Joyous Health Recipes Food
Joyous Health Wellbeing Well-Being
Joyous Health Beauty Beauty
Joyous Health Family Family
Previous Episodes 

11 Foods to Help You Detox

There are foods that contain nutrients to aid your body's natural process in detoxification. These are some of the best foods to incorporate into your diet.
Mar 31, 2024 | Joy McCarthy

Can you feel it? Spring is finally in the air and with that comes a lot of pressure to buy this or that intensive detox program. However, if you know me, you know that I like to support my body’s natural detoxification every single day by eating the foods and nutrients it needs to maintain joyous health.


I’ve written a whole book about how to detox joyously and the foundation was, of course, what goes on your plate. So today I want to highlight some of my favourite foods that are delicious, easily accessible, and support your body’s amazing natural capacity to detox!

1. Beets

Crunchy Beet Salad from The Joyous Cookbook

I love, love, love beets and now is the perfect time to incorporate them into your diet to help support your liver since they’re rich in phytonutrients called betalains, responsible for their bright red colour! One of these compounds, betaine, supports liver function by thinning bile allowing it to flow freely through the liver and into the small intestine, carrying toxins and waste products with it. Enjoy the rich flavour and crunchy texture of beets in this Beautifying Crunchy Detox Salad or in my Crunchy Beet Carrot Quinoa Salad. 

2. Kale

pesto ingredients

Kale and other cruciferous veggies such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, turnips, and cabbage are another one of my top recommendations to support your detoxification. Not only are they rich sources of vitamin C, which is required for proper detox, they also contain other toxin-fighting and liver-loving compounds. Sulforaphane helps support liver function and indole-3-carbinol can help the liver detox excess estrogens. I have tons of delicious kale recipes here ranging from hearty salads to a rustic galette and this delicious kale pesto.

3. Chia Seeds

Chocolate Chia Mousse from Joyous Detox

You may think detox is all about supporting your liver or kidneys, but making sure you’re staying regular is a fundamental part of the process that many people overlook. Ensuring that you’re eating enough soluble fibre is one of the best ways to keep things moving.

I love chia seeds because they are rich in this gut- and microbe-loving fibre and contain healthy omega-3 fats and protein. The soluble fibre can also absorb toxins in the digestive tract and ensure they move smoothly out and through! If you want to get more chia based recipes into your diet, definitely try my Chocolate Chia Mousse - a healthy and decadent dessert!

4. Fermented Foods

jar of sauerkraut

I tried to choose just one, but I love a good ferment so much I had to put the whole category here! Fermented foods can be anything from yogurt to kombucha to raw apple cider vinegar or kimchi. Even lacto-fermented pickles make the list! These foods are rich in beneficial bacteria, often referred to as probiotics, that help support your microbiome , which in turn supports healthy digestion and elimination.


I’ve written about the microbiome and have a couple excellent podcast interviews with experts, but suffice to say that getting your probiotics from fermented foods is a delicious and easy way to help detox!

Just make sure when you buy fermented foods that the product says unpasteurized on the label to ensure all the healthy microbes are still alive and well! If you want to try making your own, try making my simple and creamy Coconut Milk Yogurt or Creamy Cashew Cheese!

5. Garlic

Roasted Root Veggies

I’ve written an entire post about how much I love garlic and how great it is for you, but wanted to add it to this list as well. Like cruciferous veggies, garlic contains sulfur compounds that help support liver detoxification, while also killing off harmful bacteria and viruses. A win-win! My hearty and nourishing Roasted Root Veggies contains tons of detox-loving foods from this list including garlic, kale, and beets!

6. Turmeric

turmeric collagen latte

Is there anything turmeric can’t do? Not only is it highly anti-inflammatory and great for brain health, the curcminoids also support phase 2 liver detoxification and the production of enzymes that help enhance the elimination of toxins and chemicals.

