The Master Cleanse or lemonade diet restricts your caloric intake to 650 calories a day. The diet is followed for ten days. I think you can see how everyone would lose weight if they only consumed 650 calories a day. The problem is that the diet is not sustainable long term, and like I’ve said previously, the best diet is the diet that you can maintain long term.
The diet participant foregoes solid food and drinks a beverage composed of lemon, cayenne pepper, maple syrup and water. They also drink saltwater and an herbal laxative tea.
Stanley Burroughs, the originator of this diet, advises mixing two teaspoonfuls of sea salt in a quart of lukewarm water. He does not recommend using iodized salt, since he feels that this will take away from the “cleanse”. The quart of water is ingested first thing in the morning, and the laxative tea is taken at bedtime. Mr. Burroughs recommends staying close to a bathroom as this is an elimination diet.
Other drinks like coffee and alcohol are frowned upon. Vitamins and mineral supplements are avoided. Smoking is also avoided. Mr. Burroughs emphasizes that this is a detoxifying diet.
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, body aches and feeling faint are symptoms that can accompany the diet. It shouldn’t come as a great surprise that lack of energy is also a side effect. There is no ingestion of protein, and the high carbohydrate ingestion will cause the dieter’s glucose to spike. Thus, this diet is not recommended for diabetics. And, honestly, I wouldn’t recommend this diet to anyone. Bad breath (ketotic breath), and a white film on the tongue are also common side effects.
There is an extreme loss of muscle mass which often makes the dieter look flabbier than they did prior to starting the diet. The dieter will lose weight, but the body will look worse than what it did originally.
I have spoken against starvation diets repeatedly, and this is definitely a starvation diet.
The allure of losing weight sometimes blinds us to common sense. This diet does not make sense.
I cannot emphasize enough that the ultimate answer to weight loss and maintenance is proper eating and regular exercise. Any drastic diet like the lemonade diet is doomed to failure.
Wishing you success in your weight loss and maintenance, Pablo.