Detoxes and cleanses have become so mainstream, you may feel like you're doing something wrong if you haven't tried at least one. But the truth is detoxes and cleanses aren't right for everyone, and they can even backfire. The key to reaping the rewards is finding what works, and doesn't work, for you. Here are five dos and don'ts, and real-life lessons I've learned from my clients. Some of them may just surprise you.
Don't Do It to Be TrendyEven at the thought of being restricted, some of my clients experience intense cravings, or obsessive thoughts of food, and become more prone to binge eating. This is often the case for people who were put on diets as children, or have a history of strict dieting or disordered eating. While some people rave about how amazing they feel physically and emotionally during a cleanse, I've seen others struggle with moodiness, irritability, depression, fatigue, constipation, constant thoughts of food and rebound overeating. Striving to eat clean, all- natural foods is fantastic, but you don't need to do a cleanse or detox to be healthy. If your body, mind, or both don't react well to limiting your diet, even for three, five or seven days, don't put yourself through it.
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Do Choose a Detox or Cleanse That's Right for You
There's no one standard definition of a cleanse or detox. For some, it means pressed juice only, and for others a cleanse can simply mean cutting out things like alcohol, caffeine, processed or refined foods, sugar, gluten, common allergens and animal protein. While super strict regimens are incredibly popular, most of my clients feel much more energized and satiated when they include lean protein, and/or raw veggies and fruits they can chew, rather than juices that are gone in a few gulps. It's perfectly OK to "cherry pick" from various plans to create a program that feels right for you.