General Diet Plans and Questions - Why is Master Cleanse considered bad and IF is considered good?




leacj
07-08-2011, 08:47 PM
I read some thread on here about the Master Cleanse and how it was not supported on this forum.

I have also read about how people are raving about Intermittent Fasting.

I understand that the Master Cleanse is basically a short term "quick fix" while IF is a long term lifestyle change.

I get that the Master Cleanse is very restirctive and therefore harder to follow and IF can be easier to incorporate into one's lifestyle.

But from what I have read on IF, you can fast for 3+ days before metabolism is affected....so, if you fast for a few days on the Master Cleanse, taking in the maple syrup/lemon juice for some calories...why are people so strongly against it?


The reason I ask is I had been playing around with IF before I went away for a weeks vacation and it seems quite doable for me, so I think I will give it a serious try for the next two months to see if it is something I can do long term.

But, after eating pretty poorly in the last week, I feel physically icky and have the psychological need to cleanse. So, I was thinking of following the Master Cleanse for 3 days (I know it calls for 10 days, but I realistically don't think I could do that) then eat clean(er) with IF.

In theory, I can not find fault with my thinking. If anybody has any further insight, I would appreciate the feedback!!


bargoo
07-08-2011, 09:50 PM
Your body is well able to cleanse itself. You do not need to buy into what some scam artist is telling you. I would think if anything would make a person sick it would be a combination of lemon juice and Maple Syrup. Maple Syrup is mostly sugar.

chubbycanuck
07-08-2011, 10:03 PM
Fasting puts your body into starvation mode and conserves any calories it does get. Maple syrup, while better than plain old sugar still mostly a "junk" food item. If you wanted to fast you would be much better to sweeten with a natural honey, at least that has some antioxidants in it.

Fasting is just bad for your health as far as I am concerned.


julie99s
07-08-2011, 10:48 PM
My thoughts on fasting... You wouldn't clean your car's engine by not putting fuel into it, right? That's basically what you're asking your body to do. To run on an empty tank. Maple syrup and lemon juice may have calories, but where do the rest of your nutrients come from? Pill form? You may as well eat veggies.

Nola Celeste
07-08-2011, 11:00 PM
I'm glad you recognize that it's a psychological feeling of needing to "cleanse" and not an actual, physical need. Our bodies don't need to be cleansed; like certain ovens and dishwashers, they're self-cleaning. ;)

If you're feeling the need for a cleanse, why would you do it by dumping empty, nutrient-poor calories into your body in the form of sugar? Try a "cleanse" that will actually do you some good. Some people eat nothing but fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins for a few days to feel renewed. Others go with raw fruits and veggies only. Others add whole grains into the mix. However you slice it, eating "clean" makes more sense than not eating.

You're right that drinking sugar-water for three days is not significantly more unhealthy than simply not eating for three days. But that's tantamount to saying that a sharp stick in the eye is better than a sharp stick in both eyes.

How 'bout just not sticking a stick in either eye? :D

Purrfect
07-08-2011, 11:06 PM
I read some thread on here about the Master Cleanse and how it was not supported on this forum.

I have also read about how people are raving about Intermittent Fasting.

I understand that the Master Cleanse is basically a short term "quick fix" while IF is a long term lifestyle change.

I get that the Master Cleanse is very restirctive and therefore harder to follow and IF can be easier to incorporate into one's lifestyle.

But from what I have read on IF, you can fast for 3+ days before metabolism is affected....so, if you fast for a few days on the Master Cleanse, taking in the maple syrup/lemon juice for some calories...why are people so strongly against it?


The reason I ask is I had been playing around with IF before I went away for a weeks vacation and it seems quite doable for me, so I think I will give it a serious try for the next two months to see if it is something I can do long term.

But, after eating pretty poorly in the last week, I feel physically icky and have the psychological need to cleanse. So, I was thinking of following the Master Cleanse for 3 days (I know it calls for 10 days, but I realistically don't think I could do that) then eat clean(er) with IF.

In theory, I can not find fault with my thinking. If anybody has any further insight, I would appreciate the feedback!!

