Using Detox Products While Trying to Conceive


Dear Livitician,
My wife and I are trying to get pregnant and we have some concerns about an over-the-counter detox/nutritional product that we are taking. The product is called Elemis Silhouette and it contains Gotu Cola, Kelp, and Klamath Lake Algae.

My wife has been taking the product for a week now and has 3 weeks to go on it. I have done some research on the ingredients and from what I see there is little human research on the product so the generic warning of "avoid if pregnant" shows up.

Is this a product that we should really be concerned about or is this like the warnings of don't use a cell phone and don't stand too close to the microwave. I think that the pills are fancy "snake oil" but I believe in the power of the placebo effect and as long as my wife thinks that they will help her detox the better she will make herself feel.

Thank you!


I do not recommend this product for optimal detoxifying.

Increasing dietary fiber (eating 3 grams of dietary fiber per snack and 5 or more per meal), eating organic fruits and vegetables, exercising and increased water intake (sipping all day) is the best way to detoxify and keep your body clean.

The specific ingredients you listed have not been established in regards to safety for pregnancy and lactation. For Gotu kola-the only adverse reaction established is allergic reaction- contact dermatitis and large doses may be sedating; Kelp is great as an iodine source.

Health and happiness to you and your wife!

--Deborah A. Klein, MS, RD

Deborah Klein

Deborah Klein , MS, RD, is the world’s first Livitician™ coach, a term she coined beyond Dietician, counseling clients on nutrition and fitness for 17 years. Her mission is to educate others on achieving optimal wellness through balanced eating, intrinsic coaching and exercise.

At University of California, Davis, Deborah received a Bachelor of Science degree in Dietetics and a minor in Exercise Physiology and received her Registered Dietitian license in Georgia. She also completed her Master’s of Science degree in Foods and Nutrition with an emphasis in sports nutrition at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona and is a PhD candidate at Saybrook University Graduate College of Mind-Body Medicine. She is also a Certified Intrinsic Coach, which she incorporates into her nutrition counseling to delve into the core of ones’ experiences and thoughts, to identify any barriers to enable long-term health.

Her past career experiences include hosting a TV show in Georgia on Midday News Live, teaching “5 A Day - For Better Health,” working for CNN, Food & Health News and honored as “Registered Dietitian of the Year” by the Spectrum Health Club in Los Angeles. Recently, she was named “Young Dietitian of the Year,” by the American Dietetics Association and served as President of the Los Angeles Dietetics Association.

Currently, Deborah has a private practice where she specializes in weight loss, diabetes, hyperlipidemia, disease prevention, and long-term wellness. She is the author of “200 Superfoods That Will Save Your Life” published by McGraw-Hill, Inc. that details her “Livit” philosophy to achieve one’s wellness goals. Through education and discovering each individual’s full potential, Deborah provides individuals with “A Plan to LIVE for!” She resides in Los Angeles and relishes being a mother of 2 boys, Hayden (8 years) and Eitan (6 years).