There have been numerous health fads, diets and smoothie cocktails that have taken the wellness industry to a whole new level of popularity due to their unfounded promises to fix all health and weight problems. An example that has stood the test of time is Stanley Burroughs’ Master Cleanse Diet.
Throughout the years it has been developed nicknames such as the Lemonade Diet and the Master Cleaner in part due to its use among celebrities like Beyoncé, Demi Moore, Jared Leto, Denzel Washington, and Angelina Jolie.
The goal of the Master Cleanse is quite simple. Unfortunately the reality of our foods today is that they’re filled with chemicals, preservatives and toxins that ultimately build up in the body. Over time, this build up can cause a loss of energy, poor health and a general yucky feeling.
As a result, the Master Cleanse aims to flush out this build up to improve overall health and to help shed a few unnecessary pounds. For others who already have a relatively healthy diet, the results may be a little less obvious however, can be great if you’re seeking a quick slim down for an event or big date night.
Life Before The Master Cleanse
The master of the Master Cleanse is known by the name of Stanley Burroughs however, he also went by the name of Aaron Hayes. Stanley was born in New York in 1903 but the majority of his childhood was spent in Detroit, Michigan.
During the 1930s, Stanley left Michigan and ended up migrating to Portland. It was here that he married and had three daughters but that marriage didn’t last. After they divorced, Stanley ended up moving to California where he eventually remarried and stopped contacting his children.
Despite a heavy interest in the lumber industry, Stanley was drawn to alternative health theories. His pursuit of these theories took him across the country to test his theory on citizens in California, Hawaii and Oregon.
Some of the alternative health theories that he studied and enacted were deep tissue massage, light therapy, and deep reflexology. Interestingly enough, he also indulged in the practice of nudism and considered himself a vegetarian.
The Master Cleanse Trend
Perhaps, most famously, Burroughs eventually came up with the Master Cleanse. At its heart, it is a juice diet, as participants are not allowed to consume food. Instead, they drink tea or lemonade that contains maple syrup and cayenne pepper.
Initially, Stanley wrote about the Master Cleanse in his book The Master Cleanser published in the 1940s but it was the revised version published in the 1970s that put the cleanse in the spotlight.
Although Stanley died in 1991, his cleanse still remains a diet performed today. The cause of his death was acute pneumonia although an autopsy was not performed on him, he was also found to have leg fractures suffered from a fall he had endured earlier, as well as a urinary infection.
A great deal of controversy plagued Stanley in life, most of which were legal issues. In one particular instance, he told a man who had been suffering from cancer that his diet plan could help cure his cancer.
Stanley claimed that he had helped heal thousands before so the suffering man, Lee Swatsenbarg, agreed to undergo the plan. Stanley had him drink herbal tea, salt water, the special lemonade, and nothing else. He also had Lee procure a lamp that had several coloured sheets for light therapy. In addition, Stanley massaged Lee with an added fee.
Lee did not get better, in fact his condition worsened steadily over time but Stanley told him to remain on the plan and not to contact his physician. After about three weeks, Lee complained about severe pain in his abdomen and Stanley responded by giving him deep abdominal massages.
Unfortunately, Lee had a haemorrhage in his abdomen and passed away. Doctors found that the haemorrhage had been a result of the deep abdominal massages that Stanley had been administering.
After first being convicted of second-degree murder for this case, The California Supreme Court ended up reversing the charge but they still believed that he was guilty of involuntary manslaughter. In the end, the court convicted him of the unlawful sale of cancer treatments as well as a felony charge for practicing medicine without a license.
Be Smart With Your Body
Obviously, the Lemonade Diet can’t cure everything. Even though celebrities have used it and promote its benefits, you should always consult with your doctor before trying a new diet, especially those that are as radical as the Master Cleanse.
While it does have detoxifying elements, using the diet for the short term seems to have a better effect on the body than the long term. Be smart about your body and always do your research.