Many of us embark on a New Year’s detox diet to undo the damage done over the holidays. However, food-free programs and crash dieting can wreak havoc on your body, doing more harm than good when it comes to making longterm lifestyle changes.
This year, make it your New Year’s resolution to incorporate healthy superfoods into your daily diet – whether you want to lose weight, feel more energized, improve your complexion or boost your mood.
We’ve rounded up the top 10 ingredients to keep stocked in your pantry that will have you back on top form for 2015.
Kick-start digestion by stimulating the release of enzymes and Vitamin C found in lemons. This zingy fruit converts toxins into a water-soluble form that can be easily eliminated from the body and helps stimulate the liver and purify the blood. Fresh lemon juice contains more than 20 anti-cancer compounds and helps balance the body’s pH levels.
Watercress is an excellent health-booster and detox food. Its leaves are packed with vital detoxifying nutrients including several B vitamins, zinc, potassium, vitamin E and vitamin C. It also has natural diuretic properties which help flush toxins out of the body. Include it in your diet by adding a handful of watercress to salads, soups and sandwiches.
These delicious berries contain natural aspirin that helps lessen the tissue-damaging effects of chronic inflammation, while lessening pain, and they have antiviral properties and are loaded with super-detoxifying phytonutrients called proanthocyanidins.
An amazing source of healthy nutrients and minerals, beets are superb fighters of infection, blood purifiers and liver cleansers. They also help boost the body’s cellular intake of oxygen, making them excellent overall body cleansers. Roast alongside other veg.
If you’ve been overindulging in fatty foods and alcohol, adding some steamed globe artichoke leaves to your meals is a great way to help get your body back on track. Globe artichokes are packed with antioxidants and fibre and can also help the body digest fatty foods, as well as improve the functions of the liver - the body’s main toxin-fighting tool.
Cabbage cleanses the digestive tract and soothes the stomach. It also contains numerous anti-cancer and antioxidant compounds and helps the liver break down excess hormones.
These have powerful antibiotic and antiviral substances to help the body cleanse harmful bacteria and viruses from the urinary tract.
- Flaxseeds and Flaxseed Oil
Loaded with essential fatty acids, particularly the omega-3s, they are essential for many cleansing functions and maintaining a healthy immune system.
Fresh garlic has anti-cancer and antioxidant properties that help detoxify the body of harmful substances, especially from the blood and intestines. It’s best eaten raw though, so crush some and add to a salad dressing, or rub on toast and serve with fresh tomato, olive oil and a pinch of salt, Catalonia-style.
- Dark Leafy Greens
Leafy greens such as kale, chard and spinach help the body get rid of environmental toxins like smog and herbicides and are easily incorporated into your diet – eat them raw in salad, add to a broth, add to juices, or sauté them with a touch of olive oil.
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