The Truth about Superfoods and Detoxing
Jun 11, 2019 11:42 AM EDT | By Staff Reporter
The health industry is a booming one. One of the ways you may have been drawn to eat certain things or try certain diets is hearing words like "superfoods" and "detox." But most of the time, these are just fancy words.
Of course, eating a diet rich in leafy greens, whole grains, and lean meats while minimizing treats like cake and candy is good for you. But if you're worried about missing out on potentially amazing, cancer-fighting foods and cleansing routines, don't worry. You're likely not missing out on much.
Let's explore these topics a little further.
What are "superfoods"?
The term "superfood" isn't recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This means food doesn't have to meet particular criteria to be deemed "super."
However, this doesn't mean you shouldn't add so-called superfoods to your diet! Many of these products, while not miraculous, are smart to add to your diet. The American Diabetes Association has some good suggestions:
- You can't really go wrong with dark leafy greens like kale and spinach. These vegetables packed chock-full of nutrients you require.
- Citrus fruits are rich in fiber, vitamin C, potassium, and folate.
- Sweet potatoes are a good alternative to regular potatoes. You can even sprinkle some cinnamon on a sweet potato if you're craving something sweet but don't want to reach for the cake.
- Berries are another food useful for sweetening things up. They're rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and fiber, so add some to your oatmeal and yogurt.
Just be aware that no food is guaranteed to prevent cancer, but eating well definitely doesn't hurt!
What is detoxing?
Detoxing and cleansing are trends based on the belief that our bodies hold on to toxins from the processed foods we eat.
A detox program often involves fasting, only consuming liquids, a very restricted diet, or using certain dietary products. Unfortunately, scientific evidence supporting these detoxing schemes is scant. In fact, some detoxing diets can be outright harmful. For example, consuming too much juice may be harmful to those with kidney disease. An extremely restrictive diet can deprive you of nutrients you need.
Moreover, the FDA has even taken legal action against certain detoxing products because they were inappropriately marketed or contained harmful substances.
In fact, your body already has a fantastic built-in detox system in the form of your kidneys and liver.
Yet, many people still report feeling good after detoxing. This may be because detoxing cuts out processed foods and unnecessary fat and sugar from their diets. But you don't need to detox to reap these benefits. Simply avoid processed food and excess fat and sugar.
If you're considering a detox program, talk to your doctor first to make sure it's safe.
What if I have a legitimate detoxing problem?
Sometimes, however, your kidneys or liver don't work properly.
People with diabetes or high blood pressure, for example, may be at increased risk of developing kidney disease. This means their kidneys aren't detoxifying their bodies as well as they should.
Fortunately, you can help prevent kidney disease by eating a healthy diet! So, the "superfoods" mentioned above can and do come in handy!
There are also ways to manage kidney disease. For example, your doctor may prescribe medications like Lotensin® to control blood pressure, or a diuretic ("water pill") like Bumex® that increases urination. A more affordable way to access these medications is through an online international or Canadian prescription services like RxConnected. Kidney disease treatment can get expensive, so hopefully, this method may ease your stress.
At the end of the day, you don't have to worry about detoxifying your body because it already has a built-in detoxification system. However, this system may not function perfectly forever, and it's up to you to take care of it! One way to do so may be to include more "superfoods" into your diet. While these foods may not make you immune to detoxification problems, they're healthy for you in general and may contribute to helping protect your natural detoxification system.
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