Detoxing. We’ve all heard our friends say it in passing. “I need a good detox after all of that drinking this weekend!” But what is it, exactly?

Detoxing, specifically, is the process of cleansing harmful toxins (i.e. Alcohol, among other things) from your body. Detoxing “cleanses,” as they are often referred, can last from a few days to a few months with claims of resetting the body, improving mental clarity and supporting digestive functions. It sounds like a great idea — right? But is it all hype?

Why Dramatic Detoxes Are Risky for Your Health

Unfortunately, there are many unreliable sources that tell you how to detox in dramatic ways which are harmful and shocking to your system. Many of these crash cleanses and detoxes are extremely low in calorie intake and deficient in protein. The Master Cleanse, probably the most talked-about cleanse, has the cleanser drink six to 12 glasses of lemon water with cayenne and maple syrup throughout the day. Are you hungry yet? In the evening, you cap off the night with a laxative tea.

So why do people keep doing these crazy cleanses? Ultimately, the appeal in these cleanses likely lies in the psychological benefits one receives from achieving a goal (see – weight loss) in a brief period of time. However, the health risks outweigh the psychological benefits.

Detoxing Naturally: 10 Items You Should Be Eating

There are many physical benefits to detoxing, when done naturally and slowly and not with some crazy drink. Detoxing primarily benefits the liver and stomach, easing the load and allowing the functions of each organ to work more efficiently. Plus, when you detox by eating the proper fruits and vegetables you get the added benefits of antioxidants which help to clear away free radicals and boost your immune system. If you’re looking to detox naturally, here are 10 things you should be consuming more of!

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1. More Water

There are countless reasons to drink more water. Water helps flush toxins out of the body, hydrates the skin and improves digestive function. Did you know that when you have a major hunger pang, you may just be thirsty? So, drink water first. You’ll be doing your body several favors.

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2. Beets

High in fiber, beets help your digestive system process other foods and give you that satisfied, full feeling. As a great source of iron, beets are a brilliant blood builder.

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3. Green Tea

As one of the least processed teas, green tea is full of antioxidants and polyphenols. Polyphenols have been shown to decrease tumor growth in lab tests and decrease damage from ultraviolet UVB radiation. The studies haven’t fully explained how green tea’s polyphenol interacts with cancer cells, but the glasses consumed for benefits range from two to 10 daily.

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