Detox and Weight Loss
Five Facts You Must Know

What do scientific studies say about detox and weight loss? This article serves up some surprising answers.

Detox and Weight Loss Fact #1:
Distinguish between water loss, muscle loss and fat loss.

Detox diets that contain few calories or involve fasting will help you lose weight quickly, but the result is seldom sustainable. There are three reasons why this is the case.

First, when you have fasted or juice "cleansed" for a period of time, you are simply clearing out the normal contents of your digestive tract. This "icky stuff" does add to your weight, so of course you will weigh less!

Second, even though you are seeing 4 to 7 pounds of weight loss in just the first few days, you are simply losing water! Your body needs lots of water for optimum health. This water weight will simply return once you come off your diet.

Third, by eating few calories and fasting, you destroy the body's lean muscle mass, which is easier to burn than fat.

This has severe long term consequences. Your metabolism rate is largely determined by the amount of lean tissue you carry; i.e. the less muscle you have, the lower your metabolism. This explains why weight loss by starving often rebounds to greater weight gain after the diet.

Now comes the killer. According to a research published in American Psychologist, while people can lose 5 to 10% of their weight in the first few months of a detox diet, up to two thirds of people regain even more weight than they lost within 4 or 5 years.

Detox and Weight Loss Fact #2:
Permanent weight loss is not a quick fix. It happens gradually over time.

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the largest and most respected health, medical and exercise organization in the world, has established guidelines for healthy weight loss.

They recommend a weight loss goal of one to two pounds per week.

According to the National Weight Loss Registry, which tracks over 5,000 individuals who have lost significant amounts of weight and kept it off for long periods of time, permanent weight loss is achieved by healthy diet change and increased physical activities.

Further information about successful dieting can be found in Green Tea Diet - How To Be A Successful Loser

Detox and Weight Loss Fact #3:
Toxins are attracted to and stored in fat cells.

You may be surprised to learn that the fat cells in your body contain traces of pesticides and other pollutants. These compounds are known as organochlorines and include DDT, PCB’s and Dioxins.

To quote the US Fish and Wildlife Service (

"Organochlorines (OC's) are compounds that contain carbon, chlorine, and hydrogen. Their chlorine-carbon bonds are very strong which means that they do not break down easily.

They are highly insoluble in water, but are attracted to fats. Since they resist metabolism and are readily stored in fatty tissue of any animal ingesting them, they accumulate in animals in higher trophic levels.

This may occur when birds eat fish that have been exposed to the contaminant.

It may also affect humans if they drink milk of a dairy cow that has ingested the chemical because the chemical is excreted in its milk fat. This is called biological magnification."

Detox and Weight Loss Fact #4:
Fat loss may cause toxin release.

So what happens when you lose fat? Here is what Tom Venuto, author of the excellent Burn the Fat ebook (reviewed here!) says:

As for the release of these substances from your fat cells with weight loss, well, what can you say? Those are the consequences of environmental pollution and this is just one more reason to stay lean and eat clean and perhaps also, do your share to take care of our environment, if you are so inclined.

But I do believe for the most part, your body is quite well equipped to naturally detoxify most toxins that are ingested in "normal" (small) amounts or would likely be released slowly with normal rates of fat loss.

I don't think this is a reason NOT to lose weight, although some researchers say that obese men and women have to "weigh the health advantages of losing the weight with a potentially harmful effect."

Unfortunately, there is another twist: Some data suggests that if these chemicals are released into your system as you lose weight, they could hamper fat loss by decreasing thyroid (T3 conversion) or reducing thermogenesis [heat burning] during weight loss if an obese person had accumulated these chemicals in their fat cells.

Detox and Weight Loss Fact #5:
Detox tea may help reduce the side effects of toxin release.

There is no direct evidence that drinking tea can help neutralize the side effects of toxin release, but the evidence is encouraging.

A 2007 study conducted by National Cancer Institute found that green tea boosted the production of detoxifying enzymes by as much as 80 percent in some participants.

"They actually convert known carcinogens to non-toxic chemicals, and studies have shown a correlation between deficient expression of these enzymes and increased risk of developing some cancers," researcher Chow said.

Green Tea Detox Cleansing - EGCG Boosts Anti-Cancer Enzymes

Further information about selecting a herbal detox tea can be found at Cleansing Tea For Daily Herbal Detox.

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