Sunday, March 30, 2008

Top 10 Detox Foods

There's no better time to give your body a healthy, fresh start! If you're thinking about lowering your weight eating healthy food is a great first step. Add these 10 foods to your menu and you'll get three excellent benefits:

- Lots of super-healthy liquids to flush out the body while pouring in nutrients.

- Fiber to keep your GI tract fit.

- Foods that energize cleansing enzymes in the liver, your body's built-in detox center.

The TOP 10

Green leafy vegetables

Eat them raw, throw them into a broth, add them to juices. Their chlorophyll helps swab out environmental toxins (heavy metals, pesticides) and protects the liver.


You need to keep the fluids flowing to wash out the body and fresh lemonade is ideal. Its vitamin C, considered the detox vitamin, helps convert toxins into a water-soluble form that's easily flushed away.


Put a handful into salads, soups, and sandwiches. The peppery little green leaves have a diuretic effect that helps move things through your system. And cress is rich in minerals too.


Add it to everything -- salads, sauces, spreads. In addition to the bulb's cardio benefits, it activates liver enzymes that help filter out junk.

Green tea

This antioxidant-rich brew is one of the healthiest ways to get more fluids into your system. Bonus: It contains catechins, which speed up liver activity.

Broccoli sprouts

Get 'em at your health-food store. They pack 20 to 50 times more cancer-fighting, enzyme-stimulating activity into each bite than the grown-up vegetable.

Sesame seeds

They're credited with protecting liver cells from the damaging effects of alcohol and other chemicals. For a concentrated form, try tahini, the yummy sesame seed paste that's a staple of Asian cooking.


There are two main types of detoxifying enzymes in the liver; this potent veggie helps activate both of them. Coleslaw, anyone?


A plant that's rich in soluble fiber, like oat bran, but more versatile. It mops up toxins (cholesterol too) and helps clear them out. Stir powdered psyllium into juice to help cleanse your colon, or have psyllium-fortified Bran Buds for breakfast.

Fruits, fruits, fruits

They're full of almost all the good things above: vitamin C, fiber, nutritious fluids, and all kinds of antioxidants. Besides, nothing tastes better than a ripe mango, fresh berries, or a perfect pear.

Monday, March 24, 2008

24 hour Lemon Juice Detox

24 hour Lemon Juice DetoxThe 24 hour detox concentrates on foods and practices that can help boost your nutrient intake and cleanse your body of toxins naturally. To ensure your detox is nutritionally sound, the plan will involve drinking plenty of lemon juice with water; it will also involve regular snacks of fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds.

Rather than starving you of nutrients, which would just cause your blood sugar levels and your mood to sink really low, you will be eating plenty of cleansing, natural foods and drinking lots of water to support your body's own in-house detox system, which is so effective that even the most complex detox product can't compete with it.

As you follow the 24 hour plan, never forget that healthy eating to lose weight has nothing to do with dieting - we know that diets don't work in the long term - but everything to do with giving your body the best nutrition it can get. So, for the next 24 hours, and hopefully for the rest of your life, you are going to give yourself the very best, top-quality, premium-grade fuel.

The basis for this detox diet is four glasses of fresh lemonade, lots of water and regular meals and snacks that are as fresh, natural and healthy as possible. Not only will it give you all the nutrients you need to expel toxins naturally and revitalise your digestive system without feeling hungry, you can also lose a minimum of 600 grams to 1 kilo, depending on your height and body weight.

Making your lemonade

To make your lemonade you will need:
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (approximately 1⁄2 to 1 lemon)
300 ml (10 fl oz) pure, filtered water (according to taste)
1 tsp organic grade B maple syrup (optional) or a cinnamon stick
Small pinch of cayenne pepper

Mix together the lemon juice, water, maple syrup and cayenne pepper. Stir well and serve slightly warm at room temperature. As an alternative to maple syrup you could stir a cinnamon stick into your lemon juice.

Research has shown that cinnamon can help balance blood sugar and, if you like the taste, it's a fantastic way to add some sweetness. Use only fresh lemons, organic and vine ripened whenever possible. Never use canned or frozen lemon juice. Mix your lemonade just before drinking. You can, however, squeeze your lemons in the morning and measure out the 2 tablespoons when needed.

