[Article updated on 19/09/2023]
Known to purify your body, the detox diet is a short-term treatment which consists of ridding your body of toxins and waste using juice or a detoxifier. It is attributed with all kinds of virtues for health and weight loss. But is it really effective?
Before reading on
I’m not an expert in this field, but I am passionate about nutrition and health.
The articles you’ll find on my site are the result of in-depth research that I’d like to share with you. However, I would like to stress that I am not a health professional and that my advice should in no way replace that of a qualified physician. I’m here to guide you, but it’s important that you consult a professional for specific questions or medical concerns. Your well-being is important. So be sure to consult the appropriate experts and take the best possible care of yourself.
I’ll give you the answer right away!
What is really behind this word detox?
There are many ways to follow a detox diet, which range from intermittent fasting to drinking fruit juices, vegetables, and water throughout the day. Some detox cures also prescribe herbs, teas, and even supplements intended to cleanse the colon.
So, the arguments put forward are that the detox cure will rest your organs, that it will eliminate toxins from the liver, eliminate free radicals, improve blood circulation and make you lose weight quickly!
What is working very well at the moment are vegetable juice cures, for example. Today there are two formulas: either you do a juice cleanse in addition to your daily diet, or you eat exclusively pressed juices, for a period of 5 days to 2 weeks.
How’s it going ? Most of the time, you subscribe to an offer published on the internet and you are sent several bottles of juice with, let’s say… original recipes. You will find juices combined with “spinach, seaweed, apricot and ginger” or even stronger “cucumber, redcurrant, dandelion and green curry”. I’m barely making it up. We are surfing on the fantasy of a healthy and natural diet. All of these products are respectable, and you are told that the mixture is beneficial. We tell you that these juices are made using a revolutionary technique: “cold extraction”.
Even if you don’t know what it is, it looks chic, and it provides a kind of scientific backing to definitely convince you.
This juice cure, as you can imagine, has a cost. I made a little statement to give you an idea: a three-day treatment, i.e. 24 juices and 3 snacks, costs €119. For the two-week treatment, it’s 54 juices for €239.
Do you really understand the detox business?
All these are Fruits and vegetables, that’s exactly what we recommend right now, right?!?
Oh no ! It’s good to eat FRESH fruits and vegetables, but when they are squeezed and mixed with who knows what, it’s not the same benefit at all!
I explains to you: to make these fruit cocktails, the foods are passed through an extractor which will separate the juice from the fibers. Gold detox cure brands claim to relieve your system digestive by depriving it of these fibers. But these fibers are very useful: they promote bacterial activity in the colon. We need it.
Furthermore, the absence of fiber certainly does not allow your stomach to rest. Then, meals with a single food: detox juice does not meet the daily nutritional intake.
On the labels, it says mono diet… Your diet will be very unbalanced. These cures are very low in calories. Fortunately, they don’t last long enough for you to suffer from deficiencies. Finally, if you follow these cures, you will be hungry, believe me. For what ? Because the feeling of fullness is mainly caused by… chewing. And if you eat liquids, you won’t have to chew so it’s ruined and you’ll be hungry an hour later.
But is it true or not?
And quite frankly, demands of this type of diet are often issued without the support of any scientific research. And that is dangerous.
Indeed, the few published studies are not reliable enough to allow solid conclusions to be drawn.
The body cleans itself, thanks to the liver, and fortunately, without dangerous side effects.
There are even detox products that claim to remove toxins from the liver. But healthy people do not have toxic substances in the liver. The liver converts waste into non-harmful substances, which can then be passed out through the intestines. You feel like you are in better health thanks to the detoxifier, even though it is your lifestyle that has improved.
My advice: If something seems too good to be true, beware!
But what is dangerous?
And GOOD :
- weight loss is short-lived because you mainly lose water and muscle;
- a detox diet is taxing on the body and will create fatigue, irritability, bad breath and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Detox cures are often simple draconian diets, cleverly marketed under a different name;
- there is a real danger of overdose because some detox diets encourage consuming large quantities of supplements, water and even laxatives in order to detoxify the body.
I really want you to remember that you feel like you’re in better health thanks to the detoxifier, while it is your lifestyle which has improved.
The Lemon Detox cure, isn’t that too acidic?
So in fact, lemon has an acidic pH due to its richness in citric acid. But in the body citric acid is transformed into citrate, a base which allows us to say that lemon is not acidifying for blood. So no, it is not acidic for the body.
On the other hand, excess acidity on an already sensitive stomach or digestive tract can worsen discomfort and excess acidity can also damage tooth enamel.
Note from Lucie: read our complete file on Lemon Detox to continue on the subject! 🙂
To sum up :
- The liver knows how to detoxify your body on its own;
- A detox diet will cause you to mainly lose water and muscle;
- A detox diet can be harmful;
- It’s improving your lifestyle that really helps you.