Over the years, the number of guests seeking a raw food detox retreat at Casa Verde Raw – Hiking – Yoga Retreat has increased dramatically.

It’s really no surprise, most of us live in a polluted world, pursuing a high-stress career and eating food that is riddled with chemicals. We spend hours glued to a screen, unable to find sufficient time to spend outdoors, exercising and meditating.

Many of our guests will testify that their retreat experience was the best way to detox body, mind and spirit, enabling continued improvements to overall health and wellbeing even after returning home.

Learn more about our raw food detox yoga retreats and book yours today.

In the following article, we will get into why you might need a raw food detox retreat, the benefits of a detox cleanse, a detox foods list and ways to start detoxing today.

Why do you need a health detox retreat?

A health detox retreat addresses the toxic load that wreaks havoc on our health and wellbeing over time, presenting itself as lethargy, brain fog, addictions, inflammation, infertility, pain, insomnia, disease, cancer…and can even be passed on to fetuses.

It’s a dirty world. Ever since the industrial revolution, pollutants have been released into our environment with increasing frequency and amounts. Imagine how much of this you have accumulated in your body!

There are few places left in the world that are not affected; even polar bears in the north pole are contaminated with PCB’s and heavy metals. Chemicals in our food, water, air, homes, cleaning products, clothing, furniture, etc, accumulate in our cells and fat (a favorite storage area).

Just like we clean our homes in the spring, it’s a good idea to do a yearly “cleanse” or “detox”.

Raw food cuisine is the perfect internal scrub brush. Crammed with vital vitamins, enzymes, phytonutrients, minerals and fiber, low in calories (and no animal protein or fat) these nutrients are easy to digest and absorb and begin to sweep the body clean. At our raw food detox retreats, we also only drink pristine spring water to help flush toxins out through urine.

Modern living is so very demanding. The people that arrive at our raw food and yoga detox retreats are exhausted. Can you relate?

Along with our 100% raw vegan alkaline detox diet, we believe in the power of quality downtime. After active mornings of yoga and hiking, guests rest in the afternoons so their bodies can do other meaningful things like repair damaged cells and reconstruct broken systems.

Without exception, guests leave the retreat feeling lighter, brighter, clearer, cleaner, leaner, more enthused.

By the end of my stay, I felt like a new man. Wendy has done for me what no doctor or specialist have ever been able to do and in the span of only 8 days! I highly recommend spending a week to ten days with Wendy Green

Simon, Canada
Yoga retreat before and after

Benefits of gut reset cleanse

Most detox diets are essentially gut reset cleanse. You’re adjusting your food and drink, which will, in turn, have a direct effect on your gut health. Depending on the length of detox, you may experience the following during and after your gut reset cleanse:

Digestive improvements An obvious one, but still with mentioning! Improving your digestive system will improve your health. It’s as simple as that. Through a gut reset cleanse, you will increase good bacteria in your digestive tract. By removing harmful foods from your diet, your body will be better able to eliminate waste and absorb nutrients.

Metabolism reset By cleaning the body of both internal and external toxins, other systems are more likely to work efficiently, such as the kidneys, lymph, skin and, of course, your bowels.

Reduced sugar cravings (and other food) – Eliminating these from your diet will also eliminate cravings. Many people nowadays are addicted to sugar and, if you’re one of them, try to follow a longer detox cleanse to ensure you make it through sugar withdrawal. Consider the below 5-day juice cleanse plan, or an even longer raw food cleanse. Our 7 day raw food and yoga retreats might be just what you need.

Improved natural immunity Our bodies are, fortunately, healing machines, but when they are overloaded with toxins and never catch a break from digesting and (trying to) absorb nutrients, they start to gradually collapse. Detox cleanses often reduce the amount of food consumed while also replacing your normal diet with healthy, nutrient-rich ingredients. Not only are you giving your body more space and time to rebuild and regenerate, you are pumping it with the vitamins, minerals and nutrients it needs to do it with GREAT efficacy.

Decreased inflammation – One of the first things you’ll notice on a detox cleanse is reduced inflammation, both externally and internally. Externally, your eyes may look less puffy, if your kidneys were struggling, your skin will also look less puffy. If you can observe these changes on the outside, think about the benefits occurring internally!

Feel revitalized – Age is just a number and, regardless of your age, a detox cleanse will leave you feeling fresh, healthy and younger. There might be a few days where you feel groggy, weak, “hangry” and possibly going through a serious sugar withdrawal, but if you make it through these early stages, you will reap the amazing benefits of a detox cleanse.

We promise you, it’s worth it.

How do our bodies detox naturally?

Our bodies are extremely efficient at flushing toxins, waste and dead cells. The organs responsible for this amazing work are the liver, kidneys, colon, lungs, skin and lymphatic system. When overloaded, however, they are unable to maintain a toxin-free environment. That’s when it’s time to commit to a raw food detox retreat.

Colon: Solid food waste passes through and out of our bodies through the colon. Fiber normally makes elimination easier.

Liver and kidneys: Toxins in our food and liquids must pass through our liver and kidneys. These organs will either neutralize or pass the toxins through and out of our body through the colon and in our urine.

