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Master Cleanse?


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Hi,

I'm not particularly religious, but I'm giving up alcohol for Lent and I'd like to detoxify my body. A friend of mine is on the master cleanse and she says it's awesome and that it's really cleaning out her system. It's a 10 day fast where you consume a mixture of lemon juice, pure water, cayenne pepper, and Grade B maple syrup throughout the day. In the morning you drink warm salt water and in the evening a cup of senna tea. Has anyone done this?

I'm a vegan and I'm going to eat lots of raw foods and fresh juices before and after the fast so it's not an abrupt change to my system.

 

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I have never tried it but I have heard a lot about it.  I would personally rather do a juice feast/fast since lemon juice and sugar doesn't seem to have much nutritionally.  There are a lot of people who have video blogs on youtube about it if you want to check them out.

It sounds to me like someone decided to come up with the worst possible experience food-wise and then decided to see how many people they could con into doing it.  LOL  Essentially you're getting zero nutrients for 10 days.  And you've got to drink warm salt water?  WTF?  Gross.

Sorry, no I haven't tried it, and I won't because it's ridiculous.  What's wrong with eating healthfully instead?  You know, lots of leafy green things, lots of other vegetables and fruits, grains, beans, nuts, and seeds. 

It's not only a bad idea, it's unecessary.  Unless you're sick, your body already has the mechanisms in place to rid itself of stuff it doesn't need through the kidneys and liver if you give it plenty of exercise and a balanced diet including plenty of fiber and water. 

There have been a lot of threads on this:

http://caloriecount.about.com/forums/post/689 55.html

http://caloriecount.about.com/forums/post/729 22.html

http://caloriecount.about.com/forums/post/645 82.html

The BBC did a scientific study on "detox" diets, which this sounds like.  They did detailed blood tests before and after, with one group eating normal healthy meals with a few "treats", and the other group eating a strict "detox" diet for a week.  The end result: there was no difference in the blood tests between the two groups.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/humanbody/truthaboutf ood/young/detox.shtml ;

Detoxing / cleansing is an unhealthy myth.

Thanks guys. I'm going to do more research. I wasn't planning to do it for a couple weeks, because I want to wean myself off caffeine and alcohol before I even attempt it. My friend is lending me the book on how to do it properly.

Yes, mikelane, you're supposed to drink warm salt water in the morning and apparently it makes you go to the bathroom like crazy. It's supposed to be a top down enema. Sorry if that sounds gross.

I'm turning 30 this week, and I want to get rid of all the bad junk in my body. My diet is pretty healthy except for too much caffeine and alcohol (I'm a bartender) and sometimes I eat other people's fries and too much fake meat at times, although I've been trying to cut back on them (due largely to the folks on this forum). I also smoke a cigarette occasionally and I live in NYC and bike commute in the warmer months which means I'm huffing a lot of exhaust. I used to eat a lot of processed foods before becoming vegan. And I've done all sorts of drugs, but I've cut that out.

I want to make a major change for my health. My grandparents have died from colon cancer and strokes and almost everyone on my mom's side of the family is on medication for high cholesterol. I had my cholesterol checked a couple months ago and it's 150 which is ok, but higher than they thought, since I eat practically no cholesterol. When I was only 22 and was a semi-vegetarian, it was 190.

I guess now I'm getting off topic, but all these things concern me and are prompting me to re-evaluate my lifestyle.

I do the MC twice a year for about 5 days.  I eat very healthy but it still feels good to give my digestive system a break.  Most people around here will bash you for it.  If you are really interested in doing it my suggestion is to buy his book.  You can find it online or at Whole Foods or a health food store.  Follow the directions!

There are a LOT of thread on this in the forums. Redkitty is right about the attack/bashing... simply because fasting is often used as a quick fix in weight loss and that represents unhealthy and maladaptive attitude and behavior. It also completely undermines the purpose of the master cleanser and other fasting detoxes.

I would definitely advise to search the forums and skim through what people have said because I remember posting in some of those threads and there was quite a bit of information written down by several users representing both sides of the story.

 

Make sure you don't exercise during it.  My physical Therapist tried it this summer and even the effort of helping other people work out was enough to make him ill.  I've considered trying it, but I know I can't fit it into my crazy lifestyle.  Also, definitely read the book and make sure you buy the expensive organic maple syrup.

BBC America aired a documentary called "Super Skinny Me" in which one of the subjects tried this exact "cleansing" program.  She lost weight, but at a heavy cost to her mental and physical health. 

Medical evidence (as in real science) proves that all this "detox" stuff is a bunch of snake oil.  Your body already has what it needs to keep "clean" without you having to fast, take pills, or drink weird concoctions.  I'd trust a scientifically based study like the one cynthb cites over any sort of anecdotal evidence.

I'm sure you're already doing enough to "eat clean" by eating local, eating organic, and being vegetarian.  If you want to give up something for Lent, why not give up some of your free time by doing volunteer work or collecting donations for a nonprofit, perhaps?  That way you can do something that will really make a difference for yourself and others.  Smile

I tried it years ago, during my starve/giveup/gain weight period.  It was the most disgusting, awful stuff I ever experienced.  I could not even smell lemon or maple for months without feeling sick.

