The new year is upon us, the parties are over and now it’s time to hit the ground running and feel great inside and out! The body needs a good month of healthy-everything after all the indulgent celebrations don’t you think? In times like these, a good detox is what we all need to get back into shape. But don’t worry! You don’t need to be on a special diet and you definitely don't need to starve, all you need to do is add a few ingredients into your daily life that will help you detox. Taking a break from refined sugar, alcohol, and gluten to cleanse your system has never been easier. Here are some everyday recipes that can be turned into super-healthy body-cleansing dishes by just adding these few detox ingredients that we’re going to talk about today.
Picture Courtesy: Doha Family
Your liver has gone through a lot in the past month, and it is time to give it some well-deserved rest from the usual chore of detoxifying your blood. In comes the beetroot – a superfood that has detoxifying powers. Beetroot is a high anti-oxidant vegetable that’s packed with nutrients which are natural body cleansers. It’s also tasty and versatile, and can be included in a variety of recipes to make it easier to get your daily dose of beets. Check out the recipe for a Smoky Black Bean Beat Burger –
• ¾ cup Healthy Alternatives – Peruvian Red Quinoa (cooked)
• ½ large red onion (finely diced)
• 1 cup mushrooms (finely chopped)
• Pinch of salt & pepper
• 1 15-ounce black beans (well-rinsed and drained)
• 1 cup finely grated raw beet
• 1 tsp. cumin
• ½ tsp. chili powder
• ¼ tsp. smoked paprika
• ½ cup raw walnuts (crushed or ground into a loose meal)
1. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and add some nonstick spray or a bit of olive oil. Once hot add the onion and sauté, seasoning with a pinch each salt and pepper. When the onions are soft – about 5 minutes – turn up the heat to medium and add the mushrooms. Season with another pinch of salt and pepper and cook until the mushrooms and onions are slightly browned and fragrant – about 3 minutes.
2. Remove from heat and add black beans and mash. You’re looking for a rough mash, so you can leave a bit of texture if you want. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl and add the cooked quinoa, beets, spices and stir.
3. Lastly, add the walnut meal a little at a time until the mixture is able enough to form into patties. Set in the fridge to chill while your oven preheats to 375 degrees F (190 C). Coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray or olive oil. Form mixture into roughly 8-9 patties.
4. Arrange burgers on a baking sheet and brush or spray the tops with olive oil. Bake at 375 F (190 C) for a total of 30-45 minutes, gently flipping at the halfway mark. Serve on small buns or atop mixed greens with desired toppings. See notes for freezing instructions.
2. Brussels Sprouts
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Brussels Sprouts is a vegetable that goes amazingly well with a variety of recipes, and is a super-healthy cleansing agent for the body. This green veggie can provide you with some special cholesterol-lowering benefits thanks to the fibre-related components in them, and that’s just one of the many other benefits. It helps cleansing your body off all the harmful toxins. What if we tell you that this health-booster can also taste delicious? Check out this easy recipe for Buffalo Brussels Bites and binge on the mouth-watering side while increasing your immunity!
• 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
• 1 ½ cups Brussels sprouts
• 1 tbsp. grapeseed oil
• 1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
• 2 tbsp. hot sauce (of your choice)
• 1/8 cup nutritional yeast
• ¼ cup cayenne pepper
• Parmesan cheese
• Sea salt (to taste)
1. In a medium saucepan, bring the vegetable broth to a boil and add the Brussels Sprouts. Allow them to simmer for about 3 minutes, or until they turn bright green. Drain and rinse in cold water for 30 seconds before cutting each sprout in half.
2. Heat a sauté pan on medium and add the oil. When warm, add the garlic and salt and allow them to simmer for 1 minute. Add the halved Brussels sprouts to the pan, cut side down and sauté them until brown, about 6 to 8 minutes.
3. Allow the sprouts to cool slightly before tossing them with hot sauce, nutritional yeast, and cayenne pepper. Garnish generously with parmesan cheese and serve them warm or cold with chopped carrots and celery sticks.
