by Sarah Penney
At this time of year, ‘detox’ and ‘cleansing’ are the buzzwords of the season. So what is a detox, and what can it do for you? Detoxification is the body’s natural process of eliminating toxins. A ‘detox diet’ or ‘cleanse’ can help alleviate a sluggish metabolism, cravings, and feelings of lethargy. It can be easy if you follow a few simple dietary guidelines, and there are lots of local stores, cafes and bakeries offering healthy food options.
The foundation of a detox diet is to avoid foods that our body commonly reacts to, while decreasing our intake of food additives that may be burdening our natural detox systems. Unfortunately, it’s the tasty stuff that should be eliminated, such as: the majority of processed or packaged products, refined sugar, caffeine, dairy, gluten, wheat and food additives. Detox-friendly foods include nutrient dense fruits and veggies, whole grains, legumes, lean meats and fish. Experimenting with new recipes can transform a detox into a tasty opportunity to try healthier options. Natural detoxes are also a great way to break cycles of sugar and caffeine dependence.
When you’re compiling your list of cleaning duties this spring, be mindful of your body. Nourishing your body in a healthy way will improve your overall wellbeing and mental state.
Detox diets may not be safe for everyone, and some require supervision. Consult your healthcare provider before starting a detox diet if you have diabetes, low blood sugar, a heart condition, an eating disorder, any other chronic conditions or if you are pregnant/nursing.
Top 10 foods To Eat During A Detox
Greens – broccoli, cabbage, kale and bok choy, for instance, contain sulfur, which boosts antioxidants in the liver.
Onions, Garlic – high in sulfur, essential for detoxifying the liver.
Avacado – this creamy fruit contains healthy fats that boost good cholesterol and compounds that may help protect against, and repair, liver injury.
Turmeric – this anti-inflammatory spice may also increase important liver enzymes used in detoxification.
Lemon – bitter flavors help stimulate detoxification through digestive function and elimination.
Green Tea – has antioxidants that support detoxification. Steep your tea bag for several minutes.
Walnuts – high levels of an amino acid called l-arginine help support the liver.
Berries – well known for their high antioxidant levels.
Beets – high in antioxidants and minerals like zinc and copper, which support liver function and protect liver cells.
Sauerkraut – high in probiotics, helps promote healthy bowel function.
Local Dining Guide
399 John St, Burlington
What’s available: gluten-free vegan restaurant featuring local and organic plant based meals, baked goods and beverages.
The Naked Sprout
4040 Palladium Way, Unit 11, Burlington
What’s available: lunch or dinner, enjoy vegan, plant-based meals, both cooked and raw. Plus, dairy-free desserts, juices and smoothies.
Where to Shop
2300 Fairview St, Burlington
The Organic Garage
579 Kerr St, Oakville
Whole Foods Market
301 Cornwall Rd, Oakville