January is usually the month where the public are dealing with an aftermath of indulgence. Following the festive period, the diet industry is in full throttle. One of the most popular dieting trends that will appear at the beginning of the new year will be the detox.
What is Detoxing?
Detoxing itself is a natural, biological process whereby the body excretes toxins. Natural detoxing is carried out by the liver, kidneys, skin and lungs. Any harmful toxins are cleared out of the body. The toxins that the body can expel include things such as alcohol or air pollution; as well as toxins inside the body that are part of natural processes. For example, ammonia is produced when the body breaks down protein and exits the body through urine.
Essentially, detoxing already happens every day most without our knowledge. The body is capable of self-cleaning and is built to cope with toxins. However, it is often used by the diet industry as a marketing tool and is presented as a solution to all problems associated with a bad diet. Furthermore, they are specifically marketed with the assumption that the body is full of harmful substances that it can’t already deal with.
Detox Diets Are More Like Fad Diets
Detox diets are also not completely effective. Fundamentally, they are all the same. Most detox diets are based on consuming copious amounts of raw, natural produce and homemade juices whilst avoiding meat, dairy and products with sugar and fat present. Overall intake would only amount to 500 calories, with the designated time limit typically situated between 7 and 14 days.
Because the daily calorie consumption is so low, it simply isn’t feasible to undertake a detox diet. There isn’t enough energy involved in these plans for people to function normally. Due to the lack of carbohydrates in a detox, weight loss does occur but only in the short term. Once the detox period ends and the dieter returns to their usual eating pattern, the weight will most likely be gained again.
Detox Diets Won’t Help In the Long Term
Detox diets can be effective. The simple act of changing to healthier food following an extended period of indulgence is a step in the right direction. Such actions give an incentive to make healthier choices and encourages the mind-set for change. However, detox diets are not a long-term fix. There may be weight-loss involved, but it can only be maintained with a consistent, healthy diet and exercise. Nevertheless, losing weight and wanting to be healthier doesn’t require a detox diet to be successful. It requires a change in everyday actions and practiced throughout life.