3-Day Detox Diet

Raw vegetables and almonds

The 3 day detox diet is a popular method of mildly cleansing the body of impurities and harmful toxins, while boosting cellular renewal and immunity function. Advocates report the additional benefit of feeling rejuvenated after the detox.

The 3 Day Detox Diet

The 3 day detox diet is a short detoxification diet used for different purposes. A mini-detox can prepare the body for a long-term diet, fast or as part of a healthy lifestyle approach. Those who believe in the health benefits of detoxification often participate in annual cleanses for proper maintenance of health. Moreover, for those who have never cleansed or fasted, a three day cleanse is a safe starting point, which is quickly completed over one weekend.

Overall, the three day cleanse is a safe detox diet, but it also has its own set of caveats. One of the misconceptions about mini-cleansing diets is misguided claims about weight loss. Unfortunately, short cleanses used for health purposes often get abused by crash-dieters seeking rapid weight-loss. Any weight-loss during the first few days of detoxification is merely water loss, gained back promptly thereafter.

While there are many versions of the 3-day mini-detox diet, all versions emphasize the importance of withdrawing from food and drink, which are considered toxic to the body over long-term use. Processed foods along with coffee and alcohol are replaced with whole or liquid, cooked or raw, unprocessed organic foods, mainly from fruits and vegetables. Fresh water is taken in large volume to flush the body of harmful toxins. Different versions of the detox diet may include a combination of alternative cleansing therapies in order to enhance detoxification. These could include the following:

  • Dry brush massages
  • Colonics
  • Enemas
  • Sauna/sweat bath
  • Moderate exercise
  • Vitamin supplements
  • Herbal detox supplements

Samples of the 3 Day Detox Diet

There are many varieties of the 3 day detox plan, from whole food cleansing diets, to juice cleanses and 3-day water fasts. Additionally, there is the popular 3 day fruit flush diet and raw food detox diet. Below are two safe diet samples that are nutritious and focused on health, rather than weight-loss.

Whole Food 3-Day Cleansing Diet

This version of 3-day cleansing includes whole proteins of lean fish and poultry, while other plans may include no meat or only nuts, while mainly focusing on fruit, vegetables and a moderate intake of complex carbohydrates. It is a modified 3-day diet plan suitable for anyone with chronic conditions, such as diabetes, low blood sugar or heart condition. To detoxify, the premise is to eliminate toxic foods, such as coffee, tea, alcohol and preservatives by eating fresh, organic foods, fruit and vegetables. Other activities, such as moderate exercise and drinking plenty of fluids are viewed as accelerators of the detoxification process. Liver tonics or detox supplements are often taken to accelerate detoxification.

Day 1

Fresh Juice


  • Fresh fruit slices
  • Fresh fruit juice


  • A carbohydrate, such as potato or rice
  • Cooked vegetables
  • Fresh fruit juice


  • Lean protein, such as fish or poultry
  • Vegetables
  • Fresh fruit juice


  • Fresh fruit juice
  • Water

Day 2


  • Fresh fruit


  • Vegetable salad with no-frill dressing


  • Lean fish or poultry
  • Steamed vegetables

Day 3

  • Fresh fruit as needed throughout the day
  • Drink water as needed throughout the day

Juice Fast Cleansing Diet

Juicing for Life

Nutritionists Cherie Calbom and Maureen Keene, in their bestseller Juicing for Life, outline a group of cleansing diet plans, including this safe, healthy cleansing diet based on the juice fast. The cleansing detox is usually taken over a few days, but can be followed over a longer period of time. The 3-day cleanse is also good to alternate with long-term detox or weight-loss plans consisting of solid food. The benefits of this detox diet are that it allows your body to rest and cleanse, while bathing your body in a cocktail of vitamins, nutrients and calories from the fruit and vegetable intake. The plan is not a weight-loss diet, thus there are no calorie restrictions. You can have as much juice, herbal tea or soup as you need to keep yourself going.


  • Energy shake


  • One juice shake
  • Harvest or vegetable soup


  • One juice shake
  • Consume or harvest soup


  • One juice shake, or herbal tea

Bedtime snack

  • Relaxing herbal tea, such as chamomile

While the three day cleanse is considered a safe detox diet overall, many versions of it may, or may not be right for you. If you are underweight or have a chronic disease, such as cancer, anemia, diabetes, or other conditions, consult with your doctor before starting any detox diet.

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