A simple way to detox your life is by starting with your diet. You want to clear out the processed foods that are high in sugars and trans-fats (cookies, cereals, chips, fast food), and instead, focus on eating whole foods, such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts/seeds, whole grains, fish and lean meats. A great way to do this is by striving to eat 4-5 cups of vegetables per day, as well as 2 servings of fruit. This behavior will increase your nutrients and fiber, and thus, naturally crowd out the junk foods.

Give your pantry and refrigerator an overhaul. For starters, many of us have expired foods that are long past their due dates. Go shelf by shelf and discard any expired foods. Don’t get overwhelmed. Do one shelf at a time! In addition, carefully read the ingredient label. If there is a long list of ingredients, and you cannot pronounce most of them, ditch it! Be cautious of what you’re putting into your body; it’s where you live after all.

Be a savvy grocery shopper. Stick to the outer edges of your local grocery haunt. Real food, like produce, tends to be on the outer edge of the store near the loading docks where it can be easily replaced with fresh foods. There are also many healthier brands on the market of your favorite foods that are less processed. Again, be sure to check the ingredient list, and when reading the calorie count, look at the number of servings.

Further, be kind to your wallet by consciously choosing which vegetables and fruits to buy organically. Follow the Environmental Working Group’s annual free Shopper’s Guide that highlights the newest “Dirty Dozen Plus” list – produce that contains the highest pesticide residues, as well as the “Clean Fifteen” list – produce least likely to hold pesticide residues. You should also be on the lookout for when stores are having sales on fish, cage-free eggs, grass-fed beef and organic poultry. In addition, you can order these items online from local farms.

Buy local. Farmer’s Markets are all the rage and are popping up in cities and small towns all over the country. Support your local farmers and your health by focusing on eating seasonable delights.

Cook! A great way to detox your diet (and life) is by cutting down on the number of meals you out. Even when you’re being conscious at a restaurant, you have no control over the amount of added sodium, sugar and fat in seemingly healthy dishes. Even a novice chef can pick up a pre-made roast chicken and whip-up a few sides. Tacos and salads are also easily made with no fuss. Plus there’s many food blogs and cooking videos available for free all over the Internet. And you get the added bonus of detoxing your wallet. Seriously, add up everything you spend in a week eating out on food and drink (include other household members). I guarantee you would save money if you cooked your dinners and brown-bagged it for lunch!

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