Going on a detox diet? Steps to take
Detoxification basically involves eating the right foods and eliminating toxins. So read ahead to know the steps to take, the tips to incorporate and a glossary of what to eat and what to avoid while on a detox diet.
We all know what detox diets are -- they are meant to cleanse the body of toxins and can also help you lose weight.
A detox diet cannot, however, fulfill the normal basic calorific requirements of the body and so, when embarking upon one it is important to ensure your wellness throughout.
Step One: Eliminating toxins from your system
Detox essentially involves the removal of all kinds of processed and artificially flavoured foods and drinks from the diet.
Although it is not scientifically proven, a detox diet is supposed to eliminate all toxins (a function performed naturally by your kidneys and liver on a daily basis).
It is not recommended to follow any detox plan for more than seven days.
There are a number of detox diets that people follow, like the natural liver detox, lemon detox diet, liver detox diet, cleansing diet etc.
Photographs: Scott Bauer, USDA ARS/Wikimedia Commons
Step Two: The right approach to a detox diet
Rather than following a strict 'all-water', 'all-fruit' or 'all-juice' detox diet, you should follow a diet that allows you to eat, which will also avoid pushing yourself towards the risks associated with detox diets.
The key is to know what to eat and what not to eat. Planning your diet will help better. You don't need to resort to extreme means and menus.
Image: Don't follow fadds like an 'all-juice' detox diet; choose one that allows you to eat
Photographs: Agricultural Research Service/Wikimedia Commons
Step Three: Practices to follow alongside
- Practice relaxation techniques to support a detox diet.
- A stop in the sauna for a quick steam is good.
- You can also try a variety of these options to feels good: aromatherapy baths, spa massages, saunas, visualisation exercises, walking (but never engage in strenuous physical exercise while on a detox diet, since you will feel weaker), yoga and meditation.
Image: A stop at the sauna for a quick steam is good while on a detox diet
Photographs: Todtanis/Wikimedia Commons
Tips to detox
- All natural herbs and supplements that are made from dandelion root, ginger, milk thistle and licorice are known to enhance the detoxification process.
- These are found in detox teas, which can be purchased at most grocery and health-food outlets.
- The detox teas also help to protect the liver from getting overused during the detoxification process.
- It is good to refrain from taking any unnecessary medications or using any chemical-based products that involve inhalation, and/or cleansing products during the detoxification process.
- Try to drink at least a minimum of eight glasses of warm or lukewarm water per day and take enough time to chew food well, especially grains.
Image: Dandelion root is a natural supplement and enhances the detoxification process
Photographs: Zero-X at Flickr/Wikimedia Commons
Foods to be allowed during a detox diet
Image: All herbal teas and green tea are permitted while on a detox diet
Photographs: Courtesy Gud2Eat.com
Foods to be avoided while on a detox diet
- Sugar: All sugar, products that contain sugar and hidden forms of sugar, for example sucrose, dextrose, corn syrup, brown sugar. Avoid artificial sweeteners. Natural sweeteners like erythritol and stevia are allowed.
- Dairy products: All milk, butter, cream, cheese, sour cream and other dairy products.
- Wheat: All wheat and wheat-containing products, such as pasta and bread etc.
- Gluten: All the gluten-containing grains: wheat , spelt, triticale, kamut, rye, and barley.
- Coffee: All coffee and caffeine-related products.
- Other : Anything containing yeast, alcohol, food additives and preservatives, chocolate and high-fat foods, fried foods, red meat.
Image: Avoid all dairy products while detoxing
Photographs: Sammis Ochoa/Wikimedia Commons