3-Day Clean-Food Detox Plan

Detoxification diet for a natural body cleanse
This three-day super-clean eating plan helps you eliminates toxic dietary offenders and focuses on whole, natural foods. Includes menus and simple recipes — plus tips for minimizing withdrawal symptoms.

I am not a fan of cleansing regimens that involve fasting, colonics or laxatives. I find that a super-clean eating program can do wonders for your body, mind and soul. So I've created a three-day detox diet meal plan that is free of caffeine, alcohol, refined carbohydrates, sugar and sugar substitutes. Try this nutritional detoxification program and in just a few short days, you can look and feel years younger by eliminating a few dietary toxins and focusing on whole, natural foods.

I suggest you follow this body detox plan for a minimum of three days, but ideally try for it five. Most likely, you'll feel the positive effects immediately and your body will be smiling from the inside out. If you find that removing junk food from your diet causes feelings of withdrawal (many of my clients have found sugar to be worse than caffeine), try my tips on page 2 to help you manage these symptoms.

3-day spring cleaning menu and detox recipes

The three days of menus are approximately 1,500 calories per day. If you require more or fewer calories, you can simply alter the portion sizes, but do not skip any of the meals or snacks. You'll need to eat frequently to keep your stamina going.

Also, it's important to follow these guidelines:

  • Keep an eye on absolutely everything that goes into your mouth. YES, I even want you to avoid chewing gum and breath mints.
  • Drinking water is a true necessity, especially when you are cleansing. Almost all of your liquids should be pure, unadulterated water. We usually recommend about 64 ounces per day.
  • Decaf green tea and hot water with lemon may be added for those people missing their warm morning mug.
  • If all of these guidelines seem too daunting to take on at once, feel free to mix and match. In other words, you could follow the menus but allow yourself one small cup of coffee. Make it work for you, but remember that the more you adhere to the plan, the bigger difference you'll feel and the more effective your whole body cleanse

Day 1

Breakfast: 1 cup of steel-cut or Irish oats (measured after cooking), topped with 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts and 1 cup of fresh or frozen berries.

Snack: ½ cup plain nonfat yogurt mixed with ½ of a banana, sliced, and 2 tablespoons Grape-Nuts or other high-fiber cereal.

Lunch: Washed baby spinach leaves (or other dark green salad greens) topped with 4 ounces of grilled chicken, 8-10 sliced red grapes, sliced red onion and 2 tablespoons slivered almonds. Dress salad with fresh lemon juice and 2 teaspoons olive oil. Serve with ½ of a 6-inch whole-wheat pita pocket.

Snack: Sliced green apple with 1 ounce of cheddar cheese.

Dinner: Bake a 5-ounce piece of cod or tilapia (or other white flaky fish). Place fish in a baking dish, top with 2 teaspoons olive oil, fresh lemon juice and a pinch of sea salt and pepper. Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes, or until cooked through; serve with ½ cup brown rice and steamed broccoli.

Nutrition Information

1,489 calories

145 grams of carbohydrates

108 grams of protein

57 grams of fat

31 grams of fiber

41 grams of sugar

784 mg of sodium

665 mg of calcium


Day 2

Breakfast: In a nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, make a 3-egg-white omelet filled with 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese and ½ cup of sliced tomatoes and onions (or other vegetable of choice). Serve omelet with a navel orange or half a grapefruit.

Snack: 1 slice of whole-grain bread topped with 1 tablespoon all-natural peanut butter or almond butter.

Lunch: 5-ounce salmon fillet grilled or poached (can purchase canned salmon if easier) served over a bed of baby arugula (or other dark green lettuce) and topped with ½ cup of chickpeas (or garbanzo beans), fresh lemon juice and 1 teaspoon olive oil.

Snack: ½ cup 1% cottage cheese (calcium-fortified if available) topped with ½ cup of fresh or frozen berries.

Dinner: Broil a lean 4-ounce ground sirloin burger (or lean ground turkey burger) and serve it on a whole-wheat English muffin topped with sautéed mushrooms and onions. Serve burger with a large mixed green salad dressed with balsamic vinegar and 1 teaspoon olive oil.

Nutrition Information

1,473 calories

118 grams of carbohydrates

122 grams of protein

60 grams of fat

26 grams of fiber

34 grams of sugar

2,100 mg of sodium

821 mg of calcium

Day 3

Breakfast: Combine 1 cup of plain nonfat yogurt (look for Greek yogurt if available), 2 tablespoons flax seeds, 1 cup of fresh or frozen berries and 2 tablespoons Grape-Nuts or other high-fiber breakfast cereal.

Snack: 1 hard-boiled egg and a handful of baby carrots.

Lunch: Top a 6-inch whole-wheat tortilla with ¼ of a sliced avocado, 2 slices of tomato, 2 slices of part-skim mozzarella cheese, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard and 1 romaine lettuce leaf. Wrap up and enjoy with a bag of fresh green or purple grapes (about 15-20 grapes).

Snack: 1 cup of skim or soy milk and 1 ounce of raw almonds (about 20 almonds).

Dinner: Bake a 5-ounce boneless skinless chicken breast with fresh lemon juice, 2 teaspoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of capers or sliced green olives (in oven-proof baking dish at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes -- or until cooked through). Serve chicken with a corn salad comprised of 1 cup of frozen, thawed corn niblets, 1 diced plum tomato, ¼ cup black beans, topped with a pinch of sea salt and pepper.

Nutrition Information

1,508 calories

152 grams of carbohydrates

109 grams of protein

61 grams of fat

29 grams of fiber

54 grams of sugar

1,872 mg of sodium

1,183 mg of calcium

Tips to minimize withdrawal symptoms

Get yourself psyched to cleanse, but also be prepared. This may not be easy, but it is definitely worth it! It is really only the first one to two days that you are likely to feel any of these negative side effects, and I can assure you that by day four, you will feel better than you have in a long time!
To help combat side effects such as headaches and fatigue, try the following:
  • Drink adequate water — about 64 ounces per day. This will help to ease any negative side effects.
  • Add an extra piece of fruit or a very small glass of fruit juice if you are feeling extremely lethargic.
  • Get at least seven to eight hours of sleep per day. If this is not possible at night, try to fit in a few catnaps during the day.

Give it a go! And please come chat with us about your detoxification cleanse on the nutrition forum. I'd really love to hear from you.

The Firm

Sara Ryba is a registered dietitian, certified dietary nutritionist and a contributor to The FIRM Believers Club website, an online community that helps you reach your fitness, health and weight loss goals. With maximum-efficiency home workouts, support and motivation from The FIRM Master Instructors, daily tips, personalized workout rotation calendars, and access to other members through discussion boards, The Club provides all the tools you need to get in the shape you want.



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smplfied's picture
User offline. Last seen 6 years 30 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 12/31/2009

Is there a vegetarian version of the 3 Day Clean Food Detox Plan?

GwynJ's picture
User offline. Last seen 6 years 26 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 01/29/2010

I would suggest giving up gum-chewing and breath mints permanently. It fouls the air with an overwhelming scent, and many people unconsciously chew like cows.

SilkyJ's picture
User offline. Last seen 6 years 25 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 02/04/2010

Yes! A veggie version of the cleanse would be very well appreciated. And perhaps, a menu for a five day program would be nice too. Other than that though, the article was great!

KayleeGia's picture
User offline. Last seen 6 years 24 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 02/10/2010

Excellent menu! Tried it out last week and it was excellent. It's a lot better than the juice detox that I have been doing the last few years. It's not as taxing to the body as compared to other detox diets and definitely better for detox beginners looking for ways on the body.

Angela424's picture
User offline. Last seen 6 years 22 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 02/22/2010

It was difficult to cut out sugar, caffeine and "unconscious snacking" for 5 days, but I felt wonderful at the end. I have modified the plan for my daily eating and have lost over 10 pounds and a whole dress size in the past 6 weeks! I'm not "on a diet"...I am eating mindfully and respecting my body by eating foods that are healthy for it.

micwar's picture
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Joined: 04/08/2010

what about a gluten-free version? its near impossible for me to find detox diets that work for me. i'm also sensitive to rice and corn.

cybele0's picture
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This truly looks amazing, and I would absolutely try it, but for one thing: I eat a "strictly" plant-based diet. The "strictly" is sort of a confession: I still eat a lot of junk. Even vegan junk food is still junk food. So I think the detox would be beneficial, but for the animal products. Any ideas?

Kay424's picture
User offline. Last seen 6 years 5 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 06/20/2010

I just tried this and I felt great after 3 days. I didn't cut out the coffee though.

Pedro Maia
Pedro Maia's picture
User offline. Last seen 5 years 44 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 09/21/2010

I found a variation of this diet and that is what I am using. I must say I am achieving great results. I feel healthier and with more energy :)

leathemillioner's picture
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I have hyperthyroidism do you think detoxifying will help to balance the hormones to my system?

Kirs10's picture
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Joined: 12/07/2007

It's always safest to check with your physician before beginning any new regimen, such as a detox. Try Mayo Clinic's page on hyperthyroidism for more information: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hyperthyroidism/DS00344.

debbie35's picture
User offline. Last seen 4 years 21 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 03/01/2012

U would want folks to stop chewing gum and using breath mints? One word comes to mind GROSS. Yes some people chew like cows, but some peoples breath smells like ass and a piece of gum works wonders.

shankly769's picture
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hello can someone help me by guide me some detox ricieps,im 46 male 110 kilos and need to do something,please help.thanks

tgirlnc's picture
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Joined: 01/22/2013

I was doing some research on 3-day cleanses and this article came up...I had to join this site just to post a comment- HOW?? can you call this a "Detox Food Plan???"

Dear Sara (the writer)- There is NOTHING about this plan that is detox other than the fact that it is somewhat low calorie and advocates cutting out the basic "junk" that most people put in their bodies on a daily basis..this "food plan" at best is a somewhat...healthy 3-day meal plan...again there is NOTHING "DETOX" about this! In reality this 3 day plan is chock full of things that I would not dream of consuming on a "clean diet" let alone a detox diet....(dairy-tons of dairy, grains /gluten (an English muffin- really?, meats (that need to be organic grass-fed)..). The fact that there are processed foods even mentioned...makes hardly a diet at all (chemicals, horomones..genetically modified foods...are all in this post) awful article. Please to the author...and anyone reading it- do an internet search for "clean diet"..or "detox diet"...and click on any number of links that will TRULY tell you what you need to eat to "detox."

jbsegelken@gmail.com's picture
User offline. Last seen 3 years 2 weeks ago. Offline
Joined: 07/08/2013

I stay away from most carbs (fruit, grains) as I have found they help keep my blood sugar stabilized. I am also allergic to eggs. Is there an alternative detox? Thanks!

DobraM's picture
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Joined: 01/30/2016

Thanks for displaying these diet plans, they were really much helpful to me.

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