Can You Drink Alcohol While Detoxing?

Can you drink alcohol while detoxing? Many people are asking this question since detox diets are really popular nowadays. Detox diets have been used for thousands of years as a way to cleanse not just the body, but the mind and spirit, too. Most detox programs recommend that you avoid refined sugar, animal products, and tobacco. In addition to the contradiction of taking in something deliberated toxic during a detox, there are firm reasons why a detox diet and wine might not mix.

Fasting, or detoxing to eliminate toxins from your body, isn’t necessary. According to Roger Clemens, a professor of pharmaceutical science and pharmacology at the University of Southern California School of Pharmacy, the body is impeccably capable of detoxing itself naturally. Our immune system, gastrointestinal tract, lungs, liver, and kidneys already process and remove toxins a few hours after exposure.

Health benefits of a fasting, as less bloating, more energy, and clearer skin come from the fact that you simply not eat solid foods and you are more hydrated than habitual on a liquid diet. Still, a 1 to 3-day fast that includes around 1,200 – 1,800 calories of fresh vegetables and fruit, and lots of water may inspire you to carry on to avoid fat-laden processed and sugary foods.

So, How Does Alcohol Affect a Detox Diet? And Can You Drink Alcohol While Detoxing?

Alcohol affects you mentally, emotionally, and physically. The scientists at Clemson University Cooperative Extension claim that moderate consumption of alcohol can actually have some benefits. According to the American Heart Association, drinking 2 alcoholic beverages per day for men and 1 alcoholic beverage per day for women shouldn’t cause you any harm. 1 drink is considered 1 oz. of 12 oz. of beer, 1.5 oz. of 80-proof spirits, 100-proof spirits, and 4 oz. of wine. Consuming more than that regularly could lead to heart problems, high blood pressure, and diabetes, not to mention the risk of injury and possible tragedies inherent in driving while impaired.

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Most detox programs recommend that you avoid alcohol. It would be ideal if you can avoid it, though, you can have a little alcohol, if you choose to do so.

Brown rice, vegetables, and fruits will work with the cleanse to give your colon the rest it needs to heal. According to cleansing specialist Marty Meshek of Energy for Today, drinking plenty of water and a fresh fruit juice will also help the cleanse. If you eat healthy foods, you may lose the craving for alcoholic drinks or you may be able to tolerate the little amount of alcohol.

As to consuming alcohol during the detox – if you cannot refrain from drinking during the detox – regular use of a milk thistle supplement can help to refract some of the damage. Actually, for people who drink alcohol regularly, a recommend protocol to use on a daily basis should include:

  • Drink plenty of clean water during the day. Remember – alcohol dehydrates the body.
  • A milk thistle supplement.
  • Vitamin (especially the B vitamins), trace mineral supplementation, and mineral to replace those lost from regular intake of alcohol.
  • Proteolytic enzymes, alpha lipoic acid (or R-lipoic acid), and Omega-3 fatty acids to ease liver inflammation.
  • And a good full spectrum antioxidant — particularly for the water soluble antioxidants that are lost because of the drinking. 


If you decide to drink alcohol while detoxification, keep in mind that the type of alcohol you consume will define how much the cleanse is affected. Red wine is a great choice, due to its anti-oxidants, which can help your body restore. You can also mix some fresh orange juice and vodka in order to make it more detox-friendly. Avoid beer and beverages mixed with high-sugar syrups, as they will do the most harm to the good thing you are trying to do with the colon. However, if you do drink alcohol during a cleanse, keep the amount as minimal as possible.1

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Alcohol could be toxic to your system, and for the time you are on the cleanse, plus several days afterward, your body might be more susceptible to the effects of alcoholic drinks, because cleanse can increase the absorption of material in the colon. Moreover, you will be eating less – and the alcohol will go through the system more quickly. So, if you are wondering can you drink alcohol while detoxing – our general advice is: try not to. But, if you choose to drink during the cleanse, do so with more caution.

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