The Ups And Downs Of Getting On A Detox Diet Plan

The Ups And Downs Of Getting On A Detox Diet Plan
March 2, 2011 Heather Nicholds, C.H.N.

I sometimes hear people bragging about the specific detox they’re doing. For example, you may have heard of the ‘Master Cleanser’, which consists of drinking only water flavored with lemon, cayenne and maple syrup.

That’s a pretty extreme detox, and I would also put that under the term ‘fast’ since it involves basically no calories.

One of my personal favorite types of detox is the mono-diet, which is when you eat only one kind of food. That could be because they’re usually done with a particular fruit, like apples, and I’m a fruitaholic.

So for me, a mono-diet of apples is like a dream come true.

Although an extreme detox diet plan may always be more appealing to some people based on a ‘no pain, no gain’ mentality, or the thought that drastic change requires drastic measures, it really is possible to get a lot of the same benefits without going to the extreme.

There are definitely situations that require that drastic change, but it’s also true that in some circumstances an extreme detox or fast done without proper strategy and supervision can miss out on the benefits – and even cause some problems.

The other side of the coin is that some people are afraid to detox, even through a really simple detox diet plan. While some of those fears may be justified in certain situations or with certain forms of detox diets, lots of them are unfounded when you look at the big picture.

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Unfounded Worries About Detox Diet Plans

Lack of calories, or lack of protein

When you go into a detox as a 3- to 7-day cleanse, a temporary reduction of calories isn’t a huge deal unless you’re underweight. Even then, a few days of lower calorie intake isn’t the end of the world.

The same thing goes for protein. In developed countries like the US and Canada, eating excess calories and protein is more likely to be the problem than having a lack.

It’s cold out

This is a valid argument against a hard-core detox, like a juice or water fast or a 100% raw food diet. Even raw foods can be warmed slightly and chosen carefully to work in the winter. If you’re really prone to getting cold, you can still do a very simple detox diet plan, with some well-cooked grains or starchy vegetables.

Justified Worries About Detox Diet Plans

Succumbing to Cravings or Addictions

Any detox plan is going to be different from your regular way of eating. That’s the point, right? To change things. Because you’re going to be restricting yourself in some way, whether to the extreme or just moderately, you might find it really difficult to keep yourself from giving in to cravings or addictions.

The good news is that if you stick with it, a detox diet plan should help eliminate those problems long term. In the short term, try to keep in mind all of the benefits you hope to achieve. Think of just getting through the few days of your detox, and after that you can deal with the next leg of your journey towards health.

Certain cravings feed into each other, and eliminating all of the things you crave can sometimes make it easier. Salt, for instance, makes you want to eat more and feeds into a craving for fatty foods.

If you have a serious addiction, there are things you can do to support yourself through detox with nutrient supplementation and other systems. For those situations, make sure you have a plan before you start and a simple detox diet probably isn’t the full solution for you.

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