Science of Nutrition

Detoxifying Powerhouse Foods That Need to Be on Your Grocery List

detoxifying foods dark leafy greens

You live in a toxic world. Luckily, you have organs of elimination that help you detoxify every day.

But what happens when they can’t keep up? When the liver, kidneys, or the blood aren’t filtering fast enough?

The FDA has approved 84,000 chemicals for use in our environment and food, with none of them tested for long-term disease risk for those breathing, drinking, and eating them.

Your grandparents did not face these challenges! It’s no wonder we’ve gone from 1 in 200 getting cancer just a few generations ago, to 1 in 2 now, for men. (And 1 in 2.4 for women.)

It’s as if we’re a Model T motoring through the Dust Bowl in the 1930s.

(Can you imagine not changing the air filter on your car for two years when there was so much particulate in the air in 1936 that babies and older people were dying, literally, of dust?)

You don’t want to get caught in that situation. With your “filters” unable to keep up with the cleanup required to deal with:

  • Pesticides and preservatives in our foods.
  • Chemicals in our cosmetics and personal care products.
  • Fluoride, plastics, chlorine, and drug residuals in our water supply.
  • Let’s explore some foods that support the body’s natural process of detoxification and defense against toxic exposure and overload.

Put these power ingredients on your grocery list and use them whenever possible!



These detoxifying foods are great for your thyroid, offer a boost of antioxidants, support your gut health, and may aid in a healthy heart! You’ll find that they are rich in iron, calcium, magnesium, natural iodine, and other trace minerals and phytonutrients.

Seaweeds provide a natural whole food source of iodine, an essential mineral that helps keep the thyroid gland working properly. The thyroid controls growth, energy, and metabolism as well as regulating the endocrine system as a whole.

Types of sea vegetables include arame, hijiki, sea palm, bladderwrack, wakame, dulse, kelp, and nori.

Enjoy the benefits of sea vegetables by wrapping salads, grain dishes, prepped veggies, noodles, leftovers in nori sheets!


Enjoy the low calorie, high plant protein content of mushrooms along with a host of beneficial minerals and vitamins, such as selenium, B vitamins, potassium, and copper! Plus, they are great for your gut health and immune system!

Here are a few mushroom varieties to toss in your shopping cart: shiitake, wild porcini, chanterelle, hedgehog, and reishi extract.

detoxifying foods for liver


Who doesn’t love some citrus in their life? These detoxing powerhouses are high in vitamin C and key antioxidants. They also act as a blood purifier and liver detoxifier!

You can enjoy the benefits of citrus by consuming lemons, limes, oranges, and other citrus fruits.


Herbs with a green hue offer a high concentration of antioxidants and chlorophyll, which helps to detoxify carcinogens and heavy metals from the body.

You can find these benefits in parsley, basil, cilantro, watercress, dandelion leaf, nettles, and most green powders.

Chlorophyll-rich foods such as wheat and barley grasses, lake and sea algae can help denature radiation-like effects from microwaves, x-rays, electromagnetic fields, sun exposure, and air travel. Radiation causes free-radical damage, which contributes to aging, cancer, birth defects, and other diseases.

Make a goal to add green herbs to whatever dish you are cooking up to get the benefits of these detoxifying plants.


Although they may not sound appealing, bitter herbs offer serious detoxifying benefits. They can act as a stimulate for bile production, support the adrenals, cleanse the blood, kidneys, lymph, and liver!

Where can you find these bitter herbs? In artichoke leaf, dandelion root and leaf, yellow dock root, plantain leaf, gentian, burdock root, milk thistle extract, red clover, and fennel!

Enjoy bitter herbs by using them as a tea or tincture!


This may come to no surprise to you, but vegetables and dark leafy greens are crucial in supporting your body’s natural detoxing processes.

They provide you with important sources of beta-carotene that your body makes into vitamin A, the B vitamin folate, vitamin C, and vitamin K.

Vitamins and dark leafy greens are also a primary source of magnesium, potassium, a wealth of other minerals, fiber, and essential phytochemicals.

Our challenge is to consume a minimum of six 1 cup servings of vegetables per day. (But don’t stop there!) In this mix, aim for three or more servings of dark leafy greens.

If cooking vegetables, steaming is the best method of preparation!


When you eat whole, natural, uncontaminated foods, little room is left for new contaminants to be taken up by the body.

Although the body has many natural defenses and methods of maintaining balance and restoring natural functions, you still can use all the help you can get in today’s environment in most parts of the world.

When given a choice of foods, make choices in favor of foods that provide the most nutritive value, so the body works less to benefit more from the diet and process of digestion and assimilation.

Re-mineralization with land and sea vegetables is the most direct way to keep the body free of disease and stress.

What are some of your favorite detox foods? Tell us in the comments!

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