Raw foods and detoxification

It is that time of the year when many of us reflect on what resolutions, plans and goals we have for the forthcoming year. In terms of health goals, if there was one key I would recommend for 2020, it would be to increase your intake of fresh, whole fruit and vegetables in their raw state.

The gift I would recommend that you give yourself for the New Year would be to purchase a good quality, high speed blender!

Why? Most of us know that the average person is exposed to many toxic substances on a daily basis. These can be either exogenous, coming from things such as air and water, or endogenous toxins which can be generated within our own bodies through metabolism and the inadequate digestion of food.

Excess sugar in the diet, hydrogenated vegetable oils and food additives all wreak havoc on the body, increasing our toxic load. Excess sugar alone can result in dysbiosis, which is an imbalance in the natural flora (bacteria) in our intestinal tract. The excess ‘bad’ bacteria produce toxins of their own, all increasing endogenous toxic load.

In terms of weight, increased toxins in the body can make it very difficult to lose weight. The body will use fat cells to ‘store’ toxins, thus preventing them from circulating in your bloodstream and damaging vital organs.

Toxins do not affect one body system only; all systems are integrated. Examples of toxic load to various body systems include:

Digestive system and liver

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Nausea
  • Coated tongue
  • Bad breath
  • Gas (burping or flatulence)
  • Constipation or diarrhoea

The skin

  • Rashes (eczema, dermatitis or hives)
  • Acne or other blemishes
  • Psoriasis
  • Dark circles under the eyes

The hormonal system

  • Fluctuating blood sugar levels
  • Sugar and carbohydrate cravings
  • Difficulty losing weight
  • Unexplained infertility

The benefits of raw foods to reduce toxic load

Raw fruit and vegetables are high in beneficial enzymes that will help us digest the food we are eating.  This enhances digestion, and reduces toxic load.

Raw foods also retain their water content, helping to relieve constipation. The longer the stool remains in the colon, the greater the amount of toxins that can be reabsorbed into circulation.

Retained water content will also support kidney function, another organ of detoxification.

Raw foods support healthy liver function. The liver is one of the most important detoxification organs in the body.

If you have been someone who starts the day with a cup of coffee, followed up with a bowl of cereal or toast why not make 2020 the year to start your day in a new and healthy way?  With a fresh, raw, green smoothie. That way, you are starting your day with a glass filled with intact vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients. You will be aiding your digestion, elimination and detoxification capacity… thus, reducing your toxic load.

A reduced toxic load will also aid weight loss!

Here is a delicious recipe for a Green Smoothie to kickstart your day. Follow this up by including a salad for lunch or dinner (or both) and you will have greatly increased your daily raw food intake, with all of the above health benefits!

My ‘standard’ green smoothie

Serves 2

  • Handful of ice
  • 1 banana (fresh or frozen)
  • Handful of strawberries (fresh or frozen)
  • Handful of parsley
  • Handful of mint
  • 1 cup of fresh greens such as swiss chard, lettuce, kale, bok choy, pak choy.
  • 1 cm chunk of fresh root ginger

Add water to desired consistency. Blend and enjoy!

Remember, it is best to consume your smoothie as soon as it is made, as exposure to air may destroy some of the enzymes and nutrients in the fruit and vegetables. If not consuming immediately, store in the fridge.

LivaTone Shots Cleanse & Detox tablets can help support your natural detoxification processes. The herb St Mary’s Thistle has been traditionally used to support healthy liver and gallbladder function. It may help relieve the symptoms of occasional overindulgence.

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