If you’ve been contemplating trying the Master Cleanse there are a few things you should keep in mind before taking the plunge. It’s been around for quite some time, and it has a feels like equal parts internet rumor and a legit cleanse. Much of it largely depends on making up your own mind on whether it’s something that will do your body good, so we’ve compiled a list of tidbits and facts to mull over before starting.
1. There’s nothing really “masterful” about it.
While it may have a powerful name, there’s really not much to this cleanse that would suggest it’s mastering anything in regards to your body. The core of the cleanse is as simple as drinking a lemon concoction and fasting for a length of time. But to hear people talk about it you’d think they’d just found the Fountain of Youth or something equally miraculous. It’s best not to get your hopes and expectations sky high before trying this, and keep a level head throughout the process.
2. There’s a book on it.
While it may not seem like the Master Cleanse is official, it actually stems from a book that was written over 50 years ago. There have been revisions and additional books have been published more recently by various authors. The cleanse has also been expanded and explored further so you have more insight into what is going on with your body while you’re on it, and how to make sure you get the best results for your efforts. Here is the most comprehensive book on the Master Cleanse that we’ve found.
3. It involves fasting.
This cleanse relies heavily on you not eating anything while on it, and only using the lemon mix as your source of sustenance. Stopping the influx of food is designed to give your digestive system a rest, and drinking the lemon with the cayenne pepper is supposed to help stimulate your body into purging out toxins and other built-up waste. The maple syrup is said to give your body enough nourishment, but many health experts say that this is not nearly enough to sustain the human body for days at a time.
4. You should buy premium ingredients.
Since you’re only going to be consuming a limited number of ingredients, it’s important to make sure that you are getting nothing but the best, right down to organic lemons for the lemon juice. Unless you have a premium filtration system, you should also consider buying the water you’ll be using for the lemonade. You want to make sure that your body doesn’t have to contend with any added containments or chemicals, so be very selective about what you use while on it.
5. There’s not a ton of support from the medical community.
There aren’t many doctors that get behind this cleanse as a legitimate way to detox the body or cleanse it of any impurities. The overall feeling regarding fasting as a way to lose weight is that it can be dangerous when stretched out to several days as is recommended by the official version of the cleanse. In fact, most medical experts recommend against doing this cleanse, and point out many potentially risky factors involved.
6. It’s often written off as a fad diet.
If you’re looking for a diet that you can adopt as your lifestyle for the long term, this isn’t it. What many people do is use it as a wedge between their old self and the one they’d like to create. Many times when you begin a diet old habits and cravings can keep you from maintaining it. By cleansing the body, breaking your ties with food, and helping to get old body waste out of your system, it can be a way to prepare yourself for a new diet plan and a new way of living.
7. It takes a leap of faith.
Since there’s no large body of scientific evidence that this cleanse works, you have to feel it in your gut and resonate with it, and pretty much have faith that you’re doing a good thing for your body. Basically, you just have to try it because there are pretty much an equal number of people saying that it works for them, and others that say it didn’t. There are also those that have never tried it, but are making calculations as to the effect it is having on your body.
8. You should gradually go on and come off of it.
Not properly starting and stopping the Master Cleanse is the biggest problem most people have. It’s important to not approach this “cold” by just stopping eating and starting an influx of lemonade. Spend time acclimating your body to the idea of what’s to come. You also don’t want to just stop the cleanse and jump right back into eating solid foods like sandwiches and cheeseburgers.
9. It doesn’t involve an exercise regimen.
You aren’t required to do any specific exercises on this cleanse, which makes it attractive to those that either don’t want to, or can’t perform cardio or weight lifting activities. You won’t be getting enough calories to warrant doing anything extra while on it, and you should practice conserving your energy even though you might feel more energetic than you normally do. You can practice meditating or do some very light yoga to help keep the body in motion.
10. It can be customized to your desired length of time.
Even though the recommended time to be on the cleanse is ten days, it is not a hard and fast requirement. You can play with this number as you see fit, and as your confidence grows you can increase the number of days that you go on it, eventually building up to ten. It’s important to always feel good about what you’re doing, so don’t push yourself past your limits and take this process slowly and deliberately.
11. You can buy pre-made kits if you can’t buy the ingredients.
If you are in a remote location or don’t feel like assembling your own ingredients, you can buy pre-packaged kits that include everything you’ll need, from the water to the lemon juice and syrup, to the laxative sea and salt for the salt water flush. These are usually moderately priced, and are just a little more expensive than if you got them all yourself.
