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The Master Cleanse Diet, sometimes also called the Maple Syrup Diet or The Lemonade Diet, is an old diet that has recently come back into fashion in a big way. Celebrities like Beyonce Knowles have credited the diet for their rapid weight loss. She openly says not to do this but admits that she used it to lose 20 pounds in 10 days during the filming of Dreamgirls.
Likewise, scores of non-famous people use the diet as a regular maintenance cleanse to purge impurities from the body.
History of the Diet
The Master Cleanse Diet was originally written in 1976 by Stanley Burroughs, though he had been recommending it to people since the 1940s. It was developed as a way to cleanse toxins from the body rather than a weight-loss method. However, most people who do the cleanse find they lose a fair amount of weight as those impurities are lifted from the body.
Burroughs used the cleanse to treat ulcers and other intestinal problems. Doing the cleanse also tends to clear up skin problems, since acne is thought to be the body’s way of trying to purge unwanted substances.
The diet was revived in 2004 when Burroughs devotee Peter Glickman published a book ‘’Lose Weight, Have More Energy and Be Happier in 10 Days,’’ which outlines the steps of the Master Cleanse Diet, possible problems people might have and tons of real-life experiences from people who have completed the diet.
Components of the Master Cleanse Diet
The Master Cleanse Diet is a fast during which no solid food is consumed. Instead, people on the cleanse drink purified water spiked with lemon juice, Grade B maple syrup and cayenne pepper. A laxative tea or saltwater drink may also be consumed to help get things moving once the impurities start releasing from the body.
The basic recipe for the Master Cleanse Diet is as follows:
two tablespoons lemon or lime juice, preferably fresh-squeezed from organic citrus (about half a lemon or lime)
two tablespoons genuine Grade B maple syrup (not maple flavored syrup)
a pinch of cayenne pepper or to taste
eight ounces of water (many people recommend purified or filtered water) cold or at room temperature.
Mix all of the ingredients and drink.
Burroughs recommends drinking between six to 12 glasses daily during the course of the cleanse. No food should be consumed, just drink whenever you are hungry.
Before bedtime and first thing in the morning, you can either drink a cup of herbal laxative tea or do what’s referred to as “salt water bathing.”
Mix two teaspoons of sea salt, not table salt, with a quart of water and drink morning and evening. This is designed to help flush impurities from the body.
What the Diet is Like
The Master Cleanse Diet is gentle and will not mess up your routine too much, but some people who have done it report it’s a good idea to stay close to a bathroom.
It’s possible that you will feel sick or dizzy on the diet as your body focuses its attention on getting rid of the bad things that are in your body.
Some people call this sort of illness a healing crisis; it is how you know your body is healing but it’s not so fun to get through. You may also feel weak while on the diet because you’re not eating anything.
Burroughs spends a long time in his book talking about how the maple syrup and lemon juice provide sufficient nutrition for you to function for up to 40 days, though most people who do the Master Cleanse Diet only use it for 10 to 14 days. He even says that you shouldn’t take vitamin or mineral supplements while on the plan, though many companies sell supplements marketed to be taken while on the cleanse.
Once you’ve done the cleanse for as long as you like, you need to be careful about returning to solid foods. Remember that your body is no longer used to eating. Burroughs recommends that people only drink orange juice the first two days off the cleanse, then eat only raw fruits and vegetables on the third day. Vegetable soup is also recommended to get the body used to food again.
Using the Master Cleanse Diet
The Master Cleanse Diet is designed to be a short-term cleanse. While it was originally intended to heal the body from the inside out, it also helps people to lose weight quickly, as much as a pound or two a day.
It is not an easy way to lose weight. It is likely you will feel deprived because you aren’t eating solid food. You may feel you need to take time off from work to complete the cleanse because of the effects of cleansing or just feeling run down or sick while doing it.
Many people use the Master Cleanse Diet to clean out their bodies three or four times a year. It is an effective, if extreme, way to achieve balance within the body and lose weight quickly.