Detox Your Body With These 7 Seasonal Fall Foods
By: Brandi Black, RHN
1 March, 2017 by
Detox Your Body With These 7 Seasonal Fall Foods
Sun Chlorella USA

Spring and summer may be the most common months to detox your body, but that doesn't mean your cleansing efforts have to stop when fall arrives. In fact, nature provides us with some of the best detoxifying and antioxidant rich foods during the cooler months.  

While detoxification is commonly associated with unpleasant laxative herbs, bland food, misery and starvation, it's time to forget the doom and gloom of traditional cleansing. You can detox your body safely, naturally and effectively simply by adding certain foods to your diet each day: no restriction or frequent bathroom breaks required.

I'll tell you what foods I'm referring to in just a moment. First, let's talk about whether or not you should do a natural body detox during the fall. 

Is it Safe to Detox Your Body During The Fall?

Detoxing your body is safe during the cooler months, so long as you "cleanse with the seasons". 

You see, as temperatures begin to drop in the fall, our bodies require rich foods that warm us from the inside out. Since raw salads and frozen smoothies are cooling, it's best to avoid these recipes during the colder months. Instead, gentle cleansing can be done safely and effectively in the fall by adding seasonal detoxifying foods to cooked recipes- such as stews, baked veggie dishes and casseroles. 

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), eating foods that have cooling (or yin) properties in the colder months can also leave you more susceptible to catching colds and feeling fatigued or foggy. So when it comes to adding detoxifying fall foods to your diet such as apples, you may notice a difference in how you feel when you eat an apple raw, versus cooked or boiled. 

Why Is It Important to Detox Your Body During the Fall?

Unless you live in a bubble, it's impossible to avoid toxins completely. We're exposed to toxins from all directions each day, which is why it's necessary to support our body's natural detoxification process year round. 

We absorb toxins from the air we breathe, the water we drink, the household cleaning products we use, and the food we eat (yes, even organic food can contain a small amount of toxic residue from pesticides). Toxins are also found in the majority of body care products, cosmetics, plastic containers and water bottles.

Now, our bodies have an intelligent system in place to prevent these toxins from harming us and contributing to the onset of illness. Our primary organ for detoxification, the liver, "deactivates" toxic substances (with the help of specific nutrients, such as antioxidants) when they enter our bodies, to prepare them for safe elimination. 

In addition to detoxification, your liver has over 500 other functions to perform. Therefore, if your liver is overburdened with toxins to deal with, your body can't detoxify as efficiently. This is when toxins can get stored in your body- namely, your fat cells- rather than eliminated. Unfortunately, toxins are the hardest to get rid of once they enter your cells. 

When toxins accumulate in your body, not only are you at a greater risk for developing chronic illnesses, but it's impossible to feel your best. In fact, a toxic body is a primary root cause of fatigue, unexplained weight gain, digestive disorders, brain fog, a loss of concentration and focus and skin conditions, such as acne. 

On the other hand, when you detox your body, you begin to experience increased energy, glowing skin and mental.Luckily, certain seasonal fall foods provide the exact nutrients your body needs for detoxification.

Not only do these seasonal fall foods improve your liver function, but they also support the health of other detoxification organs, such as the kidneys and colon. 
With that said, here are the top 7 detoxifying foods to eat to feel your best this fall season. 

1. Apples 

Nothing says fall has arrived like biting into a crisp, crunchy apple. Apples are one of the top detoxifying fall foods because they're high in fiber, which is a nutrient needed to detox the body by removing waste from the GI tract. 

Fiber also helps promote bowel regularity, which is a necessary part of detoxification. If you're not eliminating at least once per day (in fact, 2-3 bowel movements per day is the goal), toxins can accumulate in your digestive tract and may get reabsorbed into your bloodstream if you have compromised gut health. This is why it's important to have a variety of high fiber foods in your diet. 

Apples have also been shown to have antioxidant activity in the flesh and peel, where high concentrations of flavonoids, such as catechins and quercetin are found. Flavonoids are a group of nutrients found in plant foods that act as antioxidants and remove impurities from cells, while reducing inflammation. 

When it comes to apples, it's best to choose organic whenever possible. This is because apples are one of the highest pesticide sprayed crops. Since apples have such a high concentration of fiber and antioxidants in their skin, you won't want to miss out on eating the peels. 

You can eat apples raw, but during the colder months you may prefer to cook apples in coconut oil and cinnamon, or lightly boil them and add them to your oatmeal. 

2. Brussels Sprouts

Not only are brussels sprouts extremely high in fiber, they also contain several natural vitamins that act as antioxidants, such as vitamin C. Brussels sprouts have another quality that make them an ideal food to support liver detoxification.

