It’s common for people to want to lose weight quickly before a big event or a trip, but there is a right way to lose weight and a wrong way to lose weight. Recently, there has been a trend of trying to use certain diets that celebrities have used in the past. Many of those diets are ridiculous and basically consist of starving yourself.
One of the most famous of these diets is the “Master Cleanse”. Beyonce went on this particular diet, and so of course, many people followed in her footsteps. At least they attempted to follow in her footsteps (myself included), but the diet is very strenuous on the body. The diet was originally founded in the 1940’s as a remedy for ulcers, and then later altered to the description to a weight loss plan. The layout of the plan is to only consume three selected meals for ten to fourteen days, and then gradually add in other food after. Sounds easy enough right?! However, when I say “meals” I mean liquids, and when I say “add in other food after” I mean you actually get to eat solid food again. There are four drinks permitted for the diet: a Salt Water Wash, a Lemonade Drink, Peppermint Tea, and Herbal Laxative Tea. The Lemonade Drink is the main source of energy from the cleanse, and it is the drink that is taken the most often; six to twelve glasses per day. The ingredients of the drink are lemon juice, water, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup.
While the maple syrup may charge your body with some energy, there are many side effects due to the lack of nutrients in the Master Cleanse diet. Pulled from the full list from the Master Cleanse site, nausea, dizziness, and diarrhea are just some of the negative reactions the body may encounter. The Master Cleanse claims that experiencing these side effects indicates that you need to drink more of the lemonade, and that the diet is actually working! Great!
In reality, the reasons you are feeling so bad is because your body is not receiving the calories or nutrients it desperately needs. An average grown woman should be consuming anywhere between 1500-2000 calories per day in order to be functioning properly (Gunnars). The Master Cleanse diet only supplies the body with 650 calories per day, and keep in mind, that is only if you are drinking all twelve glasses of the lemonade drink (Cespedes). With simple math, it is evident that the Master Cleanse is 850 calories behind the minimum recommended daily calorie count. Yikes.
In addition to falling behind in calories, your metabolism drops because your body thinks it is being starved. In order to conserve energy, your body stores fat (which is the exact opposite of what you are trying to do). While the fat is being stored, your muscle is what is sacrificed to burn (Gueren).
Not only are you contradicting the purpose of the diet, but you are putting yourself in some serious medical risk. Like I said before, the body does not function the way it is supposed to without the correct amount of nutrients entering the body. So, the body will have to resort to taking the nutrients from itself. The most severe risks include: broken bones, anemia, and various heart problems. Your bones will grow weak because your body needs calcium, anemia could result from your body removing the iron from your blood for uses in other parts of the body, and lastly, your heart is the most important muscle in your body, and since you tend to lose muscle mass during crash diets, your heart can grow weak. For the complete list of all potential risks (including emotional), you can find them here.
Cespedes, Andrea. “How Many Calories Are in the Master Cleanse Diet?”LIVESTRONG.COM. LIVESTRONG.COM, 10 Sept. 2015. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.
Dreifke, Sarah. “Why A Crash Diet Isn’t A Healthy Solution / Nutrition / Healthy Eating.” Why A Crash Diet Isn’t A Healthy Solution / Nutrition / Healthy Eating. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.
Gueren, Casey. “Here Is What Crash-Dieting Does To Your Body.” BuzzFeed News. Buzzfeed Inc., 11 Mar. 2015. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.
Gunnars, Kris. “How Many Calories Should You Eat Per Day to Lose Weight?”Authority Nutrtion. Authority Nutrtion, 29 July 2016. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.
“Master Cleanse – Lemonade Water Detox Diet- Effective Recipe For Weightloss – 7Min Blog.” 7Min Blog. 7Min Blog, 15 July 2016. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.
Olaski, Mike. “Master Cleanser Side Effects: The Definitive List.” The Master Cleanse. The Master Cleanse, 20 Jan. 2016. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.
Image 1: http://familysponge.com/health/start-the-master-cleanse-detox-recipe/
Image 2: https://www.theodysseyonline.com/winter-break-as-told-by-michael-scott
Image 3: http://dalesaunders.blogspot.com/2013/07/eat-right-and-stay-fit.html