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Sunday, April 05, 2009

Toxins everywhere!

Fads come and go, they say, but one that keeps on coming back is the Detox Diet. This is where you take certain herbs, or adjust your diet, or even put pads on the feet—I'm not kidding!—and the body is detoxified, rid of dangerous poisons.

Exactly what are these toxins? The ads don't like to say, but they're dangerous, taking years off our lives, we're told.

The one getting all the attention is called "Master Cleanse." This diet has you drinking about ten glasses of a lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup concoction. Expect to spend your next ten days in the bathroom. Essentially you are starving your body, thereby releasing "toxins" from fat cells. What you are really doing is forcing your gut into diarrheal states for ten days. Not a good idea.

Another is the Martha's Vineyard Diet, started by a nurse (so it has to be good for you, right? Wrong.) Here you get to drink a lot of distilled water, protein shakes, vegetable shakes, and a lot of round-the-clock colon cleansing. Yeah! Oh, but people with heart problems, liver problems, kidney problems, diabetics and so forth shouldn't use it or any of these methods. Why? Well, you might die or something. But it's got to be good for you, right? Wrong.

There are others (the Joshi diet that Gwyneth Paltrow shills is omnipresent lately), but they all basically make you poop you heart out. These things are all:

  • Silly
  • Dangerous
  • Expensive
  • Designed to make the promoters a lot of money

No medical person worth his salt will tell you these things are good for you. Because they are not. They will alter your electrolyte levels, sugar levels, put stresses on your circulatory system, and flush out the good probiotic bacteria in your intestines.

Think about this: Your body already is designed to get rid of the bad stuff. Things like your liver, kidney, lungs, and even your skin, are all designed to metabolize and neutralize the bad stuff. Next time you hear somebody say that they're thinking about detox-ing their body, ask them why. When they say to get rid of all those toxins, ask them exactly what toxins they are talking about. They will stare at you as if everybody knows what those things are. Tell them "toxins" is another word for money: That's what these diets are really good at: flushing your money down the toilet.

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