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Master Cleanser Side Effects

Let’s rename The Master Cleanser Side Effects. I want to call them Front Effects because they are simple, natural, tolerable and, most importantly, a sign of your healing in progress. The term “side effect” has an emotional trigger for most of us. We associate the term with the life-threatening effects of modern prescriptions. We think of side effects as something unwanted. The Master Cleanser Side Effects are very much wanted. These “Side Effects” are why we are Master Cleansers to begin with.

Master Cleanse side-effects

The Master Cleanser Side Effects are well worth it and so natural.

Are Master Cleanser Side Effects really “Side Effects” at all? I have a hard time referring to the Master Cleanse “Side Effects” as such; at least in the traditional sense.

Master Cleanse side effects

When I think of side effects, I think of those absurd TV commercials for artificial prescriptions that big pharmaceutical companies are trying to convince us we need. They even “brand” a disease with a term and then give it an acronym (such as ED for erectile dysfunction) so that they can market a “Cure” for you. Then they have the nerve to list dozens of horrifying side effects while calming music plays and we watch very healthy, happy people illustrating just how healthy and happy we can be if only we take their product. For life — or at least for as long as their product doesn’t kill us, make us bleed from the eyes or have 4-hour erections, etc.

It is mind boggling that people will denounce The Master Cleanse as a treatment, cure, prevention, cleanse, etc. because you might have a headache on the second day or break out for a few days, whereas these drugs being offered as cures include catastrophic side effects such as paralysis and “an increased risk of death.” HA!

They slip these “Side Effects” in the side door when you’re not looking, hoping you will be so convinced you’re already dying that their prescribed increased risk of death won’t look so bad.

Master Cleanse side effects

Positive Master Cleanser Side Effects

Since The Master Cleanse is a Detox Diet, or Cleansing Diet rather than primarily a Weight Loss Diet, the fact that you will likely lose weight is, in fact, a side effect as well.

Master Cleanse side effects, weight loss

  • Most people would view a side effect of weight loss as a positive one, but not all. Those of us who are already living a balanced, healthy lifestyle will not have much weight to lose, thus rendering weight loss unwelcome, as it would likely mean lean muscle loss.
  • Those who have weight to lose will lose weight as a side effect of the Master Cleanse. Those who have some weight to lose will lose that weight and plateau at their natural weight. It has even been reported that those who are under-weight will actually lose no weight and even gain weight.

So even though many people use The Master Cleanse for Weight Loss, that doesn’t make it the primary intention of the Detox. In fact it is more about weight management than weight loss, since the loss of weight is not your body’s primary objective either. The primary objective is DETOX and the positive results of the detox: the cleansing of our bodies of toxins and waste results in the side effects we Master Cleansers refer to as Healing Events.

Healing Events (Healing Crisis)

Tom Woloshyn refers to Healing Events as Healing Crisis, but I prefer the term Healing Events since it casts a more positive light on the events. The Healing Events truly are positive as they represent the elimination of something that caused a Disease Event when they were first ingested.

There is a saying in the Master Cleanser Community about the side effects we call Healing Events: “Sick in, Sick out”.

When you pick up something like a flu virus, bacteria, or something your body wants to reject, you experience a Disease Event. Your body is not “At Ease”, but rather in a state of “Dis-Ease” because of it. Your body’s immune system then deploys any and all available defense mechanisms to expel the intruder. These mechanisms include:

Master Cleanse side effects

  1. Stuffed Nose, Runny Nose or Congestion
  2. Coughing and Sneezing
  3. Sore throat and swollen glands
  4. Fatigue, Muscle aches and other Cold and Flu Symptoms
  5. Skin Irritation such as Rashes and Breakouts
  6. Headaches
  7. Fever
  8. Cold sores or other mouth sores

All of these “side effects” of a cold, flu or any other disease agent are the result of your body’s primary objective: to rid the body of the disease agent.

All of these “side effects” are actually just the reaction to the disease agent as it now exits your body.

And best of all: these “side effects” are temporary. They last for only a brief period. The Healing Events resulting from the Disease Agent are far less severe than the Disease Events which were the cause of the ingested Disease Agent.

