Clean up your act

The #cleaneating movement is bringing a whole new generation into the nation’s natural health stores. Matt Chittock discovers how to tap into this category-defining trend

Over the last few years the face of  healthy eating has been changed forever. Whereas once the image of the slimming and detox category might have been a stern schoolteacher telling consumers to cut their calories – today it’s the young, clued-up, gym-going, Instagram-friendly type who’s into #cleaneating and #greenjuicing.
This new grassroots clean eating movement has brought a millennial generation into local health stores and they are more than willing to pay a bit extra for healthy products that can help them detox. For instance, the Nielsen Global Health and Wellness survey of 30,000 millennial consumers in 60 countries found that 32% were happy to splash out on a “healthy premium”.
Plus, these switched-on shoppers also understand that slimming and detox is about more than counting calories and avoiding fat – and now encompasses everything from fashionable juice detoxes to free-from food, the 5:2 regime and the controversial FODMAP diet.

More than a fad
“These health trends are encouraging many more people to think about their lives from a different perspective and to place a
higher value on health and wellbeing,” says Katie Clare, Lecturer at the Institute for Optimum Nutrition. “I think this is evolution rather than just a trend.”
So, where should a good detox start? In a world of websites continually pinpointing new healthy eating techniques, it pays to hold on to the basics – like the fact that detox isn’t necessarily an artificial stricture that’s imposed upon the body from outside. In reality it’s something that you’re doing while you read this feature.

“Your body does its own detox all the time,” explains Shona Wilkinson, nutritionist at
“Every single thing that travels in your bloodstream is filtered by your liver – this includes toxins from your food, skincare products, pollutants from the air, cigarettes, sugar and chemicals such as alcohol and caffeine. This is our own built-in detox system.

“The problems arise when the liver is overworked due to being overloaded by too many toxins. It can sometimes fail to keep up the demands placed on it. You can then experience symptoms such as poor skin condition, hormone disruption, tiredness, a low immune system and just not feeling fit and healthy.”

“Just as we want to keep our cardiovascular system in good health or our skin in good condition we also want to keep our detoxification processes functioning optimally,” adds Clare.

“This has become increasingly important over the last century as we are now exposed to many more different industrial chemicals than we ever were before. These are in our food, hygiene and cleaning products and in the air.”

A healthy detox
With all this in mind, a healthy detox becomes about maintaining a cleaner way of life rather than emitting toxins in one swift ‘purge’. Or, as Clare puts it: “Supporting detoxification isn’t just something to think about on a Sunday morning if you have a hangover. It is something to consider as part of an ongoing healthy lifestyle.”
Shoppers experimenting with this more holistic approach can access different products within the clean eating trend to support their choices, whether that’s loading up on vitamin D to boost the immune system or adding flax seeds to a morning smoothie. Consumers are also coming to understand that, as detoxing becomes a more long-term lifestyle choice, it is as much about incorporating healthy foods as excluding unhealthy ones.

The food factor
It’s no surprise that food is right at the heart of the detox process. Aiming for seven portions of fruit and veg a day is now common advice, as is encouraging consumers to ask exactly where their food is coming from and insisting on organic produce. Wilkinson adds that food-wise, maintaining a good protein intake is a healthy way of feeling fuller for longer (hence the rise of added-protein foods) – and naturally, shoppers’ sugar and caffeine intake should be seriously cut down.

“We always start with foods,” says Clare. “If somebody is looking to support their body’s detoxification pathways then we would advise that they increase their intake of antioxidant-rich foods, with lots of bright-coloured vegetables and fruits. In particular we would want to see cruciferous vegetables on the menu. Also, can they increase the amount of organic food in their diets? We would want to see good quality proteins and fats too.”
Herbs and supplements can play a useful part in detox as well, although the exact mix may differ depending on each customer’s individual needs. In detox, milk thistle is a particularly popular health store stalwart which enjoys a serious uplift when shoppers want to cleanse their livers
after Christmas and New Year celebrations.

