The holidays are over and we are faced with a brand new year. Often at this time we find ourselves looking for a new nutrition or training program as a reset to better habits. Detoxing continues to be an option many people turn to. Detox diets often come in the form of teas, pills and powders and promise increased energy and weight loss. These detox diets are costly, have limited research behind them and often provide temporary (if any) changes.
Lucky for us we can actually get a full body detox totally free! Our bodies have the amazing ability to detox from the inside out with the liver, kidneys and colon playing a big role in this. A well balanced diet and consistent exercise program support a healthy body that allows these organs to function optimally. When it comes to detox diets, they often claim to offer drastic results in a short period of time. This is a big warning sign to stay away. Lasting change comes with a ‘slow and steady’ approach. Yes, dropping 10 pounds in 7 days can be appealing, but the other side of the story is regaining that 10 pounds, and then some, once the detox has ended. So what is the perfect detox diet? My advice is to save the money on the costly detox products, and put that into a customized training program and whole foods to support a healthy body. Click here to get your training program today.
Whole foods are the way to go when trying to get your body to work with you and feel better. Think of eating foods as close to the natural form as possible to do this. Here are some tips to ensure you’re getting nutrient dense foods that support the natural detox of your body.
Vegetables & Fruit
1. Include dark green vegetables each day (spinach, kale, broccoli, romaine lettuce.
2. Include orange vegetables each day (carrots, sweet potato, squash).
3. Choose vegetables and fruits from a variety of colours over juice (and limit juice to ½ cup (125 ml)/day).
4. Choose vegetables more than fruits to meet the recommended number of servings.
1. Choose whole grain breads, pastas, crackers and oatmeal more often.
2. Include a variety of grain products such as barley, bulgur, quinoa, brown rice, and oats to increase fiber intake.
3. Choose breakfast cereals that are lower in sugar and higher in fiber.
Milk & Alternatives
1. Drink lower fat milk such as 1% or 2% or fortified unsweetened soy/almond milk to ensure adequate Vitamin D and Calcium intake.
2. Choose lower fat yogurt that is plain or low in added sugars.
3. Include different cheeses for a variety (cottage cheese, hard, soft).
Meat & Alternatives
1. Choose lean meats like turkey, chicken, or lean ground beef rather than meat with higher amounts of fats.
2. Include beans, lentils and tofu more often.
3. Have fish such as tuna, salmon, or trout at least twice each week.
4. Natural peanut butter and nut butters are a good way to include protein at breakfast or a snack.
Drink 1.5 – 2 L of fluid per day (6-8 cups) daily. Water is your best option. Urine color can help determine level of hydration and the body’s natural detox process: light yellow (adequate hydration), dark yellow (dehydrated).
Make sure to get enough fiber because it supports comfortable and regular bowel movements and keeps the gut healthy. Aim for 25 grams of fiber each day. Simply choosing whole foods and drinking plenty of water is a great place to start to allow the body to go through its naturally build in ability to detoxify. So instead of spending your hard earned dollars on a detox pill or tea, head to your grocery store and fill your cart with what your body really needs.