Detox diets are very popular among people who want to lose weight. They are believed to promote weight loss and help in removing toxins from the body.
This so-called healthy diet is mostly promoted by celebrities, models and social media influencers. Celebrities and Youtubers have a great influence on kids and teenagers, parents are eager to know if this diet is safe for their children.
Why is detox diet so popular?
The name itself made it popular. Detoxification is a well known method of treatment. It is often used by doctors to treat people with any kind of addiction, especially drugs. It is also known to assist individuals with any kind of withdrawal symptoms. So, it is considered as a medically-supported method for treating a person with acute intoxification.
However, medical detoxification is different diet detox. Detox diet is known for supporting the body’s natural detoxification processes, boosting health, and aiding in weight loss.
Studies on detox diets:
As of now, there is very little evidence to prove the health benefits of this type of diet. There are not even enough studies to prove the detoxification effects of it.
Some of the studies focussing on the benefits of commercially available detox diets are mentioned in an article published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics. According to the article, these detox diets can help in improving the way liver removes toxins from a person’s body. However, most of the studies mentioned in the article had small sample sizes.
There are also a few studies highlighting the demerits of detox diets. A study published in a journal called Current Gastroenterology Reports suggested that this diet plan is not sustainable.
The research paper stated that this diet plan focuses on extremely low calorie intake. As a result, the dieter experiences weight loss for a short period. Once the person starts following a normal diet, they gain weight.
People following this diet are not receiving enough nutrients to lead a healthy life, stated National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH).
Experts’ advice on detox drinks:
There are several types of “detox drinks” and a lot of them include the same ingredients such as lemon juice, cucumber, honey, lemon and warm water.
There is no doubt that this citric fruit is rich in nutrients and it is known to be a good source of Vitamin C. But excessive consumption of lemons can lead to several health problems.
“It prevents pathogenic bacteria from infiltrating the gut and triggering inflammation. If the barrier function is compromised, it usually results in leaky gut syndrome, which is a key step in the initiation and development of irritable bowel syndrome. Additionally, it also has the ability to regenerate other important antioxidants such as Vitamin E and glutathione (both offer additional anti-inflammatory protection for the gut),” Clinical dietitian Fatema Valikarimwala told Vogue.
In a similar vein, Dr. Akanksha Kotibhaskar, senior Ayurveda consultant of Forest Essentials, said the combination of lemon and honey can result in internal inflammations and digestive disruptions.
“Combining honey and lemon does promote healing, but Ayurveda advises against using the two with any hot substances (including hot water) because this changes their natural qualities, which in turn impacts our digestive and immune system,” Dr Aneesh Manoharan, an Ayurvedic physician, said.
In addition, excessive consumption of lemon can lead to teeth sensitivity and pain, according to Dr Aikta Singh, dentist at Columbia Asia Hospital.
“While a couple of glasses of lemon water are good to keep the digestive track up and running, excessive consumption can cause erosion of teeth enamel due to lemon’s acidic nature,” the dentist explained.
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