Cleanses to leave you beachy clean
March 5th, 2012
05:00 PM ET
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Kate Krader (@kkrader on Twitter) is Food & Wine's restaurant editor. When she tells us where to find our culinary heart's desire, we listen up.

Yikes, didn’t you realize that Spring Break was just around the corner? Or is already here? And you haven’t started your diet yet? There’s not a minute to waste. It’s time to do a cleanse. If you need help figuring out the best one for you, here’s a little Q & A that might help.

Q: Money is no object. And I want options.
A: There’s lots of options on the BluePrint Cleanse. With this well-established cleanse, you can do a "Tasting Flight" with selections like cashew nut milk; you can do intense green juicing; or you can just "Juice ‘Til Dinner." Then, you schedule delivery based on how many days worth of juice you need; prices start at $45 per day. You can also choose your level of cleanse, starting at "Level 1 – Renovation." If you’re feeling super toxic, "Level 3 – Excavation" might sound like nirvana. 

Q: I’m looking for a cleanse specialist.
A: The Clean Program was created by cardiologist Dr. Alejandro Junger; he’s a "cleanse specialist" and the author of the best-selling book Clean. There’s a generous amount of protein powders and digestive enzymes as part of this cleanse, plus a large online community support group. If you’d rather do a version of the Clean Program that has a celebrity endorsement, Gwyneth Paltrow teamed up with Junger to create The Goop Cleanse.

Q: I want the original cleanse.
A: The Master Cleanse is pretty much the mother of all cleanses. It would be hard not to lose weight here - all you do is drink glasses of lemon juice, maple syrup and cayenne pepper (though those calories do add up; registered dietician Joy Bauer has noted that 12 cups of the stuff equals 1300 calories). Plus you either take laxatives, or do the Salt Water Flush. Again, if a celebrity endorsement is motivating, Beyoncé used the Master Cleanse to very good effect to prepare for her role in Dreamgirls.

Q: I want a cleanse with as many celebrity clients as possible.
A: Organic Avenue counts among its fans Alicia Silverstone, Russell Simmons, Liv Tyler, Donna Karan and yes, Gwyneth Paltrow. They promote five different raw food experiences based on LOVE (Live, Organic, Vegan Experience). Their Love Easy program includes a menu with solid foods - think raw vegan lasagna, falafel - while Love Deep is juice and only juice, like Beautifying Cucumber. If you’re in New York City and need an emergency cleanse delivered between 11 a.m. and 9 p.m., Organic Avenue has your back.

Q: I want to go on a cleanse that has a celebrity co-owner.
A: You’re in luck. Salma Hayek is the co-founder of Cooler Cleanse. Whether she had a lot of input into the juice flavors, I’m not sure, but Cooler Cleanse’s green juice gets raves for being the best tasting one of its kind. That might sound like faint praise but you might feel differently when you’re on day two of your cleanse.

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© 2011 American Express Publishing Corporation. All rights reserved.

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soundoff (113 Responses)
  1. Doug

    It'd be nice if they started this article with a brief primer on what exactly constitutes a "cleanse." I have a rather vague idea of what a cleanse is, and I'm not any more informed now than when I started reading. It's nice to know that there are a lot of options, but there's nothing in here that explains how these options differ or what the different outcomes should be.

    March 14, 2012 at 11:32 am |
  2. AGeek

    Want a real, permanent cleanse? Eat a healthy, balanced diet. The money wasted on crap (no pun intended) like this is mind-boggling.

    March 7, 2012 at 7:04 am |
  3. Shirely

    I need a mental cleansing after reading this article about an obsession over excretion

    March 7, 2012 at 2:31 am |
  4. Susan

    I think I alot of the effect of a cleanse is psychological. If you think it's going to make you feel better or cure your chronic conditions, it will.

    March 6, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  5. Solomon

    No matter what you eat, there is only one thing to remember: this too shall pass.

    March 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • OopsICrappedMyPants

      That's actually the motto of my new cleansing program, Culo Cleanse. Seven pounds of prunes and a case of PBR a day. Get wasted and still wear skinny jeans. http://www.ims***
      Hoc transibit!

      March 6, 2012 at 10:55 pm |
  6. smokin1011

    HA! If you click on the link for "Master Cleanse," you get a page that read "Fatal Error."
    It would only be funnier if it read "Epic Fail."

