October 04, 2010


Learn to love lemons. Essentially, you lose weight by cutting out all solid food and consuming only a homemade “lemonade” beverage spiked with cayenne pepper.

Basic principles:
The website claims eliminating solid foods and subsisting on a lemon juice–based drink flushes the system of internal waste and toxins, helps you overcome “psychological” cravings for food, and results in weight loss. After the cleanse, you simply choose to “eat wisely” to keep the weight off.

How it works:
The diet may be divided into two to three phases. There is an optional “ease in” phase to transition from solid foods to liquids. Or you can just start with the main phase in which you are restricted to homemade lemonade rations and water for the time period of your choosing (as little as three days and up to two weeks). This stage includes a daily salt water flush and/or laxative tea to induce bowel movements since there is no solid food consumption. Finally, you transition from liquid to solid foods in the three-day “ease out” phase.

What you eat:
Nothing. You are restricted to liquid nourishment in the form of a freshly prepared lemonade concoction (lemon juice, filtered water, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper) with a salt water flush (2 teaspoons of sea salt dissolved in 1 quart of water) and/or an herbal tea laxative chaser. The three-day “ease in” phase and “ease-out” phases consisting of fruit and veggie juices and broths.

How much can you lose?
The website claims you can expect to lose “20 pounds in 10 days” at a rate of 1 to 3 pounds per day.

Is it healthy?
No. It lacks key nutrients (e.g., protein, zinc, and iron), despite the websites claims that the lemonade provides all the nutrients you need. This kind of crash diet, over time, can actually hurt your heart, says cardiologist Isadore Rosenfeld, MD.

Expert opinion:
Its important to lose weight safely, which usually means slowly: Most experts recommend dropping just 1 to 2 pounds a week. “The key to losing weight is a combination of diet and exercise,” says Dr. Rosenfeld. “One alone will not do it.”

Try this diet if you:
• Are absolutely desperate to lose that belly bloat before you hit the beach this weekend
• Have extreme willpower
• Dont have a physically demanding lifestyle
• Have consulted your physician

1-day sample menus:
No menus. Just sip on lemonade throughout the day and make sure to chase it with a salt water flush and/or laxative tea before bedtime.

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