Problem Days with Greater Side Effects

There are generally 3 days during which most cleansers experience the greatest number of master cleanser side effects, especially those of the Healing Crisis variety noted above. Day 1, Day 3 and Day 4 always seem to be the hardest. In my Day-to-Day account of the characteristics of each day during The Lemonade Diet, I have named these days: Day 1 – Bandwagon, Day 3 – Healing Events, and Day 4 — Hump Day.

  1. Day 1 – Bandwagon Side Effects: The side effects of day 1 are usually Detox Side Effects or Withdrawal Side Effects (both discussed below).
  2. Day 3 – Healing Events: Day 3 is when most of the Healing Events tend to surface. This is likely due to the detox part of the Master Cleanse really starting to reach a critical point.
  3. Day 4 – Hump Day: Healing Events are often short lived, lasting only a day or two. I once had severe cold symptoms for one night only. They disappeared as quickly as they came. Day 4 is Hump Day like Wednesday is in our work week. Just get past these Healing Events, and you are likely to succeed the rest of the way.

Master Cleanser Detox Side Effects

There are a few side effects of The Master Cleanser that are not directly related to Healing Events. I call these the The 10-Day Skin Brushing Detox: The easy, natural plan to look great, feel amazing, & eliminate cellulite, as they are not the common cold or flu symptoms we experience when our body is fighting off a new invader.

The following side effects are results of the Laxative, SWF, improperly taking the Lemonade and/or the general detox process  itself:

  1. White Tongue: A general side effect of the detox. It is generally reported that the tongue turns pink again once detoxing is complete.
  2. Bad Breath: Related to the aforementioned White Tongue. This is due to the extra release of toxins through the tongue.
  3. Greater Tooth Plaque: Related to above.
  4. Mucous Increase: A primary tool of our immune system, the loosening of mucous including sinus congestion and draining is brought on by the Fresh Lemon Juice and Cayenne Pepper.
  5. Increased Ear Wax: Similar to above.
  6. Nausea: Usually the result of the Salt Water Flush.
  7. Dizziness: Usually the result of not drinking enough Fresh Lemonade or not drinking it early enough in the morning upon rising (especially after the SWF).
  8. Feeling Chilled: Not “chills” like when you have a cold, but feeling cold as the result of lowered metabolism.
  9. Passing Gallstones: This is not uncommon and is good news.
  10. Diarrhea: Either from the SWF or from an excess of Vitamin C from the Lemon Juice.

Withdrawal Side Effects

Discussing these side effects from the perspective of the Healing Events and Detox is necessary, as they are indeed related to the cleanse.  However, many of the side effects felt by cleansers are not necessarily the result of the detox, or healing, nor are they some awful sign that cleansing is not for you. They are often just symptoms of withdrawal from some chemical dependency you have.

There are many common chemical dependencies which (if you did the cleanse properly) you would have had to stop feeding during the cleanse.

  1. Nicotine
  2. Alcohol and Drugs
  3. Caffeine

These substances are obvious. Most of us know we go through nicotine and alcohol withdrawal, but we don’t always realize that caffeine withdrawal can be even worse. Caffeine is a food (found in coffee, tea and other foods like chocolate). Food is addictive as well. Most of us know that, but we don’t dig much deeper than that basic understanding. Caffeine is a drug which is found in food. All food is a drug, as are all substances. Everything we consume is a chemical that our bodies break down, then decide to use, expel, destroy or quarantine.

So we can be addicted to anything. We can be addicted to coffee, sugar, pasta, or sushi.

And when our body doesn’t get a substance it is expecting, it will send us signals — often painful ones — that it wants that substance NOW. Once the body is re-accustomed to NOT expecting these substances, a new norm is set and symptoms disappear.

Now most of those foods aren’t as chemically addictive as caffeine is, but they can certainly be emotionally or psychologically addictive.