Picture Courtesy: Tasty Mediterraneo
If there’s one ingredient that’s the all-star of the detox-universe, it’s Kale. Kale’s multiple nutritional benefits is what makes it so favourable for those who are on a health regime. What’s so great about Kale, you ask? This leafy green veggie is a great source of fibre, with a 1000/1000 score in the Aggregate Nutrient Density Index. Your liver-cleansing can’t get better than this! It also has a high level of Vitamin C, approx. 134% of the daily recommended amount for an adult’s diet, making it a super-food for cleansing the body & improving immunity. If that’s not enough, Kale is chockfull of Omega 3 Acids, which helps with various health issues, both physical and mental. So are you ready to add this hero to your diet and detox like a pro? Check out this delicious Mediterranean Kale Soup recipe –
• 3 tbsp. Healthy Alternatives – Pure Olive Oil
• 1 onion (chopped)
• 1 garlic clove (chopped)
• 3 carrots (peeled and sliced)
• 2 potatoes (peeled and sliced)
• 2 ¼ cups Kale leaves (finely chopped, thick stems removed)
• 2 pints vegetable stock
• 1 tbsp. salt (or salt to taste)
• 2 tbsp. pine nuts
• 4 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1. Have all the vegetables well washed and prepared as indicated in the ingredients description. Heat 2 tbsp. of Healthy Alternatives – Pure Olive Oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute until lightly golden. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook over a low heat, stirring frequently, for about 2 minutes.
2. Add the carrots and the potatoes and stir all of them together for about 5 minutes until they just begin to colour. Pour in the vegetable stock, increase the heat to medium, and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat once boiled, and let it simmer for 10 minutes. Add the kale and the salt and let it simmer again for 5 more minutes.
3. Remove the saucepan from the heat and with the help of a hand mixer mix it all well until perfectly combined. Serve hot and garnish each serving with the rest of the olive oil, the freshly squeezed lemon juice and some pine nuts (raw or toasted).
Picture Courtesy: Gimme Some Oven
Artichoke is another must-have ingredient on your detox diet list. They are extremely useful in treating liver/gallbladder conditions because they promote bile flow in the body. Bile acids are what move the toxins that are ingested through food and water from the liver to the intestine, making artichoke an excellent detox food. They also increase the breakdown of cholesterol, thus treating high-cholesterol conditions and helping in cleansing all the cholesterol-heavy food you must have consumed during the festive season. Though the leaves of artichoke are also high in nutrients, the maximum amount of nutrients are packed in the artichoke hearts. Check out this delicious recipe for a power-packed meal that involves whole globe artichokes –
• 3 artichokes
• Half a loaf of sourdough bread
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 1 tsp. smoked paprika
• 3 tbsp. L’Exclusif – Whole Dried Cranberries
• 1/2 cup parsley (chopped)
• 2 big lemons
• 2 tbsp. pine nuts (roasted and chopped)
• Healthy Alternatives – Pure Olive Oil
1. Trim the artichokes. Working with one artichoke at a time, rub a serrated knife with lemon juice and cut off the top of the artichokes, approximately 1 inch. Snap of the outer leaves and trim the stem to the base. As you finish trimming each artichoke, rub it with one halved lemon to prevent discoloration. Repeat with remaining artichokes.
2. Stuffing: In a bowl mix the bread, parsley, salt, pepper, smoked paprika, nuts, and cranberries. Sprinkle some Healthy Alternatives – Pure Olive Oil to moisten the entire mixture.
3. Gently pry open the artichoke leaves. Starting from the outside in, push a little stuffing mixture in each leave, approximately 1 tsp. Continue stuffing till you reach the inside yellow-green leaves. So basically you would stuff 3 – 4 layers. Repeat with the remaining artichokes.
4. Squeeze rest of the lemon juice on top of the artichokes, place the lemons and artichokes on a steamer rack over simmering water. Cover and steam – for large artichokes set your timer for 75 minutes. For medium artichokes 60 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
5. Green Tea
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When we’re talking about a detox diet, how can we not mention the healthiest beverage on the planet? Green tea is loaded with nutrients and anti-oxidants that give your body a complete cleanse and much-needed nutrition. Green tea contains elements that improve glycemic control and help normalize blood sugar levels. Apart from its cleansing properties, Green tea is also known for improving brain functions, encouraging fat loss in a healthy way, and lowering the risk of cancer. Enjoy a good, aromatic cleanse by replacing your everyday morning tea/coffee with a warm cup of green tea, or experiment with its taste by making a Raspberry Green Iced Tea mix –
• 1 cup Raspberries
• 2 tsp. Healthy Alternatives – Detox Tea
• 1 tsp. granulated sugar (optional)
1. Heat 1 cup water and add 2 tsp. Healthy Alternatives – Detox Tea. Let it brew for about 3 minutes. In a large saucepan, heat 1 cup water, add the raspberries and sugar (optional) and boil it on medium heat, letting it simmer until the raspberries break up.
2. Add the raspberry mixture to the brewed tea, let it cool down, and then keep it in the fridge for 1 hour. Strain it once it’s chilled and enjoy this healthy iced tea.
You’re all set to have a delicious cleanse diet now! Get all your ingredients at the Nature’s Basket store.
Want more ideas to make your detox regime easier? Check out these 12 detox waters that will help you boost your metabolism!