20 Foods that Detox Your Body & Mind

The connection between the body and the mind is a very real one, with the way your body feels playing a big part in how your brain functions and whether or not you experience a state of well-being. Keeping it free of toxins, free radicals, and other nasty things that can end up in our insides is essentially to maintaining a healthy life. You’ll notice that with many of these detox foods the road to purification goes through the liver, and getting it to full capacity can have several long-lasting benefits throughout the body.

Artichokes

Artichokes help the liver function at its best, which in turn will help your body purge itself of toxins and other things it doesn’t need to survive. It ups the liver’s production of bile, and since bile helps break down foods which helps your body use the nutrients inside them, an increase in bile production is typically a good thing.

Aside from all of the benefits to your liver, it’s also filled with fiber, protein, magnesium, folate, and potassium. It’s simply a good food to add to your diet in order to stay regular, stay healthy, and keep your liver happily doing its job.

Asparagus

Despite being a tasty veggie asparagus ranks highly on the detox-o-meter. Not only does it help to detoxify the body, it can help you wage the anti-aging battle, protect you from getting cancer, help your heart to stay healthy, and is a general anti-inflammatory food.

It’s also known to help with liver drainage, which might sound like a bad thing, but since the liver is responsible for filtering out the toxic materials in the food and drinks we consume, anything that backs up its drainage is not doing you any favors.

Avocados

Because of its fiber and antioxidant count this is a food that is making it onto more and more detox lists. At first many shied away from them because of they’re high in fat, but ever since the difference between good fats and bad fats become more commonly known, they are now getting the respect they deserve.

Don’t think that the guacamole you can add to your meal at a fast food restaurant for 50 cents more is going to do the detox trick. Opt for organic avocados and consume them without any other ingredients to get the full benefit of their healthy content.

Beets

You may only see beets when you order a Greek salad, but you should make a bigger effort to include them into your regular menu, and definitely pick some up if you’re going on a detox diet. There are so many different benefits to them, it’s easy to see why they are often mentioned as a super food.

When you’re detoxing they will help by making sure that the toxins you’re getting out actually make it out of your body. Many detox cleanses go wrong when toxins are reintroduced to the body because they don’t make it all the way out. Beets also help with free-radicals, making them an anti-cancer aid.

Broccoli

You’re probably sick of seeing broccoli show up all over the place whenever health food is mentioned. But that’s only because it packs a nutritional punch in a mini-tree shaped vegetable. Why does it belong on your detox food shopping list? It specifically works with the enzymes in your liver to turn toxins into something your body can eliminate easily.

If you’re stuck for ways on how to make broccoli taste better try changing up the way you cook it, or consider eating it raw. But don’t microwave it or it won’t have the same detox properties.

Cabbage

Don’t let the fad Cabbage Soup Detox Diet throw you off course with this helpful vegetable. Like most things that go viral this diet has some truth to it, but you don’t have to go to extremes. Cabbage helps your liver with the byproduct being lower cholesterol, so there is more than one reason to include this cruciferous vegetable.

In addition to cleansing your liver cabbage will also aid in helping you go to the bathroom, which in turn helps you expel the toxins, getting them out of your system so you can start fresh.

Dandelions

Happy liver, healthy life is the motto here, and dandelion root can help you on your quest to a healthy liver that does its daily duties. This plant is considered a weed by most lawn enthusiasts, but it has several healing properties for the liver, and therefore should not be overlooked when it comes time for detox.

Dandelion has been used to treat liver problems dating back hundreds of years, but you don’t have to wait until your liver is in dire straights to get the benefits. Strengthening an already healthy liver will still yield plenty of good results and makes it worth looking into dandelion on your quest for a cleanse.

Garlic

Many detox diets list garlic as a crucial piece of the puzzle. The reason is that garlic boosts up the immune system as well as helping out the liver. One good thing about garlic is that you can up your intake of it without having to worry if your body is going to get used to it or build up a resistance.

One other positive aspect is that it can help to add flavor to otherwise bland foods that you’ll be eating on your detox program. But if you don’t like the taste of garlic you can still get its benefits because it comes in supplement form.