Emotional and Psychological Master Cleanser Side Effects

The loss of Comfort Foods can be devastating both emotionally and psychologically. We are so used to managing our chemistry by ingesting foods we like. If we feel down, we turn to food because eating it will make us feel good, either because we like the taste so much or because we have another association built into that food. Perhaps this type of cookie reminds me of my childhood when times were more simple. Maybe that ice-cream puts me into a state of subconscious self-loathing that I have come to depend on.

This is a major topic and is beyond the scope of this article, but it is worth mentioning because it leads to the following two Emotional Side Effects and Psychological Side Effects of The Master Cleanse:

  1. Impatience and Irritability: Our patience can really be tested when we are not getting what we want, when we are not comforted by our crutches.
  2. Flashbacks (Feelings, Tastes): in his book “The Complete Master CleanseTom Woloshyn describes the body as a “Time Machine,” saying that his clients report tasting cigarettes or feeling “stoned” as they relive past experiences.

Any other Master Cleanser Side Effects?

I have avoided going into detail on a number of very common side effects in an attempt to keep this post from getting too long. I want to leave the forum open to you to so you can add your own feelings. What were some Master Cleanser Side Effects that you experienced? How did you overcome them?

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91 Responses to Master Cleanser Side Effects

  1. Katie October 16, 2014 at 2:30 pm #

    Hello! This is my second attempt at the MC and I am on Day 4 (so proud of myself)! I love reading about everyone’s experiences. My detox symptoms have been pretty standard although last night was the worst. I woke up in the middle of the night feeling very nauseous. I drank some water though and that helped a lot. This morning I added a bit of ginger powder to my lemonade and plan to add some to my laxative this evening. My biggest issue is pretty much constant hunger and daydreaming of food. I work in a restaurant which makes it extra hard. I would also recommend (based on my research) that people don’t do intensive excercises while on the cleanse because of the lack of protein. If you’re breaking down your muscles you won’t be able to build them back up. Good luck everyone!

  2. Deb September 27, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

    I want to do the master cleanse, however I am presently on the candida diet and I’m concerned about using the syrup since I am avoiding all sugar…so will this cause a problem? I’ve also heard of some people getting a yeast Infection during or after their cleanse so that causes me some concern as well because that is one of the things I’m trying to get rid of…TIA!!!

  3. Rachelle August 28, 2014 at 7:43 am #

    I am on day 4 of my 8th master cleanse (since 2007) and I actually have a sore throat this morning, which is what brought me to this page… I’ve been vegan since my first cleanse, I couldn’t go back to eating flesh and animal secretions after cleaning myself out like that!

    Anyway, it’s been nearly a year since my 7th cleanse and I had been eating more of the unhealthy vegan foods like cheese and meat substitutes, so I think that’s why I’m having a harder time with this one… It’s so interesting to me how many people do this cleanse all wrong and wonder why they feel terrible!!? It’s an exact method that if you can’t handle, you shouldn’t compromise it and do it halfway… Not only is this dangerous, it’s not nearly as effective. Skipping the salt water and tea is not an option. How do you expect to get yourself cleaned out? That’s probably the most common thing I see, as well as using the wrong ingredients like agave, honey, chili powder (seriously?)… Don’t go into this blind, READ THE BOOK. It’s short and necessary to understand why this isn’t something you can simply customize for yourself. Do it right or don’t do it.

    Anyway, to the people truly doing it— Happy Cleansing! <3

  4. Jordana May 1, 2014 at 8:46 am #

    Hi everyone!
    I am on the end of day 5 and I feel great and full of energy..Day 4 in the morning I did feel like i had the flu and I had lemonade and it cleared instantly…I believe all the “crap” that we humans take into our digestion systems is just making it working so hard that it just does not work correctly anymore. Doing this cleanse has really been simple apart from the SWF…It been empowering and has made think about all the unhealthy things i have put in my body. Happy Cleansing

  5. Eva February 21, 2014 at 10:08 am #

    I have heard of this detox, from my sculpt and sweat class trainer. She is up for anything healthy and has motivated us to do it since day 1 of the class- Aug 2013. I am finally trying this, tomorrow. I will buy all ingredients needed. Ready for the challenge! Thanks for the article, thanks Melinda(trainer)! (: Hope all can go through it and celebrate your success happily!

