With most dieters going gaga over detox programs to lose weight, several questions and viewpoints arise. How effective actually are they? What’s the buzz about detox diets causing harm to the body? Then why is almost every third person paying a bomb for it? Is it all that it actually is – just a buzz?
We bring you some of the most popular detox methods and provide the experts’ take on them.
The Master Cleanse: A Short Term Cleanse
The supposed ‘secret’ of many celebs in Hollywood, the master cleanse, bags premier position among the detoxifiers. Master cleansers are supposed to drink water mixed with lemon juice, maple syrup and cayenne pepper for approximately 10-12 days. This is said to help in speedy weight loss. So, let’s see what the expert has to say about this roadrunner style of weight loss.
Stella Metsovas, a nutritionist in Laguna Beach, California says that once the master cleansing diet is successfully completed and the person returns back to his previous habits, he/she tends to become more prone to being ill, lethargic and constipated.
During the detox programme, the body is completely off what it had been striving on right from the day of its creation; and once the program ends, the body finds it extremely difficult to adapt to the previous regular diet.
Juice Cleanse: An addition
Fresh juices as the only source of food for the body for two weeks is the principle of this detox cleanse. The saying ‘too much of anything isn’t too good’ – even if it is as healthy as fresh juice holds true in this case. Dr. Thomas Sterry, a plastic surgeon with a master’s degree in exercise physiology says that fruit and vegetable juices are healthful ‘additions’ to a diet, and not the sole components of any diet.
It really isn’t healthy to deprive the body of proteins and nutrients which come from solid food for two whole weeks. Juice cleanse can be incorporated into a balanced diet for weight loss.
Fast Detox: A Fast Way To Gain Weight
This diet consists of breathing air, and only air. During the diet period, no doubt you will see the numbers on the weighing scale falling steeply. But, this downward trend will also be reflected on your health.
Diekman, past president of The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says that when one dramatically negates calorie intake, one will obviously lose weight. However, the initial weight loss is loss of water-weight and not of fat. And when you go back to eating, the mechanism works in a bloated fashion.
You will tend to regain the lost weight as well as add a few extra pounds due to the slowed down metabolism rate. Moreover, this method can prove to be dangerous as experts have seen people following prolonged fast detox diets develop stomach ulcers. This is mainly due to the acids released in absence of food intake.
Detox Chai: Stay Moderate
Almost all chais popularly called ‘tea’ in most cultures claim to have detoxification properties. Exoticness within the detox tea has crept in with dried flowers or flavors such as hibiscus, cranberry, blueberry and dandelion. However, Fred Hahn, a nutritionist and fitness trainer says that he is unaware of truth to any such claims.
He explains that it is nice to sip tea in moderation, and maybe even replace those soda cans with tea cups to reduce sugar intake. But, having an excess of detox teas, which claim to help detoxify and help lose weight isn’t really healthy as they don’t help the body get rid of toxins to such an extent that the metabolism soars and weight loss results.
Herbal Laxative: All’s Not Green
It’s said that products that are labeled ‘herbal’ are safe. Up to a certain extent, yes! But it is important to know, which leaves or herbs make it herbal. Herbal laxative, meant to clean out the colon, is derived from the senna plant.
Some experts feel that it is best to avoid products containing senna due to its serious side effects such as nausea, motion sickness and cramps.
Following one detox diet strictly can help you lose weight on a temporary basis. Sticking to only detox diets, most of which consist of few components; will serve the body with a minimal amount of nutrients only. This not only deprives you of your energy levels, but can also weaken your immune system making you vulnerable to illnesses.
But, choosing a detox diet as a way of ‘healthy and clean eating’ can do good. This would involve eating natural, less-processed food in ‘balanced portions’ at proper timings.