I did the master cleanse for the full ten days. I think there are alot of good reasons to do it but WEIGHT LOSS is not one of them. You will lose weight but you will not maintain that kind of loss.
I cured myself of asthma by doing it, and it was worth it. I had that intent when I started.
As for fasting, it's a great thing to do for a day a week...give your organs a rest, nothing wrong with that and most integrative doctors support the idea and the practice.
You need to find what feels best and is most workable for you.

jillnicole03
07-08-2011, 11:19 PM
I use to work at a hospital and the surgeon I worked close with had patients do a cleanse very similar before certain surgeries, so I do not thing it's as bad as people say. I do not think you need to cleanse but I do think it can be helpful. For weight loss though it is usually not weight that stays off, so may be more effort than profit.

indiblue
07-09-2011, 03:17 AM
IF is not fasting. The name is unfortunately a bit of a misnomer. IF means you eat all your normal calories each day in a shorter time frame. You still intake all the nutrients, calories, vitamins, and minerals your body needs each day to grow and restore itself.

mandalinn82
07-09-2011, 04:31 AM
IF is not fasting. The name is unfortunately a bit of a misnomer. IF means you eat all your normal calories each day in a shorter time frame. You still intake all the nutrients, calories, vitamins, and minerals your body needs each day to grow and restore itself.

That's the difference, in this case, between a plan 3FC doesn't support (Mastercleanse, which includes a dangerously low number of calories to consume without a physician's supervision) and a plan 3FC does (IF, which is essentially about restricting the timeframe within what eats to a smaller window, not about restricting calories to extremely low levels).

mayness
07-09-2011, 10:08 AM
You still intake all the nutrients, calories, vitamins, and minerals your body needs each day to grow and restore itself.

Quoted for emphasis. :)

BUT I don't see anything wrong with your plan - going without food for 3 days for psychological reasons is unlikely to do any physical harm. You'll probably drop a few pounds and then gain them right back, so be mentally prepared for that.

bargoo
07-09-2011, 10:23 AM
Beyonce is one of the celebrities that did the Master Cleanse, she said as soon as she stopped she regained all she lost almost instantly.

Lovely
07-09-2011, 11:45 AM
IF is not fasting. The name is unfortunately a bit of a misnomer. IF means you eat all your normal calories each day in a shorter time frame. You still intake all the nutrients, calories, vitamins, and minerals your body needs each day to grow and restore itself.

Just QFT!

leacj
07-09-2011, 12:14 PM
Thanks for all of the replies. I find it very interesting to get other peoples perspective on different diet/nutrition.

I know that for every diet out there, there is some study that proves how great it is while another will blow it's whole theory out of the water.

So, while the pro Master Cleanse group may believe that the maple syrup/lemon/cayenne concoction has lots of vitamins and provides a sustainable amount of calories while detoxing the system/liver those against believe that it is basically a starvation diet with a little bit of empty calorie sugar water to keep you going.

But, what the two have in common are that both maintain that fasting - going for a set period of time without food - can be benficial to one's health (ie. ajcn.org/content/86/1/7.full --- sorry can't post links yet)

Personally, I still like the idea (purely psychological as it may be) of cleaning out my system and starting fresh, but agree that trying to do so while drinking a bunch of maple sugar water sounds counterproductive.

What I think I will do then is do a day or two of just raw fruits/veggies, followed by a day (maybe two) of only lemon water and green tea and then work my way slowly back up with a day or two of raw fruit/veggies, then some protein, etc...and end up doing IF (and taking in a whole days amount of calories/nutrition).

I know any weight I may lose during this time will probably be water weight that is easily regained and my system may not really be "emptied" but, even though I knew my vacation would throw me off course, I really feel the need to start fresh and feel good about this plan!

Thanks again!!

kaplods
07-09-2011, 03:39 PM
Thanks for all of the replies. I find it very interesting to get other peoples perspective on different diet/nutrition.

I know that for every diet out there, there is some study that proves how great it is while another will blow it's whole theory out of the water.
!


This isn't exactly true. If you know how to interpret research you are much better able to interpret study results. You would understand that a study can only give you indirect evidence. One study is never used by scientists to prove anything. Research doesn't start to "prove" anything until there is a large body of evidence (that is many similar studies finding similar results).

People can twist the information to say it proves what they want it to, but they're "breaking rules" to do it (though if they haven't taken classes in research methodology, logic or statistics they may not know it).

There's a lot more research against "cleanses" than there are for it. It's not even a close tie. Dozens (if not hundreds) of studies against cleansing, and none for it than I've seen (not in any reputable health journals anyway, those that require strict research guidelines).

You can choose to believe there's a benefit, but the benefit will be only psychological. And sometimes the psychological benefits can mask physical harm. For example, the body releases endorphins (natural pain killers) in response to damage, which can create a euphoric feeling. People can become addicted to the euphoria, and ignore the signs of damage. To them the euphoria proves it is beneficial (but it masks the physical damage).

