Gentle is the New Detox
Three Simple Suggestions
Do you remember when detoxing was difficult? That headachy, tired feeling that accompanied so many days of your detox? Thankfully, those days are over. We now know that gentle detoxing is very effective and much kinder to our body. With this method, we use food and herbs to support our body’s natural detoxification cycle. No harsh products, no harsh symptoms.
Our body detoxifies every single day. Our liver plays a major role in orchestrating this process and will move any unwanted toxins out of the body through our kidneys, digestive system, lungs and skin. But your liver would like some support.
Certain families of veggies, important herbs, lots of water, and some gentle exercise is the recipe for a good and gentle detox. And after a few weeks, you should feel more energy, have fewer headaches, sleep better and have clearer skin. Not a bad result for a few simple changes.
There are three families of veggies that are particularly helpful for detoxification:
Cruciferous family – broccoli, kale, cauliflower, cabbage
This family contains sulphurs and indole-3-carbinol that your liver loves. Enjoy 3 servings 4 times per week.
Allium family – onions, garlic, leeks, shallots
This family contains lots of sulphurs—which your liver needs to detox—as well as other important nutrients like selenium and allicin. Enjoy 4 servings 5 times per week.
Leafy greens – kale, chard, collard greens, spinach (cooked is preferred)
This family is high in chlorophyll which can be a blood cleanser. They can also help your body neutralize heavy metals, pesticides and chemicals that may be in our food.
Adding specific herbal teas to your routine can help support your full-body detox. Herbs like:
Red Clover – This lovely herb helps move toxins out of the body, while also supporting our immune system’s garbage collectors, the macrophages. These immune cells engulf and digest any worn-out or toxic cells in the body.
Blessed Thistle – Bitter tasting herbs may not be our favourite, but our digestive system loves them. This herb has a mild bitterness that stimulates bile, releasing any fat soluble toxins stored in the gallbladder. The bile also helps to digest important anti-inflammatory fats.
Watercress – This is an herb that can be found in a great salad or detox tea blend. It’s a great friend to the liver, supporting phases I and II of the detox cycle, while also containing lots of important nutrients like vitamins C & E, and iron.
Detoxing doesn’t need to be difficult or miserable. Support your body’s daily whole body detox with a few simple tools and watch your energy rebound!
Lisa Kilgour is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and a faculty member at the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. Lisa believes how we care for ourselves — our emotions, gut flora, sleep, stress, and of course, the food we put into our bodies — all work together to help us heal.