THE MONO DIET
In a regular healthy diet, we should go out of our way to feed ourselves a wide variety of nutrients by eating all sorts of seasonal fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, legumes etc. However, one of the most effective ways to support and boost the body’s natural detox process is just the opposite: it’s called the mono-diet. A mono-diet refers to eating just one type of food repeatedly for a designated time period, usually a minimum of 3-5 days. When we give our body just one type of food, the body can produce less digestive enzymes. When the body is producing and utilizing less digestive enzymes, the body has plenty of extra energy to reallocate for all its natural cleansing processes. The mono dieting “frees up” extra energy for digestion, detoxification, and cellular repair. The mono-diet is the traditional Ayurvedic diet for detox and recovery but can be used anytime your body is run-down and needs to repair.
WHY KITCHIDI IS THE BEST MONO-DIET DETOX DISH ON THE PLANET
The classical mono-diet healing dish of Ayurvedic healing is Kitchidi; a simple yet tasty stew of rice and mung beans, digestive spices, ghee and vegetables. Kitchidi is easy to make, delicious and makes the perfect mono-diet for a short home detox.
RICE AND BEANS
The combination of rice and beans create dishes enjoyed by thousands of cultures and hundreds of nations every day. Rice and beans have been sustaining humans for a long time. Almost all cultures have some variation of the special mixture, creating something much greater than the sum of its parts. Nutritionally speaking, rice and beans make a great marriage, providing both protein and carbohydrates.
Ghee is butter that has had the milk solids removed. Sometimes referred to as clarified butter, it might just be the most effective tool for detoxifying the body. Ghee is now at the forefront of the ‘good fat’ movement, with hundreds of scientific studies showing it’s profound benefits on the microbiome of the gut. Ghee’s most prized component is butyric acid (rooted in the word butter). Interestingly, butyric acid is also present in the beneficial microbes of the gut. Butyric acid (also known as butyrate), is a short-chain fatty acid that the intestinal tract thrives on. Not only does it protect the lining of the gut, but it can even assist in fat metabolism (burning fat) a detox essential since the non-water-soluble toxins (the ones we don’t flush out naturally) are stored in our fat cells, and we must burn fat to eliminate these toxins. Ghee is a goldmine of nutrition, hosting important fatty acids, Omega 3’s, vitamins and minerals, and antioxidants. From the Ayurvedic perspective, ghee enhances ‘Ojas’, or our tissues. It increases digestive fire, fortifies and repairs our liver and acts as food for our nerves, bones and brain. Ghee helps the body flush out old bile, and stimulate the liver to make new bile. A detox essential since old toxic bile can end up being reabsorbed.
Ghee acts as a little cleaner to the intestines, removing stagnant toxins and bad bacteria. And it actually feeds the good bacteria of the gut, that in turn can produce more butyrate.
CAYENNE (ADDED BONUS INGREDIENT)
Cayenne is a master detoxifier and that magic “driver” to deliver other medicinal ingredients in a formula into the bloodstream. In 2015 the results of a seven-year study concluded that the regular consumption of spicy foods reduced the risk of death by 14%. The important alkaloid present in chilli peppers is Capsicum, Capsicum has been repeatedly studied for its ability to alkalize the body increase oxygen intake, increased digestive enzymes, aid in fat metabolising, relieve intestinal gas and as a stimulant for the lymphatic system, one of the most important areas of our body for healthy detoxification.
The Ayurvedic system of Detoxification known as Panchakarma preaches the use of heat (sudation) to move the molecules of the body, to stimulate blood flow and “shake-up” the molecules storing the toxins before elimination. These ingredients combine to create a simple but powerful kitchidi dish. So whether you’ve been feeling sluggish, bloated, or have been getting ill frequently, you might want to help your body repair and rejuvenate through a short mono-diet. And with all of the time you’ll save on cooking, you can take some much-needed time out to rest: another essential ingredient of any detox protocol.