Three days of fasting a few times a year isn't likely to do any permanent damage, but if you become hooked on the "highs" provided by the endorphins and by the rush of seeing rapid weight loss (even if it's temporary) that's where you can do longer term damage.

somethingnew912
07-10-2011, 01:28 AM
I am relatively new here, so I hope I'm not breaking a rule by disagreeing with the 3FC stance that the Master Cleanse is bad. The cleanse has been around for more than 50 years, so I hate to hear it referred to as a "fad" because people heard about Beyonce doing it. It has a history and a large group of followers.

I have done the the Master Cleanse and while I wont do it again soon (mostly because the smell of maple syrup makes me gag now lol), I do feel that it was beneficial to my health. I did it for 14 days, lost 16lbs, and did not immediately gain back the weight (As the weight loss struggle goes, it came back over time as my eating habits worsened). At the time I did it, I was a vegetarian and living a healthy lifestyle. I had already lost some weight and I started reading about fasting and the benefits of allowing the body to "detox". My grandmother had actually been doing it for years and she highly recommended it when I told her I was thinking about doing it. The Master Cleanse is not meant to be used as a diet. You are taking in about 800-1200 calories a day depending on how much of the syrup mixture you take in, so of course you are going to lose weight. However, when I hear people talk about it as a "diet" it angers me because these people are looking for a quick fix and are perpetuating the bad reputation that The Master Cleanse has gotten.

So, let me say a little bit about my experience with the cleanse. I felt like crap for the first couple of days. I felt weak, I had a headache (caffeine withdrawal is horrible), and I was cranky. However by day 3, I started to feel better, lighter, happier. My eyes looked brighter, my skin started clearing, and I stopped craving all of the bad foods that had been plaguing me.

The cleanse involves some actual "cleansing" involving salt water and laxative tea. This part is vital to getting the effect and is what differentiates it from a simple fast. The point of the cleanse is to give your body a chance to rid itself of all of the toxins that we put in it everyday. If you think about it, with the increase of pesticides, growth hormones, and chemicals we put into our bodies everyday, food is processed differently than it was 100 years ago...or even 50 years ago. Yes, our bodies can "cleanse" themselves, but it is silly to think that the increase in these toxins has not had an effect on us. The cleanse clears out the colon and intestines while giving your body a chance to naturally cleanse itself without taking in any other chemicals from food.

I can only speak from personal experience, but I do believe that it worked well for me in the sense that it accomplished what I set out to accomplish. I felt better and cleaner and my body showed signs of it as well. Another thing it taught me is how strong I am psychologically. The fact that I could not eat for half a month proved to me that I have the power over food, not the other way around. This was a big turning point for me and is still a powerful memory when I am struggling with my eating.

Sorry I went on so long, I just had to share my experience.

Brown
07-10-2011, 05:03 AM
I am relatively new here, so I hope I'm not breaking a rule by disagreeing with the 3FC stance that the Master Cleanse is bad. The cleanse has been around for more than 50 years, so I hate to hear it referred to as a "fad" because people heard about Beyonce doing it. It has a history and a large group of followers.

I have done the the Master Cleanse and while I wont do it again soon (mostly because the smell of maple syrup makes me gag now lol), I do feel that it was beneficial to my health. I did it for 14 days, lost 16lbs, and did not immediately gain back the weight (As the weight loss struggle goes, it came back over time as my eating habits worsened). At the time I did it, I was a vegetarian and living a healthy lifestyle. I had already lost some weight and I started reading about fasting and the benefits of allowing the body to "detox". My grandmother had actually been doing it for years and she highly recommended it when I told her I was thinking about doing it. The Master Cleanse is not meant to be used as a diet. You are taking in about 800-1200 calories a day depending on how much of the syrup mixture you take in, so of course you are going to lose weight. However, when I hear people talk about it as a "diet" it angers me because these people are looking for a quick fix and are perpetuating the bad reputation that The Master Cleanse has gotten.

So, let me say a little bit about my experience with the cleanse. I felt like crap for the first couple of days. I felt weak, I had a headache (caffeine withdrawal is horrible), and I was cranky. However by day 3, I started to feel better, lighter, happier. My eyes looked brighter, my skin started clearing, and I stopped craving all of the bad foods that had been plaguing me.