“If you suffer from a sweet tooth try taking chromium,” says Wilkinson. “Chromium will help balance your blood sugar levels which will reduce your cravings for sweet things. Konjac fibre is another choice that can be added to any food. It expands in the stomach so helps you feel full and prevents overeating.”

Taking responsibility
Despite the wealth of products available, to get the most from the slimming and detox category retailers need to be responsible. After all, there’s a widely recognized darker side to detox: with elimination diets occasionally acting as a cover for eating disorders. There’s even a recognized disorder – orthorexia nervosa – in which sufferers develop an unhealthy obsession with healthy eating.

This means prioritizing education – for both the customer and the retailer. “It’s good for retailers to understand the bodily processes behind the trends in as much depth as possible,” says Clare. “Many health stores and pharmacists have resident registered nutritional therapists available on the shop floor on certain days of the week. They are able to answer queries in more depth and give helpful advice.”
She adds that customers presenting alarming symptoms should always seek medical advice and that nutritional therapy and complementary practices are not a substitute for medical care. However, this doesn’t mean that complementary therapists shouldn’t get involved in a customer’s weight-loss or detox efforts.

“It is much more helpful to be able to go to a complementary practitioner armed with the information that a doctor has provided,” she says. “We all need to work in an integrated way.”


Still super

Superfoods show no signs of going out of style. In fact, deciding which products will be big with the
detox set in January (cauliflower, aubergine and, er, black pudding have all been mooted) is virtually a national sport for both broadsheets and fashion mags alike.

It’s a category in which there is plenty of innovation too, as manufacturers work hard on recipes and formats to fit into health-conscious consumers’ busy lifestyles. Take OMNI Superfood, a raw, 100% organic and vegan range of superfood powders designed to add extra vitality to shoppers’ detox diets.

“I tried vegetarianism, veganism and raw food diets, and realized that each diet needs different extras in terms of nutrition,” explains the brand’s founder, Ondrej Matej.

“After a bit of research I started experimenting with individual superfoods having seven to ten jars with different ingredients.

“One day I figured, why don’t I save time and combine the most potent and powerful superfoods into one powder? So I experimented with the taste and came up with a formula that was tasty and powerful. And that was how OMNI Superfood was born.”

“One of the ingredients in OMNI Superfood is raw cacao which is very high in antioxidants, thus very helpful in body detox,” adds Matej.


A shop with a view
Katie Tume from Infinity Foods in Brighton says that although it’s hard to generalize (they get all ages in the store), the customers that come in and specifically ask for advice on a detox tend to be women in their twenties or early thirties.

“Maybe that’s because older people are more clued-up about general health. Or, more realistically, it might be that young people want a health solution that works quickly for them.

“It’s a category that’s very seasonal – we don’t necessarily get enquiries all year round. It tends to be at key times like Christmas, or the start of winter, when people come in and ask for advice on products to help them detox.

“It has to be said that we definitely shy away from advising on, or selling, products which offer ‘quick fixes’ or advertise themselves as ‘one-hit wonders’. We’re a big wholefoods shop, so we’re more interested that people do their own research and look at detox as being about a good healthy lifestyle rather than stocking or pushing ‘miracle cures’ or products making crazy claims.

“In the store we have a large range of Pukka supplements and also its Organic Aloe Vera Juice. In particular we sell a lot of green powders. So we sell Dr Schulze’s SuperFood Plus and Inspiral’s range too – anything that you can put in a smoothie. It’s interesting that those powders are one of the few things in the store that actually have the word ‘detox’ on the label!”


cocofinaCocofina Detox Supplement

Cocofina Ltd
Tel: 020 84293078
E-mail:  [email protected]

Cocofina’s Coco Detox is your best ally to detoxify your body! This food supplement only contains the best ingredients for a daily detox regime, namely organic coconut oil and chlorella.   Chlorella is a single celled green micro-algae naturally containing chlorophyll, the phyto-nutrients in plants that capture the sun’s rays. It is a natural source of protein as well as an essential nutrient to support health and wellness and promotes body detoxification by beneficially affecting the function of the liver. Combining this gift from nature with organic coconut oil enabled us to create detoxifying capsules for your health regime! Chlorella  and 100% organic, cold pressed virgin coconut oil. Take two capsules of Coco Detox per day with a full glass of water after food to detoxify your body.


