Also known as the "lemonade diet," the lemon juice and cayenne pepper diet is one phase of the "Master Cleanse" diet. Developed as a short-term solution for cleansing the body of harmful toxins, the diet significantly restricts food and beverage intake. In fact, the diet uses just a sour and spicy concoction to detoxify the body and initiate weight loss. To ensure your health and safety, consult a physician before beginning any cleansing routine or diet.
Before following the strict lemonade diet, participants first transition slowly into the diet. This three-day stage, known as the "Ease-In," allows the body to become accustomed to a more natural and liquid diet. For the first day, only fruits and vegetables are consumed. On the second day, only pure fruit and vegetable juices are allowed. On the third day, participants consume just 2 liters of orange juice mixed with water. After this three-day transition, the body is ready for the lemonade portion of the diet.
During the main cleansing phase of the Master Cleanse diet, the diet is restricted to only the lemonade drink, which is made from 2 tbsp. of fresh lemon juice, 2 tbsp. of grade B organic maple syrup, 1/10 tsp. of cayenne pepper and 8 oz. of distilled water. Participants following the diet consume this lemonade drink at least six to 12 times per day, following each glass with 8 oz. of plain water. The creator of the cleanse recommends that participants follow the lemonade diet for at least 10 days.
Since no fiber is consumed during this diet, the body is not stimulated to produce a bowel movement. To encourage waste excretion, dieters must take either a laxative or drink a saltwater solution every day. Within 30 to 60 minutes of either method, dieters typically experience a series of bowel movements that last about 60 minutes.
After the lemonade cleanse, solid foods are slowly introduced back into the body. This "Ease-Out" process is essentially the "Ease-In" process in reverse. On the first day after the cleanse, only orange juice is consumed. On the second day, the diet includes just fruit juice, vegetable juice or vegetable broth. The third day expands slightly to include raw fruits and vegetables. After the third day, participants return to a normal diet.
During the Master Cleanse diet, many people experience unpleasant side-effects. Most people experience food cravings throughout the lemonade diet. According to The Master Cleanse / Raw Food Site website, other common side-effects include fatigue, irritability, muscle aches and headaches. The presence of headaches becomes significantly worse among dieters with a caffeine addiction. Occasionally, a person might experience nausea and vomiting.