You can read more about this superfood here and browse all my amazing recipes here. One way I ensure I get my daily dose of turmeric is by sipping on my morning Rise & Shine Tea, which also contains ginger for even more detox support!

7. Ginger

I don’t know many people who don’t love the rich, spicy flavour of ginger! It works so well in sweet and savoury dishes and is a real nutrient powerhouse. Like garlic, I’ve done a deep dive into the health benefits of this fabulous root . It makes the list for one of my top detox-friendly foods since it supports healthy digestion and is highly anti-inflammatory.

These gingerbread pancakes can be enjoyed year round!

As we move into the warmer months, this Iced Turmeric Ginger Latte will be making its way into my regular rotation! You can also sip up the benefits by brewing up a cuppa my favourite Everyday Detox Tea!

8. Grapefruits

Enjoying a fresh, juicy grapefruit at the start of your day is one of life’s simple pleasures. I love the tangy sweetness and my liver loves the detoxifying phytonutrients limonoids, which can inhibit tumour formation by promoting the formation of glutathione-S-transferase, a detoxifying enzyme.

They also contain lots of vitamin C, which we know is a key nutrient for proper detox function. You’ll love the freshness of my Cucumber Grapefruit Refresher as we move into the warmer spring and summer days!


9. Cilantro

Everything Guacamole

I know this herb can be controversial–you either love it or hate it! But I am firmly in the love it camp and if you’re not there yet I encourage you to try it! Did you know that you can actually learn to love cilantro just by eating it more? My advice is to start small, using it as a condiment in recipes, until your taste buds adjust because the health benefits are just amazing!

Cilantro can help bind heavy metals such as lead and cadmium and remove them from your tissues, which is great since we are living in a world that is becoming increasingly overrun with these kinds of environmental toxins. If you want to dip your toe in the cilantro pool try my Everything Guacamole since you can easily adjust the amount you add to the recipe.

10. Matcha Green Tea

I love tea so much that I formulated my own line of organic wellness teas and one of my favourites has got to be Matcha and/or green tea! Not only does green tea help nourish our gut microbes (read more about green tea benefits here), but it also boosts the production of groups of detoxification enzymes that use catechin bioflavonoids to convert carcinogens into harmless chemicals.

It’s also extremely rich in chlorophyll, a nutrient that helps eliminate environmental chemicals, making it a superior beverage for detoxification. I might be a little biased, but my favourite green tea is Pure Radiance, made with a blend of anti-inflammatory green and white teas, rose petals, nettle, and jasmine.

11. Lemons and Limes

lemon cheesecake vegan

I couldn’t let grapefruit be the only citrus on this list since lemons and limes are just so fresh and so good for you! They’re rich in vitamin C and encourage the production of bile, which helps remove toxins from the liver and body. This Golden Elixir contains limes, ginger, and turmeric and is so bright and flavourful it will be a joy to drink! For your lemon fix you can go for the basic fresh lemon and water or enjoy these No Bake Lemon Cheesecake Squares .

These are 11 of my favourite superfoods for detoxification, but some honourable mentions go to:

  • Parsley–helps chelate heavy metals
  • Apples–rich in pectin to help with regularity
  • Dark berries–blueberries, cherries, blackberries, strawberries, and raspberries all contain bioflavonoids that support liver function and detoxification.
  • Onions–contain similar sulfur compounds to garlic that support the liver
  • Oats–contain beta-glucans and fibre that support healthy elimination
  • Sea vegetables–contain algin that absorbs toxins from the digestive tract
  • Sunflower seeds–rich in selenium and vitamin E, both of which are important for detoxification of the liver.

I hope this post inspires you to look around mother nature for support as we transition into the lighter, brighter spring season. Remember that you can gently detox every single day, no harsh products, herbs, or restrictive diets required! And that’s something you can feel joyous about!

Xo Joy

Post Comment

Welcome to thoughtful, organic beauty

Hello Joyous is an organic, plant-based, sustainable beauty brand here to bring more joy to your day.