How to do a Detox diet

Updated: December 23, 2012

Detox diet.  Does a detox diet really help you achieve long-term weight loss and health?

does the detox diet actually help you achieve long-term success?

We will give the facts so you can decide if the detox diet is for you?

detox diet with fruitsAll of the current detox diets that people are using to lose weight, are a spin offs and copy cats from the original book called The Master Cleanser“ by Stanley Burroughs. It has been around for over half a decade and it is still very popular. And thanks to the internet, the master cleanse or detox diet, has really skyrocketed. But does the detox diet actually help you achieve long-term success? Very few hyped up products and programs live up to the high expectations. For a desperate person, wanting to get rid of the excess pounds quickly, a detox diets sounds perfect. But is it?

The detox diet program is generally a ten day fast, but some variations of the program can last up to forty days, but the principles are still the same. What this diet really is, is a very low calorie starvation diet. But people like to call it a fast, because during the program, no solid food is eaten. The detox diet/Master Cleanse prescribes people to drink nothing but water with maple syrup, lemon and cayenne pepper.

People are also prescribed to drink laxative teas like senna, which are all suppose to help flush the body and do a saltwater flush every morning. When you take a look at how it is suppose to work, then it sounds really good because it has so many “exotic” mixtures and techniques. A lot of people think that there is something special about these specific ingredients, which helps them lose weight.

lemon for detoxBut is there any scientific evidence that lemons, maple syrup and cayenne pepper or a general fast, can remove any potential toxins from the body? Well, there is no evidence for that! But if your goal is to lose muscle, then a detox diet, is most likely the best way to achieve this. Prolonged fasting, which a detox diet really is, causes a loss of lean body tissue like muscle. And it also starves your body from vital micro nutrients, macro nutrients and caloric energy. A detox diet does contain around 600 calories, which does give you some energy, but the calories come from maple syrup. And it has no proteins what so ever, which makes it even more catabolic.

Guys should especially be aware of detox diets, because a 4-5 day fast has proven to reduce testosterone levels by 30-50%. Even a 2 day fast has a large negative effect on muscle and strength. Kathleen Selman the spokesperson of the American Dietetic Association, has said that the body has plenty of mechanisms to cleanse itself. She said that there is no need for any special potions and adequate liquid intake is all that your body needs. The body needs around 40 nutrients a day. If you are on a detox diet, then you are missing out on fat, protein, calcium, iron, fiber and many other important nutrients.

I am sure you have heard plenty of “success stories” of people, who went on a detox diet and lost tons of weight very fast. And that happens if you go on a starvation diet. But unlike most people think, this very rapid weight loss is not a good thing. Most of the weight you lose is muscle and water. Once the 10 day detox diet ends and you start eating normally, you start to gain fat, but not muscle. So by going through the 10 day detox diet plan or 40 day plan, you will have more fat ,than you had before.

And what does detoxification and cleansing really mean? Is it possible to somehow measure your levels of toxification before the diet and after the diet? How do you know how much, or if, you have detoxed your body? Do people get rid of heavy metals, pesticides, food additives, environmental wastes or industrial chemicals with detox? It seems that “detox” and cleansing“ are just cool and catchy phrases that are used to attract people.

Before you decide to follow some kind of a diet plan, do some basic research and think about the pros and cons and point of such a diet!

NadiaWritten by: Nadia (17 Posts)

Nadia is a life coach and health writer residing in Toronto.

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