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This is the first in a series entitled “Back to the Basics.” The goal is the focus on basic nutrition and health for everyone. In order to jump start your health, we will focus on the importance of detox and how to detoxify your body. This is the first step in getting your body Back to the Basics!

Back to the Basics: Detox

A detox is a great way to “reset” your body. Whether you are looking to shed a few pounds after a holiday or period of over eating, or attempting to restart or refuel your body, a 4-7 day detox can be the way to go! You do not need to buy any products or cleanses because you can do it by using natural, live, real food.

Detox Do’s:
1. Fruit – PLENTY of fruit. Apples and pears are great detoxifying fruits and should be a staple throughout the process. Include other fruits like peaches, oranges, grapefruits, lemon (especially in water before meals), and berries. Be careful if you have blood sugar concerns.

2. Vegetables – Eat plenty of vegetables, including in their raw state. Broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, and cabbage aid detox through the liver. Kale, spinach, endive and all other red/green lettuces should be consumed. Do not be afraid to include onions, garlic, and artichokes, as well. One of the best vegetables for detoxifying is asparagus. Include cut peppers, carrots, and celery as snacks throughout the detox. Also, sweet potatoes can be a great side dish for a meal.

3. Protein – The key is to consume lean protein. Focus on wild caught or cold water white fish or salmon. Organic chicken and organic eggs should also be included.

4. Grains – Whole grains do not have to be avoided. Focus foods like steel cut oats and quinoa. Even though quinoa is technically a seed, it can serve the same purpose that rice does in a meal, or even as a breakfast food. Add honey, stevia, or cinnamon to quinoa or steel cut oats to add flavor.

5. Other foods – Raw nuts, edamame, nut butters (particularly almond) can really help during moments when you crave something. These foods have the same “snacking” mentality when eating. Try to find freshly ground nut butters or ones made without additives.

6. Water – Drink plenty of it. This should be the main (or only) liquid consumed during this time.

Detox Don’ts:
1. No alcohol
2. No sugars
3. No white flour
4. No dairy
5. No processed foods
6. No corn
7. No condiments
8. No pre-packaged or prepared foods (You don’t really know what is in them!)

1. Try to buy organic products if possible. You are trying to rid your body of chemicals, pesticides, dyes, colors, heavy metals, etc.
2. When cooking the meats and vegetables, try to steam, bake, or grill them. Flavor or season with olive oil, salt, pepper, and real seasonings and herbs. Avoid “packaged” flavorings and seasoning.
3. The food should all be real and live and things you can find “of the earth.”
4. Fruits and vegetables are the driving force in the detoxifying process and should be consumed the most.
5. Big salads with a combination of the vegetables and lean protein do not even make you feel like you are detoxing!

Here is an example of a detox that can be done:
2 days of a combination of the above foods (fruit, vegetables, lean protein,
1-2 days of mostly/all fruit
1-2 days of a combination of the above foods

If you can handle something like this for up to 6 or 7 days, you will notice a difference in your entire body. Your skin will feel better, and you will feel your body becoming less bloated. The first few days can be difficult, but you will be surprised after completing this that you may actually dislike the food you were previously putting into your body!