'Detox’ or ‘liver cleansing’ diets have been around for years. Put simply, their intended effect is to purge the body of a supposed build-up of toxins, in order to regain good health.
Some of these diets require enormous dedication, but these days it’s claimed you need only purchase a detox kit from the shelves of your local healthfood store, chemist or supermarket, swallow some supplements and follow their dietary guidelines, and in most cases within three weeks you’re ‘cleansed’.
Do detox kits work?
There’s no shortage of glowing testimonials from people who’ve used detox kits, claiming to feel cleansed, energised and healthier. But when we went searching, evidence-based research to support the testimonials was thin on the ground.
- First we bought all the detox kits we could find (see Detox kits reviewed ) and asked the manufacturers to supply evidence for the efficacy of their products, but none volunteered any, most citing commercial confidentiality as a reason.
- Failing this, we went to other sources — scientific literature and experts in dietetics, gastroenterology, pharmacology and toxicology for the detox lowdown.