The cleanse involves some actual "cleansing" involving salt water and laxative tea. This part is vital to getting the effect and is what differentiates it from a simple fast. The point of the cleanse is to give your body a chance to rid itself of all of the toxins that we put in it everyday. If you think about it, with the increase of pesticides, growth hormones, and chemicals we put into our bodies everyday, food is processed differently than it was 100 years ago...or even 50 years ago. Yes, our bodies can "cleanse" themselves, but it is silly to think that the increase in these toxins has not had an effect on us. The cleanse clears out the colon and intestines while giving your body a chance to naturally cleanse itself without taking in any other chemicals from food.

I can only speak from personal experience, but I do believe that it worked well for me in the sense that it accomplished what I set out to accomplish. I felt better and cleaner and my body showed signs of it as well. Another thing it taught me is how strong I am psychologically. The fact that I could not eat for half a month proved to me that I have the power over food, not the other way around. This was a big turning point for me and is still a powerful memory when I am struggling with my eating.

Sorry I went on so long, I just had to share my experience.
I second your experience, and I also reiterate the myth that it's "dangerously low in calories", when you are getting 1,200 if you go by the book.

indiblue
07-10-2011, 09:09 AM
But, what the two have in common are that both maintain that fasting - going for a set period of time without food - can be benficial to one's health

There is a big difference between not eating for 12-23 hours and then eating all the calories and nutrients your body demands each day (IF) versus only eating very few calories and not the complete nutrients your body needs for 10 days (Master Cleanse).

IF, unlike the Master Cleanse, does NOT call for a restriction of calories. In the 10 days a person participating in a MC would intake a few hundred calories a day from a few specific, non-nutrient-dense sources, an IF individual is to eat the proper number of calories from a wide range of macronutrient sources (fat/protein/carbs from dairy/poultry/seafood/vegetables/grains/fruits, etc).

Looking at IF as a "fast" is a misnomer. The amount of calories/nutrients consumed is the same as a non-IF-er.

I do not know enough about MC to say whether it is good or bad. But eating only lemon, salt, and sugar for 10 days is completely different from eating the same type and amount of food you usually each day but in a restricted time period during that day.

foodmasochist
07-10-2011, 04:25 PM
i don't know anything about master cleanse, but i have been learning & trying to begin practicing IF. i feel this a more intuitive way of eating for me-i feel like this is something i can live with and feel good about combined with my veganism. So far, i have good experiences with it. -fm

Nola Celeste
07-10-2011, 11:02 PM
I tend to look at ridding our bodies of nameless "toxins" via drinking a miracle elixir--right now it's the MC juice with maple syrup and lemons, but when I was in junior high, it was all about the honey/vinegar "cleanse"--as about as scientific a notion as the four humors of medieval medicine and astrology.

"Cleansing" is unlikely to do serious harm (well, unless you're one of those people who dies of sepsis from a colonic irrigation that went bad as you can read about at QuackWatch (http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/gastro.html), a site that everyone who has a body should read). It's also unlikely to do you any physical good, although psychologically, some people do feel that "cleansing" has a benefit.

If something can't hurt and might help, awesome. But what about something that can't help and might hurt? People on this site can't and shouldn't try to give medical advice, and I'm certainly not trying to do that; I'm no doctor. But there are a lot of doctors who do give medical advice at sites like the Mayo Clinic (http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/detox-diets/AN01334) web site, WebMD (http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/detox-diets-purging-myths), reputable newspapers (http://www.guardian.co.uk/befit/story/0,,1379231,00.html), and the aforementioned QuackWatch.

If pretty much all of them are advising against "cleansing" these spurious toxins from our bodies (and just what are these toxins supposed to be, anyway? I haven't been drinking acidic wine from lead-lined vessels like the Romans did and I don't typically bathe in effluent from a Superfund site), they might be onto something and maybe we should stop worrying about toxins and cleanses.

kaplods
07-10-2011, 11:44 PM
What are these mysterious toxins that are supposedly removed?

There's been a lot of research trying to find evidence of toxin removal, and researchers have never found any difference between the cleansers and the control group. They've tested for heavy metals, pollutants, pesticides, and waste products that are removed by the kidneys and liver, and they've looked for other benefits as well, and in every case (but one), no difference whatsoever.

The only benefit that has ever been found has been (in the case of cleanses that result in diarrhea) is the release of endorphins. Ironically which were being produced in response to the damage being done by the diarrhea (endorphins are the natural pain-killers the body produces in response to injury).

This isn't necessarily a good or even harmless thing, because endorphins can actually mask physical damage. You feel great, because of the natural pain killers coursing through your system, not because any "toxins" were removed.