12. There’s no hidden ulterior motive.
Some diets and cleanses are merely the front end, while on the back end they’re hoping to get you to buy their additional books, tapes, pre-packaged foods, and specialty items. One refreshing feature of the Master Cleanse is that it is what it is, and there isn’t a lot of proprietary goods that are under lock and key. You can go and buy all of the items you’ll need for it from your local grocery store, and start on it right away without being forced to by a particular supplement.
13. Celebrities use it.
This may or may not sway your decision, based on your feelings towards celebrities. The most recent attention the cleanse got was from Beyonce when she used it to slim down for Dreamgirls. Many times celebrities can put a diet or detox program on the map by just mentioning it to the tabloids. This will either get you more excited about trying it, or turn you off of the idea since it’s become something of a fad.
Should You or Shouldn’t You?
In the end, you’ll have to make up your own mind whether to give this a go. As long as you avoid the major pitfalls that can lead to lousy results it seems to be a reliable way to clean out your digestive system. At the same time there are other routes to the same goal without going to such extremes. Be sure to consult with your doctor before starting this or any other cleansing program. They’ll have an understanding of your medical history and may be able to advise you on better options.
Master Cleanse FAQ
Can the Master Cleanse get rid of candida?
Not likely. There are specific cleanses for candida and the Master Cleanse does not resemble them in any way. You’ll still be taking in sugar with the maple syrup that is in the lemonade mix, and the cayenne pepper is not a strong enough agent to kill off candida. If you are concerned about your candida levels and are looking to do a candida cleanse, it’s best to find a program that is especially for candida.
Does the Master Cleanse clean your liver?
Your liver is attempting to cleanse and repair itself at all times. If you stop doing things that are detrimental to your liver, it gives it a chance to heal and rid itself of impurities. The Master Cleanse gives the liver a break from items like alcohol, caffeine, processed sugars, processed foods, and artificial ingredients. At the same time it’s getting citric acid from the lemon juice, and thermogenic cayenne spices. These can act as a way to help the liver do its thing and be more effective. Whether you need to go to such extremes and stay on a cleanse for so many days is debatable.
Is the Master Cleanse a fad diet?
The first thing to remember is that it’s not a diet. It’s a cleanse, so it can’t really be thought of as a fad diet because no one is claiming that this should be looked at as a way to alter your intake of foods in order to lose weight. It can be considered a fad because there are some big name celebrities that have been on it and gotten results. It can also be considered a fad because it’s using unorthodox and unusual means to get your body to respond.
How Does the Master Cleanse lemonade work?
The lemonade is really the crux to the whole cleanse. It’s a simple enough concoction, just water, lemon juice, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper. The lemon juice is meant to have a cleansing effect. The syrup is there to sustain you since you won’t be eating any food, and the cayenne pepper is said to be able to stimulate your internal organs so that they can function at more optimal levels. All combined, these are supposed to cause the magic to happen, leading to the positive feedback the cleanse gets.
Can you do the Master Cleanse for X days?
One of the biggest questions regarding the cleanse is whether it’s OK to do it for a specific amount of days, ranging anywhere from one to 40 or more. The official book that started it all says that you can do it for up to 40 days, and ten is recommended as the norm. But ten days can seem like an eternity when you’re not eating any food, and there’s no pressing reason why you couldn’t start off with any number that sounds reasonable to you, working your way up to the ten days over a series of cleanses.
Does the Master Cleanse get rid of acne?
The Master Cleanse is billed as being able to rid you of many ills, acne being one of them. The idea is that since you are cleansing the body as a whole all problems should improve, especially those related to the skin. But we’d recommend that you don’t set your expectations too high on this one, and don’t take the cleanse just to see if your acne improves.
Does the Master Cleanse get rid of belly fat?
You might notice that your belly doesn’t protrude as much as it used to after you’ve completed several days of the cleanse and have been using the laxative tea regularly. This is a natural byproduct of emptying out the digestive system. Many think they have lost belly fat when this happens, but that is not necessarily the case.
Does the Master Cleanse get rid of cellulite?
There is no evidence that the Master Cleanse is effective at eliminating cellulite. Some cleanses claim that they have a direct effect on cellulite, but there is no particular reason why this would work for it. The symptoms and results are similar to what you get on a starvation diet, and that has not been shown to reduce cellulite.
Can you do the Master Cleanse without cayenne pepper?
The cayenne pepper is presented as a major reason for why the cleanse works. Since there are very few components to this cleanse, it’s important to make sure to include all of the ingredients and follow it to the letter. You’d likely get fewer results without the pepper.
How much Does the Master Cleanse cost?
The nice thing about the Master Cleanse is that it’s not really for sale. You can buy books for it, but there’s nothing to buy except for the ingredients which can be had for a modest price at your local supermarket. Keep in mind that you won’t be eating regular food while you’re on it, so it will likely end up saving you money by not having to feed yourself for ten days.