    March 6, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  7. Spiff

    Q: I want a cleanse that is backed by medical evidence that it actually accomplishes anything.
    A: Sorry, you're out of luck, as this whole business is just a bunch of new age (rhymes with sewage) bull crap.

    March 6, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
  8. t3chsupport

    It's called fasting. You don't need some special product for it, and you shouldn't do it for very long in any given stretch. It's really not doing to you what you think it is though, but it is doing something. Ask any anorexic how they feel after they've starved themselves just the right amount of time – feels a lot like one of those cleanses. Because it's the same thing. You're starving yourself and allowing your body to not just digest what's already in there (as it does every day, the hoax that you have stuff just sitting around in your gut is just that – a hoax to sell you garbage that you will eagerly buy), and some of your muscle tone. You may lose a little bit of weight after a bit, but mostly it's going to be water weight, and it will come back very quickly after you cease your 'cleanse'.

    Fasting is kind of nice (anorexia isn't so bad either until your hair falls out), it feels nice to be reminded of what hunger really feels like, and to be able to meditate on that emptiness, and all of that other happy feelgood crap, but don't delude yourself. You aren't cleaning out anything but your wallet.

    March 6, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • whatever

      It's called using the number 3 to represent a backwards E, even though the rest of the name is written in lower case. It's been done thousands of times; the writer could at least substitute a k for the ch or a z for the s.

      March 6, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
      • sylli

        Haters gonna hate...

        March 8, 2012 at 11:27 am |
  9. Collin Pow

    I'd like to join in the conversation but I really really have to go

    March 6, 2012 at 10:47 am |
    • Colon Blow

      Wait. I'm almost finished ...

      March 6, 2012 at 10:50 am |
  10. Kevin

    There's a reason this is in the Eatocracy section and not in the Health section. All cleansing diets are completely bogus and have zero scientific credibility.

    March 6, 2012 at 9:03 am |
  11. gremlinus

    So what I've learned today is that people who praise cleanses are revolutionaries that are far more knowledgeable than these scheming doctors and scientists that keep us in the dark simply to make money and to keep control over us. Cleansing groups that charge hundreds of dollars for their quick fix treatments however are the miracle way to health and apparently aren't just selling it to make money. Anyone that argues that moderation, a well-balanced diet, and regular exercise are the way to go is a self-righteous naive fool. CNN, I love you. Good night all.

    March 5, 2012 at 7:19 pm |
    • Billy

      Keep up the fight but you are in a losing battle. We live in a time when some people feel superior by being anti-science.

      March 6, 2012 at 8:51 am |
    • Deela

      gremlinus, you sound like a well-grounded, down-to-Earth, not even slightly self-righteous poster and I support the comments you've made here ... even the sarcastic ones. Pay no mind to the postings against you. Those who call you self-righteous are being overly defensive because you post in confidence and in opposition to their way of thinking. They don't know how else to deal that kind of positive thinking except negatively.

      The necessity of a regularly scheduled cleanse is something I've never understood. What good does it to do eat/drink/live however you do, cleanse for a brief period of time, then go back to the way you were eating/drinking//living before? If someone was going to make a drastic change in their diet, drinking habits or lifestyle after a cleanse, or even a series of cleanses, I would see the need for it. But to do it & rationalize that you are remove "toxins" in your body seems lemming-ish to me. The human body is a marvelous, self-healing machine in this regard. Unless you have a problem with irregular bowel movements, I don't see the need for them.

      A couple of years ago, I asked my questions to my doc, then let her talk me into two back-to-back cleanses. Afterwards all I felt was, um, lighter. She made her notes and we've moved on.

      FWIW, after my husband's pre-colonoscopy cleanse, he only weighed about 7 pounds less. The person believing they (or people in general) carry 20 lbs of waste probably should see a doctor, a nutritionist, pick up a 20 lb weight and get a grip.

      March 6, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • t3chsupport

      What bothers me the most about it is that I have too much of a conscience to tell people that lemon water is going to do something for them, and they should pay me a bunch for it. I'd love to be able to take advantage of people like that, but it's too much like teasing puppies, which is sad. Had I not had a conscience, I probably would have had a 'product' out by now to take advantage of these rubes. Stupid conscious... it's the whole reason I'm poor!