  6. Summer February 11, 2014 at 6:33 am #

    Lemonade Diet Day 4, today I feel very irritated, on edge and kind of depressed. I tried to work out but the anger get worse.
    Is it usual side effects? How long are they going to last?

    Thank you

    • Liying February 18, 2014 at 9:24 am #

      Hi there

      I am on Lemonade Diet Day 4, today I feel good, better than yesterday. Little bit chilled, little bit headache.

      My challenge is just missing foods, but I can overcome.



  7. Jessica January 23, 2014 at 9:02 am #

    This is my second attempt at the cleanse. The first time I didn’t make it past day three. Now a year later I am trying it again. I am on day 7 now. I have lost a totally of 8 lbs but I lost them within the first 4 days. Since then I have not lost anything and seemed to have reached a plateau in my weight loss. However I am still about 60 lbs from a healthy weight, so I wonder if the first 8 lbs lost was simply water weight. I have not felt light headed or had any major issues. Today I do feel hungry but have not yet had my cleanse, that usually stops my hunger. We shall see.

  8. Eileen November 4, 2013 at 4:55 pm #

    The first day went well, so I recorded some of it on my blog. In the second half of day two, the only symptom I have seems to be the constant state of the runs I have. Gas constantly rumbles through my abdomen, and brown water leaks. Gross, but if this doesn’t quit, I may have to stop and just fast for awhile. I avoided the laxatives, because I have never needed them. I had tried a little salt with my water, but nothing as serious as the Salt Water Flush.

    Now that I think of it, my teeth do have fuzzy sweaters, but that is nothing compared to the pain of hitting the toilet every 20 or 30 minutes for the last 10 hours. I’ll try to continue through tomorrow, but this really hurts. Potassium deficiency anyone?

    • Chris April 23, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

      If you reread the master cleanse material you will see that there are reasons why you need to do it in the correct way. This is my 4th time and I have to say it does get easier but maybe because I know what to expect. The salt water flush isn’t easy for sure but it works. I did it this morning and only needed to be close to the bathroom for about 2 hours. I also use the laxative tea at night. Even if you are normally regular you are not eating food so you have to jumpstart a movement. Perhaps that is why you are leaking and not having larger movements. Try the tea at night at least before you give up. This thing works wonders.

  9. Racquel September 7, 2013 at 6:02 am #

    Day 7; Hi everyone, these are some of the symptoms ive personally had: light head ache nothing serious, hunger rumbblings, feeling weak, one morning woke up with trembling shakes but it was because im a flight attendant and i have a weird time table and slept for 20
    Hours after being awake for 30 so i think i was low on sugar i drank the lemon and syrup and after an hour i was feeling better, i also have psoriasis but only on my scalp and mostely on hair line on forehead and day 5-6 has been really bad also out burst of pimples on face back and neck, i have the bad breath and increased plaque on teeth and since day 4 onwards i have a kindda buzzing very ligh tingling sensation mostley in my legsbut sometime in my whole body, day 6-7 im not even feeling very hungry anymore not like day 2-3-4 but i m not excersizing as i did some push up the other day(10) to be exact and my arms and chest are still hurting! And working in the air is very difficult, i ve had 1 bowl movement in 7 days but because i cant find the green lax tea and because my tiemtable is so weird this week im scared to do salt water flush and still have yhe runs on the plane! Plus i do feel cold too! Im planning on 40 day detox, i was 61 kg and im now 56 kg, i hope this has helped oh and im female! Stay strong people!!!

  10. Sommer September 4, 2013 at 9:46 pm #

    This is my 1st try with the MC. I’m feeling motivated and ready. So far day 1 is going ok. But, I’m worries about day 2. Going to stay strong though and do it!!! I just did the SWF (evening, need to work in the day so I can’t afford to do in the morning). Belly is rumbling and making all kinds of noises!! (Nervous). But my main goal is to flush the bad out of me, make me feel healthier and energetic. And most of all, rid myself of bad eating habits. Feeling motivated and strong.

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