It’s the middle of February and everyone that was participating in the Designs For Health 14 Day Detox/Cleanse with me is now finished. Seven people did the cleanse. Of the seven two had real trouble and had to bail out. The rest of us did really well.

The 14 day Detox comes as a kit. You get two powders, a protein powder and a “cleanse” powder. You also get the Design for Health Amino D-Tox pills and a bottle of Digestive Enzymes. The program is set up so you start taking everything the very first day.

  • Two (women)/Three (men) Amino D-Tox pills before each shake and then 2 digestive enzymes while enjoying the shake. The shake consists of one scoop of PaleoCleanse and one scoop of Protein Powder. You do that twice a day for fourteen days. The third meal of the day (either lunch or dinner, your choice) is a normal meal with protein, veggies and healthy fats. You also have the opportunity to snack between shakes/meals if you are hungry. Remember, this detox/cleanse is NOT calorie restrictive, that’s why I chose it.

So, as I mentioned above this procedure worked out really well for 5 of us but not so well for the other 2. One friend had to abandon the cleanse by the end of the first day. She develop a migraine headache and just felt terrible, really terrible. My other friend made it through about 5 days and then had to stop due to headaches, light-headedness, and feeling out of it. Both of these people are tiny, not sure if that makes a difference or not.

The rest of us felt kind or out of it, tired and a bit loopy for the first four or so days. One friend thought for sure she had the flu the first two days. My husband was more loopy, saying he felt “stupid” and was sure he shouldn’t operate a vehicle. I was mostly tired and needed to nap a few times. I also needed to snack the first week. One other friend also snacked but she snacked for the whole 2 weeks. She exercises a lot so I’m sure she needed the extra calories/fuel. Aside from that one friend the rest of us really lost our appetite in the second week. We had to remember to have the second shake.

Here are a few things that really stood out:

  • Pretty much everyone thought the shakes were vile the first day but after that we all LOVED them. Not sure what was going on with that but perhaps we all perfected our “blend”. You really have to blend the heck out of the shakes to avoid a grainy consistency. The fact that we actually became “addicted” to the shakes is a little weird but that’s really sort of what happened.
  • By week two you do kind of lose your appetite. The shakes are very filling so you don’t feel hungry. This was a little scary but as long as you remember to have the two shakes and eat the meal each day it’s fine.
  • For those that did well on the cleanse, no one wanted to stop. A little weird and a bit scary. The shakes turned out to be really, really easy, so much easier than trying to figure out food to eat three times a day. Not only are the shakes “easy” sustenance but we all felt so great I think we were a little afraid to go back to “normal” eating. That’s the part that was scary. We’ve all successfully made the transition back to food but I think everyone is still incorporating one protein shake into their daily diet. The shakes are too easy, and yummy to give up completely.
  • I was happy with the outcome. Everyone felt like the detox/cleanse gave them the boost they needed to do a diet “reboot”. The approved “foods” while on the cleanse are whole, organic foods. When the cleanse is over it’s easy to continue to eat the “clean” foods that you ate during the cleanse, just more of them. Two weeks without sugar, caffeine, grains and other processed carbs really helps the body get over the cravings. It’s quite amazing.
  • One friend did a prep week before she started the cleanse. She cut down and then gave up caffeine, sugar, dairy and processed carbs. She really felt like that made a difference. I would agree and I will suggest a prep week to others who plan to do the cleanse in the future.
  • Although it is NOT a calorie restrictive cleanse, meaning you should eat if you are hungry, we all lost a little weight. I think the average weight loss was about 5 lbs.

I felt very badly for my two friends that didn’t do well on the cleanse, so badly that I did a little research. The Designs for Health 14 Day Detox/Cleanse is new. Prior to this they have only offered a 21 and a 28 day detox/cleanse. I began to wonder if maybe there was some information that got lost in translation, so to speak, when converting the longer detoxes to only 14 days.

As it turns out, I was right. I went back and read everything I could find about each product in the detox kit and discovered that the Amino D-Tox pills are supposed to be taken for at least a week prior to adding any detox power. The pills up regulate the detox pathway and get things moving so when the cleanse powder is added and all the toxins that are stored in the fats cells start to emerge you dont’ get overloaded with toxins and feel really, really sick (sounds like exactly what happened).

I do get it, 14 days is a really nice amount of time, that’s why I picked this cleanse. It seems do able, it is doable. At the same time, anything that can be done to make the process easier is important. Taking the Amnio D-tox pills for a week before you start the shakes is easy. You are eating normal food and maybe even doing a “prep” week so it’s not a real hardship and I suspect it will make the 14 days of shakes a lot easier.

Going forward, if I have a client that is healthy and eats a pretty clean diet and has done cleanses in the past I might suggest taking the Amino D-tox pills for a week prior to adding shakes but it will be up to them. They will probably do o.k. with the program the way it’s outlined. However, for those that eat a standard American diet, haven’t done a cleanse or have some sort of auto-immune disorder I will insist that they do a week or maybe 2 weeks of Amino d-tox pills prior to starting with the shakes.

Over all, I loved this cleanse. I had never done a cleanse/detox prior to this and now I’m hooked. My husband and I are planning on trying the Designs for Health 21 day Detox later this spring. Remember how I mentioned that none of us wanted to stop at the end of our 14 days, well 21 days seems just right. We’ll see.

If you are interested in trying the Designs for Health detox and have any questions shoot me a message through my contact button at the top of the page. I am happy to help if I can.

Here are parts 1 and 2 of this detox adventure.

Eat Well, Feel Good, Have Fun!



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8 Responses to Detox/Cleanse, Final Thoughts

  1. Katy Fertel says:

    Just started the 28 day detox today. I’m not sure I can stick with it. Could you please share your recipes? Your posts give me hope that maybe I can do this!

  2. Lee says:

    Thank you so much for the review. It was actually quite difficult finding first-hand accounts of this detox program so I really appreciate it. I am really looking forward to starting the program now, my first one. Although I bet it’s gonna be tough!

    • amy says:

      My current Holistic Nutrition class is all about Detoxing. I’ve learned a ton. One important thing is to make sure both your phase I detox and phase II detox pathways are working well. A lot of people can have a super fast phase I and a sluggish phase II (there are 6 phase II pathways so any one of them could be under preforming and causing problems), this will lead to really uncomfortable detox symptoms: headache, fatigue, nausea, brain fog, muscle pain etc… I had a couple of people have to stop their detox after just two days because they felt so bad, now I know why. I can’t really go into all the info. about the different detox pathways here but I will say it’s important to do a prep-week, clean up your diet, start to phase out caffeine and alcohol and eliminate it before you start the detox. The second thing I have found that makes a huge difference is the Detoxification Support Packets from Designs for Health. You start taking them during your prep week and then keep taking them through you cleanse. The supplements in the packets make a HUGE difference, they make sure your phase II pathways are running optimally and excreting all toxins. If phase II isn’t running optimally the toxins will build up and start banging around your body causing more trouble and damage than they did when they first entered your body. The support packets really help eliminate the bad detox symptoms. You still may feel sleepy and sluggish for a few days and you may even have a headache but it should all pass and not be as bad as it might have been. The Detox Support Packets are extra and they over lap a bit with the 14 day cleanse because you are getting amino d-tox pills in the 14 day cleanse which you won’t need because they come in the packets. It’s an additional expense but well worth it. Good luck, the cleanse is great and you will feel amazing by week two : )

  3. Tara says:

    Thinking of this cleanse and this thread has been very helpful. The only thing I am worried about is that I exercise (a intense boot amp class) 3x a week. I’m worried that if I’m felling “foggy” ect maybe I shouldn’t exercise during cleanse? I also drink A LOT of coffee – so cutting that out could be difficult on me but willing to try. Maybe even cut that out a week prior to starting cleanse. Any ideas?


    • amy says:

      Hi, you may want to go easy with the exercise the first week. You may feel fine but you also may not, you’ll have to play it by ear. If you are planning to cut the coffee out you should definitely start to taper (start adding decaf, and slowly increase the decaf and decrease the caffeine) early and stop as you start the cleanse. The withdrawal from the caffeine can be enough for you to quit the cleanse. As I mentioned above, I think the Detox Support Packets from Designs for Health really help support both phase 1 and phase 2 detox pathways and ultimately reduce the lousy detox symptoms. It’s a great detox so if you can dive in and do it right, without the coffee you should. You’ll feel great. I’m starting one this week, can’t wait!

  4. Laureen says:

    How do I know if my phase I and phase II are working? I know that I have liver congestion because I have allergies with skin itching.

    • amy says:

      There is so much involved in the detoxification system. It’s really not a question of your detox pathways working, it’s a question of how well they are working. The way we live, even if we live “healthy” is a burden to our detox system. It’s hard to eliminate all of the environmental toxins even if you eat organic and filter your water. Car exhaust is everywhere, antibiotics are prescribed like candy and speaking of candy, how about advil as “candy” (that’s how my husband refers to it – oy). Alcohol, sugar the list goes on. The best thing to do is do a liver cleanse at least once a year, twice is better ; ) Focus on foods and supplements that support the enzyme activity of Phase 1 and Phase 2.

      Vitamins and minerals that support detoxification pathways: B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, zinc
      There are also a lot of good herbs for liver support and health. If you choose to do a cleanse, a good company (Designs for Health would be my example) will have all of these vitamins, minerals and herbs in their product blends.

      Phase 1: Some foods to focus on are beetroot, artichoke, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts, adequate protein, garlic, onions, fruits (not grapefruit), vegetables, flax seed

      Phase 2: some supportive foods: Asparagus, avocado, cabbage, broccoli, brussels sprouts, kale, bok choy, watercress, papaya, red beets, watermelon, dill weed, citrus peel

      Things that can slow Phase 2: not enough protein, low-fat diet, aspirin, ibuprofen

      Back to “working right”. That’s really another whole can of worms. Have you heard anything about MTHFR gene mutation? There are some gene mutations that affect the methylation detox pathway (one of the 6 detox pathways of phase II) . You can get tested to see if you have the gene mutation but even if you do there really isn’t much you can do about it medically. You have to support it nutritionally. A lot of people are finding they have some gene mutation. The best thing to do is just be proactive and make sure and take methylated B vitamins and be serious about a clean, healthy diet and daily movement/exercise (nothing crazy). If you have the MTHFR gene mutation you will have trouble absorbing B vitamins. Thorne Basic Nutrients is a good example of a supplement with the right kind of B vitamins.

      I think you would benefit greatly from a liver detox. The one from Designs For Health is really easy and very tasty.

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