      March 6, 2012 at 11:52 am |
      • Billy

        Most scientists look at this kind of thing and think if I was willing to sell my soul I too could make a lot of money off the ill informed. (I've been doing research for twenty years on X. If you just buy my books and my product Y, you too can lose weight, live longer, have more energy etc)

        March 6, 2012 at 12:26 pm |
  12. JimJam

    Had several friends do cleanses, the difference is astounding. Their skin and eye looked so much better, they had more energy, and lost weight and felt better. One lost most of the symptoms of fibromyalgia to boot.

    It seems to me that we humans were hunter gatherers for thousands of years, and only in recent times have we had enough food to eat every day, and eating every day likely just isn't that good for our bodies. Looks to me like a cleanse/fast is nothing but bring us back to our roots.

    Scientific supporting evidence? Physicians? If these people were so smart we wouldn't have nearly the highest morbid obesity/diabetes rate in the world. " I don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows."

    March 5, 2012 at 6:50 pm |
    • anon

      Or maybe if us people were so smart we'd listen to the Physicians and scientists. Call me crazy but I think there's real merit to the idea of not stuffing our faces every 5 minutes and getting up off the couch now and again.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:55 pm |
      • gremlinus

        That's just crazy talk.

        March 5, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
      • JimJam

        Med schools have been taken over by drug companies. If they don't prescribe a lot of crap they are violating "standards of care." So we end up with 10 year old kids on Prozac. Science isn't' nearly as smart or as advanced as some think they are, and there is a WHOLE LOT we don't yet know about the human body. If you think Dr's have all the answers, your in for a real shock.

        March 5, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
        • JimJam

          Just finished a 14 day fast/cleanse. One of the best experiences of my life. You have to do one to know what it's like.

          March 13, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
    • gremlinus

      So because people don't listen to their doctors, the doctors are wrong? When you get cancer, good luck with cleansing it out.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
      • Angus in OHIO

        That is how I removed my cancer in 1987 – NO CHEMO – still going strong with a once a week juice fast and a twice a year juice fast/cleanse. Good luck to all, don't believe the foolish naysayers, just get yourself someone with experience to talk and walk you through the journey. PEACE

        March 5, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
        • Jo

          What do you do exactly??

          March 7, 2012 at 12:30 am |
    • Sweetcake

      "It seems to me that we humans were hunter gatherers for thousands of years, and only in recent times have we had enough food to eat every day, and eating every day likely just isn't that good for our bodies."

      Agreed! Most centurions list either 2 meals a day, or small portions, as one of the keys to their health and longevity...

      March 5, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
      • gremlinus

        That's likely true if that's what they are eating now. Their metabolism has slowed. You metabolism slows throughout your life. What you need in your 20s is not what you need in your 90s or even your 40s.

        March 5, 2012 at 7:08 pm |
    • Alex

      Yes, I mean, you'd think if they were so smart we'd be living, on average, 45 years longer than our hunter gatherer forebears.

      ....Oh wait, we do.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
      • JimJam

        "Age of death is a median and that in the paleolithic era a lot of children died at birth or shortly thereafter and that a lot of people died of accidents, injuries or infections, thus skewing the median age of death. Today we have emergency services and we are able to sustain sick people for a long time with no regard for their quality of life. Paleo people didn't die of heart attacks, diabetes, obesity... But instead stay active until the very end."

        "In preindustrial times, deaths at young and middle age were common, and lifespans over 70 years were comparatively rare. This is not due to genetics, but because of environmental factors such as disease, accidents, and malnutrition, especially since the former were not generally treatable with pre-20th century medicine. Deaths from childbirth were common in women, and many children did not live past infancy. In addition, most people who did attain old age were likely to die quickly from the above-mentioned untreatable health problems. Despite this, we do find a large number of examples of pre-20th century individuals attaining lifespans of 75 years or greater, including Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Cato the Elder, Thomas Hobbes, Eric of Pomerania, Christopher Polhem, and Michaelangelo. This was also true for poorer people like peasants or laborers. Genealogists will almost certainly find ancestors living to their 70s, 80s and even 90s several hundred years ago."

        There are many reasons for a moderately long lifespan today, mostly it's dental care, and emergency room care, and better knowledge of how to stay safe and alive. However, it's is not because of today's diet, as the rate of diabetes is skyrocketing and so is heart disease. Things ancient man knew nothing about.

