Weight Loss Cleanse Diets
Those looking to shed a few pounds might want to consider a cleanse; these diets work to flush the body of toxins. The choice of healthy foods coupled with lower calorie intake leads to weight loss. In order to successfully complete a cleanse, sometimes referred to as a “detox” diet, consider the following tips.
Pick a Diet
Many diets are known as “cleanse” diets; they differ in length, acceptable foods, and purpose.
The Master Cleanse is a week-long (sometimes month-long) diet where you drink a concocted juice and laxative tea. The juice is made from water mixed with fresh lemon juice, grade B maple syrup, sea salt and cayenne pepper. The syrup provides glucose for energy, but otherwise, no nutrients are present in this diet. Therefore, this diet should not be followed for lengthy periods of time. For more information on the recipe, see Resources below.
The raw food diet is another consideration. On this diet, you eat fresh, uncooked fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouts. Abstain from meat, dairy and processed foods like bread, grains and any other meal requiring an oven or microwave. Though some successfully eat this way for years, getting all required nutrients from obscure raw vegan forms (like B12 from spirulina) can be difficult. Ease into the raw diet by slowly cutting out meat and processed foods. If the diet will be long term, get nutrient levels checked yearly by a doctor. David Wolfe advises, in his book “The Sunfood Diet Success System,” to ease into the diet with cooked vegetables.
A third cleanse is a juice fast. Choose as many fruits, vegetables and leafy greens as desired and drink only juice for the desired length of time. The body stays hydrated and, with enough variety of fruits and vegetables, the body can stay nourished for as long as 6 months. Take a daily multivitamin if you will be sustaining the diet longer than a week.
Because most cleanses involve simple, low-calorie foods like fruits and vegetables, weight loss is inevitable. However, you must make smart food choices after the cleanse ends in order to keep the weight off. If you consume too few calories during the cleanse, the body can go into starvation mode which could lead to binging after the cleanse is over.
To avoid gaining the weight back, set realistic weight loss goals: you might be able to lose 15 lbs. in 2 weeks by severe calorie restriction, but it will likely be at the expense of yo-yoing once the diet is over. Therefore, set a realistic goal of 4 lbs. per week, and devise a healthy, well-rounded meal plan to follow once the diet is over to continue to lose weight at a healthy rate of 2 lbs. per week.
Successfully completing a cleanse takes dedication. Choose the diet that fits your lifestyle. If eating a variety of healthy foods for a longer period of time is more appealing than sticking with one juice for a week, choose a juice fast over the Master Cleanse. Or, if you prefer a diet where preparation is easy and efficient, choose the Master Cleanse. Making one juice in bulk is easier than making fresh fruit juice daily.
Stay hydrated on any cleanse diet. Water is the principle ingredient that causes weight loss and acts as a cleansing agent. According to the book “100 Weight-Loss Tips that Really Work,” water keeps cells healthy, washes away toxins accumulated in the body and satisfies the appetite. Therefore, keep it with you at all times.
Next, do not ignore the importance of vegetables. Many prefer sticking with a cleanse high in fruit or, in the case of the Master Cleanse, sugar from maple syrup. However, vegetables are high in minerals like zinc, iron and calcium. If abiding by a raw food diet or juice cleanse, be sure to add plenty of greens.