Debunking Detox Diets: Harmful Chemicals Do Not Accumulate in the Body

Last Updated: 02 Apr 2023
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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. igh 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.

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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 and skin are designed to do, after all. Most experts also say that strict detox diets followed in the long term, can lead to nutrient deficiencies and health problems associated with this. “It may alleviate your guilt but it is actually doing more harm than good. ” McGrice. Health Kick nutrition and dietetics

However, studies have shown that fasting and extremely low calorie intake — common elements of detox diets — cause a slowdown of metabolism and an increase in weight after the dieter returns to normal eating. Fasting to detoxify and lose weight is not necessary, says Frank Sacks, MD, a leading epidemiologist at the Harvard School of Public Health. "There is no basis in human biology that indicates we need fasting or any other detox formula to detoxify the body because we have our own internal organs and immune system that take care of excreting toxins," Sacks says. "Your body is designed to remove toxins efficiently with organs such as the kidneys, liver, and colon. You don’t need detox diets, pills, or potions to help your body do its job," Sacks says. Experts agree there is no credible science to substantiate claims that detox diets work or the need for detoxification, lymphatic draining, and frequent bowel cleansing. There are no studies available to document the benefits; instead, most claims are based on testimonials. Include skin British Dietetic Association, “ Detox diets are marketing myths rather than nutritional reality. Dr John Emsley said: "There is no scientific reason for people to waste time and money on so-called detox regimes, fancy diets, or expensive remedies, none of which can compare to the detox system that is already inbuilt into our natural system. " “The concept of ‘detox’ is a marketing myth rather than a physiological entity,” Dr. Catherine Collins, Chief Dietician at St George’s Hospital Medical School, London, http://www. acefitness. org/blog/2239/do-detox-diets-work http://maddashpublishing. wordpress. com/2012/03/28/detox-diets-do-toxins-hate-purified-vegetables/ http://www. etterhealth. vic. gov. au/bhcv2/bhcarticles. nsf/pages/Placebo_effect http://socialanxietydisorder. about. com/od/glossary/g/doubleblind. htm non scienticfic evidence- http://health. ninemsn. com. au/whatsgoodforyou/factsheets/826277/does-detox-work http://www. bbc. co. uk/sn/humanbody/truthaboutfood/young/detox. shtml http://www. choice. com. au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/nutrition/do-diet-detox-products-work. aspx the placebo effect A placebo is any medical treatment that is inactive.

A patient can be given this ‘dummy’ treatment such as a pill, surgery or form of exercise, and begin to feel better. They begin to feel cured although the medication really did nothing for them. The placebo effect is triggered by the person's belief in the treatment and their expectation of feeling better. Around one third of people who take placebos will experience an end to their symptoms. In the case of a detox diet, the individual may feel better because they believe they are doing something beneficial for their body. They feel like they have more energy and focus, but it is only a belief.

Little do they know, they are causing nutrient deficiencies to the body. Double blind experiment A double blind experiment is where neither the researcher nor the participant know which treatment each participant is receiving. For example half of a group to be tested is given a placebo, and the other half are given the real medication. The purpose of this experiment is to eliminate bias from both parties. A double blind detox diet has never been carried out, but it would be very valuable in proving whether these diets truly work. Anecdotal evidence

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Debunking Detox Diets: Harmful Chemicals Do Not Accumulate in the Body. (2017, Jul 15). Retrieved from

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