        March 14, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
    • Christina

      My mother-in-law did a doctor-ordered cleanse; I'm not sure what it involved, but the results were amazing. Her IBS symptoms and flare-ups are better, and her neuropathy is not as bad. Now that she's done with the cleanse, she's on a reasonable diet that includes a lot of fruits and vegetables. I think some fo them do work, but you can't just choose one based on celebrities who use them.

      March 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
  13. okan

    All preservatives are toxins. Alcohol is toxic, drugs are toxic, heck even salt is toxic. People tell themselves everything is fine simply so they can eat what they like. mmmmm these doritos are good for me, they're not bad, they're not toxic, oooh, aaah, everything in moderation.....LOL. dead at 50, dead at 60, dead at 70, people just don't get it. Eat fruit, vegetables, nuts seeds, legumes and live to be 108 with great energy and outlook!

    March 5, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • gremlinus

      My grandfather had bologna sandwiches for lunch everyday for 35 years except friday when he had fried egg sandwiches (he's Catholic). He's 90 and outbowls me, a vegetarian for the most part. Anecdotes work as proof for everyone else, so I guess I'll say that it proves bologna is healthy. It couldn't possibly have a lot to do with the fact that he is active or that his genetics play a huge part.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:55 pm |
      • Mary K.

        Lol gremlin, you really don't get any of this do you? Considering the arrogance and self-righteous of your posts, your moniker is quite accurate.

        March 5, 2012 at 7:10 pm |
        • gremlinus

          I'm self-righteous? I don't recall saying anything about the superiority of my lifestyle. I see a whole lot of other people claiming that cleanses are miracle cures and that they know more than any scientist or doctor. But I'm the self-righteous one. Right.

          March 5, 2012 at 7:15 pm |
      • Okan

        Bologna is toxic too (isn't it amazing what the human body contends with!)

        March 5, 2012 at 7:12 pm |
      • JimJam

        Oh com'on Grem, your attitude sucks, and your probably the only one who can't see it. You think you have all the answers, and forget, no one has all the answers. Science isn't the be all, end all. There's so much we don't know so quit acting like you know it all.

        March 5, 2012 at 7:23 pm |
      • bologna is right

        it has enough preservatives in it to keep anyone alive for a loooong time.

        March 5, 2012 at 11:04 pm |
    • Nomme de plume

      Sorry, but fruits and vegetables contain toxins too.

      March 6, 2012 at 11:00 am |
    • Billy

      Try living without salt ( you can't).

      March 6, 2012 at 11:37 am |
    • AGeek

      Salt is toxic? Really? Without sodium, you'd be dead inside of two week. You people really do astound me with your tripe.

      March 7, 2012 at 7:07 am |
  14. pacman357

    Yuck. I can't believe people do this to themselves intentionally. Tell you what...if you really want to be emptied out, schedule a colonoscopy. The most heinous medical procedure I've been through (yes, I am sure there are worse procedures...thankfully, I don't know of any), then you can also get yourself checked out for polyps and cancer.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
  15. Jared

    The last cleanse I did, was seven days on water only and taking coffee enemas (interesting side note there, you don't have to drink coffee to get the effect, you can put it up your hiney if you so choose :) The first two days were hard and some fecal matter in my system came out. Day 3 and 4 weren't too bad, you get into a groove. Day 5 is what fascinated me. I passed a huge bowl movement! It was smelly, putrid, looked old and odd, there was nothing fresh about it, and it was exceedingly apparent that it had been up there for awhile! Day 6 and 7 followed with more nasties coming out. Sooo.... tell this all to a doctor later and he says its impossible, he says there is no place for such things to hide. I say, um doc, this isn't a story, this happened. He says no. LOL! Experience people, you gotta love it...

