After the holidays -- with their traditional onslaught of stuffing, gravy, and mountains of chocolate -- our bodies are begging for a detox session. When it comes to shedding water weight and eliminating toxins, we rely on the liver and other organs, and there are several ways to give them a boost. Here are a few ingredients to be sure to include in your diet over the coming days to enter 2015 on the right foot.
1 Herbal teas and tinctures
Health food stores are the first place to go when the need for a detox sets in, as they offer natural products known to help the body eliminate toxins. Some classic detox aids include tinctures and teas made with rosemary, artichoke, burdock, dandelion, black radish, peppermint, lavender or lemon essential oil.
2 Water, water and more water
After a period of excess, water is one of your best allies when it comes to flushing out the system. Particularly while attempting to detox, it is important to drink around 50 to 70 fluid ounces of water per day (1.5 to 2 liters). Drinking H2O helps to promote better digestion and, somewhat counter intuitively, to shed water weight. To reap even more benefits, choose bottled mineral water that is rich in calcium and magnesium and low in sodium.
3 The lemon method
There is one ingredient people around the world swear by after overindulging during the holidays: lemon. Adding lemon juice to a large bottle of water and drinking it throughout the day helps regulate the digestive system and stimulate the elimination of toxins. Of course, lemon juice can also be added to food as a light salad dressing, for example.
4 Seasonal fruit
Rich in vitamins and water, pineapple, grapefruit, apple, orange and lemon are ideal detox aids when eaten raw before and (especially) after a meal. Of course, fruit is rich in sugar, so moderation is advised.
5 Green vegetables instead of starch
Instead of mashed potatoes or white pasta, fill your plate with green vegetables in the weeks following the holidays. A diet rich in herbs, lettuces, kale and cabbage -- as well as onions and garlic -- can help the body eliminate toxins while replenishing vitamins and minerals. While any detox diet should also include a few whole grains in moderation, avoid white starches as well as all forms of processed sugar, alcohol, coffee and dairy products.