Taste and Train

Eating healthy is the best Detox

Posted: June 29, 2014
Green Smoothie

Detox diets have gained immense popularity in recent years. Popular detox diets generally last anywhere from a few days to couple of weeks and include eating raw fruits and vegetables, juicing and/or using herbs and supplements. In some cases people even opt for colon cleansing to clear out their intestines. However, the claim that these diets can leave your liver and kidneys squeaky clean within a matter of days is clearly a myth. What it can do though is kick-start you on a path to making healthier food choices. And as long as you are willing to adopt healthy eating as a lifestyle change you will be well on your way to better health. So how do you super charge your metabolism to enjoy long term health benefits? Try making the following changes to your diet:

1. Eat low glycemic fruits and vegetables

Eat mostly non-starchy vegetables like leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, zucchini, mushrooms, green beans, artichoke, eggplants. Potatoes, sweet potatoes and winter squashes are starchy vegetables which covert into sugar in our bodies. It’s a good idea to eat these in moderation. Fruits are full of vitamin, minerals, and other beneficial nutrients but in general contain high levels of fructose. Eating high sugar fruits right before or after physical activity is ideal. Low glycemic fruits like berries, lemon, lime, and grapefruit are full of nutrients and are ideal if weight loss is your goal.

2. Increase protein intake

Make protein part of every meal. Starting the day with a protein powered smoothie or eggs can be excellent choices. Other options include fish, chicken and grass fed beef. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for protein is to consume a minimum of 0.8 g protein per kg of body weight. However, professional athletes and even people embarking on an exercise and weight loss program should consume anywhere from 1.4 to 1.8 kg of protein per kg of body weight.

3. Eat good fats

Fats promote satiety, provide taste enhancement and are responsible for the production of enzymes, hormones and for formation of cell membranes. Good fats are therefore essential for optimal physiological function of our body. According to the institute of medicine the acceptable macronutrient distribution range (AMDR) for fat consumption is 10 – 35% of our daily calories. Enjoy healthy fats like fatty fish (for e.g. salmon and trout), avacadoes, olives, olive oil, flax seeds, nuts and seeds.

4. Make the right snack choices

Many people eat three healthy meals a day but totally give in to their cravings in between meals. Ensuring healthy snacks are ready and available beforehand can help take care of this issue. Hummus with vegetables, Greek yogurt, berries, nuts and seeds are all healthy snack choices. It’s best to eat simple carbohydrates (sugar, honey, high sugar fruits, fruit juices, jams, etc.) right before or right after exercise.

5. Avoid processed food

Highly processed foods such as baked/packaged goods, fast foods and convenience foods are calorie dense and generally high in salt and sugar. They contain artificial ingredients, additives, are high in transfats and low in fibre. This lead to increased inflammation and contributes to fat storage. So avoid foods like cakes, cookies, soda, chips, pre-made granola bars and opt for healthier alternatives like fresh fruits, vegetables, eggs, freshly prepared meats and other whole foods.

6. Eat whole grains in moderation

If you are following a detox plan for a couple of weeks, you may want to avoid grains during that period. However, introducing whole grains like quinoa, couscous, brown rice, barley, spelt in moderation while avoiding highly processed grains will be a good choice.

7. Last but not the least, don’t forget to drink Water

Human body is more than 60% water. Most of us forget how important it is to consume water evenly throughout the day. According to the Institute of Medicine, the daily reference intake (DRI) for water for active adults is 2.7L (~11 cups) for women and 3.7L (~16 cups) for men. Plain water is ofcourse the best choice but drinking decaffeinated herbal teas is also a good option. In fact starting the day with a glass of lemon water kick starts the metabolism by releasing hydrochloric acid in the stomach.

 


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