    March 5, 2012 at 6:39 pm |
    • anon

      I have a prescription for you: Anatomy 101.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:43 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      I just take a hose and jam it up there and open to full throttle for about 5 minutes.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • gremlinus

      No kidding you don't have to drink it to get an effect, your intestines are a direct pipeline to your bloodstream. That's why suppositories are used for many things. OF COURSE it was smelly and putrid, it's in your intestines. "It looked like it had been up there a while?" Only if you haven't been taking a dump for a while. There are no pockets of storage. So the first thing to come out was the last thing you ate. This isn't rocket science. You can believe because you took a big dump once that it's all true, but you laugh at decades of research and centuries of studying digestive behavior. You want to believe it's true and that's all you're going to believe. Good luck with that.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:45 pm |
      • Sweetie

        oh you poor little thing :(

        It must be so frustrating for you to be so right and everyone so wrong! Hee hee! Well chalk one up for your naivety tonight, much of what you posted on this page is wholly incorrect. No no, don't worry, don't fret little tiger, its okay. Back to sleep little one, your poor brain must be sore, trying so feebly to get your voice heard with your "me me, I'm right, I know how this works, I have the answer! LOL! ... let me guess what's next, you can explain dark matter, dark energy, and why God is dead...

        March 5, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
        • gremlinus

          I really love posts like this. The original poster lays down his/her experiences as if they are proof positive of something beyond any question and when the ridiculousness of the post is pointed out, somehow the person using science and logic is the naive fool. I'm assuming you're the same person posting under a different name, or someone of the same mindset. Yes I'm a mathematical biologist and I rely on logic and evidence. If you think you're going to somehow make me feel foolish for doing that, then you are as laughable as your post. Have a nice day.

          March 5, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
        • Ally

          I'm sorry, sweetie, but your post just sounds silly. You're trying to belittle someone for posting information against cleansing. Why? There are lots of studies showing some "cleanses" are baseless in their claims and some are even dangerous. You don't have to agree with gremlinus, but trying to make it sound like the evidence is against him just makes you look uninformed.

          March 6, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
  16. anon

    Protip: They still sell snake oil, they just call it by different names. "Cleansing" is of course one of them. If you have half a brain it should be obvious that these generic "toxins" were invented to get people to pay to solve a problem that doesn't exist.

    Protip #2: placebo effect. 'nuff said

    It is frightening that CNN is too incompetent to see this for what it is. Or perhaps they've just been paid to ignore the BS and post this. Wouldn't be surprised by either.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
  17. Lila

    I don't call it a cleanse but I spend a few days here and there just juicing especially with greens like cucumbers, Kale and celery. Makes me feel like a million bucks and I lose a few pounds.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
  18. R. Williams

    Eat a balanced diet, exercise, drink plenty of water, and you won't need these 'cleanses'. The human body is good at getting rid of waste products, there isn't 20 pounds of it in the intestines, there is not food sitting there for months. Those are myths. These 'cleanses' can also hurt beneficial bacteria in your system, not to mention cause damage to organs.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
    • Me

      Ah! A voice of reason in a sea of crazy!

      March 7, 2012 at 7:00 am |
  19. Lumpy

    I got a surprise after going through this treatment in my Unnerwears. Is there a cleanser for that? This was my favorite pair. :((

    March 5, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
  20. C

    There is no such thing as a "cleanse". You can't extract things from your body chemically without taking out the good with the bad. This is science/chemistry/biology/medical ignorance.

    Everything involves a respectable diet and an exercise solution. No one mentions that that part, alone, will get you the same results.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
  21. Yolande

    Junk info. Celebrity endorsements? what?!! Cleanses can work wonders, and yes, everyone on the planet more or less has toxins and build-up that can be removed by such things. All of the nay-sayers on here touting a well balanced diet simply don't have the experience with this to comment. 31 years ago I fasted for 14 days in Sri Lanka and learned such things...14 years ago in Thailand I was taught by a master faster to learn to go without food for extended periods. Dangerous? For you, yes. But armed with the right knowledge,'re just never going to understand things beyond your pervue, so its time to digress...

    March 5, 2012 at 6:24 pm |
    • Poor Fat Fad Follower

      Master faster... tee hee!!

      March 5, 2012 at 6:26 pm |
    • gremlinus

      Yes, me with my pesky science. What is that compared to anecdotes?

      March 5, 2012 at 6:36 pm |
      • JimJam

        How soon you forget grem...Your "science" was proclaiming how smart it is for a long time. Remember spontaneous generation... remember Jan Baptist van Helmont (1580–1644). He used experimental techniques, such as growing a willow for five years and showing it increased mass while the soil showed a trivial decrease in comparison. As the process of photosynthesis was not understood, he attributed the increase of mass to the absorption of water. His notes also describe a recipe for mice (a piece of soiled cloth plus wheat for 21 days) and scorpions (basil, placed between two bricks and left in sunlight). His notes suggest he may even have done these things."