The pinch of cayenne pepper adds a zing to the flavour, as well as some stimulating warmth, which speeds cleansing and elimination. Some studies show that the capsaicin in cayenne pepper may increase the body's production of heat for a short time. It may also help to regulate blood sugar levels by affecting the breakdown of carbohydrates after a meal. Based on these studies, capsaicin is being investigated to see if it can be useful in treating obesity.

The grade B maple syrup (grade A is over-processed and refined) adds a sweet taste for those who find the drink too bitter, and a welcome shot of zinc and magnesium to help regulate your appetite and further boost fat metabolism.

Your lemon juice detox day: step by step

On this one day you will take in enough calories to keep your metabolism running efficiently as well as a host of wholesome and healthy nutrients. Moreover, your body will have 24 hours in which to rid itself of the toxins absorbed by overindulgence, or simply through daily life (stress, pollution and processed food products). You should not follow this detox diet for more than one day a week as it is not effective as a general everyday diet. It is, however, highly effective as a cleansing pick-me-up to boost your digestion and get you started on the road to weight loss.

It's best to do this detox on a Saturday or Sunday or on a day when you aren't working and bound by your normal routine; then you'll have time to relax and take your time cooking, preparing and eating your food.

Throughout the day

Make sure you drink at least six to eight glasses of filtered water with added lemon peel. You shouldn?t feel any hunger pangs. If you do, drink more water or herbal teas, or have a banana with a handful of mixed seeds or a bowl of warm vegetable soup that isn't high in sodium, additives or preservatives (homemade soup is probably your best option).

First thing

Try to get up around 7.30 in the morning if you can, and on rising, drink your first glass of lemonade. It's probably best to drink it slightly warm, as cold water first thing in the morning is a shock to the system and can create gas and bloating. Wait at least half an hour until you eat breakfast or until you brush your teeth.


5 each of blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries and cherries
1 apple
1 pear
Organic live yoghurt
Handful of raw almonds
Chop up all the fruit, mix with the yoghurt and sprinkle with almonds.

Mid-morning snack

Drink your second glass of lemonade. Ten minutes later have a banana, plus a handful of sunflower or pumpkin seeds.


As much mixed green bean or lentil salad as you like, dressed with lemon juice, balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil. You can eat any kinds of beans and lentils, including red kidney, haricot, cannellini, butter, black eye and pinto beans and red, green and brown lentils.

Mid-afternoon snack

Drink your third glass of lemonade, then 10 minutes later have cucumber, radish and celery crudites, or a handful of raw unsalted nuts and dried fruit.


Grilled fish with steamed vegetables (make sure you include onions). You can eat any vegetables you like, fresh or frozen, such as carrots, turnip, swede, sprouts, cabbage, peppers, mushrooms, sweetcorn, leeks, courgettes, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, cucumber, spring onions. You can also choose any of the following fresh fish: cod, plaice, mackerel, salmon, trout, haddock, tuna, prawns, Dover sole, red mullet, halibut, lemon sole. Make sure you sprinkle your fish with lemon juice before eating. (If you don't eat fish, substitute with soya beans or tofu and avocado.)
Stir-fry a selection of vegetables such as bok choi, spring onions, mushrooms, bamboo shoots and bean sprouts in a little extra virgin olive oil with garlic, lemon juice, ginger and tofu pieces.

About two hours before bed

Have your glass of lemonade, this time with warm or hot water.

Just before you go to bed

Have a relaxing warm bath with aromatherapy oils. If you feel hungry after your bath try nibbling on some celery stalks as they are loaded with magnesium, which is a calming nutrient.

Try to be in bed before 10pm if you can. A good night's sleep is important for weight loss because lack of sleep disrupts hormones, triggering metabolic changes that mean you don't process food so well. There may also be a link between lack of sleep and increased appetite, so in the weeks and months ahead aim for quality sleep every night; between six and eight hours a night is considered optimum.

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