Detox Diets: Placebo

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No evidence supports that harmful chemicals accumulate in the body (in fact, the liver and kidneys are pretty good at getting rid of bodily toxins). And even if toxins did accumulate in the body, there’s no reason to believe that these detox diets would get rid of them. Toxicologists A. Jay Gandolfi, an associate dean for research in the college of pharmacy at the University of Arizona, and Linda Birnbaum, director of the experimental toxicology division of the Environmental Protection Agency made the following points in a LA Times article: 1. high volumes of liquid consumption could theoretically help remove water-soluble chemicals like arsenic, but not fat-soluble chemicals (which make up most pollutants) 2. fiber consumption may help eliminate toxic chemicals that accumulate in the liver, but not chemicals that are located in other parts of the gastrointestinal system 3. raw vegetables have no special detoxifying properties other than that their high fiber content can further help bulk up stools 4. most chemicals of concern are fat-soluble and so are stored in fat. The best way to get rid of these potential toxins is not through a detox diet, but through weight loss. Slender people get rid of toxins more quickly than overweight and obese individuals.

The decreased bloating is likely from eating less food; the clearer skin from increased hydration; and the decreased headaches exercise and relaxation components of the program, and psychological factors.  – placebo effect

Some people report feeling more focused and energetic during and after detox diets. placebo

There’s simply no scientific evidence to suggest that our bodies need help to get rid of waste products if we are healthy and there’s little proof to support the claims that detox diets work. Quite rightly, most nutritionists, dietitians and doctors believe that our bodies are completely capable of excreting waste without the aid of ‘detoxing’ – that’s what our liver, lungs, kidneys...
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