What do the Ingredients of the Master Cleanse do?

Each ingredient in the Master Cleanse (otherwise known as the Lemonade Diet) was chosen for a specific reason and the ingredients also work together to provide detoxifying benefits. Read below to see what each ingredient does and learn why the Master Cleanse works as well as it does.


The lemon is an amazing fruit and an essential component of the Master Cleanse.  It will nourish you during your cleanse because it contains calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, sodium, zinc, copper, selenium and iron.  Lemons are high in vitamin C and also contain thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-5 and B-6, as well as protein and fiber and other trace nutrients.

Lemons are the ONLY fruit that have more anions than cations.  Anions are simply atoms that have a negative charge, and cations molecules with a positive charge.  Because the lemon has more anions, it has a composition resembling your stomachs natural digestive enzymes.  These enzymes are used not only for food but also as your body cleanses itself of dead cells and waste that has accumulated in the body from poor diet, bad habits, toxins and pollutions.  So the lemon actually helps break down this waste in the body and helps to purge impurities during your cleanse.

The lemon has several acids that help to break down calcified substances in the body like gallstones and kidney stones.  Many people report passing gallstones on the Master Cleanse that they never even knew they had.  Lemon is a natural cleansing agent for the body that breaks down and eliminates mucus.  If you find yourself coming down with a cold, and I’m speaking of any time, not specifically while on the Master Cleanse, a cup of the lemonade with cayenne pepper mixture is a great remedy.

Note:  Don’t use Meyer Lemons, otherwise known as Valley lemons, for the Master Cleanse.  They are a cross between a true lemon and a mandarin orange and don’t have the same properties of a proper lemon.

Maple Syrup:

Maple Syrup is the ingredient that gives you the fuel that will keep you going over the period of the Master Cleanse.  It contains a number of minerals and vitamins in trace amounts like potassium, calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, sodium, iron, zinc, copper, tin, sulfur, and silicon.  Maple Syrup has vitamins A, B-1, B-2, B-5, B-6, biotin, folic acid and amino acids.  One tablespoon has around 55 calories, and this is where your body will be drawing your energy.

Maple Syrup has different grades, and you absolutely essentially need to use grade B, which is the highest quality and contains the nutrients you need.  You should also use organic maple syrup.  You may need to search to find organic grade B maple syrup if you live in a rural area, or order it online.

Cayenne Pepper:

Cayenne pepper is ground from the seeds and pods of red peppers of the Capsicum family.  The most active compound in these peppers in capsaicin, and this is what gives the pepper its heat.  It is high in vitamins A and C, contains B vitamins also, and contains potassium and calcium.

Cayenne is good for a variety of things- the heat makes it a natural pain reliever, it stops internal bleeding and external bleeding when applied externally, and it can even stop a heart attack when placed as a powder under the tongue!  It’s a natural stimulant (you won’t get any sort of jitters or “buzz” at all) that boosts metabolism, purifies and thins the blood thereby increasing circulation, and is helpful for digestive disorders.

As the lemon does, it also breaks up mucus in the body. That makes it beneficial to your sinuses, lungs and bronchial tubes and improves your breathing.  And it also acts as a catalyst- it makes other herbs work more effectively.

You’ll be able to find it in a majority of supermarkets, in the spice section, and organic and health food stores.  Look for cayenne that is red in color or deep orange, as that will be the freshest as its color fades with age.  To keep it freshest you should store it in a dark, cool place.

Laxatives and Salt Water Flush:

The salt water flush is made by adding two teaspoons (not tablespoons) of un-iodized sea salt to 1 quart of warm water.  This mixture is the same salinity as your blood, so as you drink this, the salt is not absorbed into your blood stream.  Unless you are deficient in salt or trace minerals, you will not take in any of the salt.  Rather, it is like an internal wash for the body.  It will pass right through you, and go right through your colon, washing you from the inside.

There are a variety of laxative teas to choose from.  A good choice is “Smooth Move.”  Make sure that the tea is not caffeinated.

Now you’ve learned why the Master Cleanse really works! If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments for me.

What is the Master Cleanse (Lemonade Diet) Recipe?

In a tall glass, add:

  • • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • • 1/10 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

Fill the glass with 8-10 oz filtered water and stir it up.

You should seek to drink your lemonade fresh – within ten minutes of preparing it.  When it is fresh, it has the most beneficial enzymes that will help you with nutrition and help you on your Cleanse.  These enzymes break down as time passes.

If you find that the mixture is too sweet, you can try it with 1 tablespoon of the maple syrup.  If you are tired or don’t have enough energy, you can drink more of the lemonade mixture throughout the day, or you can increase the maple syrup to 3 tablespoons per glass.

If you can’t make your lemonade fresh, for instance if you are on the go all day and away from home, you can mix the maple syrup and the lemonade ahead of time and keep it in a thermos.  You can mix enough to make multiple glasses of the lemonade.  Then, when you need a glass, measure out four tablespoons of this mixture, add the cayenne pepper (don’t forget to take it with you), and water wherever you are.  The maple syrup acts as a preservative for the enzymes in the lemons.  Drink the mixture within 10 minutes of adding the water.

Want to know what each ingredient in the Master Cleanse does and why it works? Click here.

The Ultimate Master Cleanse Shopping List

You’ve got to be sure to get the best ingredients for your cleanse or you won’t get the results you want. I’ve compiled a list of the brands I personally use when I do the Master Cleanse so you can’t go wrong!

I have found that it is often cheaper and easier to order the ingredients for the Master Cleanse online. If you live in a rural area, you may not be able to find some of the ingredients locally anyway.


Here are my favorites:

Coombs Family Farm Grade B Maple Syrup

Simply Organic Cayenne Pepper

Celtic Sea Salt

Smooth Move Laxative Tea


You can also save even more time and money and order all the ingredients at once in a “Master Cleanse Kit”. This one is the cheapest I have found (and it has free shipping which is huge, as the others I’ve seen charge $20 for shipping):

10 Day Organic Master Cleanse Kit


I hope you found this list of recommendations helpful. They are what I personally use so I can vouch for the quality of these ingredients.


Do you have a different brand you have used and liked? Let me know in the comments below.