Winter often puts the body to a severe test. A moderate cleansing cure can then be beneficial for the body. Discover how to carry out a detoxifying cure, which is by no means a diet to lose weight, but which is ideal to feel better in your body when spring arrives!
What is a detoxifying cure?
The detoxifying cure would “rid” the body of the toxins it has accumulated due to dietary and environmental factors. During the winter, our diet tends to be less healthy, there are many excess tables and physical activity is less frequent. As a result, toxins can accumulate in the body. These toxins are actually residues of chemicals such as pesticides that were in our food. When we eat too much or too little, we do not give the body time to eliminate these residues1.
A cleansing cure also aims to stimulate the elimination of the liver and kidneys.
It could thus help to relieve fatigue and nervousness, skin problems and insomnia, although a rebalancing of the diet and the resumption of physical activity also contribute to this.
Note: This article does not refer to ready-to-use, commercially available cleaning or detoxifying cures. These include advice to ensure a good dietary balance and proposals for fruit and vegetables and natural health products that help stimulate the body, their virtues having been validated by scientific research.
Be careful, a cleaning cure is not a diet. It is not intended to cause weight loss. Here is what it is recommended to apply:
Choose light meals, most of which are fruit and vegetables. Choose especially those that contain vitamin C such as citrus fruits or acerola, opt for steaming to preserve the vitamins and nutrients contained in vegetables without adding fat (broccoli, green beans, etc…) and add some draining and antioxidant foods such as black radish, artichoke or lemon to the menu.
Diversify your menus to avoid fatigue and enjoy eating. Vary the flavours and colours to make your dishes pretty and appetizing. Avoid fatty meats and prefer lean meats such as chicken or turkey to get plenty of animal protein, or soy or tofu for their vegetable protein content.
Avoid stimulants such as coffee, alcohol and cigarettes. Take the opportunity to reduce or even quit smoking completely! Also remove or reduce refined sugars and animal fats that are too rich in saturated fatty acids from your diet. Green tea is a good alternative to coffee as it is very rich in antioxidants.
Artichoke contains inulin, a sugar of the fructan family contained in plants. Inulin, when it reaches the colon, is used by the intestinal flora that metabolizes it. It is a prebiotic, i.e. it is not digested or absorbed but it stimulates the development of beneficial bacteria in the intestinal flora such as bifidobacteria. These bacteria help to synthesize or absorb many of the nutrients needed by the body1. The artichoke activates the emission of bile, which facilitates digestion2,3. Artichoke can be consumed steamed, in the form of ampoules or as an infusion by drying the leaves beforehand.
The black radish
Black radish is excellent for treating dyspepsia, i. e. digestive and gastric disorders usually accompanied by feelings of overload or nausea. The black radish would act on the body by stimulating the intestine and bile ducts, which would increase bile secretion and thus digestion. Black radish has antioxidant properties4 that limit the oxidation of cells by free radicals and their premature aging. Black radish can be eaten raw or in juice. However, not everyone likes its taste, so there are ready-to-use ampoules available.
Starting the day with a fresh lemon juice diluted in a cup of hot water can be beneficial. Lemon promotes digestion and helps to eliminate toxins more quickly. To cut the bitterness of the lemon, you can add a spoonful of honey. Lemon also has diuretic properties that stimulate kidney activity.
Fumitory is a plant with multiple virtues. It is said to have depurative properties on the kidneys, gallbladder and liver and to be diuretic. It is consumed as an infusion or decoction.
The dandelion leaf is an excellent diuretic according to Commission E and ESCOP (European Scientific Cooperative on Phytotherapy). Dandelion consumption stimulates kidney function and urine evacuation. It is an additional aid to eliminate toxins present in the body and cleanse the kidneys. It is also choleretic, i.e. it increases bile secretion. Just like artichoke, the inulin content (= a sugar of the fructan family) of dandelion makes it an ally that helps to purify the intestinal flora. Dandelion is consumed in salads or by infusing dandelion leaves in boiling water.
During a detox treatment, it is especially advisable to fill up with fruits and vegetables because they possess antioxidant properties thanks to their content of phenolic compounds, compounds contained in plants that have the ability to neutralize free radicals that damage the body’s cells by oxidizing them.
In order not to lose the vitamins and nutrients contained in vegetables, it is advisable to steam them or cook them in a wok with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Some vitamins and nutrients are water-soluble, i.e. they dissolve in water.
Finally, don’t forget to practice a physical activity that is inseparable from a fitness program.
It may sometimes be recommended to fast for 48 hours before the cure. If fasting is not convenient for you, at least remove hard-to-digest foods and meats from your menu, as well as coffee, chocolate, alcohol and spices.