Dr. Frank Lipman on Detoxing

One of our favorite healthy living gurus, Dr. Frank Lipman, shares his tips for detoxing your diet—and your life.

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January is the time of year when pretty much everyone I know decides to get healthy. Or at least try. And I'm firmly in that group trying to eat better and work out more. Here are some tips about how and why to detox from Dr. Frank Lipman whose advice is sought by A-listers like Gwyneth Paltrow, Donna Karan and Maggie Gyllenhaal. And even little old me—I'm currently doing his Be Well Cleanse for the second time...and feeling great I must say.

What are the key benefits of detoxing?A detox removes irritants and harmful foods that are triggering inflammation in your body and overloading your detox system. It rests the digestive system allowing your body's detox system to reboot. It's a great way to push the restart button. Most people feel more energetic and lose weight, their skin clears up, they feel less puffy and their aches and pains improve. Their concentration and focus improves. My detox in particular relieves abdominal bloating and can get people over their sugar cravings. And finally, a benefit that is not often realized is that it resets one's appetite. Most people find they don't eat as much after my Cleanse.

What are the most important things to remember when you are cleansing?

It is not really that difficult!! With my Cleanse you are still eating food. It is not just drinking juices and avoiding all foods. Because I have been doing this for so long and fine tuned it over the years, I have developed a Cleanse that people will actually do. I have made it convenient and easy to do even with a busy lifestyle.

It is really just an entry point into a healthy lifestyle, a way to change unhealthy habits and develop new healthy habits. See the Cleanse as a new beginning, a time to try new foods and let go of bad habits.

If you're not ready to dive head on into a detox or cleanse, what are some small things you can do to start changing the way you eat?

Start cutting down radically on the sugar, processed food and junk food you eat. Drink less caffeinated drinks and decrease alcohol intake.

What is your advice for starting to detox and cleanse areas of your life other than your eating?

Become aware of not only what you are putting into your body, but also, what you put on it. The average American is exposed to more than a hundred different chemicals from personal-care products every day. So keep cosmetic pollution to a minimum.

Try incorporate some meditation or some type of relaxation technique into your life. Most of us need to slow down and relax as we are too busy and we get addicted to being busy.

How are the best ways to continue clean eating after a detox?

Your diet should be predominately plant foods, ideally fresh and organic if possible. Try eat a variety of different foods, the more colorful the better

I highly recommend eating seasonal and local foods if possible as well. Although you should know how to read food labels, most of the food you eat should not have labels… fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, organic eggs and chickens, grass fed meats, wild game and low mercury fish

What are the most important foods to have in your diet every day?

Here are my favorite 7 foods…I call them Foods with Benefits: Avocado, Beans, Blueberries, Cruciferous vegetables, Spinach, Walnuts, and Wild Salmon.