Most people approach detoxing with all the enthusiasm normally reserved for a root canal. And no wonder: Some cleanses involve varying stages of starvation combined with laxative herbs and gallons of fiber drinks. But a good detox is actually easier—and tastier—than you might think. The goal is to stimulate liver enzymes, increase bowel movements to empty intestines of waste, and help the kidneys eliminate toxins that build up in your tissues, organs, and blood. It’s TLC for your digestive system, and it benefits every part of your body.
The key points: First, avoid meat, cheese, fats, soy, chocolate, sugar, and salty foods, says Christopher Vasey, ND, author of The Naturopathic Way (Healing Arts, 2009). Second, emphasize lots of liquids and plant-based, high-fiber, organic foods to stimulate the colon and reduce intake of new toxins. Best of all, focus on foods with specific cleansing properties, starting with these delicious detoxifiers. Try to include at least five of these in your diet every day, eating only enough to feel sated, never full. (We offer recipe ideas after each food below; just type titles into the search box at deliciousliving.com.) Stick to it, and you’ll see and feel results—more energy, clearer brain, and even weight loss—in as little as a week.