Are Detox Diets Effective?
As a society that is going “green,” we are trying to do the same with our bodies. Detoxification is the process of eliminating harmful substances from the body. Detox diets are designed to aid the natural process of detoxification already in motion in your body.
Have you heard of “body burden”? It refers to the amount of toxins in your body. Testing urine, liver function and blood work is said to determine your “body burden.”
A build-up of toxins in the body is blamed for many conditions of the body. If you feel tired, sluggish, and sick or suffer from frequent headaches, your body may need to be detoxified. A detox diet is supposed to eliminate the toxins lurking in your body so that you feel energized and full of life again.
How do they work?
A detox diet works by retraining your body to process foods. The diets usually begin with a fasting period where no food is eaten. The body begins with a clean slate. Lots of water and only certain foods are eaten in the next phase to help eliminate toxins. Many detox diets recommend a colon flush to clean the intestines.
Once the detoxification is finished, you can resume normal eating again. These diets are observed once or twice a year and sometimes more often depending on the diet creator. Everyone from teens to baby boomers and ordinary citizens to celebrities are trying detoxing diets for health and weight loss.
The Pros of a Detox Diet
Those who support detox diets say that the body may hold on to toxins in fat tissue. These diets are designed to get at those toxins. Your body is in a state of poor health because of the level of toxins in your system. According to them, detox diets have been shown to increase energy and reverse sickness. Their products are safe to use.
The Cons of a Detox Diet
On the other side, researchers are saying to use common sense. The body is designed to clean itself on the inside. The liver and the urinary system filter out impurities and remove them from the body, leaving the nutrients that we need to nourish the internal environment. Also, if you are eating junk food and you give that up for a detox diet, won’t returning to that same junk food bring back your previous condition?
Any diet that promotes fasting and food restrictions is not safe for teenagers. Their bodies are still growing and restricting nutrients can hinder that growth from occurring properly.
Detox diets do not help you lose fat. The substance that is leaving your body in quantity is water. You drink so much of it to remove toxins that you are bound to lose some water weight. But, as soon as you begin eating normally it all returns.
Doing too many colon flushes or taking detox supplements that are basically laxatives can alter the internal environment of your organs. It may flush out the good flora in your intestine and leave you prone to bad bacteria. The lack of proper nutrients in this type of diet further alters your body function with no useful nourishment being introduced.
If you try a detox diet, be careful. Eating a diet high in fiber and healthy natural foods will probably do the same thing as a detox diet, only with fewer (if any) side effects.