Lemon is good for detoxing. Picture: Unsplash / Mariah Hewines
Lemon is good for detoxing. Picture: Unsplash / Mariah Hewines

Overindulged during Christmas weekend? Here are inexpensive foods to help you detox

By Viwe Ndongeni-Ntlebi Time of article published Dec 26, 2021

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If the ‘eat, drink and be merry’ weekend has taken its toll on you and your waistline, now is the time to detox and restart your body.

When it comes to cleansing your body of harmful toxins, food really is the best medicine. You'll be amazed to learn that many of your favourite foods also cleanse the body's detoxification organs like the liver, intestines, kidneys and skin, preventing harmful toxic build-up.

Besides helping you eliminate the wrong foods that can contribute to weight gain, the right detox programme can give your liver and overall health a helping hand in eliminating those excess toxins. Here is a list of foods that can help you detox:

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

Be sure to drink plenty of fresh water every day. This helps to flush out toxins and will also keep your skin healthy and clear from the inside out. Make use of the water filter or reusable water bottle with a built-in filter to ensure that the water you’re drinking is pure and free of harsh chemicals.

Lemon

Lemons are a staple of many detox diets, and there is a good reason for this. Firstly, lemons are packed with antioxidant vitamin C, which is great for the skin and fighting disease-forming free radicals. Furthermore, the citrus fruit has an alkaline effect on the body, meaning that it can help restore the body’s pH balance, benefiting the immune system. Try starting your day with hot water and a slice of lemon to help flush out toxins and cleanse your system.

Cabbage

Cabbage contains numerous anticancer and antioxidant compounds and helps the liver break down excess hormones. Cabbage also cleanses the digestive tract and neutralises some of the damaging compounds found in cigarette smoke and second-hand smoke. It also strengthens the liver's ability to detoxify.

Ginger

If too much fatty food or alcohol has caused problems for your digestive system, it may be worthwhile to add some ginger to your diet. Ginger is not only great for reducing feelings of nausea, but it can help improve digestion, beat bloating and reduce gas. In addition to this, ginger is high in antioxidants and is good for boosting the immune system. To give your digestion a helping hand, try sipping on ginger tea or adding some freshly grated ginger to a fruit or vegetable juice.

Use a probiotic

The microbes will help get your whole digestive track back in balance by getting rid of harmful bacteria and promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut. A healthy, happy digestive system is key to a well-balanced and cleansed body. Try a natural probiotic supplement, or enjoy more fermented goodies in your diet, like refreshing kombucha or tangy sauerkraut.

Watercress

Like most green herbs and vegetables, watercress is an excellent health booster and detox food. Firstly, watercress leaves are packed with many vital detoxifying nutrients, including several B vitamins, zinc, potassium, vitamin E and vitamin C. Secondly, watercress has natural diuretic properties, which can help flush toxins out of the body. To reap the benefits of this nutritious food, try adding a handful of watercress to salads, soups and sandwiches.

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