Spring clean: the 7-day detox guide
Atone your winter sins
Our bodies are constantly inundated with toxins, which our liver works tirelessly to package and ship out before they can linger around long enough to cause any damage. Overindulgence, times of stress or poor diet choices can cause a backlog of toxins as the liver struggles to find the nutrients it needs to keep these processes working efficiently.
This clean, high-protein, low-glycaemic seven day meal plan will provide the nutrients to support the conjugation and elimination of toxins in a gentle detox. You should finish the week feeling light, bright and energised. And your liver will thank you for it!
- Abstain from caffeine, alcohol, dairy, sugar and gluten;
- Start each day with the juice of half a lemon in warm water;
- Include herbal teas - licorice, peppermint, rooibos, dandelion, ginger, fennel and chamomile;
- Snack on activated nuts and seeds, vegetable sticks with hummus or tahini, fruit, bone or vegetable broths;
- Drink 2-3 litres of filtered water daily;
- Eat entirely organic for the period of the detox;
- Practice mindful eating - eat slowly, chew thoroughly;
- Stir 1 tablespoon of psyllium husks into a large glass of water before bed (2 hours after any medication, supplements or food);
- Engage in gentle daily movement - walking, yoga, swimming, stretching;
- Prioritise sleep, relaxation and quiet time spent alone;
- Enjoy an Epsom salt bath every second day.
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Breakfast: smoothie: kale, spinach, cucumber, frozen banana, mint leaves, cashews, chia seeds, coconut water (or filtered water), ice.
Lunch: 100 grams grilled chicken, steamed broccoli, grated beetroot, avocado, watercress, sauerkraut dressed with lemon juice, olive oil, hummus.
Dinner: barramundi baked in paper with lemon, capers, dill served with roquette, radish and parsley salad.
- High quality protein from fish and organic chicken provides the liver with the amino acids necessary to conjugate and eliminate toxins.
Breakfast: two eggs scrambled, avocado, sautéed kale.
Lunch: cooked quinoa, chickpeas, roast carrot, sweet potato and cauliflower; topped with parsley, pepita seeds and lemon juice.
Dinner: grilled snapper, steamed broccoli, bok choy and mushrooms; topped with garlic, tamari.
Carotenes from sweet potato, carrot and kale act as antioxidants to combat the oxidative stress from an over-burdened liver.
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Breakfast: chia pudding: chia seeds soaked in coconut milk and cinnamon (the night prior), topped with mixed berries, flaxseed meal and almonds.
Lunch: tempeh stir-fried in coconut oil, salad of spinach, shredded cabbage, alfalfa sprouts, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, avocado, parsley, pepita seeds, dressed with apple cider vinegar, olive oil.
Dinner: palm-sized piece of grass-fed beef, roast pumpkin and Brussels sprouts, served with bitter roquette salad dressed in lemon juice and olive oil.
- Cruciferous vegetables like Brussels sprouts, cabbage and broccoli promote detoxification by inducing both phase one and phase two processes in the liver
Breakfast: smoothie: mixed berries, frozen banana, cinnamon, cashews, coconut yoghurt, soaked chia seeds, flaxseed meal, coconut water (or filtered water), ice.
Lunch: one tin wild-caught salmon, shredded cabbage, watercress, dill, parsley, sprouts, avocado; dressed with lemon juice and olive oil.
Dinner: baked tempeh, cooked quinoa, grilled capsicum and zucchini, parsley, sprouts, pepita seeds; dressed with lemon juice and hummus.
High-fibre foods like soaked chia and flaxseed meal will increase transit time and encourage the thorough elimination necessary in detoxification.
Related story: Why Brussels sprouts are the new kale
Breakfast: smoothie: frozen banana, 2 handfuls spinach, squeeze lime, cashews, coconut milk, ice.
Lunch: tinned sardines, grated beetroot, parsley, sauerkraut, avocado; dressed with lemon juice.
Dinner: chicken thigh fillets stir fried in coconut oil with eggplant, kale, tamari, garlic, ginger, onion, chili, coriander; served with brown rice.
- Fermented foods like sauerkraut will replenish the gut with beneficial flora as bad bacteria is being cleared out during elimination.
Breakfast: two eggs baked in fresh tomatoes and sugar-free tomato paste, garlic, kalamata olives, parsley; topped with roquette before serving.
Lunch: grilled salmon, sautéed kale, grilled zucchini and asparagus, squeeze lemon.
Dinner: stir-fried tofu, mixed mushroom medley, English spinach, garlic, onion, chili, tamari.
High-sulfur foods like garlic, onion and eggs support sulfation; an important phase two detoxification pathway.
Breakfast: two boiled eggs, cooked quinoa, sautéed kale, avocado, parsley, squeeze lemon.
Lunch: roast pumpkin and beetroot, lentils, mint, watercress, pepita and sunflower seeds; dressed with olive oil.
Dinner: grilled sardines, roasted sweet potato, Brussels sprouts and fennel; served with watercress and radicchio salad dressed in lemon juice and olive oil.
The high content of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids in sardines will help to regulate the omega 3:6 ratio that is commonly unbalanced in modern diets.
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