Ginger

This is one root whose medicinal value dates back to ancient Chinese civilizations, and one that is still believed to offer many health benefits. Often used in a tea or other drink, you can add it to the meals you make as well. It is thought to help the liver function, and has some astringent properties.

Some detox diets ask you to chew on ginger root. You may also find that adding it to hot water makes the water taste better. Basically any way you can think of it get it into your system is going to be beneficial, especially if you’re suffering from a fatty liver caused by too much alcohol, or too many toxic foods and drinks.

Grapefruit

The fiber and the nutrient-rich juices in a grapefruit pack a nice detox punch and can really get your body into action as far as detoxing goes. It’s all about flooding the body with good things for it while helping it dislodge the bad things. The effects of grapefruit on weight loss are well-established, and one reason may be because of the way it makes the liver burn up fat.

The big takeaway on grapefruit is that it gets your liver fired up and ready for action, while infusing the rest of your organs with nutrient-laden fruit juice. It’s a winner when it comes to detox foods.

Green Tea

Green tea is often thought of as a great addition to any detox program because of its high antioxidant value. Antioxidants are helpful because they will help seek out and kill free radicals before they can do any damage. This is a great beverage to drink on a daily basis for this factor alone.

Getting into a healthy state of mind is a matter of feeling like you’re doing what’s best for your body. It can be something as simple as substituting green tea for colas, juices, and other teas so that you can actually be benefiting your body from a beverage instead of hurting it.

Kale

Dr. Oz includes kale in his 48 Hour Weekend Cleanse and recommends blending it up in a shake. However you choose to get it into your body, the benefits are that it contains plenty of nutrients, and also acts as a way to help flush out the kidneys, a set of organs that must be cleansed on any good detox effort.

This vegetable is so good for you that it is often recommended to patients that are following a doctor recommended diet when fighting kidney disease. It’s packed with so many antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties as well, not to mention all of the vitamins and minerals it contains.

Lemongrass

This is an herb that is used in Thailand and other parts of the world as a natural way to cleanse several organs at once. It not only helps the liver but also the kidneys, the bladder, and the entire digestive tract. Benefits of using it in your cooking, or drinking it as a tea include a better complexion, better circulation, and better digestion.

It is most often used as a tea in the world of detoxing, and there are several recipes you can try until you find one that suits your tastes best.

Lemons

Lemons and lemon juice are often mentioned when detoxing, and there’s even a few Lemon Detox Diets floating around out there. It’s simply a matter of adding lemon juice to water and drinking it. It’s supposed to flush toxins from your body. Some people add cayanne pepper and sweeten it with sugar, but sugar is not recommended if you’re trying to get a detoxifying effect from it.

It helps with your digestion and you can drink a cup of hot water with lemon added in order to prepare your digestive system for that day’s work.

Olive Oil

Some liver cleanses out there call for olive oil mixed with fruit juice in order to trigger your liver to expunge its gallstones. But aside from that olive oil should be your go-to oil for use in cooking when you’re trying to detox the body. That’s because it has a lot of healthy properties, and makes for a better choice of fat than most of your other options.

Just be sure not to cook with it at high heat. Use it as a salad dress to help things like dark leafy greens go down.

Seaweed

This probably doesn’t enter your menu unless it’s wrapped around a piece of sushi, but seaweed has a ton of nutrients and antioxidants in it. If you’re trying to get more detox foods into the body, don’t go for the nori they used to hold together a sushi roll, you’ll want to go with kelp instead to get the most out of it and avoid the salt that’s added to the dried nori.

The kelp is used in Asian cuisine and can often be found in soups. That’s a great way to have it when you’re detoxing, and it makes it so it’s easy to digest and tastes good too.

Turmeric

This is an herb that usually shows up as a tea, and it has specifically been studied in relation to the effect that it has on the liver. It’s said that you can do a detox using just turmeric tea, and drinking it for a week straight along with a healthy diet.

If you are simply looking for a way to start adding detoxifying foods to your diet, it would be good to keep this on hand and to substitute it for another beverage to reap its healthy benefits.

