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To detox or not to detox?

By 14th February 2017

The wonderful South Inch Osteopaths have launched a new Naturopathy practice in Perth, run by Lou Johnston. Lou talks us through a question many of us are pondering at this time of year; to detox or not to detox? Over to her...

Our bodies are awesome!  Do we really appreciate all the things that they do for us without even a conscious thought about it?

It breaks down food, absorbs it, filters our blood, breaks down hormones, recognises what it does and doesn’t need at a cellular and chemical level, redirects what it needs, gets rid of what it doesn’t... and all this by the time you’ve had your morning cappuccino!

Poached egg over avocado and sourdough, two avocado'sSo why do you want to detox? What are you asking your body to do and do you know what ingredients it needs to do it?

Just as there are those of us that do things full on and those that have a more gentle approach in life, there are those that want to feel the burn and there are those that want to feel the stretch and just breathe.

Perhaps the way we detox runs alongside with the way we choose to exercise? Your biochemical individuality is the thing that determines your ability to process and eliminate toxins; it’s a unique process well worth working out for yourself. So how you deal with a particular lifestyle habit or external toxin is completely unique to that of your gym buddy.

No pain no gain for some and gently does it for others, it has to feel right for you but whatever type of detoxer you think you are, here are some pointers and things to think about.

What do you want your body and mind to do?

Think about the physiology; which organs & systems are you making do the work?

Our bodies are processing internal and external toxins all day every day. We have an incredibly sophisticated system which involves our livers working on a Phase 1 and Phase 2 system. (It’s worth a deeper read if you are interested as with a bit of research it’s hard not to have total respect for what our bodies do for us without even thinking about it! It may even help you to change the way you treat it or at least make more informed choices!)

Detox eggsWhat ingredients do you need?

Without getting too dull and technical I thought I would focus on the food ingredients that the body needs to drive through the daily detox process this may then drive the focus of which food you want to use for your detox.

The most critical anti oxidant which helps the liver to cope with the complete detox pathway is glutathione – this can be found in all the things that I will suggest become your Green Daily Smoothie friends! Other nutrients required include Vitamins B2, B3, B6, B12, E, and C, folic acid, bioflavanoids, zinc, magnesium and copper.

So if we cut out some of the more toxic ingredients that make the Phase I & II pathways work harder and add in more of the ingredients that the system needs to function then we are on the way to a positive detox experience.

Although some ideas of detoxing seems to be that we strip out everything and starve our bodies; I say we focus on the foods that help the body to do it for us focusing on inclusion to keep it as positive a  mental and physical experience as possible.

My top 20 foods that support detox

Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, asparagus, avocado, cucumber

Walnuts, pumpkin seeds, green leafy vegetables (like kale or spinach), artichokes

Citrus fruits including the peel! parsley, ginger and garlic

Eggs, Fish, beans and whole grains

detox Fruit and VegKeep it simple, you’ll appreciate it when things get tough 

  1. Juice of ½ lemon every morning – this stimulates the digestion to clear the bowels and get ready for another day; the alkaline nature of lemon in the system is a great balance for acidic situations.
  2. Add a green smoothie every day – this is where your super nutrients above come in to play.
  3. Drink at least 8 glasses of water every day – over and above any hot drinks
  4. Choose a rainbow of different coloured fruit and veg every day – blend, salad or steam
  5. Cut back on processed foods – the more ingredients on the labels the more processed they are.
  6. Cut out sugar – just stop adding it to drinks and food, with the focus on these other 5 points it will slowly reduce.

Taking some detox tips and turning them into habits can be a really smart way of reducing the impact of toxins on your mind and body all year round.

In order to detox alongside everyday life, it has to be simple and do able otherwise we set ourselves up to fail. You can always go and try a detox retreat where you are away from everyday life and can sink into the process a bit more with the luxury of someone else preparing your smoothies and snacks! does just that!


For more information on Naturopathy at South Inch Osteopaths see here>

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