Is it just me, or does it feel like almost every celebrity out there has been talking about their latest and greatest cleanse? You know, the one that helped them to lose 20 pounds in only two weeks, gave them abundant amounts of energy, and helped their bodies remove all of those pesky toxins.
There are numerous cleanses and detox diets out there, but perhaps the most famous one is the Master Cleanse. Championed by celebrities like Beyonce and Pink, the Master Cleanse is basically a modified juice fast which promises to detoxify the body while also helping you lose weight fast. For 4-14 days, the individual must abstain from solid food and is only allowed to ingest a drink made with lemon, maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and water. After the cleanse is over, the individual is instructed to slowly add solid food back into their diet, starting with things like vegetable soup, followed by fruits and vegetables and so on.
As you can probably guess by now, I am not a fan of the Master Cleanse or any cleanse or detox diet, for that matter. First of all, yes, you will lose weight on a cleanse, but that is mainly just because you are creating a serious calorie deficit. Most of that weight will likely be water and muscle tissue, not fat tissue, and your metabolism will slow down to a crawl. Once you stop the cleanse and return to your old eating habits, you will gain the lost weight back and then some!
Secondly, you will feel completely cruddy while on the cleanse; most people report nausea, headaches, sluggishness, fatigue, dizziness, and numerous gastrointestinal issues (usually diarrhea and/or constipation). Thirdly, the lemon-maple syrup-cayenne concoction is almost completely devoid of any nutrition, save for the carbohydrates from the maple syrup and the vitamin C from the lemon. Your body not only needs protein, fat, and carbohydrate to function, but also the myriad vitamins and minerals that a healthy diet provides.
So, skip the cleanse. Your body will thank you.