Water

Water is often overlooked but is so important for all of your organs, and for flushing toxins out of your body. If you’re exercising and taking saunas to help release the toxins it becomes even more important to stay hydrated.

If you’re not used to drinking water daily, be sure to only increase your intake by one cup at a time so you don’t overload yourself. Your kidneys won’t know what to do if they’re not used to getting water and then get a ton of it.

Watercress

Give your liver a big boost with cleansing action of watercress. If you’re into making smoothies for your detoxing this is a great one to blend up and drink down. You can also try adding it to a salad, but you might want to make sure you enjoy the taste first. It’s an acquired taste for some, and a source of consistent dislike for others.

This helps to release enzymes in the liver that clean it out and help rid it of toxic buildup. A great way to be good to yourself!

Wheatgrass

All of those health nuts that have been drinking wheatgrass shakes for years were onto something. This is a great boost to your liver and it can help you feel good all day due to its alkaline property.

It’s also effective at lowering your blood sugar and for getting your metabolism back on track. It’s simply a great food to consume, and is a nice counteraction to any junk you may have eaten in the past. Show your body you really do love it.

+ 4 Things to Avoid

Alcohol

Alcohol has a very toxic effect on the liver, and will undo all of your hard detox work. It can single-handedly cause a fatty liver, or it can contribute to one. When your liver is taxed your whole body suffers. Try to eliminate or at least drastically cut back during any detox program you follow.

Caffeinated Beverages

Beverages with caffeine in them have a dehydrating effect on the body, and make the liver work overtime to process the caffeine they contain. You have to drink plenty more water to counteract the dehydrating effects they cause, so it’s easier to just avoid them while you’re trying to detox.

Sweets, Candies, Chocolates

Excess sugar will also cause excess stress to your liver, and will thwart your cleansing efforts. Try your best to cut out these foods you’re craving. You’ll find that as you release toxins from your body you’ll crave these kind of foods less and less, but you have to give them up in order for this to happen.

Overeating

Overloading your digestive system leads to things moving sluggishly, and can lead to an accumulation of toxins. While you’re trying to detox you want to make sure that you’re stopping when you almost feel full, and that you’re eating freshly prepared foods that are high in fiber and nutrients.

Keep in mind that not one single detox food on this list is a magical one that you can focus all of your attention on to fully cleanse the body. Consider increasing your intake on as many as you can reasonably accommodate. Some might be hard to incorporate, either because you can’t find them locally or you can’t picture yourself adding them to your diet. Just do the best you can to come up with a detox plan that works for you and that you feel good about.

You may also like 28 Simple & Natural Ways to Detox Your Body.

Please make sure to like Bembu on Facebook to get the latest tips on how to live a healthier & happier life.

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The best foods to detox your body & mind.

P.S. Take a look at the 4 foods that kill fat and naturally purge toxins from your body.

         

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49 Comments

  1. NaturalLady says:

    Lemon is one of the best superfoods out there. I use it for detox, and it is also the main ingredient in so many natural remedies. You can use lemon when you have a cold or sore throat and in tons of homemade skin products.

  2. sherry says:

    I am going to try to eat these as much as I can over the next week. Great resource! Can’t wait for your full site launch.

  3. Meg says:

    Love AVOCADOS! I just can’t get enough of them. Nice to know they can be used for detox as well.

  4. Hauwa says:

    I decided I want to change my eating my habits so i can feel healthier and happier and fixing my diet is the best to start! Thank You for the suggestions

  5. SlimJim says:

    Despite the goodness explained here, I cannot stand the taste of artichokes, asparagus, and broccoli. Avocados, cabbage, garlic, grape fruit, and green tea to name a few, I very much love them. I eat so much junk food every day and there’s probably lots of toxins built up in my body due to my poor diet. I’m going to make a conscious effort to eat more of these detox foods and eat a little less doritos and whipped cream. I’ve got to get healthier when I’m still young.

  6. Laura says:

    It says avoid caffeine but drink green tea…does decaffeinated green tea have the same health benefits?

    • Bembu says:

      Yes, the detoxifying effects of green tea are not due to the caffeine, but are because of the EGCG and flavonoids.

