Learning about how environmental toxins and poor diet can affect them, many consumers are turning to detox and cleansing programs as a proactive approach to health.

Detoxification and cleansing has been practiced throughout history by many cultures for physical and spiritual reasons. Many ancient cultures took part in cleansing rituals, while detoxification is a part of traditional Chinese, Native American and ayurvedic medicine.

Further, in many religions, including Christianity, Judaism and Buddhism, fasting is a way of purifying the soul. “It’s a way of resetting one’s moral clock, of starting with a clean slate,” said Michael McCullough, a psychology professor at the University of Miami, in an interview with Newsweek.

Today, the market for detoxification and cleansing products is on the rise. In fact, according to a Mintel study, the number of food and drink products with detoxification claims has increased fourfold since 2003. Part of the reason for this growth is the exposure from experts/television personalities such as Dr. Oz and the influence that they have on their viewers. For instance, Dr. Oz introduced his viewers to a three-day detox to jump start energy on an episode of his show. “Consumers hear and listen to these recommendations— as indicated by the marked sales increases of these supplements in the days following their mentions,” said Zoe Kissam, herbalist and associate brand manager for California-based Traditional Medicinals.

(See quote from Matt Warnock, President, RidgeCrest Herbals and mention of KidneyAid and LiverClean.)

More at Vitamin Retailer