5 Foods for Daily Detox

February 28th, 2014 at 6:06 am
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5 Foods for Daily Detox | Daily Bites

If you think that doing a detox requires drinking nothing but green juice for a week or chomping on seaweed at every meal, think again! The best, most sustainable way to detox is to begin incorporating detoxifying foods into your diet EVERY day. Loading up your plate (or glass) with potent plant-based detoxifiers is a smart habit that will bring you long-lasting health for years to come.

Today I’m sharing 5 incredibly detoxifying foods that are easy to find, easy to prepare, and absolutely brimming with health benefits. Get jazzed because this is exciting stuff! Let’s get started.

5 Foods for Daily Detox (Daily Bites)

Brussels Sprouts

Behold, the mighty sprout! A cruciferous veggie that boasts a huge array of anti-cancer compounds, think of Brussels sprouts as mini cabbages. They’re loaded with fiber and vitamins K, C, and A (all of which are antioxidants). In order for the body to release toxins, it requires ample amounts of sulfur, which is plentiful in Brussels sprouts. Studies have also indicated that the sulforaphane in Brussels sprouts helps protect the integrity of the stomach lining and prevent bad bacterial overgrowth.

Ways to prepare:

  • Try my recipe for Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Shallots & Dates. I fell in love with the mighty sprout by first eating it this way.
  • Shred up Brussels sprouts just as you would cabbage for slaws and salads
  • Toss trimmed and halved sprouts with melted coconut oil, salt, pepper, and paprika. Roast for 25-35 minutes at 400 degrees, tossing once halfway through.

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Super healthy sidekicks:

  • Cabbage
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower

5 Foods for Daily Detox: Arugula

Arugula

I’m a HUGE fan of leafy greens (big surprise!), and my latest obsession is baby arugula. Arugula—like Brussels sprouts—is a member of the cruciferous veggie family, so you’re getting all those anti-cancer benefits in a leafy, more salad-friendly form. Also called rocket, arugula has a slightly spicy and bitter flavor. Anytime you eat bitter greens (think kale or dandelion greens), you’re supporting your digestion. Bitter foods strengthen the stomach and the entire digestion process, which can lead to improved vitamin/mineral absorption, less bloating, and regulated elimination.

Ways to prepare:

  • Arugula is just about the perfect salad green. Its soft texture is light and easy to toss with other salad favorites like spinach, grated carrots, dried fruit, walnuts, tomatoes, cabbage, and more. Start with tossing it into your salads for that little hint of spicy bite.
  • Dare to enter smoothie territory? Go right ahead! A small handful of arugula in your green smoothie will add loads of nutrition in one simple step. If the bitter flavor is too overwhelming, try adding a squeeze of lemon juice to your smoothies. The acidity counteracts the spice and helps to balance out the flavor (this also works with kale smoothies).
  • Perhaps my favorite way to enjoy arugula is in PESTO! Use it just as you would basil or any other herb. My favorite combo is arugula, spinach, parsley, toasted walnuts, lemon, and olive oil.

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Super healthy sidekicks:

  • Dandelion
  • Chard
  • Kale

5 Foods for Daily Detox: Green Apples

Green Apples

An apple day keeps the doctor away…and it also keeps the digestive tract in tip-top shape! One apple with the skin contains about 5 grams of fiber. Why green apples? I love them because they’re a low glycemic choice that contain less sugar than other fruits (including other apples). Plus, I just can’t get enough of the sweet and sour flavor. Apples are also an excellent source of quercetin, a flavonoid (antioxidant) that’s a powerful anti-inflammatory. Some studies have shown reduction in arthritis pain simply from eating apples! Be sure to choose organic apples and eat the skin, as many of the nutrients are concentrated there.

Ways to prepare:

  • Give me a green apple and a jar of almond butter and I’m good.
  • Add slices to salads and slaws for sweet-sour crunch.
  • Cut apples in half, remove the seeds/core, and arrange cut side up in a baking dish. Brush with melted coconut oil and sprinkle with cinnamon and walnuts. Bake at 350 degrees until tender. Serve with a scoop of dairy-free Snickerdoodle Ice Cream!

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Super healthy sidekicks:

  • Golden Delicious apples (sweeter)
  • Berries

5 Foods for Daily Detox: Hemp

Hemp Seeds

We don’t often think of fat as being a detoxifying macronutrient, but it totally is! Healthy fat supports metabolism and helps us stay satisfied. Hemp seeds are one of my favorite sources of both healthy fat and plant-based protein. One (3 tbs.) serving contains 10 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, and 13 grams of blood sugar-balancing fat. Hemp seeds offer anti-inflammatory omega 3 fats as well as GLA, an omega 6 fatty acid that is excellent for skin, hair, nails, hormonal balance, and metabolism. Hemp also contains magnesium—a natural muscle relaxant and “nerve calmer.”

Ways to prepare:

  • I enjoy my hemp seeds sprinkled on salads and tossed into smoothies. (They’re essential in my Real Food Protein Smoothie.)
  • Make your own hemp milk by blending 1 cup hemp seeds with 4-5 cups water until smooth. Strain through a nut milk bag for the smoothest texture.
  • Garnish your soups with hemp seeds for crunch and texture.

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Super healthy sidekicks:

  • Walnuts
  • Chia seeds
  • Flaxseed

5 Foods for Daily Detox: Lemons

Lemons

The ultimate “detox” ingredient, lemons have been used for both culinary and medicinal purposes for centuries. Extremely high in vitamin C, lemon juice offers incredible immune support. Lemon juice also supports liver function immensely by strengthening liver enzymes, which provides the liver with some relief as it filters toxins and processes nutrients. Liz Lipski, author of Digestive Wellness, believes that the liver is one of the most overworked organs. It’s crucial that we give it a hand daily with detoxifying foods! Lemon juice is also an excellent metabolism booster.

Ways to prepare:

  • Lemon juice (along with apple cider vinegar) is my go-to acid component when I’m making salad dressing. I also squeeze it into my smoothies regularly.
  • Upon waking, drink 8 ounces of filtered water with the juice of half a lemon squeezed in for a metabolism boost all day long and a mini liver cleanse first thing in the morning.
  • The nutrient-rich essential oils of the fruit live in the skin, so be sure to zest your lemons, too! Use lemon zest in baking, smoothies, dressings, and vegetable pilafs. (This is my favorite zester.)

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Super healthy sidekicks:

  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Limes

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So there you have it. Incorporate these 5 foods into your regular diet and start detoxing DAILY! You might be amazed at the incredible changes that will happen to your body over time.

What are your favorite detox foods? Leave a comment and let me know!

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Comments

  1. Great list Hallie! I have been trying to buy more green apples for this reason! The kids don’t love them, obviously and I can’t get them locally. So for now they’re a “treat” for our green juice! I love arugula! Though I tried it in a smoothie and I didn’t like it. Not for me :)
    Thanks for the inspiration!

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