Dr Sandhu’s 7-Day Detox Plan
Basic plan By Dietitian, Juliette Kellow BSc RD
Rather than following an extreme detox plan that limits just about every food except fruit and veg while at the same time getting you to down a nasty ‘detox’ drink every day, this plan is safer and more sensible and shouldn’t leave you short on nutrients if you follow it for just one week.
Foods to include in the plan
Your plan can include:
Limited to 1 or 2 times a week
- Fruit– your plan can include any fruit including fresh, frozen, dried or canned in natural fruit juice. This includes apples, bananas, pears, oranges, grapefruit, satsumas, sultanas, raisins, pineapple, mango, kiwi fruit, strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, nectarines, peaches, melons, star fruit etc
- Fruit juice – either make homemade fruit juices or smoothies from fresh fruit, or drink ready-made juices. Make sure ready-made juices are labelled as being ‘pure’ or ‘unsweetened’.
- Vegetables– eat any vegetables including fresh, frozen or canned in water (without salt added). This includes carrots, onions, turnip, swede, sprouts, cabbage, peppers, mushrooms, sweetcorn, peppers, leeks, courgettes, broccoli, cauliflower, salad, tomatoes, cucumber, spring onions etc.
- Beans and lentils – eat any beans, including those that have been dried or canned in water. This includes red kidney, haricot, cannellini, butter, black eye, pinto, red lentils, green lentils and brown lentils
- Tofu and Quorn
- Oats– sprinkle oats over fresh fruit or use to make porridge, sweetened with honey and fresh fruit
- Potatoes– Sweet potatoes
- Brown rice – wild rice or Quinoa (Take a look at our blog for more info on qu
- Rye crackers and oatcakes
- Fresh fish– eat any fresh fish including cod, plaice, mackerel, salmon, lobster, crab, trout, haddock, tuna, prawns, Dover sole, red mullet, halibut, lemon sole, monkfish, swordfish etc. Canned fish in water is suitable too eg salmon or tuna. ( Iceland (the country) has been voted No 1 Country with the best diet!
- Unsalted nuts– eat Brazil, almonds, hazel nuts, macadamia, pecans, pine nuts, pistachio, walnuts etc
- Unsalted seeds – eat any including sunflower and pumpkin
- Plain popcorn – without sugar or salt
- Live natural yoghurt
- Extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar
- Garlic, ginger and fresh herbs
- Ground black pepper
- Honey- Local to your area and/or Manuka honey
- Water– at least 2 litres a day. Tap or mineral water is fine.
- Herbal or fruit teas
Foods to avoid during your detox
- Red meat, chicken, turkey and any meat products like sausages, burgers, and pate
- Milk, cheese, eggs, cream
- Butter and margarine
- Any food that contains wheat including bread, croissants, cereals, cakes, biscuits, pies, pastry, quiche, battered or breadcrumbed foods, etc
- Crisps and savoury snacks including salted nuts
- Chocolate, sweets, jam and sugar
- Processed foods, ready meals, ready-made sauces and takeaways
- Coffee and tea
- Sauces, pickles, shop bought salad dressing, mayonnaise
- Fizzy drinks and squashes, including diet versions
Detox Plan Breakfasts
- Porridge-Porridge made with water and topped with natural yoghurt, and sweetened with honey.
- Fruit salad with yoghurt and oatsFresh fruit salad with natural yoghurt and a sprinkling of oats. You can even use frozen fruits they are better and cheaper!
- Fruit smoothie made with fresh or frozen fruit.
Fruit smoothie made from fresh fruit, natural yoghurt and honey to sweeten if needed.
- Muesli and yoghurt Homemade muesli made from oats, seeds, nuts and dried fruit served with natural yoghurt.
- Fresh fruit and yoghurtFresh fruit and a pot of natural yoghurt sweetened with honey.
- Green juices or blended vegetables
Detox Plan Lunches
- Vegetable soup and oatcakes
Large bowl of vegetable or lentil soup (either homemade or supermarket ‘fresh’) with oatcakes.
- Tuna and sweetcorn Sweet potato and salad
Jacket sweet potato topped with tuna (canned in water) mixed with sweetcorn and natural yoghurt and served with salad.
- Mediterranean salad with quinoa
Quinoa served with rocket, avocado, tomatoes, fresh basil and black pepper. Plus a handful of unsalted nuts.
- Guacamole with crudités
homemade guacamole made from avocado, lemon juice, fresh chilli, tomatoe and garlic served with vegetable crudités and oatcakes.
- Tzatziki with crudités
homemade tzatziki made from natural yoghurt, garlic, and cucumber and lemon juice served with vegetable crudités and oatcakes.
- Avocado and prawn salad
Fresh avocado served with prawns, salad, balsamic vinegar and lemon juice.
- Jacket potato with grilled cod
Grilled cod fillet served with jacket potatoes and lightly steamed vegetables.
Detox Plan Dinners
- Chinese vegetable stir fry
Stir fry a selection of vegetables such as bok choi, spring onions, mushrooms, bamboo shoots and beansprouts in a little olive oil with garlic and ginger. Serve with brown rice.
- Baked salmon with jacket potato
Bake a salmon fillet and serve with a sweet potato and steamed vegetables.
