Many diet programs boast quick-fix detoxes. Juice cleanses and “skinny tea” laxatives promise rapid weight loss and vibrant energy — but they can leave you feeling anything but energized. The truth is that detoxifying your body does not have to mean following unsustainable crash diets and buying unnecessary supplements.
Our bodies are programmed to eliminate toxins through complex metabolic pathways. So the question, really, is: How do we optimize our body’s everyday functions?
Research shows that a whole-foods diet free of processed fare may be your best bet for a successful cleanse. Opt for a plan with a variety of vegetables and fruits — especially digestion-boosting, anti-inflammatory foods, including cruciferous vegetables, berries, turmeric, garlic, and onions, which will aid the vital detoxification systems in your liver.
These nutrient-rich recipes — which support your liver and satisfy your taste buds — will get you started.
Cucumber and pineapple are naturally hydrating foods, so they can help your liver and kidneys clear toxins from your body. Pineapple is also the only major dietary source of the enzyme bromelain, which helps your body digest protein.
Makes one serving
Prep time: five minutes
1/2 cup chopped cucumber
1 tbs. chopped fresh mint
1½ cups frozen pineapple chunks
1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
1/2 cup plain, full-fat Greek yogurt
1 tbs. chia seeds
Add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth. Serve.
This pungent treat is full of liver-supporting alliums and bacteria to aid your gut microbiome. Spoon the honey and garlic over roasted vegetables, add it to salad dressings, or stir it into blended soups or grain salads.
Makes 16 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Fermentation time: three days
1 head garlic
2 cups raw honey
Wash a canning jar and lid in hot soapy water and let air dry.
Prep garlic by smashing and peeling each clove. Place smashed garlic cloves in the canning jar, then add raw honey until all the garlic is submerged.
Seal the jar and set aside at room temperature for three days before use.
Once the garlic is fermented, release the gases every few days by unscrewing the lid and stirring the contents. Store at room temperature.
This originally appeared as “Detoxifying Dishes” in the April 2020 print issue of Experience Life.