Detox Foods to Eat

A list of foods to enjoy while on a detox diet

Foods to eat on a detox diet.
Patrizia Savarese/Photolibrary/Getty Images

Here is a two-page list of detox-friendly foods to focus on as part of the detox diet. Also, check out the list of foods to avoid. To find out more about some of the key ingredients (including how to use them), check out our top 20 detox foods and get meal-by-meal suggestions on what to eat.

Foods to Include


  • Fresh or frozen fruit, such as apple, apricot, blackberry, blueberry, cherry, fig, kiwi, lemon, lime, loganberry, mango, melon, nectarine, oranges, papaya, peach, pear, pineapple, pomegranate, prune, raspberry, strawberry, watermelon. 
  • Unsweetened juice
  • Unsweetened dried fruit (sparingly) such as cranberries, dates, raisins, goji berries.


Try to include at least one salad a day, and incorporate vegetables into most meals. At least half of each plate or meal should ideally be vegetables/fruit.

  • Vegetables thought to be particularly good for a cleanse include broccoli, cauliflower, broccoli sprouts, cabbage, onions, garlic, artichokes, beets and dark leafy greens such as arugula, kale, collard greens, and Swiss chard.
  • Also include other vegetables such as asparagus, carrots, celery, chicory, chive, cucumber, endive, jicama, kohlrabi, leek, lettuce, okra, parsnip, radish, rutabaga, snow peas, spinach, sprouts, squash, sweet potato, taro, turnip, watercress, yams, yucca, and zucchini.
  • Sea vegetables including arame, dulse, hijiki, kelp, nori sheets, wakame


  • Rice 
  • Quinoa
  • Buckwheat
  • Millet
  • Amaranth
  • Wild rice
  • Teff
  • Tapioca
  • Arrowroot
  • Oats
  • Whole grains are preferred, but products made from the above are allowed such as brown rice pasta, 100% buckwheat noodles, glass noodles, kelp noodles, mung bean noodles, shirataki noodles, rice crackers, quinoa flakes, gluten-free bread, rice bran.

Beans and Legumes 

  • Split yellow and green peas
  • Lentils (red, brown, green, yellow, French, du Puy)
  • Other beans and legumes, such as adzuki, cannellini, chickpeas, black, black-eyed peas, kidney, and lima.

Nuts and Seeds 

Preferably raw and unsalted nuts and seeds.

  • Almonds
  • Brazil nut
  • Cashew
  • Chia
  • Hazelnut
  • Hemp seeds, hemp nuts, hemp hearts
  • Macadamia Nut
  • Pecan
  • Pine nut
  • Pistachio
  • Pumpkin
  • Sesame seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Flax seeds
  • Poppy Seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Coconut, especially young coconuts
  • Nut and seed butter, such as tahini, almond butter, cashew nut butter.


Preferably oils that are extra-virgin, cold-pressed, organic, and unrefined.

  • Cold-pressed olive oil
  • Hemp oil
  • Flax oil
  • Chia oil
  • Almond oil
  • Avocado oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Hazelnut oil
  • Pumpkin oil
  • Walnut oil
  • Safflower, sesame, and sunflower oils in limited amounts.


Although most cleanses exclude dairy, some may include probiotic-rich organic yogurt and kefir.

Dairy Substitutes

  • Unsweetened nut milk, such as almond or cashew milk
  • Hemp seed milk
  • Rice milk (unsweetened)
  • Avocado milk
  • Coconut milk


  • "Milks" made from allowed foods, such as rice milk, almond milk, hemp milk.
  • Coconut water
  • Filtered Water
  • Herbal teas, such as rooiboscinnamon teaginger tea
  • Green tea, white tea
  • Lemon water
  • Kombucha (unsweetened)
  • Unsweetened juice made from allowed fruits and vegetables
  • Mineral or seltzer water - in limited amounts
  • Drinks or smoothies with allowed ingredients and small amounts of hemp protein, pea protein, brown rice protein.
  • Detox water made with the allowed ingredients


  • Brown rice syrup
  • Coconut nectar
  • Whole or fresh fruit
  • Dried fruit, sparingly
  • Monk fruit
  • Stevia
  • Real maple syrup
  • Raw honey
  • Black strap molasses
  • 100% fruit jam


  • Vinegar (e.g. apple cider vinegar, balsamic, coconut, red or white wine, rice vinegar)
  • Baking soda, baking powder
  • Coconut amino acids
  • Fish sauce (sugar-free)
  • Nama shoyu
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Miso - small amounts
  • Olives
  • Lemons and limes
  • Cacao powder and cacao nibs
  • Carob powder
  • Sea salt
  • Mustard
  • Wheat-free tamari - in limited amounts
  • All fresh and dried herbs and spices, such as allspice, anise, basil, bay leaf, caraway seeds, cardamom, celery seeds, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, cumin, dill, fennel, garlic, ginger, mint, nutmeg, oregano, parsley, rosemary, saffron, sage, tamarind, tarragon, thyme, turmeric

Animal Protein

Detox diets differ on the question of whether to include animal protein. If it is included, allowed foods may include: 

  • Organic turkey
  • Organic chicken, preferably pastured
  • Wild, cold-water fish, such as Alaskan salmon
  • Anchovies, sardines
  • Lamb
  • Wild game, such as bison, pheasant, quail, venison, buffalo, ostrich

Daily Detox Do's

  • Drink a minimum of 8 glasses of water per day
  • Take the time to chew food well.

SEE ALSO: Foods to Avoid | 4 Herbal Teas for a Detox Diet | Dandelion Tea | Best Detox Foods to Try

Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis or treatment by a licensed physician. It is not meant to cover all possible precautions, drug interactions, circumstances or adverse effects. You should seek prompt medical care for any health issues and consult your doctor before using alternative medicine or making a change to your regimen.

Continue Reading