Don't be afraid to detox, naturally!

Our bodies are built for detox, but sometimes our systems need a little help to stay effective and in top shape. Your secret weapon? Antioxidant rich foods like berries, nuts, cocoa and spices.

You’ve heard of juice detox, body detox, alcohol detox.

Detox, or detoxification, is a term that is tossed around a lot. But do you really know what it means?

The idea behind detox diets are to remove toxins from your body for reasons such as improving overall health or losing weight. However, the truth is our bodies are already equipped to eliminate toxins naturally, through organs such as our livers and kidneys. To help our bodies to work better, there are beneficial things you can do such as drinking more water, getting enough sleep, adding more exercise to your schedule and having better eating habits.

Other than that, you can also add certain food and fruits to your diet that are rich in antioxidants to help your body fight oxidative stress. According to healthline.com, “Antioxidants protect your cells against damage caused by molecules called free radicals. Oxidative stress is a condition caused by excessive production of free radicals.”

Examples of antioxidants include vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. We’ve summarised a list of these beneficial foods rich in antioxidants for your reference, based on an extensive study by the US National Library of Medicine.

Berries: Fresh crowberries, bilberries, black currants, wild strawberries, blackberries, goji berries, sea buckthorn and cranberries. 

Fruits and Vegetables: Dried apples, flour made of okra, artichokes, lemon skin, dried plums, dried apricots, curly kale, red and green chili and prunes.

Nuts: Walnuts, chestnuts, peanuts, hazelnuts and almonds have higher values when analysed with the pellicle intact.

Cocoa: Mean antioxidant contents increased with increasing content of cocoa in the chocolate product. (The darker the better.)

Spices: Clove has the highest mean antioxidant value, followed by peppermint, allspice, cinnamon, oregano, thyme, sage, rosemary, saffron and estragon, all dried and ground.