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To Cleanse, or Not To Lemonade Cleanse: A Very Serious Question

Just about all homeopathic and naturopathic therapies, even those considered most controversial, meet the basic Hippocratic requirement: "Do no harm." And, as strictly controlled and well-documented research catches up with common practice, most all-natural cleanses and therapies turn-out to have solid bases in bio-chemistry. Of course, debate rages between traditional and alternative practitioners, but a little historical reflection strongly suggests the two factions slowly but surely are converging. Especially in cancer therapy, traditional treatments and naturopathy seem to complement one another and produce greater rates of remission and cure.

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Consequently, as you consider the risks and rewards of traditional "lemonade" cleansing or any of its common variants, you need not worry about your safety. Some conditions, however, militate against or strictly prohibit any kind of detoxification diet; some require you carefully calculate the pros and cons before you commit to a detox program; and some health conditions dictate a good old-fashioned lemonade cleansing will provide just what the doctor ordered.

Do Not Even Think About It If...

o You are pregnant or breastfeeding: You and your baby need all the nutrients you can take in. Although you definitely should increase your consumption of fruits, vegetables, fiber, and non-fat dairy products, you absolutely should not begin any kind of detox regimen. You do not want to deprive your system or the baby's of any vital nutrients, and you do not want to stress your organs and systems, because pregnancy and post-partum recovery already stress them almost to their limits. Definitely take pre-natal vitamin supplements and follow a reasonable program of daily exercise. If you already run, swim, walk, dance, or do strength training, neither pregnancy nor breastfeeding gives you any good reason to stop, but you may want to moderate your program as get closer to your delivery date.

o You have diabetes, advanced HIV, or post-menopausal osteoporosis: These conditions require substantial modification of your diet, so that you strengthen your immune system as you reduce simple sugars and increase vital minerals. But no cleansing diet will provide essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and nutrients you need. Some herbal teas will help cleanse your system without any negative side effects, but consult with your primary care physician before you start drinking too much green tea. Many of the elements in a detox diet help you gain strength-culture-rich yogurts, heavy concentrations of fruits and vegetables, and radical reduction of fatty, chemically-enhanced meats help you maintain healthy weight without compromising or stressing your system. Under no circumstances, however, should you attempt a more extreme cleansing.

Seriously Consider It If...

o You are quitting smoking and alcohol: Experts claim withdrawal from nicotine and alcohol number among the most difficult challenges a human being can face; recovering addicts claim kicking heroin and meth seems easy by comparison with giving-up smoking and drinking. They all agree the first seventy-two hours make or break your withdrawal, because all of your drug-addicted synapses will scream out for chemicals on which they depend. A well-managed detox diet will accelerate your body's natural process of purging nicotine and alcohol, restoring dead and compromised cells with brand new, healthy cells that do not depend on addictive chemicals.

o You are between twenty and fifty pounds over your ideal weight: If you teeter at about twenty pounds above your ideal weight, a low-fat, low-sugar, high antioxidant diet in concert with hydration and exercise will facilitate steady weight-loss without physical or psychological stress and side-effects. In fact, following a fundamentally naturopathic regime-lots of fruits and vegetables, no meats or processed foods-will contribute to significant weight-loss even without exercise. Exercise, however, remains key to optimal health; and a proper combination of cardio-vascular exercise and strength training will help burn excess calories and build muscles, so that you look and feel better almost immediately.

Just Do It

o You are starting training for an athletic event: As you progress in your training for any athletic event, you ought to work with a nutritionist, making sure you get all the proteins and minerals hard training depletes; you especially must monitor your electrolyte balance, making sure you remain not only properly hydrated but also chemically balanced. Sodium and phosphorus can ravage your body if you do not properly hydrate; but popular electrolyte replacement beverages and "enriched" waters often contain excess sugars and empty calories, subverting your progress. You may decide to supplement a healthy diet with regular doses of the lemonade cleanse to maintain your equilibrium and keep your workouts on-pace.

Lemon Cleanse