Skin: Without our skin and its functions, we would quickly be overloaded with toxins. It is especially important if our kidneys aren’t functioning optimally.

Lymphatic system: This network of tiny vessels is found in all parts of body tissue and carries lymph, which is a fluid responsible for removing dead cells, waste, bacteria and large proteins from our tissues.

Lungs: These essential organs are the ultimate air filter and help us eliminate carbon dioxide, toxins from air pollution and even alcohol.

Detox Foods To Eat List

You might not be able to plan your raw food detox retreat yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start detoxing. Here is a detox foods list to get you started. These foods will support your detox process and are high in vitamins, minerals and nutrients.

Note: This is not an exhaustive list, but definitely enough to get you started! Always choose fresh, organic produce when possible.

Raw detox food list

Fresh vegetables – aim for variety! Make sure to wash well

  • Artichoke
  • Arugula
  • Baby Spinach
  • Bamboo Shoots
  • Bok Choy
  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Beets
  • Bell Peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Chard
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Chilies
  • Collard
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant
  • Fennel
  • Garlic
  • Green Onions
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Leek
  • Lettuce
  • Mushrooms
  • Olives
  • Onions
  • Okra
  • Parsnip
  • Peas
  • Pumpkin
  • Radishes
  • Rhubarb
  • Shallots
  • Spring Greens
  • Sprouts
  • Squash
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Turnip
  • Watercress
  • Zucchini

Fresh fruit – only 2–3 pieces per day, avoid melons and grapes

  • Apples
  • Apricots
  • Avocado
  • Bananas
  • Blackberries
  • Blueberries
  • Cantaloupe
  • Cherries
  • Clementines
  • Coconut
  • Cucumber
  • Currants
  • Durian
  • Figs
  • Grapefruit
  • Grapes
  • Guava
  • Jackfruit
  • Kiwis
  • Kumquats
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Lychees
  • Mangoes
  • Nectarines
  • Oranges
  • Papayas
  • Passionfruit
  • Peaches
  • Persimmon
  • Physalis
  • Plums
  • Pomegranate
  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Watermelon

Dried fruit

  • Apples
  • Apricots
  • Banana Chips
  • Golden berries
  • Goji Berries
  • Dates
  • Dried Currants
  • Shredded Coconut
  • Figs
  • Mango
  • Mulberries
  • Dried Papaya
  • Dried Pineapple
  • Raisins
  • Sun-dried tomatoes

Nuts and seeds, but not peanuts

  • Almonds
  • Brazil Nuts
  • Cashews
  • Chestnuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Macadamia Nuts
  • Pecans
  • Pine Nuts
  • Pistachios
  • Walnuts

Raw Seeds

  • Flax Seeds
  • Chia Seeds
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Hemp Seeds

Raw butters

  • Raw Tahini
  • Raw Macadamia Nut
  • Raw Almond Butter
  • Raw Cashew Butter
  • Raw Pistachio Butter

Herbs and spices (always go for FRESH instead of powdered, if possible).

  • Anise
  • Basil
  • Celery Seed
  • Chamomile
  • Chili powder
  • Chives
  • Cilantro
  • Clove
  • Coriander
  • Cumin
  • Curry
  • Dill
  • Garlic Powder
  • Ginger
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Lemongrass
  • Marjoram
  • Nutmeg
  • Onion Powder
  • Oregano
  • Paprika
  • Parsley
  • Pepper
  • Peppermint
  • Poppy Seed
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Rosemary
  • Saffron
  • Himalayan Pink Salt
  • Spearmint
  • Thyme
  • Turmeric
  • Vanilla


  • Medjool Dates
  • Organic Maple Syrup
  • Raw Blue Agave Syrup
  • Raw Coconut Nectar


  • Coconut Aminos
  • Nama Shoyo
  • Tamari
  • Miso

Fresh vegetable juice and fruit juices (see juice cleanse below)

1 Day Detox Cleanse

Ready for a 1 day detox cleanse following a juice plan? Here’s one you can do every week, if you feel like it.

Try to do this cleanse on a day that isn’t too demanding in terms of work and social obligations. You might feel the need to nap on this day, and napping at work isn’t ideal!

The idea behind this 1 day detox cleanse is to stick to ONE fruit juice of your choice – or carrot juice because of it’s cleansing capabilities.

Don’t drink more than 3 servings of 8 fl oz/230 ml of your juice per day and make sure to dilute each serving with 4 fl oz/115 ml of filtered water. Diluting your juice is essential because fruit juices on their own are too high in natural sugars and will raise your blood sugar levels.

You should drink an additional 2-3 pints (1-2 liters) of other liquid (water) during the day.

Choose from the following and make sure you have enough for a full day cleanse:

  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Grapes
  • Grapefruit
  • Mangoes
  • Melons
  • Oranges
  • Papaya
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Pineapples
  • Strawberries
  • Watermelon

What does this 1 day juice cleanse plan look like in practice?:

Probably exactly what you might imagine! All juice and no food.


