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Should You Try A 3 Day Diet Cleanse?
Cleansing diets are diets that are supposed to boost your energy, improve your health, and help you lose weight.
But do they work?
Yes. But, you have to be careful because there are “cleanses” out there that promise fast weight loss and recommend that you take extra supplements or that you fast.
A cleanse that works requires you to eat only whole foods that have high nutritional value and to avoid potentially inflammatory foods that are processed, sugary, or high-fat.
That’s why I recommend a 3 day cleanse.
Doing a cleanse for 3 days is a short enough time period for you to easily adhere to it while also being long enough so that you can actually feel the benefits.
What You Eat
On a healthy cleanse you want to avoid the consumption of alcohol, caffeine, sugar, refined flour, and excess sodium. But don’t do an all liquid diet. You want to eat lots of organic fruits and vegetables, low fat dairy products, whole grains and as much water as you can drink.
All liquid diets are almost impossible to maintain and any weight you might lose will be gained back almost immediately after the diet is over.
Here is a meal breakdown for the 3 day cleanse:
For breakfast you want to try a hot, whole grain cereal. My favorite is oatmeal but you can try brown rice, quionoa, or cous cous.
Lunch and Dinner
With lunch and dinner you want to eat and enjoy as many fibrous vegetables as you can. Spinach, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, artichokes, asparagus are excellent choices as they provide tons of vitamins and minerals alone with lots of fiber (and very little calories).
The fruits most often recommended are apples and berries. The pectin and fiber in apples and the high antioxidant in berries are why they are so popular for a cleanse.
You can eat meat if you want. I recommend that you skip meat altogether, but if you really want it, you can have small amounts of salmon or organic chicken breast. In the place of meat I’ll often have small servings of almonds or walnuts. They provide heart-healthy unsaturated fats.
What Will A Healthy Cleanse Do For You?
The 3 day cleanse will help restore your natural energy levels and help eliminate cravings. The extra fiber you’ll be ingesting will help “clean out” your digestive system which will make taking laxatives and supplements pretty unnecessary.
Also a 3 day cleanse is a great way to kick off a new eating routine. If you’re thinking about changing how you eat to lose weight, try starting out with a 3 day cleanse. This will get you off on the right foot. You can slowly introduce things like lean meats and fish after the first 3 days is up.
And I’m not talking about doing a fast. You shouldn’t be starving yourself. This will only make you constantly hungry, irritable, fatigued and generally uncomfortable.
What To Look Out For
If you normally don’t eat this much fiber you may experience some digestive upset. Also, if you often eat and drink foods that are high in caffeine and/or sugar you’ll probably experience some withdrawal symptoms (like caffeine headache).
Should You Exercise?
That’s up to you. If you were doing a “fasting” cleanse I wouldn’t recommend it because you’re not going to be consuming enough calories. But, if you follow a “whole foods cleanse” like discussed in this article, then yes, I think you would be perfectly okay exercising.
Don’t Be Fooled
Don’t fall for any claims that fasting or cleansing will allow you to lose a lot of weight fast. Even this 3 day cleanse discussed on this page won’t help you lose a lot of weight. You will, however, drop some weight. And you’ll feel fantastic.
Just don’t expect miracles (you shouldn’t expect miracles with ANY diet).
I do recommend that you try a 2 or 3 day cleanse every once in a while just to “balance” yourself. It’s refreshing and a nice break from a normal routine.
Dr. Sara Mahalko – Whole Food and Cleansing