Focus on the little things to eat better...

As we welcome her to our team here at The Wellness Rooms; our Nutritional Therapist Elisabeth Carlsson offers you a few simple tips.


It’s January and words such as cleanse and detox are flying around everywhere.  We all feel like we should start the year with a clean slate and fresh habits.  But how do we know what best to do with so much conflicting advice?

Our bodies have a complex waste system that includes the lymph system, gallbladder, kidneys, lungs, skin and liver. But just like a house after a party, the body’s ability to detox can become sluggish and clogged with toxins and debris and this puts a lot of pressure on your liver as it works to get rid of them.  When working properly, the liver detoxes 99% of bacteria and toxins from the blood but even though our bodies have an amazing ability to eliminate toxins it can need a bit of help sometime. Especially after the excess of Christmas season.  However, restrictive diets and cutting out whole food groups does not promote healthy habits and it usually means weight loss followed by regain.

Instead of going on an extreme juice fast, focus on the little things that will have a lasting effect on your health and your body’s ability to detox.


1.       Start with cleaning up your diet and reduce your intake of sweets, fizzy drinks, biscuits, cakes, coffee, alcohol and processed foods and replace them with nourishing foods and drinks that support your liver.

2.       Eat plenty of organic, particularly fruits and vegetables as they contain all the vitamins and minerals the liver needs to do its job. Nutritional deficiencies will make your liver sluggish and unable to work properly.  January is the season for some fantastic produce such as kale, cauliflower, radicchio, beetroot, carrots, oranges, lemons, pomegranate and pears.  They will all help to flush the toxins out naturally.  Brassicas especially are effective as they contain sulphur and this helps with detoxifying several drugs, food additives and toxins but also eliminating hormones.

3.       Eat an adequate amount of protein such as organic meat, fish and eggs.  The body uses several amino acids in protein to combine with in order to neutralise the toxins.  One of those most commonly used is Glycine which is used to build muscles, produce digestive enzyme and bile salt and hence supports the liver. The best source of Glycine is bone broth and not only does bone broth helps to detox, it will also aid your sleep and improve your skin. Glycine can also be found in spinach, kale, cabbage and kiwi. 

4.       Pay attention to your breath.  ‘Oxygen that is inhaled purifies our blood by removing poisonous waste products circulating throughout your blood system.' Shallow breathing lets stagnant air and pollutants accumulate in the lungs, so a fuller breath is best (just don’t try deep breathing at the junction of Brockley Rise and Stanstead Road!). Learn how to breathe properly at a yoga class.

5.       Have a massage. The Manual Lymphatic Drainage massage which is offered at The Honor Oak Wellness Rooms works to help remove toxins via the lymphatic system. A study published in the Journal of Manual and & Manipulative Therapy states that ‘Appropriate lymph dynamics are fundamental to an adequate immune system as well as facilitating cellular processes and by-product elimination’.


Show your liver some love by including this salad in your diet.  It is a staple in Swedish kitchens and school canteens.  The raw carrot is brilliant for removing unwanted bacteria and excess estrogen. The beet and apple makes the bile thinner which helps the liver work more efficiently.


Shredded carrot and beet salad

2 Raw beetroots
3 Large carrots
1 Apple

Grate the vegetables and apple and mix together in a bowl.  For extra Vitamin C add some chopped fresh parsley too

Make a dressing by combining 3 tbsp. of cold pressed olive oil, 2 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar or lemon, add a pinch of sea salt and freshly grated pepper. This will last well in the fridge for several days.



[1] The Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine by M.T Murray and J.Pizzorno


[3] Systematic Review of Efficacy for Manual Lymphatic Drainage Techniques in Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation: An Evidence-Based Practice Approach