- Tuna and prawns with noodles
gently fry a selection of vegetables such as onions, mushrooms, peppers, courgette and leek in a little olive oil. When lightly browned, add a handful of prawns. Cook for a few minutes, then add canned tomatoes, tomato puree, black pepper and tuna canned in water. Bring to the boil and simmer until the sauce thickens. Serve with rice noodles.
- Sweet and sour stir fry with rice
Gently fry a selection of chopped vegetables such as onions, peppers, baby sweetcorn and mushrooms. Add canned pineapple (in fruit juice), canned tomatoes, tomato purée, white wine vinegar and honey. Bring to the boil and simmer until the sauce has thickened. Serve with brown rice.
- Sweet Potato and bean casserole
Gently fry a selection of typical casserole vegetables such as onion, carrots and parsnip in a little olive oil with garlic. When browned, add diced sweet potato and fry for a few minutes. Add fresh vegetable stock, black pepper and your favourite beans. Bring to the boil and simmer until the casserole thickens.
Detox Plan Snacks
- Fresh fruit or fresh fruit salad
- Natural yoghurt mixed with honey
- Plain popcorn
- Handful of unsalted nuts or seeds
Detox plan for the next seven days
- Morning lemon juice:This is an oldie but a goodie to kick start the digestion and cleanse the system. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon in a cup of hot water. Drink first thing in the morning before breakfast.
- Exercise: During detox aim to exercise for 45mins daily. And not just any exercise – something that makes you pant and puff and raise a sweat like a spin class, jog along the beach, walking uphill, hot yoga or boxing. Vigorous exercise increases lymph flow and circulation to help sweat out toxins. ( go to our YouTube videos for lots of exercise routines https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLC7iSVJC3SvUYfP7KjSdEEDHuwWJXjY0j )
- Raw foods:Aim to cut out the cooking process and eat mainly raw foods. Raw foods contain more nutrients and enzymes. Try adding fresh sprouts to a salad daily.
- Detox the mind:While you’re detoxing the body, its good to clear the clutter from the mind too. Aim for 15 minutes of meditation per day. If you don’t know how to meditate, try belly breathing. Start by placing hands palm down on your lower belly. Breathe in through your nose, counting slowly to 3 or 4 counts. Feel your tummy rise with the breath. Breathe out just as slowly, allowing the belly to drop. Do this for 15 minutes daily.
- Drink:Aim to drink three litres of fluid daily. This will help move the lymph and support kidney detoxification. Choose from pure spring water, fresh vegetable juice and herbal detox teas. Or make your own brew by mixing one or a combination of Dandelion root and nettle, cleavers, calendula, burdock and red clover. Add one teaspoon of the dried herbs to a cup of boiling water. Leave to steep for five minutes, strain and drink.
- Body brushing:Doing this daily will support circulation and increase skin detoxification. Using a loofah or natural fibre body brush, brush the skin with firm circular strokes before you step into the shower. Start from the feet and hands, moving up the legs and towards the arms, avoiding the delicate area of throat and face, and any rash or sore spots. Then jump in the shower. Finish your shower with a one-minute burst cold water which brings the blood circulation to the skin.
- Chew:Aim to chew each mouthful of food 10 to 12 times before swallowing. Bringing mindfulness to mealtimes improves digestion, allowing you to feel a sense of fullness without a need to overeat.
Note: Don’t detox if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, elderly, have high blood pressure, are underweight or against your health practitioner’s recommendation.
Detoxing can do more than make your eyes sparkle and your skin glow – it can boost energy levels, improve digestion and help shift a few unwanted kilos too.
While it may look like a fad diet – no grains, no alcohol, no milk, no sugar (and no fun) – a detox is far from a quick fix for weight loss. The purpose of any detox plan is to take the load off the organs that detoxify the body – the liver, kidneys and bowel – while at the same time supporting and improving their performance. If you want to fast track your health, give your body a break, or just want to detox diet for a short time, follow this safe and do-able seven-day program.
What to do
Check your diary and mark a week where you have a clean break from functions or events that might derail your detox, such as weddings, birthdays or special occasion meals. Some people may experience a ‘cleansing’ reaction in the first few days of detox, including headaches or loose bowel movements. This is due to the sudden withdrawal of certain foods, in addition to stimulation of detoxifying organs. These symptoms should subside in 24 to 48 hours.
Foods to avoid
- Milk products (except ½ cup unsweetened yoghurt with acidophilus each day)
- Sugar, honey, maple syrup, artificial sweeteners
- Grains: wheat (bread, biscuits, cakes, pasta), rye, barley, oats, spelt and rice
- Dried fruit
Foods to enjoy
- Fruit: any and all fresh fruit (in season or frozen or local fruit)
- Vegetables: any and all fresh vegetables
- Fish: fresh, canned in water or olive oil
- Lean red meat, chicken (without the skin). Limit to two serves per week.
- Legumes: dried or canned, such as kidney beans, chickpeas, lentils
- Eggs: preferably organic
- Olive oil (preferably extra virgin), Coconut oil (unprocessed)
- Nuts: raw unsalted almonds, walnuts, macadamias and cashews
- Seeds: raw unsalted sesame, pumpkin and sunflower seeds
- Green tea, white tea, weak black tea (decaffeinated)
- Water: from one to three litres of water per day
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