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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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89 Responses to Master Cleanser Side Effects

  1. Jennifer January 20, 2013 at 1:12 pm #

    Hi. I’m on day 7 of the MC, and I have had nothing BUT side affects. I’m on the cleanse because of constant headaches, and am hoping for some healing. I had headaches for the first 3 days; and a congested sinus from day 3 til now. Yesterday, I got a sore throat, and it’s still here today. Is this all normal? Is there anything I can take for my throat? I feel miserable! But would do anything to get out of this and not have the headaches anymore. Help!!

    • Bubbles January 23, 2013 at 7:34 am #

      I’m so glad to read these reviews! I am on day 3 and have also been experiencing flu-like symptoms as congestion, and a sore throat. Guess I was a MESS before I decided to do the cleanse! I look at it as all the toxins leaving my body, and that’s a GOOD thing! I am definitely gonna stick with it!
      I’m also very happy to learn that coffee/caffeine should be avoided. I didn’t know this, so I guess I’ll throw out the pot of coffee I just made! Another challenge!
      I LOVE IT!!!!!
      Good luck everybody! Hang in there! :)

  2. Nivya January 20, 2013 at 5:32 am #

    Hi.. I’m doing the master cleanse now . n I feel great but I want to know if anybody has experienced hair loss during or after master cleanse

  3. claudette January 17, 2013 at 2:20 pm #

    This is the second day of the master cleanse for me i had no emotional problems. i just felt a lot lighter. but i have not flushed very well. i used Senna tea which is a natural laxative. i had very few food cravings. but a nurse told me to not stay on the cleanse too long because some people have developed ulcers due to the acidity of the lemons. how do you correct that problem?
    i am diabetic and i had to suck on a piece of candy when i felt my blood sugar being affected. but other than that everything else is ok.

  4. Niki November 22, 2012 at 9:18 am #

    Does this cleanse help acne? At what age should u start the diet (because my daughter want to do it but I’m not sure if its safe for her. She is 13)?

  5. Angela November 15, 2012 at 8:47 am #

    Lemonade Diet Day 3- As you can see I’m on day 3. So far I’ve been doing ok. I started with the ease in which I think really helped me to go through with the process. After doin the salt water this morning I had some crampping. I was getting hot then cold. I take it that this body of mines is getting rid of some toxins. When I started my ease in on 11/10/12 (Saturday) I was 270. When I went to the doctor on 11/14/12 (Wednesday) I weighed in at 263. I’m soo exicted for what’s to come from doing this cleansing. Only about 5 people at my job know about me being on it because there is a lot of negative people that work with me. I tell anyone that ask me about it to research it for them selves because it’s more to it than just drinking lemonade. I’ve also noticed that my skin is starting to clear up. Will keep you all updated on my progress. Teamgettingitin…..

  6. Anita October 17, 2012 at 1:51 pm #

    I am on Day 8 of the Master Cleanse and I feel great!
    Well I miss food and COFFEE mostly. But! This is so
    Worth it! The first 4 days I had a bad headache, I thought
    There was something wrong with my neck… Lol. my
    Body ached! I read the Master Cleanse Experience
    everyday, which was really encouraging. I felt like I was
    doing the cleanse with a lot of people. But I didn’t read
    much on body aches so I was a little scared! But I’m the
    type if person who has to try! And that’s all it took… One
    more day.. See how I feel after today, or after I sleep and
    suddenly it’s day 8! I’m going to finish and I may go on for
    another week? Make it 2 weeks instead of 10 days. That’s
    how good I feel! And no coffee? I’m surprising myself! That’s
    the longest I went without coffee for a long time.I felt better
    since day 6. I went to work and have worked 12 hour shifts
    for the last 3 days. I could not do that in the first 4 days tho.
    But yeah it’s great! Good for me! I feel like I accomplished
    something already! It’s coming close to the end.. And I am
    Glad I did it.

