ZocdocAnswersWhich detox diet works best?

Question

Which detox diet works best?

Which detox diet works the best? I'm a woman who just turned 32 and I've been feeling really toxic lately. I want to get rid of the toxins safely and quickly. Which foods should I cut out, and which should I include?

Answer

"Feeling really toxic" is a common symptom, although people will use different words to describe the symptoms. I encourage you to talk to your primary care doctor regarding the specifics of your complaints as there are both serious as well as easily treatable potential causes for these symptoms. In general, the feeling of "toxic" does not correlate with "toxins." There is no medical basis to a "detox diet." While it is true that one can have stomach infections, and that in fact some bacteria do produce toxins--these will cause severe gastrointestinal problems (nausea and vomiting and diarrhea and abdominal distress--generally known as food poisoning). As such, without these symptoms it is highly unlikely that you have toxins in your system. Thus, there is no basis for a detox diet. In fact, when studied, detox diet have been shown to be harmful. There are well documented cases of people giving themselves nutritional deficiencies and even starvation from these diets. I would not recommend a detox diet. Some people also try these "elimination diets" for weight loss--again this is not advisable as they are both ineffective and unsafe. In general, an appropriate diet follows the mantra "everything is ok in moderation." Your symptoms however should be addressed. There are many potential causes. I encourage you to talk to your primary doctor.

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