I've learned since that your body doesn't "detox" through the digestive tract.  That's taken care of by your liver.  "Cleansing" your digestive tract won't help you at all.

Absolutely the worst waste of time ever. 

 if you're a vegan you don't really consume anything you'd have to rid yourself of anyhow...most of the people I know who really like to do the cleanses are meat eaters that are convinced the meat just sits in their gut and doesn't digest fully-that's what most of the infomercials claim anyways.  knocking out the alcohol would probably be the best thing you could do...give your liver a break:)
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i have many friends hwo have done it and loved it but gained it all back the next week once they ate normally. I would just do fruits and vegetables for a week or two and lots of water. you can also get the ultimate cleanse from gnc. it really makes you go to the bathroom and shouldnt be done too often but I do this about once a year and its easy. I eat lots of steamed broccoli and a baked potatoe with salsa for lunch. lots of grapefruit too.

 

Original Post by therria4:

 if you're a vegan you don't really consume anything you'd have to rid yourself of anyhow...most of the people I know who really like to do the cleanses are meat eaters that are convinced the meat just sits in their gut and doesn't digest fully-that's what most of the infomercials claim anyways.  knocking out the alcohol would probably be the best thing you could do...give your liver a break:)

Meat does sit in your guts. If you look at our intestinal tracts they are closer to an herbivores. True carnivores like big cats etc. have very short intestinal tracts to get meat processed faster.

Original Post by disease_of_ease:

Meat does sit in your guts. If you look at our intestinal tracts they are closer to an herbivores. True carnivores like big cats etc. have very short intestinal tracts to get meat processed faster.

Do you have a source to back this up?  When I search, most of what I find are websites that are trying to promote colon cleasers and colonic irrigation, but there are quite a few sources that indicate the story of pounds of undigested meat in your bowels is a myth. 
The meat sitting would make sense...I lost quite a bit of weight when I stopped eating meat and then just stayed the same weight...I didn't change eating habits I just cut out meat..I know this is probably way TMI but I've been told by a doctor that it's normal for people to go number2  2-3 times a day....and if you're going once every few days (something holds it up right?)...I mean think about it where's it at? sitting there..those occurences changed considerably when I stopped eating meat...I'm more regular and I didn't up my fiber intake or anything like that...that's just my personal body..but I think stopping the intake of meat was a cleanse for me.  to each their own I guess Sealed
Original Post by santonacci:

Original Post by disease_of_ease:

Meat does sit in your guts. If you look at our intestinal tracts they are closer to an herbivores. True carnivores like big cats etc. have very short intestinal tracts to get meat processed faster.

Do you have a source to back this up?  When I search, most of what I find are websites that are trying to promote colon cleasers and colonic irrigation, but there are quite a few sources that indicate the story of pounds of undigested meat in your bowels is a myth. 

If you look at the wiki for carnivores (which is cited) it says this under characteristics... "Carnivores have comparatively short digestive systems as they are not required to break down tough cellulose found in plants."

Original Post by disease_of_ease:

If you look at the wiki for carnivores (which is cited) it says this under characteristics... "Carnivores have comparatively short digestive systems as they are not required to break down tough cellulose found in plants."

Actually, I was asking about the "meat sitting in your guts" thing.  I would naturally expect an omnivore's digestive system to be different from that of a obligate carnivore.

haha here's a source..how often do pigeons poop?  a lot right? so obviously their tracts are nice and clear...how often does someone who consumes a LOT of meat and unhealthy products poop?  ( I asked a rather large male I work with-yesterday at the Chinese buffet he had 10 plates of food-mostly meat) 

He said he's lucky if he goes once or twice a week-so I said...do YOU think in that one or two times you eat all the junk you consumed came out? He said with the amount I eat based off of what comes out..there's no way it all comes out at once so where is it? it doesn't disappear so it's gotta still be inside just waiting for it's turn:)

This...is for dogs and cats HOWEVER pages 4 and 5 explain the differences in digestive tracts and things of that nature..it might help to support what disease said earlier about it sitting. 

I have read it elsewhere also about how scientists are linking (in many cases) the higher occurence of cancers with our larger intake of red meats and processed foods.  The amount we eat is too much for our body to fully digest so it continues to sit as it takes a long period of time to digest before being exposed of and because of all the things injected into animals it's now sitting in our systems and causing higher cancer rates.  I cannot remember where it was I Read it-I only remember it was in a book. 

Ok so where's the disconnect? Meat is mostly digested in the intestines, animals meant to consume only meat have bodies that are designed to handle this, we don't. Combine that with the fact that most people eat TOO MUCH meat, and there you have it... meat sits in your intestines while your body struggles to break it all down. I never said it sits there forever, though.

HAHA is that a ribeye in your lower intestine or are you just happy to see me!?  HAHA
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