Master Cleanse

Some people who want to lose weight adapt the Master Cleanse method, which was developed by Stanley Burroughs. Although initially published in the 1940s, the method was revived in 1976 in Burrough’s books, Healing for the Age of Enlightenment and The Master Cleanser. Master Cleanse employs a liquid fast, using lemonade and herbal tea. The Master Cleanse recipe consists of lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup.

What Is Master Cleanse?

The Master Cleanse is a liquid diet that calls for fasting for four days to as long as two weeks. This means that you avoid eating solid foods or taking supplements. You are only allowed to consume the Master Cleanse recipe for hydration. The plan requires drinking at least six servings of the prescribed lemonade daily. However, you also have the option to take a "salt water flush," which consists of two teaspoons salt in one quart of water, taken in the morning. At night, you may also have some herbal tea laxative, if needed. At the end of the fast, dieters may slowly go back to eating solid foods, beginning with vegetable soup, to be followed by eating fruits and vegetables.


For one serving of Master Cleanse lemonade, combine:

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup (grade-B, organic)
  • A pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 10 oz filtered water


Fasting for a few days will lead to a significant loss of calories, leading to weight loss. However, most of the weight you will lose is from water and muscle loss, not from fat. Prolonged fasting will also lead to hunger and other symptoms like headaches, dizziness, fatigue, constipation, nausea and diarrhea. There is no scientific evidence that the diet will get rid of toxins from your body, although the liver naturally performs detoxification function.

Side Effects of Master Cleanse

Going on the Master Cleanse diet can lead to weight loss, but it can also have some side effects, including:


Just drinking lemonade all day without taking any solid foods will surely lead to hunger pangs and food cravings. However, reducing hunger pangs by drinking more glasses of lemonade or giving in to temptation of eating solid foods will lead to more side effects, including weight gain.


Prolonged hunger can lead to nausea. This is caused by acid secretion into the stomach, which gives you a burning pain.


The master cleanse diet can make you feel tired and fatigued, with low energy. It takes lots of energy to detoxify the body, which can take a toll on your health.


Drinking a lot of fluids and not taking any solid foods may lead to an increase in bowel movements. You may experience watery bowel movements and a burning sensation as a result of excess acid production and intake of vitamin C.


People who are used to taking caffeine will be more likely to feel headaches while on the Master Cleanse diet. However, if you stop taking too much caffeine, headaches will be reduced.

Other Side Effects

Aside from the common side effects, Master Cleanse can result in other symptoms and ailments, such as:

  • Bad breath
  • Tooth ache
  • Mouth sores
  • White tongue
  • Increased mucus production
  • Indigestion
  • Stomach acidity
  • Stomach cramps
  • Body aches
  • Sweating
  • Increased earwax

Precautions of Taking Master Cleanse

Prepare Properly

Before starting the Master Cleanse diet, try to eat some vegetarian meals for a week and then take only raw foods for four days to avoid side effects.

Don’t Choose Work Time

The first few days of cleansing may be rough, especially after taking the salt water flush in the morning, so try to avoid working on these days.

Don’t Take Cleanse Too Long

It is not advisable to go on a fast too long because the body uses the protein stored in the body, which could lead to serious health problems.

Drink Enough Lemonade

Avoid becoming dehydrated by taking at least 64 ounces of lemonade daily, reducing the amount of cayenne if preferred.

Use Molasses for Diabetics

People with diabetes may use molasses instead of maple syrup during the cleanse.

Take Laxative

To cleanse the colon, take herbal senna tea, gentle laxative, or add a tablespoon of lemon to the salt solution.

Don’t Drink Caffeine

Avoid coffee or anything with caffeine because it can cause dehydration.

Don’t Skip the Ending Diet

After several days of fasting, follow the prescribed ending diet to allow your body to readjust to eating solid food.