        This is your science, or how about Galileo... Science has always held itself as having all the answers, much as you do now. I suspect science has a long, long way to go before we understand the human body. But you with your science, think you have it all wrapped up... Was never so in history, and isn't so today. Only the ignorant think they know everything.

        March 14, 2012 at 6:23 pm |
  22. Poor Fat Fad Follower

    Funny, just noticed 2 of the questions mention celebrities, 2 of the answers mention celebrities, and the first question begins with "Money is no object". Money and celebrities... money and celebrities... hmmm... if only it cost more to run or walk on a daily basis and eat less, it just to inexpensive! For now, I'll have to stick with money and celebrities.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
    • gremlinus

      They're using a standard credibility building technique. I can't remember if it's appeal to authority or testimonial. It's the same category the old commercials that said "I'm not a doctor but I play one on TV" falls under. Basically it makes you think that if celebrities and rich people do it, it must be good.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
  23. Lanfear

    Best diet... THE PALEO DIET

    March 5, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
    • gremlinus

      Paleo diet is a fad diet like the others.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
      • Abby

        gremlinus, you obviously haven't done any research on the paleo/primal lifestyle. You're just regurgitating misinformation you probably picked up from a news story that didn't get it right either.

        March 6, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Lanfear

      Actually, it's a lifestyle for MANY people, myself included. And if you saw me... you might change your mind about that.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
      • gremlinus

        I doubt it. Just because you look slim doesn't mean you're healthy. Some of these diets get the basics down, less processed stuff, more whole foods, healthy fats, but any diet that excludes based on some arbitrary rule whether they claim it's scientific or not, is just a fad diet. As I remember the Paleo is another one of those that cuts out carbs. Carbs are the staple primate fuel source. Fats are the energy, proteins are the building blocks. You need them all. And it's incorrect in its assumption that humans ate primarily meat originally. Humans have always been omnivores, and they scavenged. Some primates today are primarily fructovores (sp.) And since civilization began grains and carbs have been a staple. And cooking has been around longer than that.

        March 5, 2012 at 6:33 pm |
        • Kevin

          Paleo is only lower carb in that it cuts out grains. Fruits and vegetables are still fair game and are both better for you than grains. The fact that you have to fortify grains with vitamins and minerals should tell you something.

          March 5, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
        • gremlinus

          Kevin–We have to fortified the over processed grains. Whole grains are fairly nutritious. Rice and other grains are the staple for most of the world, including areas that have better health than the US. The problem isn't one food or another, it's the overall excess. By cutting out one type of food most people cut their overall calories. Then they erroneously blame that food. Which is what I mean by it being a fad diet.

          March 5, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
  24. Poor Fat Fad Follower

    Those big money doctors will be running scared from this one this time. Just a few bucks and I'm all healthy again! It's really just a matter of time before they figure out the right cleanse and all of medical science can be thrown out. Thank you cleanse companies for putting forth a real health product, not stupid stuff like "free" advice that I should exercise. I already knew that, I tried it, and it didn't work. Now I can start my weight loss program the RIGHT way.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
  25. DJ

    Why is this crap on the news site? There is no scientific evidence supporting this. Can you site one credible research paper supporting this nonsense? As @Greg pointed out, your kidneys and liver work just fine. If they are not cleansing your system, you've got bigger problems.

    It's not news. It's CNN.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
  26. Sandra

    Most physicians tell patients to steer clear of these 'cleansing' diets, as they really put a lot of stress on the liver, kidneys and heart. Sure, starving yourself will cause weight loss, and couple that with dehydration caused by these 'cleansers', there is more weight loss.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
    • Lanfear

      What do you mean by "starving yourself" ? Starving isn't good... but intermittent fasting is actually really good for you.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
  27. Primal

    Follow the Primal Blueprint and there is never a need for this kind of nonsense. It's that simple.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
    • gremlinus

      Primal doesn't have any more credible backing than this fad.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:08 pm |
      • Primal

        So very, very, wrong. It is 100% effective and it works for everyone. It is by far the best diet anyone can use. Plenty of scientific data to back it up. You are gonna have to seek that for yourself though.

