Detox is the new “it” word to use to let the world know that you are taking care of your body and getting rid of built-up toxins. Detox usually involves a couple of days of juicing – no solid food to basically give your digestive system a break and to clean the pipes, so to speak.
The most famous of all detox regimens is known as The Master Cleanse, made popular by Beyonce. Its a mixture of maple syrup, lemon juice, and cayenne pepper. You drink it for a week to 10 days, depending on how many pounds you want to shed and really, how long you can stand it. It doesn’t taste too bad and the cayenne pepper and maple syrup make you feel pretty full. But although you may drop a few pounds because you are basically living on almost no calories, you will likely gain it back and then some. Beyonce lost 20 pounds and then gained it back and more. And the detoxing itself, will likely have you suffering from mood swings because you are depriving your body of real food. Unless you are an experienced detoxer, your first time juicing will leave you tired, weak, and hallucinating that your neighbor’s dog looks like a juicy roast chicken on a stick!
Detoxing can also be expensive. The wildly popular BluePrint Cleanse will set you back about $10 per bottle. You can buy the ingredients for their Green cleanse yourself (romaine lettuce, celery, kale, lemon, ginger, cucumber, apple, spinach, and parsley) and make about 3 days worth of detox juice. Freeze the leftovers for a couple of days to keep it fresh. There is also the Yogi detox tea and other detoxification and cleanses offered over-the-counter and basically everywhere, since it became a term made popular by celebs in Hollywood. Most nutritionists nowadays will offer some sort of detox regimen in their consultant business.
Detoxing is not necessarily safe nor effective. While it claims to get rid of poisonous toxins and can help you lose weight in a short amount of time – especially if you want to fit into your tight Herve Leger dress for a charity event next Saturday – it is not something to rely on long-term. If you follow my advice of eating healthy and avoiding processed foods, you won’t NEED to detox often at all.
The best way to detox a little everyday is to drink hot water with lemon in the morning. If you are a regular at spas, you will now know why they offer lemon water or cucumber water. Both are great for cleaning your internal system. I like to use hot water because imagine pouring hot water down a clogged pipe versus pouring cold water? Exactly. And the lemon juice will give the water some flavor and provide you with lots of vitamin C. In addition to this, take some time to sweat it out at the gym from a good run and then hit the steam room. Sweating can help to release toxins too and help you shed some water weight.
So before you think about doing the dreaded Master Cleanse or plunking down hundreds of dollars for commercial detox plans or having to suffer from a few days of mood swings and lack of energy, try to incorporate a little lemon water to your morning breakfast regimen everyday. Start the day fresh and clean those pipes so that you can better absorb nutrients the rest of the day!