    • rita says:

      caffeine is actually proven to be not bad for you unless you drink in excess, 2 or 3 cups daily is average, there is water in tea and coffee which balances out the effect. the only reason really to cut back is if you have an overactive bladder or if you get nervous drinking it. there have been tons of studies done on caffeine and there are no health problems associated with it other than nervousness in people or tachycardia with folks who drink too much of it or the stimulant effect on the bladder. people with ulcers are also told to stay away from caffeine but that has not really been proven to be an issue.

  7. Adam Wong says:

    love your website, thank you! :-)

  8. Moro says:

    The lesson of this article is that you need to eat stuffs that comes from of the ground if you want to stay healthy. We eat so much processed foods on a daily basis and that I believe is the main cause of our obesity problem. If we want to stay healthy individually we must cut down on processed food consumption and if we all do that, we can make the entire country healthy again. I’m going to start with me and I’m going to watch what I eat vigilantly from today.

    • Bembu says:

      It is all about balance too. Most people are not okay with giving up all of the processed or unhealthy foods that they love. It’s all about trying to make good decisions everyday, and if you cheat once in awhile to fulfill a craving, then so be it.

  9. Ethan L says:

    My girlfriend wants me to get into this detox food thing, I don’t really think it’s necessary but I thought I do some research before passing judgment. A lot of the things here I don’t even know what they’re, but surely they’re all natural foods that can only be good for you. I’m not completely sold yet, but let’s just say that I’m interested.

    • Bembu says:

      If you want to start detoxifying the easy way, try to drink at least 9-13 cups of water a day. This will be a HUGE step forward in flushing your system.

      • Joshua Steele says:

        Drinking 13 cups of water a day is a terrible idea. This would only diminish your digestive fire and deplete your kidney chi. Learn to trust your body and stop repeating these counterproductive memes.

  10. meital says:

    This is a great list. Thank you!

  11. Stephanie Stir Rodriguez says:

    Love this information on ways to use food to detox & take care of our bodies naturally……..

  12. Victoria says:

    Very important information for our health!!

  13. Julie says:

    Green tea isn’t caffeine free! or is it?

    • Bembu says:

      Hey Julie,

      You’re right! Minimally processed Green Tea is not caffeine free. There are caffeine free versions, but these are much more processed and usually contain less antioxidants, which is the whole reason for drinking the green tea in the first place. In this case, we are willing to make an exception because of the significant benefits green tea has towards detoxifying your liver. Just make sure you stay very hydrated, which you will doing anyway, during your detox.

  14. Ariel says:

    I partially disagree with the section on avoiding sweets, candies and chocolates. 70% or higher cacao chocolate (in moderation, of course) is actually good for you. I thought that had become common knowledge by now.

    • Bembu says:

      Hey Ariel- We completely agree. It was a more generalized statement as most sweets are not good for you. We also believe that eating dark chocolate in moderation is not bad for you. However, in the case of detoxification, we think avoiding it is better because the high caffeine content far outweighs the health benefits of it.

    • Most chocolate dark or milk chocolate has sugar. Eaten in moderation is okay. But it’s not the best thing to have everyday. Once or twice a week is good. It is common knowledge, but it still is not the best for you. Unsweetened bittersweet chocolate that is organic and fair trade is the best. Not Hershey’s dark chocolate either. Read labels and learn more.

  15. Erica says:

    What about proteins?? This is all vegetarian stuff.

  16. jaderenee says:

    You should think about adding Coconut oil to your list. It is proven one of the most healthy foods with antioxidants, antiseptic properties, and is wonderful for detox, weight loss, and as a digestive aid. Excellent article!

  17. Sonni says:

    Is black tea very bad for you. I have fatigue issues related to an autoimmune issue, and I prefer tea to the pharmaceuticals doctors suggest. What are your thoughts?

    • Joshua Steele says:

      Black tea is definitely not bad for you. But it is more “warming” whereas green tea has a cooling effect on the body.

  18. Joannie says:

    Great info Bembu!! Thanks for sharing.:) was happy to learn I’d incorporated so many detox foods in my diet this past yr. Yea!!

