If you’re looking for a healthy natural cleanse / detoxification program, it’s tough to beat the Clean Program by Dr. Alejandro Junger. Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Do cleanses really work?” It’s true that there are a TON of fad detoxes out there, many with high profile celebrity endorsements, some of them limit you to things like water and lemon. But the Clean Program is different:
- No dieting — eat as much as you want!
- Eat real, yummy food, not just juice or raw nuts
- Scientific: this was the big selling point for me. Reading Dr. Junger’s book Clean, it becomes clear that his cleanse is rooted not in “ancient traditions” or empirical evidence, but rather in a deep understanding of the complicated internal ecosystem of our gastrointestinal system.
Unfortunately, the Clean Program also has some disadvantages, the main one being the price. If you purchase the cleanse through Dr. Junger’s website, you’ll pay $425 for a 1-person supply of the necessary shakes, powders, and pills.
The Clean Program’s Dirty Secret
Although the book provides many excellent natural whole food alternatives for the Clean Program shakes, you’re kind of left on your own to figure out the supplements, and Dr. Junger provides surprisingly few recommendations as to brands or availability, instead referring you only to the program website. When you visit the website, you find out why: they sell their own versions of all the recommended supplements, at enormously inflated prices!
I like to think that Dr. Junger wrote Clean with the best of intentions, but one day some enterprising intern at his publisher decided: “hey, we could make a TON more money if, instead of recommending natural whole food alternatives people could get themselves, we instead sold our own processed and packaged versions of everything!” And so a book that’s all about eliminating processed food and chemicals from your life became a vehicle to sell, well, processed food and chemicals.
But if, like me, you believe in the science behind the Clean detoxification program, it’s hard to resist the convenience of getting all of the necessary nutrients in one convenient package. Reconstructing the Clean Program supplements from whole foods would take a TON of research, shopping time, and money. It’s easy to see why many people choose to shell out the $425 bucks.
And that’s where Clean’s dirty secret comes in: they don’t manufacture their own supplements. The entire Clean Program package is manufactured by a company called Metagenics, then relabeled and resold (at much higher prices) by Clean. Metagenics products are not easy to find, but I’ve taken the time to track down the Metagenics name for every Clean Program product. I’ve also linked to the store where you can purchase it for the lowest price (which in nearly every case was Amazon, or an Amazon seller).
Cheaper Alternatives to the Clean Program Supplements
|Clean Name||Metagenics Name|
|Nourish$65||UltraInflamX Plus 360~ $58|
|EncourageOnly as part of $425 Cleanse Package||Ultra Flora Ib$35|
|Clear 2$34 (63 count)||CandiBactin-BR$24 (90 count)|
Balance$60 (63 count)
|Insinase$50 (90 count)|
|Ease$20 (63 count)||Metazyme|
|ReliefOnly available as part of $425 Cleanse Package||AdvaClear$24.50|
(And a lot more flexibility in deciding which parts of the package you’d like to use.)
Now, a few disclaimers: as with any diet, you should consult with a physician before trying Clean or the Metagenics clean alternatives. Some of these supplements look pretty hefty to me, so you’ll want to make sure they’re right for your body. I determined these alternatives to be identical to the clean program based upon observation of the ingredients only; I have no special insider knowledge from the Clean people, so caveat emptor, you will want to do your own research. You can check the ingredients and other information for the Metagenics producs on their website, and compare to the ingredients lists on the Clean website. One thing that I did notice is that the quantities and serving sizes are often different. Usually the Metagenics version provides greater quantity for less money: Eg, Clean’s Clear 1 provides 21 capsules for $40. On Amazon, the equivalent Metagenics Proboulardi costs $31 for 30 capsules. The only exception I noticed was MetaFiber, where the Clean version (Move) provides about a 50% larger size.