Toxins are an unfortunate, inevitable fact of life. We are exposed to toxins through the air we breathe, the food we eat, the water we drink and the chemicals we use to print copies, wash our cars and disinfect our homes. Over time, toxic substances take a toll on our overall health and make us vulnerable to illness and serious diseases.
To help mitigate some of the dangerous effects of toxins, it’s important to regularly consume foods that help cleanse your body. Fortunately many of the foods you need to detox your body are as near as your refrigerator or pantry. Here are just a few of the best detox foods:
Beets: Packed with antioxidants and fiber, beets top the list of the best detox foods. They contain betaine, a compound that protects against liver damage and helps the liver process fats. Add thinly sliced beets to a sandwich, serve them as a side dish, or use them to add flavor, color and texture to salads.
Garlic: The sulfur-rich compounds in garlic fight harmful bacteria and boost the body’s ability to detox by increasing the production of glutathione, which is needed to eliminate toxins. Garlic should be eaten raw and must be chopped or crushed in order to release the beneficial compounds.
Artichokes: This spiky green staple has been used in many cultures for hundreds of years to cleanse the liver and purify the blood. Artichokes contain two key phytonutrients (cynarin and silymarin) which are among nature’s best detoxifying agents.
Apples: Known for their ability to “keep the doctor away” apples contain glucaric acid, which helps rid the body of chemicals and heavy metals. They are high in fiber which soaks up toxins and waste so they can be eliminated through the digestive process. Keep an apple handy at your desk for a health-boosting, nutritious snack.
Olive oil: Hippocrates was the first healer to recognize the health benefits associated with olive oil. It is an effective tool for flushing out the liver and is particularly helpful in the prevention of gall stones. Make it go-to cooking oil and savor the fact that it’s on the list of the best detox foods.
Broccoli: Cruciferous vegetables are nutritional powerhouses and broccoli is particularly potent. Broccoli sprouts are especially important because they contain glucoraphanin which accelerates the body’s ability to detox from environmental pollutants.
Choose locally grown organic vegetables and products when possible. Certified organic vegetables are grown in chemical-free environments that support sustainable farming initiatives. Locally grown produce is healthier because vegetables and fruits lose much of their nutritional value when they are transported hundreds of miles. Opt for natural cleaning products and use air purifiers to mitigate pollutants in the air in your home and office. Good luck, good health!