My Detox Journey with Traditional Korean Medicine: Understanding

My Detox Journey with Traditional Korean Medicine: The Beginning

After the visit to the Traditional Korean medicine doctor, I cancelled all my foodie trips and explained all or part of my situation to my family and friends. A few years ago, my aunt had overcome cancer with a macrobiotic diet, so my family seemed to understand fasting and detoxification well.

Ryan thumbs-up

Autophagy and Fasting

To better understand my own situation, I looked up “autophagy” and “apoptosis,” because those were the words the Korean doctor used to explain what I will be doing.

From my understanding through videos like the ones from above, autophagy is the process of the body naturally recycling the cells of the body, and apoptosis is the process of a cell naturally dissolving itself after a certain amount of time. When the body is fasting, it can boost the autophagy process and kill unwanted cells faster than when the body is eating normally. Fasting triggers autophagy within 24 hours, and the longer you fast, the more benefits you will get.

Hmm… I see I see…

With that background knowledge in mind, I was ready to decipher the Korean explanation that my doctor would send me along with the medicine and nutrients.

Postman Pat with packages
You’ve got mail!

Replacement Meals

A few days later, two boxes of medicine and nutrients arrived in the mail. There were 30 packs of replacement meals in each box. One pack included seven different types of smaller packets like these.

traditional Korean medicine

These were the differences between these small packets. The explanations of these packets did not tell me much about which specific Korean medicinal herb is included.

  • The green packets (top row)
    • 청일수 (1): a tea bag made from 14 different types of Korean medicinal herbs. This mixture is supposed to help with the detox. Replace every drink including water with this tea, and drink around 1.5 L of this tea every day (30 mL x weight in kg).
    • 청이장 (2): 24 different types of fermented Korean medicinal herbs that will clean out your small and large intestines. Swallow with the 청일수 tea before breakfast and before going to bed. Never chew it because it would stick to your teeth and decrease the effectiveness.
  • The brown packets (bottom row from left to right)
    • Make a nutritional shake by mixing the seven packets with the 청일수 tea. Drink it slowly. If you do not like this shake, they can be consumed in different ways specified in the instructions.
    • 청오식 (1): Includes one meal’s worth of nutrients and minerals while also bringing back strength to the body. Perfect for replacement meals.
    • 청육행 (2): Strengthens the liver, kidney, and veins while improving the metabolism. Also strengthens muscles and ligaments and stimulates cell regeneration.
    • 청삼혈 (2): Detoxifies the veins, internal organs, muscles, and ligaments.
    • 청구력 (1): Includes various fermented mushrooms and pollen that improves the overall health with anti-cancer, anti-allergy, and anti-aging effects.
    • 청사심 (1): Releases toxins caused by stress, nervous strain, depression, fear, etc. Brings back the autonomic nervous system to a normal balance by enhancing the safety and strength of the nerves.

Possible Symptoms from Detoxification

Along with it was more pages of explanations of the theory it is based on and how this process could affect my body. These effects typically appear if I am already more prone to being sick in that part of the body.

  • Headache and dizziness. (Day 3-7)
  • Body odor. (Day 3-7) *A sign of detoxification.
  • Urine including blood, a strong smell, or no smell. (Day 5-20)
  • Constipation or diarrhea.
  • Drowsiness and fatigue. (Day 3-7) *A sign of detoxification.
  • High fever. *A sign of the beginning of treatment.
  • Swelling. (Day 5-15) *A sign of cleaning out the blood in the veins.
  • Vomiting. *Common for people who consume more meat.
  • Skin Reactions. (peeling, itchiness, rashes, etc.)
  • Stinging pain, numbness, bleeding gum, back pain. (Day 5-10) *A sign of detoxification.
  • There might be pain in a body part that you have hurt before. (Day 7-10, but could last longer)
  • Hair falling out after 1 or 2 months. *Healthy hair will grow back.
  • Menstrual periods may stop temporarily (Day 20-40).
  • etc…

Dos and Don’ts of Eating Habits

There was also a long list of things that I should and should not be eating even after I stop this detoxification process. Most of the “poisonous” foods were ones that I already knew as unhealthy but consume regularly.

Food that creates “poison” Eat less of…Healthier Options
Food additives
Artificial flavoring
Fried food
Instant ramen
French fries
Potato chips
Ice cream
Fast food
Frozen food
Midnight snacks
White rice
Sweet potatoes
White sugar
GMO food

(in case of
Eating less.

Skipping breakfast
if food is consumed
later at night on the
previous day.

Brown rice


Raw vegetables

Fermented food
-miso, kimchi, natto,
cheese, yogurt, etc.

Steamed or boiled
  • An ideal breakfast: fruits and healthy tea.
  • An ideal lunch: steamed potato or sweet potatoes with salads. Salad dressings should be almond oil or olive oil with some salt or soy sauce.
  • An ideal snack: fruits or nuts.
  • An ideal dinner: Brown rice with steamed vegetables, miso soup, tofu, and kimchi.
Vegetables and fruits

At first, I felt like I was dragged into this situation, but now I am more hopeful after my research. My 25-day detoxing journey starts tomorrow

nervous shaking
Am I ready…?

Phase 1 (Day 1-5): Replace dinner
Phase 2 (Day 6-15): Replace lunch and dinner
Phase 3 (Day 16-25): Replace breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Mangan, P.D. (2016, Aug 12). The Sweet Spot for Intermittent Fasting. Retrieved from


8 thoughts on “My Detox Journey with Traditional Korean Medicine: Understanding”

  1. Hey there I got the green packets from acupuncturist, I was hoping you could tell me where you ordered yours? I like them but cannot find them anywhere, if you could please share where to shop for it that’s be awesome thanks!


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