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Detox Diets

Learn how to detoxify your body

At any given time, our bodies may be carrying a number of harmful toxins that can impede their processes and make us feel tired, sick or run down. Detox, short for detoxification, is a form of diet that can help eliminate these toxins from the body and support the liver, which is the main organ for detoxification. While detox diets have come under scrutiny from scientists who believe they are a fad, many people have reported feeling better after detox diet techniques such as colon cleanses.

How to detox your body

There are many ways to detox your body, but one of the most popular ways involves using liquid diets that flush out your colon and purportedly make you feel better and healthier. A cleansing diet decreases the amount of toxins in the body and emphasizes foods that promote health and nutrients. Detox diets are characterized by liquids—the more water you drink, the more your body is flushed out. While the benefits of this form of dieting may or may not be real, it is true that eating a diet low in fat and refined sugar and high in water and fiber is good for you.

If you choose to do a flush like the Master Cleanse or Fat Flush, follow these steps:

  • Choose a time where you are not overburdened with work or errands. A cleanse is just that—you will probably need to sit close to the bathroom for the first few days while the ingredients do their job.
  • Eat fresh vegetables; brown rice; grains like quinoa, amaranth, millet and buckwheat; beans; nuts and seeds; and olive oil. Stay away from foods like refined sugar, dairy products, wheat and gluten.
  • Make sure to drink lots of water. Some cleanses will suggest a special drink made of lemons and sugar that will supposedly cleanse your body and include nutrients—beware of this and always eat a balanced diet.

Side effects of detox diets

Signs of toxins in the body include fatigue, frequent illness, bowel and stomach problems, restlessness and inability to concentrate, bad skin, bad breath and low energy. Detox diets can eliminate these symptoms and make you feel better, but they are not without side effects, some of which can become quite serious.

Excessive diarrhea is one of the most common side effects of detox diets and can interfere with your life quite significantly, not to mention leeching nutrients, electrolytes and water from your body. Also, many people reported that they had a mild to severe headache for the first few days when they went on a detoxification diet. While many naturopaths and homeopaths will say that these side effects are normal, most medical doctors do not agree and will not recommend this type of diet.

A short-term detox diet will not do any harm, but long-term diets can cause the loss of important nutrients in the body. Always consult a medical professional before starting a diet like this.