go-figureGoFigure healthy meal replacement shakes and snack bars

GoFigure® – the healthy weight loss company.
Tel: 0800 0141575
E-mail:  [email protected]

Introducing the GoFigure® range of healthy weight loss products that include natural meal replacement shakes and natural flapjack snack bars, all with patented Slimbiome®.  Packed with great tasting wholefood ingredients including, superfoods, green vegetables, spirulina, fruit, live probiotics, prebiotics, seeds, omega 3 oils and MCTs (the fat that burns fat). Our bars are a super-healthy combination of cold pressed fruits, gluten free oats and yummy seeds. We were category finalists at Natural and Organics trade show, London 2016. Slimbiome is a scientifically formulated, patented natural product that promotes healthy weight loss. Available in Wholefoods and all good health food stores.



HealthAid Ltd, HealthAid House
Tel: 020 84263400
E-mail: [email protected]

Help Support Weight Loss – CoffeeSlim™ is new weight management supplement with essential ingredients, such as Green Coffee Bean, Raspberry Ketones, Green Tea, African Mango Seed, Blueberry Extract, Cayenne Pepper and Chicory Root.  Green Coffee Bean Extract help’s to release fatty acids from fat stored in the body. Chlorogenic acid helps the liver to process these fatty acids more efficiently.  Raspberry Ketones are naturally occurring phenolic compounds found in red raspberries which help curb appetite and cravings for food. CoffeeSlim™ has the additional benefit of key Amino acids and Minerals to help support, healthy metabolism and weight management. Suitable for Vegans. CoffeeSlim™ retails at £19.99 for 60 capsules. Contact HealthAid Ltd on 020 8426 3400 for purchase and stockist information or visit


kinetic-1-amazing-grass-alkalyse-detoxAmazing Grass Alkalise & Detox Green Superfood

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor
Tel: 08450 725825
E-mail: [email protected]

Amazing Grass Alkalise & Detox Green Superfood Blend includes a proprietary combination of organic, non-GMO wheat grass, barley grass, alfalfa, spirulina, spinach, and broccoli, plus a carefully-selected combination of herbs, spices, fruit and vegetables—including over 12 cleansing ingredients—to help restore your pH balance and rid your body of harmful toxins. Every serving is chock full of all the necessary vitamins and minerals you and your loved ones need to start—and finish—the day feeling healthy. Raw, Vegan, Gluten Free. To use, simply mix one serving with 8 or more oz. of water, juice, or mixed into your favorite smoothie.


kinetic-2-natures-answer-green-coffee-beanNature’s Answer Green Coffee Bean Extract

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor
Tel: 08450 725825
E-mail: [email protected]

Nature’s Answer Green Coffee Bean extract offers 400mg of Green Coffee Bean Extract per capsule, standardized to contain 50% Chlorogenic Acids; 200mg. Vegetarian & vegan, gluten-free and non GMO. Recommended dose of one capsule up to three times a day before meals, drink 8-10 glasses of water per day and for best results use in conjunction with a calorie-controlled diet and exercise program. Using carefully controlled extraction techniques to capture the holistic balance of each herb to pass on in the final end product, consumers can be assured that the product is authentic, safe, effective, holistically balance, and Nature’s Answer.


kinetic-3-slim-kombuBalestra & Mech Slim Kombu

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor
Tel No: 08450 725825
E-mail: [email protected]

Slim-Kombu provides the goodness of kombu algae together with medicinal herbal and good ingredients – Pineapple, Turnera Diffusa, Fucus, Dandelion, Eleuterococcus, Muira Puama, Rosemary, Horsetail, Bearberry, Guar, Birch, Restharrow, Cress, Juniper, Ash, Chervil, Sea Caltrop, Nettle. These ingredients work in synergy to help maintain lipidic equilibrium, control cholesterol and stimulate the metabolism. Alcohol, preservative and sugar free.