Can you do the Master Cleanse without syrup?
The syrup is what is claimed as giving you the nutrients you need to sustain yourself over the ten day period. You wouldn’t want to take that out or you’re basically on a total starvation diet and not getting anything at all in the way of calories.
Is the Master Cleanse a hoax?
No, it’s not a hoax and was presented as a bona fide way to cleanse the body back in the 40’s. The author of the book gave his theory as to why the cleanse would work, and how it would work, and it was meant to be taken seriously. In current times people are using it in a gimmicky sort of way to fit into wedding dresses or prepare for movie roles, and the instructions have been passed around as email spam, which is why it sounds like a made up hoax.
Is the Master Cleanse hard to do?
Some say that it is difficult to do, while others say it’s hard at first and then gets easier. It really depends largely on the individual and how much experience they have with fasting, and detoxing, and cleanses, and their belief level on whether it will be easy for them or not.
Does the Master Cleanse give you diarrhea?
Loose stools are part of the program because you’re taking a laxative tea but not introducing food to the body on a daily basis. This means you will have a bowel movement but there won’t be much inside you to move, which can lead to both diarrhea, and feelings of constipation.
Does the Master Cleanse give you energy?
One of the side effects of not eating is an initial surge of energy. This is because you’re not being weighed down by food, and you’re getting sugar from the maple syrup in the lemonade. Even though you may feel more energetic, it’s important to conserve that energy since you’re not getting enough calories each day and you’ll need that energy to get through your day.
Will the Master Cleanse get rid of parasites?
There is no evidence that the Master Cleanse gets rid of parasites, as there are only two components that might be able to, the lemon juice and the cayenne pepper. Most parasites can handle these two ingredients without much trouble. You should look for cleanses that are targeting parasites in order to make sure that you are covering a broad range of organisms and getting them all out while establishing good intestinal bacteria.
Is the Master Cleanse safe for kids?
The Master Cleanse is not recommended for children.
Does the Master Cleanse give you headaches?
One of the reported symptoms of the Master Cleanse is headaches. This is to be expected as you’ll be tampering greatly with the amount of food you’re eating, or not eating in this case. The lemonade is supposed to help with these sort of symptoms, so make sure that you are consuming enough of it at the suggested times.
Does the Master Cleanse mess up your metabolism?
If you conduct the cleanse the right way, gradually entering and exiting it, there shouldn’t be any harm done to your metabolism. It should slow while you’re on the cleanse, because you’re basically fasting. But once you resume to eating whole foods again it will speed back up. It’s not as if your metabolism gets wrecked permanently by temporary changes to your diet.
Does the Master Cleanse taste good?
The combination of the lemon juice and maple syrup basically results in a lemonade flavor. It’s the addition of the cayenne pepper that will cause some people to say that it doesn’t taste good, and others to say that it does. The pepper provides more of a spicy aftertaste when used in the recommended amounts. It’s not like you have to plug your nose to get it down. It’s more of a sweet and spicy mix that stings the throat a bit at the end.
Is the Master Cleanse safe while pregnant or breastfeeding?
The Master Cleanse is not recommended during these times, as your baby needs to be nourished both during and after pregnancy. Once you are finished breastfeeding you might consider the cleanse to help with getting rid of the baby weight.
Is the Master Cleanse starving yourself?
You are basically starving yourself, and the syrup is designed to help curb the symptoms that usually accompany a starvation diet.
Will the Master Cleanse help me quit smoking?
Not likely. The Master Cleanse is not targeted towards detoxing nicotine from the body. There are specific nicotine cleanses that you can do in order to have a higher chance at successfully eradicating it from your system.
Will the Master Cleanse work if i eat?
No. The major cause of all the effects of the cleanse is that you’re not eating regular food. Drinking lemonade on top of eating a regular diet is not going to get you the sort of benefits that not eating would.
Is the Master Cleanse supposed to be spicy?
The lemonade is spicy thanks to the cayenne pepper. This can be adjusted to taste, but try to use the recommended amount of cayenne pepper, as this is a big part of why the author says it works.
What is the Master Cleanse diet recipe?
One serving: 10 ounces filtered water, one tenth of a tsp. of cayenne pepper, 2 tbsps of organic grade B maple syrup, 2 tbsps organic lemon juice. Mix it all up and drink it down. You can make enough to get you through the day, but it’s not recommended to make multiple days in a row all in one batch.
When does the Master Cleanse start working?
On the first day of drinking only the lemonade and not eating any food, most people say that they feel lighter and have more energy. This is because you’ve stopped the flow of food into your body, so you really are now emptier, and your body has been focusing on the food you’ve already eaten, and getting that out of your system.