  19. Maria says:

    I also loved this information. I had been put on a number of medications of the last couple of years due to various health problems. I was put most recently (Jan. – April) on a Medication that made me gain weight and actually feel worse. In May I decided that I was changing my diet completely. Went organic and mostly raw. Now two months later I take 1 daily medication and feel much, much better. What I really like about the list of the 20 Foods that Detox your Body & Mind is that I have been eating most of the during this time. I drink a Green Smoothie in the morning, salad at lunch and fresh steamed veggies with dinner. So I can verify that the above is correct. My skin has cleared up, I have lost weight, my energy has gone up. So if you are hesitating to change your bad eating habits, don’t!! You will feel 99% better.

  20. LaCrecia says:

    Im starting a 3 week detox today from meats sweets and caffeine and your site has really helped me to get started thanks

  21. Pops says:

    i am very interested in the Detox. my biggest problem is the sweets I love chocolate and jellies. I probably can give up the jellies.

  22. Deborah says:

    Thank you very much. This was great information..a lot of this fods I’ve eaten one time or another..I’m learning and truly understanding the benefits of these foods…It’s great!..as I learn more I can make them priority on my grocery list…ty

  23. farra says:

    JUST WHAT I NEEDED. … U JUST HELP ME WRITE MY BRAND NEW GROCERY LIST…. IAM GOING TO START TODAY IAM EVEN THINKING ABOUT STARTING A Garden WITH MY CHILDREN!!!!

  24. Wanda says:

    Thanks for all of the great helpful tips on getting healthy. I am going to step up my game, because I need to continue loosing the weight; and I’m beginning to have water retention.

  25. oldguy says:

    As an OldF@rt with arthritis, I can testify that the diet you propose also is better than drugs in keeping down pain from it’s anti-inflammatory properties.
    Following this diet keeps me off the hydrocodone!!
    Good stuff…

  26. Joshua Steele says:

    This list is all fine and good but you there’s a lot of substances out there that leave all these in the dust…. like Bupleurum. If I had to choose between all of these and just that one herb I would choose Bupleurum aaaaaalllll day long. And pleeeeeeeaaaase stop all this puritanical hating on chocolate. Chocolate is all the proof anyone needs that Goddess loves us and wants us to be healthy and happy.

  27. Ka tarina says:

    I like to add water melon to this ( always just by it❜s self ). Woriyng about protein ? your body breaks protein in to amino acidsafrom witch waste product is ammonia ( uric acid ) toxic to your body. Vegetables consist from amino acids, w/out the uric acid .But this a complicated issue, so untill you know what you doing,eat meat and eggs,
    just not to much of it. never combine protein and starch.

    • rita says:

      I am a vegetarian and you cannot get complete nutritional needs from fruits and vegetables only, the body does need fat and protein to function: my sources for protein and fat come from beans,peas,tofu,eggs,milk,yougart,cheese. fiber is especially important for satiety which helps tremendously with weight loss: beans,peas,fruits,whole grains,and veges have the fiber your body needs.

  28. JAY says:

    Lemon is best when we talk about detoxifying our body. It is often recommended to drink lemon juice empty stomach to detox our body.

  29. Bill says:

    Great list! All things I try to consume regularly. Alkaline water also plays a huge role in my routine, I drink high alkaline water everyday. Alternatively you can actually add lemons to water to turn it more alkaline, very good for you all around.

  30. Christian says:

    It is not a good idea to recommend that people eat broccoli raw as it is goitrogenic like all cruciferous vegetables meaning it acts like thyroid medication to slow the thyroid down and can lead to hypothyroidism for some people.

  31. Mark says:

    I have had lower back problems for many years. Since I changed my diet and educated myself about eating the proper foods, my back problem has become considerably better. Diet is not the only answer, but it has been a big part of the solution for me.

  32. j says:

    I eat all of these but you can keep the beets and asparagus

  33. Rosemary says:

    It would be nice if they would tell us how much of what to eat to get the benny’s and how much to do when attempting to detox. Christian thank you. I am hypothyroid and I love broccoli. I rarely eat it raw but, it has happened. No one ever told me what foods to eat or not eat since I was diagnosed nor before apparently, Thanks again.

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