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a plate of spicy peppers

Detox Superstars:

  1. Habanero peppers, serrano peppers, and jalapeño peppers
  2. Organic green tea and organic black tea
  3. Organic coffee

Supporting Role:

The skin is your body’s largest organ, providing a barrier that keeps most foreign substances out. It’s also a surface through which some toxins can be excreted via your sweat. Certain foods can encourage perspiration and nudge your sweat glands to cleanse away. In a review of 24 studies published in the Journal of Environmental and Public Health, researchers concluded that sweating has the potential to assist with removing toxins, such as heavy metals, from the body.

“The capsaicin in hot peppers creates a heated, metabolically revved response,” says Minich. Caffeine, she says, is also warming to the body — it stimulates certain liver enzymes.

Good to Know:

Taking saunas and working up a sweat at the gym are good ways to support a detox-promoting lifestyle.

For more whole foods to support your body’s innate ability to detoxify on a daily basis, see “Everyday Detox: Whole Foods to Support Your Body’s Natural Detoxification Processes” from which this article was excerpted.

Rachel Meltzer Warren, MS, RDN

Rachel Meltzer Warren, MS, RDN, is a New York–area nutrition writer, educator, and counselor.

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