        March 6, 2012 at 11:31 am |
        • Billy

          I had no problem reading the scientific research because there is none.

          March 6, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
        • Abby

          Billy, you are wrong. There is lots of scientific evidence to back up a primal-style diet.

          March 6, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
        • Billy

          Abby-List some peer reviiewed scientific studies done by independent scientists.

          March 6, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
        • Ghost of Abby

          I'm sure there's SOMETHING about it on Wikipedia ....

          March 6, 2012 at 2:34 pm |
        • Abby

          Billy, I'm at work right now, so I don't have access to my bookshelf at home full of nutrition books. But here's some suggested reading for you, which are written by experts in their fields and cite numerous scientific studies:

          "Protein Power" by Micheal Eades MD and Mary Eades MD
          "The Paleo Diet" by Loren Cordain PhD
          "The Primal Blueprint" by Mark Sisson
          "Good Calories Bad Calories" by Gary Taubes
          "Eat Fat Lose Fat" by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig PhD

          What aspect in particular of the primal-style diet do you have a problem with?

          March 6, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
        • Abby


          I'll share with you what I'm eating on my "unhealthy fad diet" (which isn't really a "diet", I don't want to lose weight, it's an eating philosophy to eat nutritious food, period). On strict paleo diets, people don't eat dairy; on primal diets dairy is allowed in moderation.

          Breakfast: organic yogurt and a handful of strawberries
          Lunch: beef Hungarian goulash soup (loaded up with lots of bell peppers and onions, served over sauteed cabbage)
          Snack: handful of cashews and a plum
          Dinner: baked fish and asparagus in a white-wine sauce
          Drink: coconut water

          Breakfast: organic yogurt and 1/2 cup of blackberries
          Lunch: chicken with marinara sauce served on a bed of zucchini and yellow squash
          Snack: 2 boiled eggs, some fresh fruit salad (kiwi, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
          Dinner: beef Hungarian goulash soup (loaded up with lots of bell peppers and onions, served over sauteed cabbage)
          Drink: coconut water

          Oh yes, SOOO UNHEALTHY, huh?

          March 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
        • Billy

          ABby-i didn'tsay it was unhealthy. Perhaps you're a bit defensive. I just want to be able to read scientific research that says its better for you than my current diet which is based on current science. I don't want to read books. I could write a book that would convince some people to eat what ever i came up with. Myproblemwith thepaleo diet is its premise that humans didn't evolve to eat ceratin foods. We didn't evolvet to eat tomatoes. Does that mean theyarebad for you? Humans were ceratinly haethier after they started eating dairy and grains. In the end iwant to be able to read original reseatch articles by scientists who have nothing to gain, no matter what their conclusions are.

          March 6, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
  28. Me'

    I heard of cleanses, but what is actually being cleaned? Do cleanses rid you of parasites and leftover waste,etc.? I don't get it. Explain it to me, Lucy!

    March 5, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
    • MarileeBob

      One of the benefits is cleaning the digestive track. We can carry around about 20 lbs of waste matter in our colon-and colon health is a huge part of overall health. If you are efficiently processing your food, you will feel better and have more energy. I don't believe in starvation cleanses, but do a fruit and veggie fast about once a year. I drink fruit & veggie juices & eat pureed veggie soups for about 5 days .

      March 5, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
      • Lanfear

        Best diet: THE PALEO DIET

        March 5, 2012 at 6:16 pm |
        • gremlinus

          Paleo DIet is a fad diet just like the others.

          March 5, 2012 at 6:18 pm |
        • Primal

          Sorry gremlinus you are once again incorrect. There is nothing fad about the diet that all humans used for 99% of human existence.

          March 6, 2012 at 11:32 am |
      • Poor Fat Fad Follower

        Another myth. This waste matter is not found in colons during routine colonoscopies of... well... everyone that's had one. When there is something found it's usually something worse like cancer or a life-threatening blockage. Colons are very good at cleaning themselves out. The matter that does come out is whatever was already working its way through the digestive system and essential hydration.

