Detoxification Diet

This article is about the Metabolism Reset Diet. The MRD is a detoxification diet or detox diet.
It is a diet which sets out to bring healing to the liver and improve its level of functioning. 
The liver is one of the components in the body that allows detoxification to take place.
Detoxification is therefore a consequence of the 4 week diet.

My name is Katherine Owen. I completed the Metabolism Reset Diet first in July 2019.
This article is part of my review of the diet.



Did I experience detox symptoms on the Metabolism Reset Diet?

Very much so!

Detoxification symptoms I experienced were as follows:

  • I had various pains in my body.
  • I got extreme pain in my right top right shoulder during the first week.
  • I got bad indigestion for the whole of the 4 weeks, and for the first 3 weeks of 'maintenance'.
    (Maintenance' 'is the optional period after the 4 weeks when you may choose to continue with a few of the elements of the diet.)

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Ghost of symptoms past

  • I experienced profound central fatigue.
    I found myself having to sit down. I would literally feel stuck in a certain position.
    This reminded me of symptoms I had when I lived with very severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis).
  • Throughout the 14 years of being bedbound I had a sharp pain and a kind of puffiness / clagginess in my right forearm. This came back on the diet, but only lasted for about 48 hours.

It wasn't pleasant but it was fascinating to have certain symptoms return that I had had when living bedbound.
It is such a different experience to have a symptom come and go rather than stay around for years and years...
If I had had such an aggravation of symptoms without an explanation I would have added a lot of fear!

Ways in which the detoxification symptoms were not so bad...

Even though I had profound central fatigue on the diet, it passed.
I was able to walk around the house at other times of the day.

I was able to make myself the evening meal each day.  It was unusual for me at the time to have this level of consistent functionality. I cook for myself, but my usual diet is simpler to cook than the Metabolism Reset Diet.

There was no increase in muscle fatigue, perhaps even a decrease.

Post exertional malaise (PEM) possibly reduced during the diet (but not afterwards).

The symptoms that arose had often disappeared 24 hours later or 48 hours later.
It was very clear that I was ‘cycling’ through various symptoms.

How long is the period of detoxification symptoms?

detoxification diet can help unclog the liver and relieve the symptoms listed here

Doctor Christianson’s book (see image below) says that detoxification symptoms will reduce after the first week on the diet.

I had some horrid detox symptoms through the whole 4 weeks of the Metabolism Reset Diet and a little beyond as well.

If I had been eating something unusual I would have worried that the diet was doing me harm.
If I had been taking a natural healing supplement I would have worried it was doing me harm.

But because I was following a diet that has been tested. And because I was getting support in the Facebook group, I felt able to persevere.

Detoxification symptoms may be worse if you are living with chronic illness

Doctor Christianson says in his book that the more our liver is clogged, the less able we are to detox.
In other words once you have detoxed a little, your liver gets better at detoxing.
Perhaps for some of us living with chronic illness, a clogged liver is key to many of  our symptoms and therefore the detox symptoms are likely to be worse than for someone who is only seeking weight loss.

Another person with CFS/ME I know who has done the metabolism reset diet also continued to be very ill from detox symptoms in week three of the diet. Unlike myself, she was better in week four.
(NB. She came out of the diet having experienced clear benefits.)

In Dr Christianson’s Facebook group there were others living with other chronic illnesses. They too seemed to experience an extended detoxification period compared to those only doing the diet for weight loss.

If you are doing the Metabolism Reset Diet as a diet to alleviate chronic illness, do allow for the symptoms continuing for the whole 4 weeks of the detoxification diet.

If you find the symptoms hard, is it necessary to do the detoxification diet for the whole 4 weeks?

If you find the symptoms hard, is it necessary to do the detoxification diet for the whole 4 weeks?

I don’t know is the simple answer. I suggest you ask Dr Christianson’s support team via his website or Facebook group.

When I posted in the Facebook group about my trouble with detox symptoms in week three, someone else with CFS/ME suggested that I stop the diet.
I considered doing so. My drop in functionality affected my ability to safely share a house with someone.

I decided to keep going because four weeks is the recommended amount.
Doctor Christianson has based the diet on research, and four weeks is the time period that has been assessed as beneficial.

I therefore thought there might therefore be benefits in the fourth week.

Some people who were just doing the diet for weight loss reported that they only got weight loss in the fourth week. This suggests to me there are benefits that come from being on the diet for that length of time.

Please please do NOT take this article as saying that you should continue if the detox symptoms are very difficult.

In case you need it, I give you full permission to only do this detoxification diet for one week, two weeks, or three weeks!

Detoxification Diet book cover

Click to buy the Metabolism Reset Diet
in the Amazon Store

After the 4 week detoxification diet - what next?

After the 4 weeks, I chose to continue with the ‘maintenance’ diet. Please see the book for more information.
At the time of writing, I have done this for the last 7 months.
I am not strict about it and find it straight forward. 


Prior to doing this diet I thought a detox diet was out of my reach.

I knew of detox retreats costing a great deal of money.

I knew of the work of Jay Davidson who said that he almost died from his first attempt at a detoxification diet.
He claims to have since worked out a diet and protocol that allows detox to take place more safely.

I am grateful to have found a diet that I can do each year as part of my self healing toolkit.

I hope to do the more intense 4 week detoxification diet again soon.
People have reported more manageable detox symptoms the second time, so here's hoping!


  • This series of articles is only an overview of my personal experience.
    Please refer to Dr Christianson's book (see book cover above) or his website for information on how to follow the Metabolism Reset Diet. I am not an affiliate of his. I am an Amazon affiliate so if you buy the book through my link I may get some pennies. Thank you.
  • Click to find out, What is the Metabolism Reset diet? - decide if it is right for you.
  • Move from Detoxification Diet to read My Results on this Metabolism Reset Diet.
    I also give tips on how to approach the diet gradually so as to reduce detox symptoms.

Move to my article on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome diet which links to all the other diet articles on this healing website.

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