Flush your pipes
Weigh the pros and cons of the designer diet detoxes
Water, lemon and cayenne pepper don’t make a silver bullet,
Show of hands time: Last May, when R&B sensation Beyonce announced to the world that she had quickly lost 20 pounds on a cayenne pepper and water diet, how many of you ran out and bought a canister or two -– or 10?
It's OK if you believed the hype, because some of it's actually true. Weight loss is a side benefit of the Cayenne Pepper Cleanse. However, don't think for one moment that using this method, or one of the other internal body-cleansing recipes designed to detox your system, is the best way to achieve optimum health.
''Drinking cayenne pepper and water is not as beneficial as moving and walking,'' says J. David Forbes, the co-founder and director of Nashville Integrated Medicine. ''We always want to find a method that's quick and easy, but it's the old-fashioned, basic tips that still work most effectively — eating fruits and vegetables, drinking plenty of water and getting regular exercise are considered the best detoxifiers.''
Regardless, it seems like every single daytime TV show and health magazine these days is giving rave reviews to the aftereffects of recipes like the Lemonade Cleanse or the Vegetable Juice and Vegetable Mineral Broth Cleanse.
''There are ingredients in these cleansers that may be able to speed up the detoxification process, but there is far too much emphasis placed on what the cleansers are taking out rather than what we are taking in,'' Forbes cautions. ''The truth is, if you went two weeks with a reduced amount of refined sugar, processed foods and saturated fat, you would feel dramatically better because the toxins in your diet would have been removed. It's silly to try and find salvation in a detox process if you are going to return to the same diet once it's over.''
Forbes goes on to say that one of the greatest detriments to anyone's body is the consumption of high fructose corn syrup, which is in ''basically everything.'' Since none of us are health saints all the time, a good internal cleansing a couple of times a year can greatly assist in removing the diet sins we've committed. However, if you find yourself getting sick, becoming obsessed or drastically reducing your daily recommended caloric intake, you need to ease up.
''Before starting any process, ask yourself what you are detoxifying from,'' says Forbes. ''The first rule to getting over an allergy is removing the allergen. This too applies to detoxification. If you want to get the toxins out of your body, stop putting them in there in the first place.''
This recipe is to be used just in the morning. You may eat for the rest of the day. Mix the following ingredients:
1 quart spring, filtered or distilled water.
The juice of two freshly squeezed lemons or three limes. Lemon helps food move through the stomach. It's a natural antacid because it helps the stomach's natural bicarbonate work. People who wake in the morning feeling bloated and nauseous and can't face breakfast should drink lemon in water. It cleanses the liver and increases expectoration and thins mucus.
4 tsp. maple syrup. Maple syrup contains an abundance of minerals. This is used for calories and sweetness.
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper. Cayenne pepper warms and improves blood flow to the hands, feet and internal organs. It also relieves gas and colic. Cayenne pepper stimulates the secretion of digestive juices, treats infections and stomach ulcers caused by bacteria.
VEGETABLE JUICE AND VEGETABLE MINERAL BROTH CLEANSE
You shouldn't consume any food while using this cleanser, and you're required to drink one additional gallon of water per day. Blend the following ingredients:
5 quarts quart spring, filtered or distilled water.
2 cups carrot greens.
2 cups potato peelings, 1/4-inch thick.
2 cups beet greens.
1 cup fresh parsley.
3 cups celery stalks and leaves.
Simmer 20 minutes. Strain, reserving the broth.
Add 2-3 cloves chopped garlic, which can kill some infectious organisms. It's also good for treating colds and the flu. It also improves circulation, lowers cholesterol and reduces blood sugar levels.
Add 2 chopped onions. They're in the same family as garlic and have similar anti-infective properties.
Simmer for 5 minutes.The Master Cleanse
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