  • Upon waking up, drink some water with a full lemon or lime.
  • For breakfast, drink a serving of your juice of choice. Remember that this should be diluted.
  • If you’re thirsty after breakfast, drink herbal tea, water or more lime/lemon juice.
  • Remember to take it easy today! Go for a walk, do some light yoga and breathing exercises, but nothing that will tire you out too much.


  • For “lunch” drink another serving of your juice.


  • Time to drink your final serving of juice. If you’re still thirsty, remember you can drink water, lime/lemon water and/or herbal teas.
  • Treat yourself to an Epsom salt bath for extra relaxation and cleansing.
  • Finally, before going to bed, have another glass of lime/lemon water.

5 Day Juice Cleanse Plan

If a 1 day juice cleanse doesn’t seem like enough, try this 5 day juice cleanse plan. The fun part of a longer plan is that you can mix and match juice recipes, switching between fruit and vegetable juices. However, don’t mix these in one sitting as this might cause bloating and discomfort; leave at least 2 hours between drinking fruit juice and drinking vegetable juice during your 5 day juice cleanse plan.

Also, note that this cleanse includes some simple foods, but the juices are the primary detoxifying agents.

As in the 1 day cleanse, drink no more than 8 fl oz/230 ml diluted juice per serving, half an hour before the simple meals.

Always try to use fruit and vegetables that are in season, when possible! Do your shopping in advance to ensure you have all your ingredients handy and consider using fruit that is most ripe at the beginning of your 5 day juice cleanse plan so that it doesn’t go bad before your cleanse is over.

Notice that the veg juices are generally made in the evenings, while the fruit juices are assigned to the morning.

As you test out different juices and flavors, note your favorites for your next cleanse or if you decide to continue for another few days (or more).

“Juice” Plan Schedule – 5 Day Juice Cleanse Plan

Day 1:

Orange (80) and grapefruit (145ml)

50/50 strawberry and apple juice

Carrot (170ml) and beetroot (50ml)

Before bed:
Lemon/lime water

Day 2:

Pineapple (145ml) and Papaya (80ml). If you’re allergic to pineapple, replace it with apple.

Apple (145ml) and grape juice (80ml)

Carrot (115ml), watercress (50ml) and celery juice (50ml)

Before bed:
Lemon/lime water

Day 3:

Orange juice with a squirt of lemon

Papaya (25ml), strawberry (50ml), and pear (145ml) (or peach instead of pear)

Cucumber (80ml), celery (80ml), and watercress (50ml)

Before bed:
Lemon/lime water

Day 4:

50/50 Mango and orange

50/50 Pear and peach

Celery (115ml), spinach 50ml), apple (50ml)
Optional: slice of ginger

Before bed:
Lemon/lime water

Day 5:

Pineapple (145ml) and mango (80ml)

Papaya (50ml), peach (50ml), pineapple/apple (115ml)

50/50 Carrot and apple

Before bed:
Lemon/lime water

Foods to go with your 5-day juice cleanse:

Although we are proponents of raw food and only serve delicious raw meals at our detox yoga retreats, we understand if that isn’t something you’re prepared to undertake on your own along with a juice cleanse.

In that case, feel free to eat other raw and cooked healthy and simple foods such as:


  • Fresh fruit
  • Oats in water with some raisins, prunes or dates for sweetness

Lunch and dinner:

  • Steamed veggies
  • Fresh mixed salad
  • Fresh fruit
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Grains like brown rice, barley or millet are okay.


  • Raw cucumber, carrot, red/yellow pepper, cauliflower
  • Tahini and hummus
  • Dried fruit (in limited quantities) such as cranberries, prunes or raisins
  • Seeds i.e. pumpkin, sunflower
  • Wakame, seaweed
  • Rice cakes

Side effects of a raw food detox diet

After and during a raw food detox cleanse, you may experience one or all of the following positive side effects. You might notice that you:

  • Feel energized
  • Have healthier hair, skin and nails
  • Have shinier eyes
  • Lose weight and cellulite

A detox cleanse might also cause a few negative, but temporary, side effects. As we cleanse and move away from bad habitual foods and habits, we can feel:

  • Low energy, cranky, tearful, “hangry”
  • Withdrawal symptoms (especially if you’ve been consuming a lot of sugar)
  • Some people have bad dreams, bad breath, constipation, loose stools, headaches

All this is normal. We can facilitate the removal of toxins by drinking lots of water, exercising and resting.

Casa Verde Raw Food Detox Retreats: Learn the art of clean living through raw food, yoga and hiking.

Detoxing your body by improving your diet, environment and mindset will absolutely change your life, but doing it on your own, and doing it right, can be challenging. An all-inclusive detox retreat might be the secret to your success!

Include hummingbirds, pristine waterfalls and orchids to the mix and, well, you’d be detoxing in paradise, AKA, Casa Verde in Mindo, Ecuador.

After visiting, you might discover that a yearly “RETREAT” (move back away from) is one of the best ways to detox your body, take control, clear the slate, re-align our health priorities and start fresh. We’re happy to see many of the same guests year after year.

Inquire about a raw food detox retreat today!