Recently my Facebook feed has been flooded with yet another misleading trend designed by companies and people in order to try to make money off people who don’t know any better. This simple word is one thing: detoxification.
Detoxification doesn’t exist. It’s a garbage term for a garbage industry. And anyone who is trying to sell you on it is trying to make money off of you. Period.
This is nothing new. In past years people from companies like Isagenix, Herbalife, Juice Plus, Visalus, several other MLM companies and many, many over the counter products are always talking about detoxification. It’s a horrible thing that is definitely the cause of your headaches, bowel problems and weight gain. Take these products for 90 days and you will feel better, lose weight and remove all these icky things that have accumulated through your lifetime of bad choices.
Here’s a few simple questions to ask anyone who talks about this stuff and find out if they actually know anything about the word:
What does detoxification actually mean? (It’s a medical term)
What is a toxin? (Toxins are always referred to but never named by these people) – can they actually name any toxin that they are claiming to remove from your body?
What are the places you need to detox most? (If they say it’s the liver or kidneys then they don’t know what these organs actually do).
Can I detox myself without your products? (of course not, my product is the best way and is scientifically proven to work!)
I’ll be blunt. This is total quackery. But for some reason people keep falling for it. I’m not going to bother listing the amount of credible scientific entities that have proven this stuff is completely stupid and a waste of money, but you can easily find them. I have one here. And here. And here. And here. Which is the tip of the iceberg.
Most of the time these products contain two things: laxatives (put under natural names) and diuretics (also naturally based). You pee more and poop more, and suddenly you’re losing weight (imagine that). Plus, some very popular ones have you replace most of your solid food with shakes (that they provide) and suddenly you lose weight. Miracle!
You know how to make yourself feel better? Eat more fibrous vegetables and fruits. Eat less animal protein. Don’t take supplements unless you actually need to. Sleep more. Stop engaging in sympathetic behaviors like computers and cell phones all the time. Exercise regularly and intensely enough to create a positive hormonal change. This is all really easy to do, and it’s free except for a possible change in your grocery bill (and vegetables are cheaper anyway).
In fact, many of these products can create more problems than they solve. Throwing your body suddenly into a state of either caloric deficit or changing your diet radically can create issues like constipation, headaches or even severe reactions. All the things people selling detox would have you think is toxins leaving your body, not something created by the cure they sold you.
Recently a friend of mine who is highly educated (two advanced degrees) actually asked me if she should do a cleanse. You know what my answer is?
You don’t need expensive products. You need a carrot. And probably more water. Let your body cleanse itself, it will do a fine job if you give it the tools to do so.
Oh, and if anyone tries to sell you on this stuff, especially within the fitness or health industry, please walk the other way. They know it’s bullshit. They’re trying to take advantage of you and make money. My latest hat tipper is a former dental hygienist (and IFBB pro of course) who is now an expert on nutrition with no formal education and one year at a holistic nutrition school under her belt. Find me a girl or guy who has recently won a couple of fitness shows and likely within a year or two they will be pushing products like this – or of course, whatever supplement line they are sponsored by. With no credibility behind the products or themselves besides a shiny trophy. Welcome to another day in the fitness industry.
Again people, let’s be smarter than this. Like I always say about fitness, buyer beware. Don’t support an industry that is based on nothing but smoke and mirrors. And please, please, please check whatever educational background your current “detox” guru has. Odds are the only thing they are looking to improve is their bank account.