Teatox: Herbal Tea in Detox Diets

photo credit: wuestenigel Cup of Tea with Book in the Background via photopin (license)

Cleanse diets have become very popular, there are a great number of them.

One of them is the detox diet, which often employ herbal tea blends.

You’ve probably seen such detox teas, and maybe even drank them before.

They are widely advertised. The word teatox seems to have caught on.

However, I advise you not to waste your money on this type of products.

About detoxification

This is the definition of detoxification by Wikipedia:

The physiological or medicinal removal of toxic substances from a living organism, including the human body, which is mainly carried out by the liver. Additionally, it can refer to the period of withdrawal during which an organism returns to homeostasis after long-term use of an addictive substance. In medicine, detoxification can be achieved by decontamination of poison ingestion and the use of antidotes as well as techniques such as dialysis and (in a limited number of cases) chelation therapy.

And if we further examine what a toxin is, we find that it is a poisonous substance produced within living cells or organisms.

Note that artificial substances and the like are not toxins.

Thus, what has happened is that both words are being misused in a way that suggests that you can “cleanse” yourself of “toxins” by eating or drinking certain foods. It’s very convenient for marketers of supplement companies.


In essence, we have the simplistic notion that all substances can be labeled as good or bad for your health.

The reality is that the dose makes the poison. For example, even something as natural as water has a fatal dose.

There are some foods that might enable you to accelerate the elimination of harmful substances such as lead or mercury, but they are specific to each substance. Drinking just one tea isn’t going to be miraculously effective against every potentially harmful substance out there.

Anyway, your liver and kidneys naturally rid your body of unwanted substances without the need for a special diet.

As this article from Mayo Clinic states: “Detoxification (detox) diets are popular, but there is little evidence that they eliminate toxins from your body”.

Unethical marketing of herbal teas

It is alarming that celebrities are promoting these deatox teas, because young people are easily influenced this way.

The supplement companies get to sell more, and the celebrities benefit as well because they are compensated for their marketing effort.

But the problem is that there are health risks associated with this type of diets.

For example, long term use of senna (a laxative often used in detox teas) can cause the bowels to stop functioning normally and might cause dependence.

The never ending quest for health

Many of this products exploit our desire to be fit and healthy. They offer a shortcut that doesn’t exist.

You’ll often find teas that supposedly promote weight loss as well, which is of course very effective regarding sales.

If you want to be healthier, just improve your diet and exercise more. You can’t purchase this, it actually requires effort, just like many worthwhile aspects of life.

I don’t drink much herbal teas. I prefer real tea, which is made from the tea plant.

Although tea is healthy, it shouldn’t be used as a simple supplement. It’s so much more, a beverage with a rich history that many tea lovers find much joy and pleasure in drinking.

I would drink tea even if it wasn’t healthy at all.





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