Most Effective Foods For Detoxification

Have you been feeling a little weighed down lately?

If you live a toxic lifestyle—maybe you smoke, drink frequently, or eat a lot of fast food—there is no doubt that you will eventually start to be weighed down by the damage done. However, you can detoxify (or cleanse) the body using certain foods to help counteract the toxins.

So regardless of if weight loss, younger looking skin, better digestion, or just more energy is your goal, here are 10 of the most effective foods you can eat to help detox and cleanse your body…


If you’ve been enjoying a few far too many cocktails over the past few weeks or if you’ve been binging on a weeks’ worth of rich, fatty meals, steamed globe artichoke leaves will get your body back to optimal function.  Plus, artichokes are a great source of antioxidants and fiber to stimulate liver function and help the body digest and cleanse those fatty meals.


Blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries, strawberries, and cherries—they have some common denominators other than just being sweet and succulent. Fresh berries are extremely high in a collection of vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, and fiber—while remaining extremely low in calories. So boost your berry intake if you want to improve digestion, make your skin and hair brighter, and regulate your bowel movements.


When you hear detox do you automatically think of lemons? I do, because the fruit is essentially able to single-handedly flush out all the bad stuff. Chalked full of vitamin C, a slice of lemon in your morning tea or glass of water will brighten your skin, improve immunity, and help ward off disease-forming free-radicals.


Similar to rhubarb, watercress is a natural diuretic, which naturally eliminates toxins from the body. However, watercress is much easier to incorporate into salads, sandwiches, casseroles, and stews. The vitamin-rich leaves of this vegetable are packed with B vitamins, zinc, potassium, vitamin E, and vitamin C to boost immune health.


Ground flaxseeds are the ideal detox food. These fiber-rich seeds work to bind and flush out toxins from the intestinal tract while coating the intestinal walls with healthy omega 3 fatty oils. Mix ground flaxseeds into your cereal or fruit smoothie.


Your doctor was right! An “apple a day” really does the body good. Packed with essential nutrients such as fiber, vitamins, beneficial phytochemicals, terpenoids, and a particular flavonoid called Phlorizidin, that daily apple encourages bile production, helping the liver gets rid of those nasty toxins like metals, food additives, and pesticide residues.

Brown Rice

Whole grains, like brown rice, repair much of the damage we’ve done care of the fast food drive thru. Brown rice, in particular, contains key detoxifying nutrients such as B vitamins, selenium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and of course, fiber to help cleanse the colon and protect the liver.


If your digestive tract is out of whack add some ginger to your diet in a stir fry or steep a few slices as a tea. Ginger curbs nausea, encourages digestion, soothes bloating and gas pain, and strengthens immunity all in one root.


You’ve no doubt heard many celebrities tout their success with one cabbage diet or another? It doesn’t matter if Beyonce is noshing on cabbage soup or cabbage smoothies, cabbage is an excellent detoxifying food that can help with weight loss. How? This cruciferous vegetable contains two things: sulforaphane, a chemical that eliminates toxins; and glutathione, an antioxidant that promotes liver detox.


The pungent bulb is already beneficial for so much. Now you can add garlic to the list of best detoxifiers as well. Garlic is naturally antiviral, antibacterial, and antibiotic because it contains allicin, a compound that increases white blood cells to fight toxins and free radicals. Best eaten raw (and alone) you can add fresh garlic to a sandwich, soup, stew, or salad.

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Julie Ching, MS, RDN, CDE

Julie Ching, MS, RDN, CDE

Julie Ching is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator in Los Angeles. She decided to become a Dietitian after traveling through Europe, South America, and Asia and discovered a passion for food. She now works with people of all ages and varying disease states to improve their health. She is passionate about teaching people about nutrition so they can live their best life while still considering their cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds.