Why it’s always a good idea to follow a Detox Diet

A dietary detox is a great way to take control of cravings and shed some kilos while establishing good eating habits. Foods containing saturated and trans fats, sugar and alcoholic beverages are excluded and replaced with a wide variety of fresh, healthy foods and beverages, eaten in moderation. A detox should be ideally undertaken for between 2 and 7 days.

Please note: a detox programme should never extend beyond one week without medical/healthcare professional supervision. Extreme restrictive dietary behaviour (e.g. a fluid-only diet or limiting the diet to only eating fruit and vegetables) can be dangerous to your health over a prolonged period. These regimes do not only skimp on calories, but also many of the nutrients necessary for good health. As a result, mineral and vitamin deficiencies can occur.
An extreme detoxification diet is not advisable generally and particularly if you are:

  • Pregnant and/or breast feeding
  • Already on a diet supervised by a qualified health professional
  • Underweight
  • Suffering from psychological complaints or an eating disorder.

The DETOX DIET Includes:

  • At least 2 litres of water per day
  • All fresh fruit
  • All fresh vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, onions and garlic are particularly good)
  • Rice – brown, basmati, rice cakes, rice crackers and rice milk
  • Natural yoghurt
  • Oats
  • Beans
  • Fresh fish
  • Unsalted nuts and seeds
  • Virgin olive oil
  • Teas – herbal, green and non-caffeinated only
  • Spices, herbs, vinegar, garlic, ginger and a little honey or stevia for flavouring.

Exclude

  • Milk, cheese, eggs and butter
  • Alcohol, coffee and soft drinks
  • Confectionary
  • Products containing wheat (e.g. bread)
  • Sauces and pickles
  • Battered and bread-crumbed food
  • Saturated fats
  • Processed and highly refined foods

Sample one-day diet

  • Breakfast
    • A mug of warm water with freshly squeezed lemon juice
    • Bowl of fresh berry fruit salad with natural yoghurt and a sprinkling of oats and seeds
  • Snack
    • Glass of fresh fruit juice (diluted with 50 per cent water) or try a berry mint smoothie (see recipe below)
    • Small portion of unsalted nuts
    • Banana
  • Lunch
    • Bowl of homemade vegetable soup (see recipe below)
    • Rice cakes with almond butter (see recipe below)
    • Glass of water
  • Afternoon tea
    • Homemade tzatziki dip (natural yoghurt, garlic, cucumber and lemon juice) and raw vegetable sticks (E.g. carrots and celery)
    • Rice crackers
    • Cup of herbal tea or try a Can’t Believe it’s Kale Juice (see recipe below)
  • Dinner
    • Grilled salmon steak with lemon juice and coriander
    • Steamed vegetables or salad with a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
    • Piece of fresh fruit
    • Glass of water (try soda water over ice with fresh lime juice)
    • Drink plenty of water throughout the day. For something different, try a tall glass of soda water over ice with freshly squeezed lemon and/or lime juice.

RECIPES

  • Lentil vegetable soup
    • 1 tsp olive oil
    • 1 clove garlic
    • small onion
    • carrots
    • 2 sticks of celery
    • ½ cup brown lentils
    • 250 g tomatoes
    • Chopped parsley
    • Bay leaf
    • Water

Heat oil in a pan and add garlic, onion, carrots and celery. Stir in lentils, water, bay leaf, chopped tomatoes. Bring to boil and simmer for approximately 1.5 hours. Discard bay leaf, add chopped parsley and serve.

  • Almond Butter
    • 1 cup almonds
    • 1 pinch salt

Place almonds and pinch of salt in a food processor and turn on low. Almonds will turn from solid, to a course meal and into small, lumpy balls. Keep processing until the oils break down and almonds transform into a smooth, creamy butter.

  • Berry Mint Smoothie
    • 1 cup coconut water
    • 1 cup almond milk
    • 1 cup frozen pineapple
    • 1 cup frozen blueberries
    • 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
    • 1/2 lemon juice
    • 1 tablespoon coconut oil

Combine all ingredients in a powerful blender. Add 4 drops of stevia liquid for a sweeter taste.

  • Can’t believe it’s Kale Juice
    • 9 leaves kale
    • 1/2 of a small fennel bulb, cut into 2 pieces
    • 1 whole lemon, peeled
    • 12 sprigs fresh mint
    • stick of celery
    • small apples

Juice all ingredients and serve over ice

For further information see the Detox Recipes topic.

Pharmacist’s advice

To further support your body during the detox process, it may be advisable to take a good antioxidant supplement throughout your detox. When your diet changes, so can your bowel motions. Avoid using laxatives and instead ask your Pharmacist for advice about a suitable fibre supplement.