You don’t have to be on a cleanse to activate your body’s natural cleansing power. In fact, all you have to do is eat the rainbow!
Mother Earth has given us a bounty of body-cleaning foods that come in red, green, purple, white, yellow and beyond! These foods contain a host of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that purify the liver and empower your body’s natural digestive processes, creating a stronger, more efficient you!
As many doctors now know, 80% of your immune system lives in your gut. Here are some naturally toxic-fighting foods that will keep that gut (and immune system) strong for years to come:
We all know the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” It turns out the saying rings true! Loaded with fiber pectin, apples help detox metals and other food additives from your body. But don’t forget to eat the skin. That’s where each apple hides most of its fiber. Also, a Washington State University study found that Granny Smith apples promote the growth of friendly bacteria in our colon. They actually helped obese mice lose weight – how neat is that?! Perhaps they can do the same for us.
Beets are simply a powerhouse food. Packed with Vitamins B3, B6 and C, they help our liver and gall bladder break down toxins. Loaded with minerals like zinc, magnesium, and iron, beets empower stronger digestion and elimination of foods. What form is best? Raw or shredded beets offer the strongest digestive benefit. But if you want a more palatable form, try pure beet juice mixed with a little orange or apple juice to balance out the flavor.
Cilantro is a remarkable heavy-metal detoxifier and is able to remove mercury and aluminum from where it is stored in the adipose, or fat, tissues. This delicious herb is also able to mobilize mercury rapidly from the brain and central nervous system by separating it from the fat tissue and moving into the blood & lymph system. When combined with spirulina, it can help remove heavy metals from the body completely. Add an extra heaping to your pico de gallo every week, and you can enjoy more fresh fish in your diet!
Want proof that turmeric is a detoxing power? Just look to India. The nation has the lowest dementia rates in the world and consumes 25-50 mg of turmeric every day. This beautifully yellow root prevents inflammation of the brain and, therefore, helps to ward off all brain-related illnesses, such as multiple sclerosis, dementia, Parkinson’s disease and more.
Also, did you know that consuming just one teaspoon of turmeric powder with every meal can help you slim down? Some people add it to their tea. Others mix it in with their fruit smoothies. I like to sauté mine with onion and garlic or add a bit extra to my mustard. Who knew eating a hot dog could be so healing?
The Japanese have a leg up on the rest of us when it comes to increasing the alkaline level of their bodies. Why? Seaweed is rich in antioxidants that strengthen our digestive track. They also contain alginic acid, which helps to absorb toxins. Plus, the iodine that is naturally found in seaweed is essential for our thyroid health. With so many people opting for sea salt instead of iodine-infused table salt, many of us lack the iodine our thyroids need to perform well. Iodine also has been shown to reduce a woman’s chances of developing breast cancer. Sushi please!
Not only are artichokes packed with Vitamin C, K and a ton of antioxidants, but each one contains 10 grams of fiber. This fiber helps your body increase its bile production naturally, which breaks down your foods more quickly and acts as a mild diuretic. Some studies also show that artichokes have the power to regenerate liver tissue. Spinach and artichoke dip anyone?
Don’t underestimate the healing power of garlic. For hundreds of years, it has been seen as a natural wonder drug and used as medicine long before modern medicine existed. Raw garlic has been proven to prevent cancer, lower cholesterol, boost your immune system, reverse high blood pressure and overcome fatigue. As a detoxing food, garlic supports many liver enzymes and is packed with the mineral sulfur, which supports metabolism and helps your body process sugars and carbs.
This green machine of a vegetable increases glutathione levels in the body, which help the liver eliminate toxins from the body. Also, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower have been linked with a longer life span. When looking for digestive help, don’t forget to eat the stems! This rougher part of broccoli, or the “trunk,” is just as important as the “tree.”
9. Green Tea/Matcha
Eisai, a famous Japanese Buddhist monk, described matcha as a “healing medicine for a healthy life; an art for a long life.” Matcha is the purest and most potent form of green tea, which is rich with amino acids, vitamins, flavonoids and essential minerals. Not only can it enhance your mental focus, but green tea, or matcha, increases liver function and hydrates the body which helps with digestion and all other body processes.
By stimulating the release of Vitamin C into the body, lemons or lemon juice convert toxins into a water-soluble form that can be easily eliminated from the body. They also purify our blood! Just a glass of warm water and lemon in the morning or night can be enough to sooth your tummy troubles and jump-start a poorly functioning digestive system.
Much like garlic, cabbage contains a large amount of sulfur which stimulates the liver’s detoxifying power. However, not all cabbage varieties pack the same punch. Purple cabbage is the best source of fiber and water-soluble Vitamin C. It also retains more of its Vitamin C after being cooked than green or white cabbage.
Beyond the incredible digestive benefits of all of these foods is the added benefit of overall vitality.
These foods are pure, whole and just what your body needs to keep you alert and focused all day long. Incorporate these into your weekly routine, and you’ll be sure to feel more energized, happy and inspired to live life to the fullest.