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What is the difference between a detox and a cleanse?

What started all the questions about detoxing and cleansing?

Ever since Spiro and I just completed the Beachbody Ultimate Reset, many people have been asking us what the diet was all about. In a nutshell, it’s a three-week program that removes all the toxins from your body and ends up eating a raw, organic diet. Each week, take different supplements that support the transition. I know what you’re saying, forget it. It was hard but we both felt amazing and really want to keep eating this way. It was a great experience and we are so glad we did. The reboot was basically a detox diet. In this post, I will explain the difference between a detox and a cleanse and follow up with posts that provide more detail on the different types of detoxes and cleanses out there.

detoxification and cleansing

For centuries, body purification has been an inseparable part of our rituals for good health and well-being. The various processes that occur within the body and the substances that enter it generate toxins that are a threat to your internal system. Harmful substances include cholesterol, irritants, excess fat, sugar, smoking, biological waste, and synthetic chemicals. Some, or all, enter your body from various sources, such as a polluted environment, processed foods, and unhealthy habits. If these harmful substances continue to build up inside your system, they can put you at risk for a deadly disease.

There’s a fine line between a detox (or “detox” as it’s called) and a cleanse. People generally use these terms interchangeably to indicate that they are trying to get rid of waste or dirt from the body. However, detoxification and cleansing are very different processes. Although they both aim to help the body get rid of toxins, they work on different areas of the body and on different toxins as well.


Detoxification refers to the body’s natural process of removing or neutralizing toxic materials from cells, tissues, organs, and the bloodstream. It works to remove toxins from the bloodstream, various organs in the body, the skin, and also the liver and kidneys. A liver or kidney detox is usually accompanied by cleansing procedures to ensure best results. Detoxification includes ingredients incorporated into a person’s daily diet. These dietary inclusions are specifically intended to eradicate toxins. Detoxification, being a relatively simple process, can be made a part of your daily regimen. Detoxification targets chemicals, smoke, metals, pollutants, stones, and even fatty deposits that build up in the body and pose harm. Adopting some detox ingredients in your daily diet has positive benefits including better health, beautiful skin, relief from aches and pains, and less anxiety or depression caused by hormonal imbalance. Detoxification can be incorporated into your daily life by simply choosing to eat fruits, vegetables, and high-fiber foods. Avoid eating processed and/or packaged foods; chips, cereals, frozen diet meals, etc.


The cleanse focuses on the digestive tract (the organ from the mouth to the anus) and does a typical colon cleansing job. The cleanse uses a particular program or component for the procedure, i.e. teas, fiber supplements, etc. It targets debris, fungus (like Candida), parasites, and harmful bacteria inside your bowls. Both detoxification and cleansing have several similar benefits. Cleansing is a safe process to keep your digestive tract and colon healthy and your body disease-free.

Our Ultimate Reset experience

I have to say that since Spiro and I did our Reset, we don’t have the cravings we used to. We were eating very satisfying foods that were very satisfying, but we were still “thinking” that we needed to eat something else. Most of us are raised to eat meat, fish, etc. and have a side of salad, vegetables, potato, rice, etc. With the reboot, we learned to really focus on all of our veggies first and add from there. Now that we can eat other foods, we don’t want to. It’s funny, the first day we broke up, Spiro got one of our favorite things; a Costco roast chicken. Did you know? She didn’t hit the nail on the head like we thought she would. crazy huh? In just three short weeks, our taste buds have changed and whole food is what we crave. Now we just have to work on changing our way of thinking. 😉 That’s always the hard part. So what do you think? Think you’re ready to do a cleanse or detox?

One last note: It’s a good idea to talk to your Doctor before starting any program. They can help you determine which one is best for you, as well as how often to participate in that program.