What is the Difference Between a Cleanse and a Detox?

foods for a cleanse

Detoxing is an incredibly popular way for people to feel like they’re getting a fresh start. From water fasting to supplement-boosting regimens, there is no shortage of packages and methods for detoxing. Whether you’re looking for a way to lose weight, take a tolerance break, boost cognitive function, or feel more energized every day, a detox or cleanse could be your solution.

But is there a difference between a detox and cleanse? At Green Gone Detox, we’re here to help you find answers to some of the most common questions in the holistic health world. So if you’re ready to learn about the differences between a cleanse vs a detox, read on here for a breakdown from our expert team.

Basic Analysis

person holding detox tea

When it comes to cleanses vs detoxes, they’re very similar. Both are based on eating clean, healthy foods that are calorie-light but dense with nutrients. Depending on the type of cleanse or detox you choose, and how closely you follow the protocol, your results may vary. However, your overall health should improve, regardless of the differences between a detox and a cleanse. While the terms are used interchangeably, and both help you feel healthier, minimize cravings, increase energy, and defeat bloating, there are some distinctions between the two.


When you hear people talk about a cleanse, they’re primarily referring to eating minimally processed foods. Cleanses typically last a week or less, but there are some that last an entire month. With a cleanse, the focus is on the digestive system, giving it a rest, helping fight bloat, and supporting regular bowel movements. Part of a cleanse is a comprehensive diet change and a significant increase in water intake.


Detoxes vs cleanses are actually more intensive of the two and take your cleanse to the next level. A true detox regimen focuses on the liver, instead of the digestive system, taking it through three phases of cleansing. Your routine will guide you through toxin release, neutralization, and elimination. Any detox system that doesn’t do all three won’t be as effective in revitalizing your liver and enhancing future function.

Whether you’re detoxing from natural toxins, which accumulate in our bodies over time due to our environment, or you’re striving to get rid of cannabis, alcohol, sugar, or any other artificial chemical, a detox will help you restore your body on a cellular level.

Since detoxes are so intense, they don’t typically last more than ten days and can be as short as two days. After a detox, you’ll feel less bloated, and your digestive system will be more efficient, but it’s your liver and kidneys that have truly been restored. With a detox vs a cleanse, most people notice enhanced mental clarity, rebalanced vital hormone functions, and a drop in cravings.

Where Do Toxins Come From

pollution from factories

Many people assume that the only toxins they need to cleanse are those they put in their bodies themselves. However, we’re constantly and involuntarily exposed to a variety of toxins. From polluted air and pesticides to synthetic materials from our clothing and chemical-laden home products, you’ll need a regular detox or cleansing regimen – even if you already eat an incredibly healthy diet!

In addition to environmental factors, we also enjoy a variety of foods and drinks that may slow our bodies down over time, accumulating in our bodies and affecting us over the long term. Artificial and processed foods, drugs, and alcohol can all have negative consequences for your body.

Signs You Need a Detox vs a Cleanse

Now that you know the difference between a detox and a cleanse, it’s time to find out when it’s appropriate to start these unique regimens. In general, you shouldn’t need an overall detox more than four times a year unless you’re targeting a specific buildup, like cannabis or alcohol. However, when it comes to cleanses, they’re much easier on the body, and you can start a new regimen once a month or whenever you feel you need one.

So how do you know it’s time for a detox vs a cleanse? Pay attention to what your body is telling you. Some top signs it’s time for a cleanse include:

  • Trouble losing weight
  • Constipation
  • Bloating
  • Frequent headaches
  • Puffy eyes

Some signs it’s time for a detox include:

  • Excessive fatigue
  • White or yellow tongue
  • Skin rashes
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Difficulty concentrating daily

When it comes to detoxing from a specific substance, there are a few additional signs to look out for, including:

  • Feeling frequently angry or depressed
  • Rising anxiety
  • Mood swings
  • Craving the specific substance

For cannabis specifically, you may notice that your tolerance has increased, forcing you to consume more product to get the same effects. At this point, a tolerance break and detox are essential to reset your body and completely flush out the cannabis.

Our Type of Detox


At Green Gone Detox, we primarily work with cannabis detox regimens, although we also offer holistic support for your entire body with supplemental wellness products. Whether you’re doing a general cleanse vs a detox, you can still find support on our site. Explore topics like the best foods to eat while detoxing, workout routines to maximize your results, and holistic lifestyle changes to enhance your overall wellness. Browse our store to find the detox products you need, and check out our blogs for even more guidance!

Have questions? We’re here to help! Reach out to the team at any time for more information about our products.

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