        March 5, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
    • gremlinus

      Supposedly yes to all of the above. They vary. The ones listed on this site look like ones that rely on you going to an all liquid diet and supplements and/or laxatives. So, yeah of course you're going to lose weight and the supplements will probably "pep you up" but it's not lasting. And as others have pointed out, it's not good for some of your digestion-related organs. Some of the extreme ones use irrigation (basically an enema) either with water or with some sort of "formula." Depending on what's in these formulas (I mentioned coffee earlier), you absorb the ingredients into your system via your bloodstream, in the intestines the exchange is more direct. This can in some cases be dangerous.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:12 pm |
  29. gremlinus

    Wow, did this really make a news site? This is terrible that they give credence to fads like this. At best they don't do anything for you that a high fiber diet won't anyway. At worst some of the "irrigation" formulas they shoot up you contain things that are safe to ingest, but that absorb much more quickly in "other places" and can be dangerous. Coffee cleanses spring to mind. If this is what this site has come to, it's time for "Eatocracy" to go.

    March 5, 2012 at 6:00 pm |
    • The Big P

      Thank you for speaking up! The vast number of ignorant responses up above make me fear for humanity :(

      March 5, 2012 at 8:39 pm |
  30. AnythingButObama

    Nature (vegetables and fruits), that's the best way to reboot. Watch Fat, sick and nearly dead documentary for inspiration.Awesome!!!!

    March 5, 2012 at 5:55 pm |
  31. Greg Malor

    "Cleanses" like these don't work.

    Your body has a very good cleansing system- the liver and kidneys.

    March 5, 2012 at 5:52 pm |
    • Lanfear

      This is true. While I've recieved great health benefits - weight loss, clear skin, etc.– from "cleansing"... the truth is it wasn't the cleanse that caused those things, it was a change in diet. The good news is that I changed my diet permanently after that cleanse. But cleanses in themselves... are not backed by science. The whole myth about excess crap in your body that builds up... that's just what it is, a myth.

      People need to stop using "diets" as a temporary solution. Your "diet" must be a permanent lifestyle change, or else you go in circles with your weight and overall happiness. You're better off just not eating cr@p for the rest of your life, rather than cleansing from time to time.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:01 pm |
  32. Goodgollymissmolly

    I wonder if reduced-calorie, well-balanced diets will ever be in fashion.

    March 5, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
  33. Jon

    LOL people still think "cleanses" work.

    March 5, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
    • MarileeBob

      If they don't work for you, that's fine, but that doesn't mean it won't work for everyone. I've been doing a cleanse for about 35 years now, once a year, and what I do works very well for me.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:12 pm |
    • gremlinus

      MarileeBob–From what you wrote, you just go down to pureed stuff and juices for 5 days. That's a lot different from some of these things that put you on a strict program for weeks. Even if you're eating pureed soups, you're still getting some of the fiber and natural plant material, not just the extracts. So what you call cleansing and what these sites sell as cleansing are different. Your logic doesn't track with science, but you're approach is moderate and relatively healthy. A lot of these sites promote "miracles" that are anywhere from ineffective to downright dangerous. And they prey on the insecure and uninformed. The entire industry shrouds itself in this unassailable wall of "naysayers just don't get it." or "you're just sheep of the establishment." Meanwhile they get away with pushing snake oil.

      March 5, 2012 at 6:27 pm |
      • MarileeBob


        March 5, 2012 at 7:19 pm |
        • gremlinus

          I'm not the one shooting coffee up my butt. But thanks for sharing.

          March 5, 2012 at 7:22 pm |
        • Deela

          MarileeBob, I simply must congratulate you on your brilliant reparteé!

          March 6, 2012 at 9:21 am |
      • Alix

        Oh, Gremlinus, you and your COMMON SENSE. When will you ever learn? Money, celebs and pseudo-science is where it's at!

        March 6, 2012 at 8:51 am |
  34. Yrsa

    Want a real cleanse? Why doesn't everyone just eat plants? GO VEG!!!

    March 5, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
    • Abby

      Because humans are OMNIVORES, not herbivores.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
  35. Truth™

    At the risk of sounding cynical, this sounds like yet another hipster dietary fad, which can get in line behind, Atkins, no-carbs, all oat bran, etc.

    March 5, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      It is. But I hear it's all about giving you great body cleansing dumps.

      March 5, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
      • Truth™@JDizz

        If I need that, I can just watch an Obama speech.

        March 5, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
      • Charmin

        I'm on sale this week with a coupon from your Sunday paper. I'd buy the 12 pack,just in case.

        March 5, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
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