Do you do a Detox diet? drinking too much fruit and vegetable juice could harm your health

“Detox” juices promise sustained weight loss, however, nutrition specialists consulted by BBCL point out their doubts about their effects, since there is no scientific evidence to support it. “The Detox diet cannot be maintained over time, because it is restrictive and can generate side effects.

Commonly, many of us want to look and feel good. Whether it is to reach our ideal weight, today there are a variety of diets that promise miraculous weight loss, among them, the Detox diet.

Praised by several famous people and celebrities such as Heidi Klum, Demi Moore, and Salma Hayek, the promise of the Detox method is simple, losing the greatest amount of weight through the intake of a smoothie that can be of plant origin, nuts, or seeds. The mere consumption of these drinks says their promoters, could help in a purification or detoxification process (hence their name) to obtain a slim figure.

The Detox diet is a diet based on the preparation of juices and smoothies. Other versions promote fasting and the consumption of water or fruit exclusively.

Although the diet works by making natural juices (with carrots, apples, and even green vegetables) they can offer a feeling of well-being generated by weight loss, but few studies support their effectiveness.

Broadly speaking, they supposedly improve the defenses of the immune system, care for the skin, restore liver function, and reduce inflammation in the body. But are Detox diets as beneficial as social media says?

The little evidence of the Detox diet

Specifically, mentions Miguel Del Valle, Nutrition and Dietetics academic at Andrés Bello University, the Detox diet can generate more problems than benefits in the long term, given its impact on nutrition. “It generates nutritional deficiencies of a caloric, protein, and micronutrient nature and therefore, it can lead to all the complications associated with malnutrition,” he exemplifies.

The specialist points out that in the last 5 years, there have been no exhaustive studies on the subject, of these diets that can last 7 or 10 days, depending on the instructions followed.

On the other hand, the teacher explains that these days there is a way to complete this purification treatment, with dietary supplements that can cause harm to the body itself. “There are risks of using enemas or laxatives without supervision and repetitively,” he says.


Regarding the preparation of these juices used in “cleanses”, many of them have not been pasteurized to kill harmful bacteria that can make people sick, details the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC in its acronym in English).

The American entity clarifies on its website that the consumption of Detox juices can lead to serious illnesses in children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems if they do not maintain adequate manufacturing standards.

The myth of detoxification

So if it is a diet that requires a high consumption of fruits and vegetables, why do nutritionists rule out its supposed benefits? For example, the “Detox” effect of certain plans invites you to eliminate gluten and lactose, however, there is no need to do so, since both offer essential nutrients to the body.

The College of Nutritionists, maintains that “there is no scientific study that says that people who do not have gluten or lactose intolerance, remove them from their diet,” expresses its president, Cecilia Sepúlveda, to BioBioChile.

Sepúlveda clarifies that people who eliminate gluten, without suffering from the autoimmune condition of celiac disease, could suffer a series of negative effects, the same occurs with people with lactose tolerance, who eliminate milk from their menu.

“ A person on a Detox diet will have an alteration in protein consumption. Some fats are good… Detox products can also cause a deficiency in vitamin D, Calcium, and Iron,” adds the expert to our media.

At the same time, studies carried out in the United States warn that some juices made from oxalate, a natural substance found in spinach and beets, are harmful to health. The CDC reported that green vegetables could cause kidney problems. In this regard, the nutritionist emphasizes that a frequent dose leads to possible health problems. “The Detox diet cannot be maintained over time, because it is restrictive and can generate side effects,” says Sepúlveda.

Is the Detox diet necessary?

The human body alone has a natural mechanism to get rid of toxins through the functions of the liver, kidneys, and digestive system. In essence, they repeat from the community of nutritionists, that the body is capable of self-regulation, as it releases harmful substances through bodily functions through sweat, urine, and excretion.

In this context, Miguel del Valle states that Detox diets may not be the perfect ally to promote weight loss.

“Our body does not need to enhance elimination. Therefore, resorting to this type of situation is stressful for our bodies. We are going to have digestive stress and a deficiency of micronutrients, which can lead to weakening the immune system and affecting concentration,” the academic tells La Radio.

Likewise, purifications based on fruits and vegetables have some usefulness by promoting drinking more water and consuming less added sugar and fats. However, if you follow a Detox diet, specialists recommend that it last about three days. If juice cleansing is constant, Beth Czerwony, a dietitian at the Center for Human Nutrition at the Cleveland Clinic, tells The New York Times, it would cause a lack of nutrients and an imbalance in electrolyte levels.

Despite the “miraculous” results of this true elixir, nutrition experts recommend that there is no easy way to lose weight, which is why they emphasize that a sustainable improvement over time is to leave processed foods and make sure to Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day.

In addition to continuing with a whole grain diet, replacing processed flour, and eating foods with fiber, such as nuts, beans, and apples.