If your child is overweight, lacks energy or is bloated, you may want to consider putting him on a detox diet. There are plenty of harmful toxins in the environment that your child breathes in every day, and the idea behind a detox diet is to flush harmful substances from his system and replace them with highly nutritious substances. Potential benefits include weight loss and improved circulation. Kids have different dietary needs to adults.
Many people think of somebody getting over a drug addiction when they hear the word detox, but the diet is commonly used to rid the body of dietary and environmental toxins. Detox is short for detoxifying. There are numerous variations on the detox diet, but in general they focus on organic food, which contains fewer chemicals, they place emphasis on foods high in vitamins and minerals, and they include consumption of large amounts of water and fiber to help the body flush out toxins by increasing urination and bowel movements.
Detox for Children
While children are exposed to the same dietary and environmental toxins as adults, because their minds and bodies are growing, they are often more vulnerable to harmful toxins. Dr. Robert Hatherill at the University of California believes toxic chemicals are linked to aggression, violence and learning disabilities among children. He recommends feeding your children organic food and limiting meat and dairy. Detox diets help rid toxins from your child’s body, but some may be too extreme for her developing body. Instead of getting your child to follow a strict, vigorous detox diet for a set period of time, you should try to incorporate detoxifying foods into her overall diet on a daily basis.
There are certain foods that are staples of all detox diets, because they provide your body with the nutrients that help your liver flush out toxins. Have your child eat a wide range of fruit and vegetables. The American Heart Association recommends that you eat eight daily portions of fruit and vegetables. A portion is a medium piece of fruit, a slice of a large fruit, a handful of smaller fruit, a side salad or 80 g of vegetables. Fruit and vegetables are bursting with dozens of vitamins and minerals that promote a healthy liver and a body that quickly and efficiently flushes out harmful toxins. Nuts, seeds, oily fish and olive oil are an excellent source of unsaturated fat, which helps detox your child’s body by ridding it of “bad” cholesterol. Beans, lentils and peas are nutritious foods to give your child protein, and whole grain rice, bread and pasta are far more detoxifying than the white equivalents. Have your child drink at least eight glasses of water a day. Detox Your Body Today advises that drinking plenty of water is the easiest way of detoxing the body.
True detox diets should only be followed for two or three days, but if you give your child detoxifying foods there is no time limit. Your child should be eating detoxifying foods each day as part of a balanced, healthy diet. Instead of three square meals, give your child five to eight smaller meals a day, every three hours, to boost his metabolism and increase nutrient consumption.
Candy, chocolate, fried foods, soda and foods containing saturated fat are the main foods to avoid in a detox diet.