Saturday, March 7, 2015

Should You Detox Before Starting Medifast?

After learning via one of my Facebook groups that the five franchise-owned Medifast centers in Arizona advise many of their clients to do a 7-day detox, I originally thought this blog post would be called something sensational like "Arizona Medifast Centers Go Rogue."

Mixing detox with Medifast sounded kind of fishy to me. So I decided to channel my inner Nancy Drew and investigate.

First I did a Google search and found a My Fitness Pal thread which outlined the 7-day detox:

Days 1&2: Pre-cleanse days eat 3-4 servings fruit, 3-4 servings veggies, & 3-4 servings whole grains plus 2 qts Smart waterxx

Days 3&4: Liquid cleanse days drink 2 qts Smart water plus 2 qts lemonade/maple syrup mixturexx

Days 5&6: Mini cleanse days eat 3-4 servings fruit, 3-4 servings veggies, 2 MF shakes, & 2 qts Smart waterxx

Day 7 -- Graduation day eat 3-4 servings fruit, 3-4 servings veggies, 3-4 servings whole grains, & 2 MF shakes plus 2 qts Smart water

Excerpted from My Fitness Pal forum
Then I contacted the Medifast corporate media relations department and one of the Arizona franchises. Not surprisingly, I heard back only from the franchise. In their defense, the Medifast public relations staff was probably too busy shopping on eBay or streaming House of Cards S3 responding to their millions of other media requests to reply to my email.

From my phone conversation with Holly Hodgson, manager of the Medifast Chandler, Arizona, I learned the five Medifast centers in Arizona are the only Medifast franchises that promote the detox program and that Medifast corporate fully condones the practice -- provided the centers do not promote the detox as being Medifast sanctioned and keep it separate from the Medifast program. Thus, the literature clients receive on the detox plan does not have the Medifast logo on it.

According to Hodgson, the Arizona centers recommend the 7-day Detox -- which includes four magical and profitable bottles of supplements they sell to the clients -- because they believe it is an effective way to quick start weight loss, crush cravings and detoxify the body before starting the Medifast 5&1 Plan.

Every three months, clients may have a detox do-over for another seven days to "rejuvenate" themselves and enjoy some otherwise forbidden foods, such as grains and fruit.

I asked Hodgson if there was any data to support whether the Arizona clients had better results than people who do the Medifast 5&1 Plan without the detox, and she told me no studies had been done to measure the effectiveness of this deviation from official Medifast.

Still, it turns out there is no scandal here. The state that does not do Daylight Savings Time or observe Martin Luther King's birthday does a funny form of Medifast. It's the Arizona way.

The bottom line is I really don't see a problem with the Arizona Medifast Centers detox plan, but I'm not completely sold on it either. Medifast 5&1 works great as is.

For people who are already scraping to find money in their budget for Medifast replacement meals, I still think the best deal is signing up with one of the Take Shape for Life Health coaches. These men and women have successfully lost weight on the Medifast 5&1 Plan and can provide guidance, support and motivation for no extra cost.

And with the recent Medifast food price increases, it is now cheaper to purchase Medifast replacement meals through a coach than through Medifast Direct.

More from Diet Skeptic:

Why I'm Addicted to Chia Seeds

Why Fat Head Pizza Is the Holy Grail of Low Carb Pizzas 

The Shocking Truth About Imported Olive Oil

Making Cauliflower Rice in the Vitamix 

Why WebMD Doesn't Want You to Get Well

Follow Nancy's board Low Carb Recipes on Pinterest

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