Detox Diet Myth or Fact?
Updated: Sep 17, 2019
Detoxification (detox) diet is very popular and it’s claimed to remove toxins from the body leading to weight loss and better health. Detox diet requires people to drink fruits and vegetables juices throughout the day with no food consumption. Yes this will lead to weight loss in the short-term, but once you start consuming food again, you will gain all the weight you’ve lost very quickly.
People say detox diet can eliminate toxins from their systems, but the truth is you don’t need to drink detox juices to clean your system from toxins, because your body already has it’s own detoxification organs. These organs are, liver, kidneys, lungs, skin and digestive system.
When you drink a good amount of water throughout your day, your kidneys will eliminate waste products like, carbon dioxide and urea through urination, sweating, or breathing.
· Digestive system:
High fiber foods are rich in prebiotic, which feeds the gut bacteria and keeps them healthy. Having healthy gut bacteria is very important in eliminating waste from your body and prevents constipation that keeps your waste products trapped inside your gut.
The liver is responsible for blood filtration, where it removes all the wastes from your blood, like hormones and drug wastes.
Your lungs can remove the waste carbon dioxide from your blood by exhaling. It can also remove other harmful wastes from your body by, coughing or sneezing.
The skin can eliminate waste products from your body (excess minerals and toxins) in the form of sweat and dead skin.
People who follow a detox diet put their bodies at risk of dehydration; this’s due to the frequent bowl movement and sometimes diarrhea, which leads to electrolytes (salts) imbalance. The bowl function and the healthy gut bacteria (micro biota) will be impaired. Detox diets have low protein, fat, and carbohydrate, which can over-time put your body on acidosis (acidic blood) that can lead to coma or death. Low protein intake can force your body to break down your muscles and that can weaken your immune system.
Unfortunately, there’s no scientific evidence on the effectiveness of detox diets, but studies have shown that the lack of food and nutrients intake lower the metabolism; this’s because your body can’t store enough energy.
Your body has self-cleaning system, you don’t need to starve yourself or follow a very strict diet to flush toxins out. The best way to stay healthy is by following a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, legumes, nuts and seeds, and most importantly water and exercise.
You can still enjoy your fresh juice as a part of a healthy balanced diet to boost your intake of vitamins and minerals.
Healthline. (2019). Full Body Detox: 9 Ways to Rejuvenate Your Body.
Newman, T. and Elaine K. Luo, M. (2019). The liver: Structure, function, and disease.
American Lung Association. (2019). How Lungs Work.
HowStuffWorks. (2019). How does your skin eliminate waste?.
Harvard Health. (2019). The dubious practice of detox - Harvard Health.