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08.04.16

Detoxifying + Delish Foods I Always Have In My Kitch

Wellness > Nutrition

By: Candice Kumai

Some of my favorite foods also happen to be great natural detoxifiers. I try to incorporate a few of these ingredients into my meals every day.

It’s easy! You can make a morning smoothie with avocado and grapefruit on the side, a lunch of kale salad or a cabbage cilantro slaw, made with a lemon and olive oil vinaigrette, and finish the day off with a miso-glazed salmon, a side of sautéed collard greens, and fresh melon slices for dessert.

The better you eat, the better you’ll feel. Consider stocking your pantry and fridge with these clean eating essentials for a clean green life.

1. Avocado

Avocados may be the most fabulous food on the planet. I try to consume this beauty fruit just about daily, and I’ll find any excuse or recipe to use it. I love to whip up some guacamole or my Avocado-Kale Caesar Salad.

2. Cabbage

This colorful vegetable is a natural diuretic that can help to cleanse your body of excess liquid. It’s also rich in sulfur, which studies have shown can help your liver break down toxins so they’re easily flushed away.

It’s also super inexpensive, around $1 a head in many places. It can top any taco or burrito, too. Look for firm, crisp green or purple varieties.

3. Cilantro

Love it or hate it, cilantro’s natural oils may help to promote digestion and alleviate tummy aches. Cilantro’s strong flavor is perfect paired with mild avocado, to top Asian dishes, or Mexican-inspired recipes.

4. Coconut Oil

When used in moderation, unrefined coconut oil is a delicious, fragrant gift from gorgeous Mama Nature. With its concentration of MCTs (medium chain triglycerides), it may help lower cholesterol and maintain a healthy weight.

I recommend using coconut oil in place of butter when cooking Thai- or Indian-inspired recipes and baking treats. Enjoy the rich, luscious flavors unrefined coconut oil brings to your favorite recipes.

I also recommend adding coconut oil to your daily natural beauty routine by using it to gently remove eye makeup or to shave or soften your legs. You can even use 1 teaspoon as a deep conditioner for 5 minutes with a damp hair towel. Rinse well. Gorgeous from the inside out!

5. Collard Greens

Collard greens can help to lower your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels and help to aid in digestion. Like kale, these greens have some heft, and stand up to steaming well. Collards are also great tossed into soups and grain salads.

6. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Full of antioxidants and vitamin E, olive oil also helps to reduce inflammation in the body. Research suggests olive oil can get rid of free radicals in your body.

Remember to buy first-pressed high-quality extra virgin olive oil versus regular olive oil for the most health benefits.

7. Grapefruit

Just one grapefruit will give you more than half your daily requirement for vitamin C. The pink shade of grapefruit comes from the phytonutrient, lycopene, which is a powerful free-radical fighter.
Grapefruit contains a soluble fiber called pectin (also found in apples, lemons, and oranges), and can help to lower cholesterol.

When purchasing, avoid grapefruit with soft spots and look for a firm citrus peel that’s smooth in texture. Segment out a few grapefruits for a super detox salad and go crazy with your juicer.

8. Kale

Kale is my absolute favorite green. It’s also one of the cleanest, most popular antioxidant-packed greens available. Kale is chock-full of vitamin K and if you’re detoxing from dairy, be sure to eat extra calcium-rich kale.

9. Lemon water

I recommend drinking water with a squeeze of fresh lemon all day every day. Try to sip on 8 to 10 glasses throughout the day.

Lemons are full of powerful antioxidants that may stimulate liver enzymes to help flush toxins from your body.

Grab a reusable bottle or a mason jar and squeeze the lemon into your water, releasing the juice, and then add the whole wedges to the water.

10. Melon

Melons are packed with hydrating nutrients. Rich in potassium and vitamin C with a high water content, melons are a natural diuretic.

Look for fruit that’s firm and ripe with no bruising — heavy is good. Tap the melon and listen for a hollow sound, or smell the melon around its stem area — you’re looking for a fresh, fragrant scent.

11. Miso Paste

Miso fabulous! Made from fermented soybeans, it contains good-for-your-tummy probiotic benefits. It’s also naturally loaded with protein, iron, vitamin B6, and magnesium.

Ranging from light-bodied Shiro miso (white miso) to dark, rich, umami Aka miso (red miso), miso paste adds depth of flavor to marinades, soups, sauces, and glazes and is very popular in Japanese cooking.

These gorgeous little bulbs contain glucosinolates (properties that may help with your body’s natural detoxification process).

I love thinly slicing radishes on a mandoline and adding them to salads, or placing them beautiful and whole on crudité platters to eat with hummus or dipping them into a creamy tahini dip. YUM.

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