It's a new year, and the new you might be looking to de-clutter not just your desk and closet but also your mind and body.
If so, you might be a good candidate for a detox — a cleansing of the mind and body that starts with healthy, plant-based eating, Elson Haas, author of the "Detox Diet," says.
"Detoxing is a treat. It's a vacation for the body, and especially for the digestive tract," says Haas, who has been promoting detox diets in his medical practice for 35 years. He is the founder and director of the Preventive Medical Center of Marin in San Rafael, Calif.
"It will leave you feeling lighter and younger," says Haas, who is also known as Dr. Detox. "It will cause you to think about food differently, and to look at your emotional connection to food. Ultimately, it's about reprogramming the mind about food and emotional well-being."
So what exactly does a detox diet entail?
Haas offers a few different detox programs, which differ in length (three days to a lifetime) and intensity (three-meals-a-day plan to fasting). But the basic detox diet is plant-based, deriving proteins and other nutrients from grains, vegetables, fruit, seeds and nuts.
So is the plan offered by Ebeth Johnson, a chef and healthful eating specialist at the P Street Whole Foods in Washington.
"Your body is detoxing on its own all the time, every day," she says at a cleansing-foods event that drew at least 20 people.
Anytime the body processes or removes waste from the body it's "detoxing." Not surprisingly, the liver and the intestines are big players.
"So the food that we pick should support the body's natural detox process. That means incorporating the G-Bombs, for example."