    • Nadia January 8, 2013 at 10:18 am #

      Hey Anita, and everyone else who went through cleanse. I am on day 2 and the body aches are insane. Is this normal or is it my muscle tissue breaking down?

  7. Leila October 16, 2012 at 11:42 am #

    Lemonade Diet – Day 5: This is my first official educated attempt at the Master Cleanse and am sooo glad my sister stumbled upon this website. The resources on this site are key to me sticking to this cleanse and making through to the end the right way. I’ve done store bought cleanses with the restrictive diet and psyllium fiber pills (with bunch of roots and herbs), but nothing has been impactful as this back to basics approach to cleansing.

    In preparation for this cleanse, I started to ween myself off my latte addiction because I knew those killer migraines would have been the antithesis to a meaningful cleanse. Now that being said, I’m expected for the hump-day hymns but I think I’m starting to feel the Healing Events I anticipated for Day 3-4. Is this expected? Any speculations on what I could be doing wrong?

    Thanks in advance.

  8. TJ September 5, 2012 at 7:49 pm #

    I’m finishing up on day 3 of the MC. Today was truly a test of my patience and determination. I was experiencing severe headaches which subdued once I finally took a cat nap. Not realizing that I was doing far to much (ie, 1.5hr workout, baking for family members, cleaning house, running errands) and forgetting to down the water as required. Once I immediately downed the lemonade I felt slightly better but it wasn’t until I awakened from my nap that I felt refreshed. Also, is it just me who’s experiencing crazy dreams of death and dying? I was freaked out and now think that I have chest pain and abdominal pain. If truth be told of day 3 and 4 being hard….gggrrr I have one major hump day to get through tomorrow. In the interim I’ll sit back and think of ways to getting over the hump. Thinking about a spa day, but was hoping to hold out till I completed the MC.

    • kate September 8, 2012 at 10:23 pm #

      The first time you do the cleanse is by far the worst from my own experience and that of my friends. I would have liked to have stayed in bed for days 2-4. I had severe headache from caffeine withdrawal and generally felt like I had the flu.

      I did all of the techniques for easing the pain and on Day 5 started to feel amazingly good. On that first round I think I made it to day 8 before I made the mistake of having just a small sip of coffee because it just smelled so good. It was like the floodgates of hunger opened and the fast was over.

      Learning from that lesson and past diets I find that eating no food is easier than eating a highly restricted diet because you don’t feel hunger and when you do get the pangs the lemonade squelches them.

      Currently finishing Day 5 of about the 8th time I’ve done the detox and going for at least 10.

      The good news is that now it is a piece of cake. Even though I sometimes fall off my healthy eating I don’t suffer from any of the symptoms that were so hard to get through during the first detox. I still feel the detoxing going on but now it takes me until about Day 4-5 before I have any discomfort and even then is is very minor.

      Stick with it and even if you can’t stick it out more than a few days give yourself a break then try again. I does get better and you may even find you feel great and like me say– I feel so fabulous I wish I never had to eat again!

  9. Martha August 18, 2012 at 11:37 pm #

    Day 5 on the master cleanse diet, but i am having rashes on my face. Small bumps im wortied if i am allergic to cayenne powder. Has any of you experienced it? Should i stop now?

    • Rachel January 23, 2013 at 12:03 pm #

      Hi Martha,
      I am on day 3 of the cleanse and am also experiencing a rash on my face. Did yours clear up? I have done the cleanse before and never had this side effect. Thanks!

  10. Alyssa June 6, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

    I’m on day 8 of the cleanse. Yesterday, my period randomly started. I’m on the pill and continuous cycle. I think it is just because of the rapid weight loss I’m experiencing (10 pounds so far). I’ve also noticed skin tags I’ve had for years going away. I’m 24 and always found them so embarassing but even when I’d remove them, they’d grow back. This is really an exciting and very happy side effect of the cleanse. My hair and skin are also looking a lot better. Overall, this cleanse has been great. I am now seriously looking into staying on a raw diet from now on.

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