils and fats
- B-well Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- B-well Olive and Canola Blend oil
- B-well Fry-Well (good for frying at high heats without denaturing oil)
- B-well Pure Canola Oil
- B-welll Canola Mayonnaise
- Organic coconut oil
- Nuts (like almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, pecan nuts)
- Legumes (like chickpeas, lentils, beans)
- Grains (like buckwheat, quinoa, couscous, millet, barley, amaranth, spelt)
- Green tea
- Peppermint, fennel, aniseed, rooibos
Here are just some of the best foods for detox, it is important to remember to feed the body in balance always, especially since diversifying our foods diversifies the essential macro, micro and phytonutrients needed for our organs, especially the detoxifying ones. Also, to always remember that the body requires water to flush and assist in the digestion process, stay active and get enough sleep as the well-being of the body relies on these mechanisms to function smoothly and optimally.