lambertsLamberts® Green Tea As a 500mg extract

Lamberts Healthcare Ltd,
Tel: 01892 554313
E-mail:  [email protected]

The green tea extract used in this Lamberts® product has been concentrated to ensure a high level of the active ingredients called catechins, providing 250mg per tablet. For Lamberts® to ensure the very best quality, and a high level of active ingredients, the extract is obtained from whole green tea leaves harvested young and without the leaves being fermented (the process that turns green tea in to black tea). Just one of these tablets is equivalent to ½ litre of traditionally brewed green tea but with a caffeine content a fraction of normal tea.


natural-health-practiceLose your Belly!

The Natural Health Practice
Tel: 01892 507598
E-mail:  [email protected]

Nutri Support and Amino Support from the Natural Health Practice provides all the most important nutrients and amino acids scientifically proven to help reduce fat from around the waist.  Nutri Support contains chromium which contributes to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels, magnesium which contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue as well as other beneficial nutrients.  Amino Support contains a special blend of 8 specific amino acids.  For best results, use both supplements as part of the ‘Lose Your Belly’ programme as featured in the ‘Fat Around the Middle’ book by Dr Marilyn Glenville PhD. For more information call 01892 507598 or visit


qChili Burn & Chili Burn Meal Replacement Bar

New Nordic Ltd
Tel: 01482 300695
E-mail:  [email protected] 

Chili Burn ™ is a formulation developed by New Nordic’s. The natural extracts in this tablet causes you to burn more calories without any changes in your daily routine. The tablet works in harmony with your body. It’s not only good for slimming. The tablet is also good to bloating and good for digestion. Recent research shows that special natural plant substances such as capsaicin and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) may increase metabolism and energy consumption. Take 2 Chili Burn™ tablets daily, 1 tablet with lunch and 1 with dinner. NEW to Slimming – Try the new and tasty Chili Burn meal replacement bar for weight control. Replace breakfast or lunch with a bar and reduce your daily intake of calories. One bar provides all the nutrients you need with green tea and chilli extract.


provenAdult Acidophilus & Bifidus – 25 Billion

ProVen Probiotics
Tel: 01639 825107
E-mail:  [email protected]
An increasing body of research suggests that chronic stress can change the diversity of bacteria in the gut and that healthy gut bacteria may affect mental health and wellbeing. The research has shown that there is a difference in the composition of the gut microbiota in those with depressive disorders compared to those without. The gut bacteria are influenced by what we eat and a natural, plant-based diet will support healthy gut diversity. This can be supported with ProVen Probiotics for Adults, which contains the Lab4 group of four strains of friendly bacteria, shown in clinical studies to support the gut.


pukkaClean Greens Super Blend

Pukka Herbs
Tel: 0117 9640944
E-mail: [email protected]

Featuring 11 organic nutrient-rich superfoods, Clean Greens is the ultimate green cleanser for everyday use.  Including nourishing herbs such as fresh freeze-dried Nettle leaf, Spirulina and cold-pressed Wheat Grass Juice, working together as a powerful antioxidant blood cleanser.  This rejuvenating blend supports everyday cleansing and detoxification through helping the body cope with polluted environments and diet that we are exposed to on a daily basis.  Its alkalising, cooling and eliminating and is a great source of Iodine contributing to the maintenance of normal skin and energy-yielding metabolism.



Renew Life
Tel: 0800 7076671
E-mail:  [email protected]

Studies show that toxins cause low energy, increased appetite, decreased ability to burn fat, and fat and fluid retention – this can really slow down someone’s weight loss efforts. CleanseSMART helps release toxins, lose weight and feel great! CleanseSMART’s advanced all natural formula is the only cleanse that stimulates deep detoxification through all of the body’s 7 elimination channels. CleanseSMART is recommended for a deep and thorough cleanse, constipation relief, improvement of digestion, skin issues, fatigue, low energy and improved weight loss. CleanseSMART is easy to use, and an ideal addition to a health or weight loss programme.