Detox Day 7: Top 13 Detox Foods

Can you believe it’s the last day? What a super journey this has been! Now that you’re accustomed to inhaling so many of nature’s powerfoods (raw nuts, berries, quinoa, broccoli, kale, spinach, beans, lentils…), I thought a quick list of my top favorite 13 detoxing foods along with their top reasons why they’re so awesome would be a cool graduation gift. Try to incorporate at least FIVE of these every day from now on, and you’ll continue to feel like you have wings.

Wheatgrass Juice from mekonfarm.com

Wheatgrass Juice from mekonfarm.com

1. ALMONDS: Help remove impurities from your intestinal tract. Almond milk is a great dairy alternative to cow’s milk.

2. APPLES: Contain glucaric acid which helps your body get rid of estrogen-like chemicals and heavy metals.

3. AVOCADOS: Rich in healthy monounsaturated fat which doesn’t upset the proper balance of Omega-3’s to Omega-6’s. Contain glutathione which blocks 30 different carcinogens and helps the liver detoxify synthetic chemicals.

4. BEETS: Contain the compound betaine which lowers levels of several inflammatory markers and protects against liver damage. Also contain antioxidant betacyanin, which helps liver detoxify chemicals.

5. BLUEBERRIES: Super-rich in antioxidants including anthocyanins which stop free radical damage (free radical damage can lead to wrinkles and cancer tumor growth). Enhance glutathione production (see AVOCADOS).

6. CABBAGE:  Cleanses the digestive tract and contains powerful cancer-purging isothiocyanates. Eat raw in juices or salads as heat destroys isothiocyanates. Fermented cabbage (kim chi) is rich in natural probiotics.

7. GARLIC: Contains allicin which fights off harmful bacteria. Increases production of glutathione (see AVOCADOS). Garlic also cleanses the arteries, lowers high blood pressure, and cleanses mucous buildup in the lungs and sinuses.

8. GINGER: Eases nausea and digestion, but also promotes detoxification by speeding the movement of food through the intestines.

9. KALE: Rich in tons of anti-cancer compounds and flavonoids which reduce chronic inflammation and oxidative stress, but also contains a compound that jumpstarts the liver’s production of cleansing enzymes.

10. LEMONS: Super liver detoxifier and very alkalinizing: help restore the alkaline-acid balance of the body. Add 1/4 lemon to a glass of water every morning.

11. PARSLEY: Rich source of chlorophyll, a natural detoxifier. Raises glutathione levels (see AVOCADOS). Contains the volatile oil eugenol which is a strong anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic agent.

12. SEAWEED: Binds to heavy metals and radioactive waste (from medical tests and food grown in contaminated soil) for elimination. Rich source of iodine which is essential for thyroid hormone production and your body’s metabolism.

13. WHEATGRASS: Potent detoxifier, and richest edible source of chlorophyll which rebuilds bloodstream, nourishes tissues, and purifies the liver. High in oxygen which helps brain and body function at optimal levels (a pregnancy must!). Grow and grind your own, or buy as frozen cubes or powder, and add to juices or smoothies.

Good thing you’re going grocery shopping today! Thank you thank you for joining all of us on this better-you health trip. You are all shining green stars! xoxo

Raw Food 3-Day Recap

nutsWell, I *just about* survived 3 days of raw. I had one minor, and very conscious slip-up on Day 2: a handful of multigrain pita chips.

All in all, it went well and I felt very light and energized. I get such a rise out of trying new things and challenging myself to leave my cozy zone. To be honest, my biggest worry with 3 days of raw, was how I was going to curtail my nightly PB & banana open-face sandwich habit. During Detox days, I have natural PB on a rice cake with banana slices, which is completely easy. Turns out, a sliced green apple with cinnamon and a cup of tea is a delicious substitute. But also turns out that a return to my PB & banana open-face sandwich on Day 4 was complete and total heaven. Sorry raw!

So, what I actually really learned is that I wasn’t properly prepared for 3 days of raw. I figured I could handle 3 days of raw fruits, veggies, dried fruit, raw nuts and seeds, and smoothies without doing any extra grocery shopping or fancy new food prep. But, by Day 2, I got tired of the limited raw fruits and veggies I had on hand, felt unsettled, and grabbed pita chips. I also found that I was eating a ton of extra calories by snacking on nuts, seeds, and dried fruit all the time. As a dietitian, you acquire an inner calorimeter, with alarms. Those alarms kept going off!

In retrospect, I probably picked the 3 toughest days to try anything new–they were super busy and full of deadlines and extra tasks. I made green smoothies in my son’s preschool class (which were raw, and fun!, but I had less time to focus on my rawness). I didn’t even have time to juice, let alone make my scrumptious Pulp Crax. My breakfasts were fruit and a Larabar every day, and that felt like cheating, especially all 3 days!

I *did* try a raw soup recipe the first day: blended raw hemp milk, mushrooms, kale, raw cashews, hemp milk, smoke seasoning, and water. It was AMAZING on Day 1, but simply did not last in flavor for Day 2. I trashed the rest and had trail mix and salad that day. Followed by the aforementioned pita chips — my excuse is that I was at work and didn’t have enough other raw gear on hand.

I also tried (but haven’t yet perfected) raw kale chips in my oven, although I learned that my oven only goes as low at 170 degrees, which is technically too hot. Why did I garage sell that food dehydrator that I insisted upon as a high school graduation present!?

On the complete upside, I discovered my new favorite non-chocolate dessert: Medjool dates, pit removed, and stuffed with raw almond butter. OH. MY!!!!

So, next time, I will plan better, and take more advice from this Raw Pantry Essentials list. I didn’t realize I could’ve eaten Nori sheets. I have a 25-pack in my pantry and could’ve totally gone to town on those!!

Raw Diet: I am not done with you!

Anyone else try/ succeed/ learn?