Brussels sprouts contain chemical compounds that help support phase II liver detoxification. Phase II liver detoxification is where the liver has detoxified a harmful substance, and is preparing it for safe elimination through the kidneys, skin or gall bladder
Steamed or roasted brussels sprouts are the perfect ingredient to enhance the nutritional power of any dish.

You can add brussels sprouts to warm salads, or saute them in coconut oil with other veggies, such as onions and garlic. 

3. Cauliflower

Like brussels sprouts, cauliflower is an effective food for body detoxification because it supports both phase I and phase II liver detox. Cauliflower also contains glucosinolates, a nutrient found in cruciferous vegetables that has been shown to stimulate the activity of detoxification enzymes. 

There are countless ways to eat cauliflower, and one of the most popular ways to eat it is to make cauliflower "mashed potatoes". All you have to do to make cauliflower mash is steam or boil the cauliflower until tender, and then puree with a little bit of melted coconut oil or grass-fed butter. You can also add a few splashes of unsweetened coconut milk for a smoother consistency, and season with spices and herbs such as turmeric, rosemary, black pepper or paprika. 

4. Parsnips 

As a high fiber root veggie, parsnips are also rich in the antioxidant vitamins C and E. Both vitamins C and E are needed to "scavenge" free radicals that can cause permanent cellular damage.

Free radicals can come from radiation, pollution, UV rays, pesticides and metabolic waste your body naturally produces. Stress can even cause your body to produce free radicals. Since many of us live high stress lifestyles, you can see why it's important to include antioxidant rich foods in your diet regularly. 

Parsnips have a mild taste, which means they can pair well with almost any warming dish. You can puree parsnips to make faux mashed potatoes, or blend them into a soup with your other favorite veggies and organic chicken broth. Roasted parsnips also taste amazing when paired with herbs such as tarragon, sage, mustard or mint. 

5. Pumpkin 

As one of the richest sources of the antioxidant vitamin A, beta carotene, pumpkin is a fall food you'll want to indulge in when it comes to detoxifying your body. Like vitamins C and E, vitamin A helps disarm free radicals to prevent cellular damage. Pumpkins also contain plant phenols, which are a class of antioxidants that further promote body detoxification. 

And let's not forget about pumpkin seeds! Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, which is a mineral that can help remove toxins from cells, especially heavy metals.

So, pull out the slow cooker: fall is the perfect time to increase the antioxidants in your diet by making pumpkin curry, pumpkin soup and pumpkin stew. 

6. Pears 

Pears share the same nutritional benefits as apples when it comes to antioxidant activity, and contain the antioxidant vitamin C, as well as antioxidant flavonoids such as quercetin. However, pears are said to be higher in pectin than apples, which is a type of soluble fiber that supports colon health. 

One of the most popular ways to eat pears warm in the colder months is by poaching them. Poaching pears (or any fruit) is also a way to preserve fruit and increase shelf life.
You can customize the flavors of poached pears with the addition of herbs and spices, such as cinnamon or vanilla bean. 
You can also add a hint of extra sweetness to poached fruit with raw honey, or Sun Wakasa. Sun Wakasa contains a detoxifying nutrient called Chlorella Growth Factor, or CGF. CGF is a nutrient that can only be found in chlorella, and can help improve cellular health because it contains the nucleic acids, RNA and DNA. 

RNA and DNA help repair and regenerate damaged cells, which may also help protect against future free radical damage. For this reason, Sun Wakasa can be used to boost the antioxidant content, and nutritional value (and flavor) of any recipe. 

 7. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes may be the sweetest thing for detoxification in the fall. 

Sweet potatoes are one of the richest sources of the antioxidant vitamin A. In fact, one medium sized sweet potato provides nearly 3 times the amount of vitamin A you need in one day- which makes it a powerful fall food for preventing toxins from entering and destroying your cells. It's most common to eat sweet potatoes baked or broiled, but lately, many people are enjoying sweet potatoes as a fiber-rich, grain-free version of toast. 

You can make sweet potato toast by slicing a sweet potato into ¼ inch round pieces and placing them in a toaster or toaster oven. Simply toast until the edges are brown and the inside is tender (cooking time will depend on your toaster and/or oven). Top your sweet potato toast with anything you'd like: avocado, lettuce, almond butter, cinnamon, soft boiled eggs, coconut oil, ghee, grass-fed butter, and any other topping you normally have on toast

As you can see, detoxing your body during the fall is not only simple, it's also delicious. By eating foods in tune with the seasons, you provide your body with a high concentration of the antioxidant nutrients it needs to maintain and boost your overall health. 

About Brandi Black, RHN 
Brandi Black is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist from Vancouver, B.C. Experiencing her own health challenges at a young age led her to become passionate about educating on the healing properties of food, and how to achieve hormone balance, clear skin and sustainable weight loss naturally. In her spare time you'll find Brandi writing in her blog and hanging out with her teacup chihuahua, Coconut.

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