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Thinking of a detox diet? Don't bother say dieticians

publication date: Jan 1, 2009

Dietitian and spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association (BDA), Dr Frankie Phillips says: “The whole idea of detox is nonsense. The body is a well-developed system that has its own built-in mechanisms to detoxify and remove waste from top to toe.

"Skin, the gut and liver and kidneys are all chemically-controlled powerhouses that respond to signals to remove waste products – typically detoxifying the body constantly.

"There are no pills or specific drinks, patches or lotions that can do a magic job. If you have over-indulged on alcohol, for example, the liver works hard to break down the alcohol into products it can remove. Being well-hydrated is a sensible strategy, but as we have tragically seen recently, drinking copious amounts of water can be as dangerous as not drinking enough.

"It sounds predicable, but for the vast majority of people, a sensible diet and regular physical activity really are the only ways to properly protect your health for the year ahead.”

The BDA’s top five New Year diet resolution tips are:

  1. Drink sensibly -  six to eight glasses of fluid, or about 1.5 - 2 litres per day is enough for most people
  2. Keep a diet diary for a week – be honest and record everything, then have a look at the areas where you can make changes
  3. If you need to make changes to your diet do so gradually – make small changes that you can stick to (eg eat one extra portion of veg or fruit each day, or have breakfast daily)
  4. Plan your meals – make a shopping list based on the meals you plan to have for the week ahead – it will also save money as you’ll be less likely to waste food
  5. Visit the BDA’s website www.bdaweightwise.com for free resources, meal plans, and strategies to improve your nutritional health.


The BDA has a series of fact sheets designed to help people make sense of a whole range of nutrition issues, including fact sheets on fluid and are free to download at www.bda.uk.com/foodfacts