How to Cleanse Your Colon

A person in jeans eating a large bowl of greens and avocado.

The first thing you should know about colon cleansing is that there isn’t a whole lot known in the scientific community about the actual physical effects that colon detoxification has on your body. A colon cleanse may or may not have any true physical benefits. I can tell you, however, that there are numerous reports from numerous people who have gone through numerous regimens for cleansing the colon, and there does some to be a pretty positive general consensus. When people have a clean colon they report feeling happier, more energetic, and lighter. Many people also report having clearer skin, improved digestion, and an overall “better” feeling. To be honest, I believe them. We do rotten things to our bodies. It only makes sense that the steps we can take to clean the colon would make us feel better. And why wouldn’t they? In most cases, the steps used to colon clean are the same steps used to make yourself healthier in general. Turns out, a clean colon and a healthy body go hand-in-hand. So do yourself the favor of reading this article. The middle section explains what I feel is the best way to clean your colon out and to keep it clean. The bottom section covers some of the more direct methods for cleansing colons. These include the use of enemas, colon hydrotherapy practices such as high colonic irrigation, and commercial colon cleansers. While you’re at it, check out the bottom of the page. There, you will find some ideas to help you with a natural colon cleanse.

Clean Out Your Colon with Simple Lifestyle Changes

  1. a written poop calendar“Should I clean my colon?” This is a question that you should be able to answer for yourself. You are, after all, the only one who truly knows how you’re feeling. We are often falsely led to believe that we should be droppin’ a dooker two to three times a day. That’s B.S. It’s different for everyone. While some people do need that two or three times a day, some people only need two or three times per week. Most of us are somewhere in between. What’s normal for you is how often you’re pooping when you’re feeling your best. If frequency isn’t your concern, look at what you do to yourself. Do you eat a lot of foods that are bad for you? Do you smoke or drink too much? Do you have that “unfresh” feeling? Give it a shot and see how it goes. I think you’ll be surprised at how much better you feel. If you suffer from frequent diarrhea, constipation, or bloating, give it a shot. However, if you’re going to cleanse your colon, then commit to it. You can’t make a half-assed attempt at it and expect to get good results (ha! half-assed. I crack me up).
  2. junk foodWhat not to eat. Cutting things out of your diet is really the hardest part of colon cleaning. The body becomes accustomed to the garbage you pump into it, and wants it. That being said, you’ll probably feel kinda junky when working through the first few days of your new colon cleansing diet. As much as I hate being the bearer of bad news, here’s what you need to drop: refined/processed foods (hot dogs, tater tots, chicken nuggets, white bread, etc.), sugar/candy (soda, Twinkies, candy bars, cheap granola bars, cookies, anything with high fructose corn syrup, anything with artificial sweeteners, etc.), caffeine (coffee, tea, chocolate, soda), alcohol, and tobacco. Sorry.
  3. recommended food chart in shape of a plateColon cleanse diet. Now for the good stuff; the things you actually do get to eat. More than likely, your new colon cleansing diet is gonna require a trip to the grocery store. It’s OK, it’ll be worth it. Start in the produce aisle and load your cart with fresh/raw vegetables and fruits. For veggies, get whatever you want, but make sure to get a lot of leafy greens. Nuts, avocados and olives are also excellent. While you’re in the area, grab some hummus. It’s fantastic for dipping veggies and healthy crackers in. As far as fruits go, again, whatever you want. Berries are an excellent choice, though. Blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries are delicious and plum full of fibery goodness. As you carry on through the store, swing through the bean aisle. Legumes are fantastic sources of protein and fiber. Tasty, too. Hit the bread aisle next and find the things that are made from whole grains. But remember, breads aren’t the only places where whole grains can be found. Look for things like oats, barley, brown rice, rye, buckwheat, quinoa, flax, and millet. And now for the part you’ve been waiting for. Yes, you can eat dairy and meat. Just don’t be dumb about it. Eating small portions of lean meats is perfectly fine, but don’t fry them. Baking, broiling, and grilling are your best options. When eating dairy, take small amounts. Actually, yogurt is a fantastic way to help clean the colon. It contains probiotics that are beneficial for digestion.
  4. water being poured into a glassWater and juice. In most cases, the simplest of things are among the best colon cleansers. Proper hydration is essential for natural colon cleaning, proper digestion, and all-around colon health. While water is the best medicine, juice is good too. Just keep in mind that, because there is a lot of sugar in fruit juice, you will want to treat it more as a supplement. This is true, albeit to a lesser extent, of vegetable juices too. When you do drink juice, it’s a good idea to water it down a bit. There’s a lot speculation about how much water you should drink. Many sources say you should drink about eight glasses a day. Because our bodies glean so much water from the food we eat, that seems excessive to me. Just drink enough water/juice that your urine comes out pale yellow to clear.
  5. Incorporate some calmness into your life. A plethora of studies have shown that being a big ball of stress can wreak havoc on your digestive system. If you’re tense, your muscles are going to be tense, and your colon is gonna be far more likely to spasm and push food through at irregular rates. This is what leads to constant diarrhea and/or constipation. So work some time into your day to just chill. Oftentimes, all it takes is a couple of sporadic 20 minute breaks. Do things during these times that relax you, such as reading a book, listening to music, or even just sitting there in quiet reflection. If you are inordinately stressed, take the time to actively figure out what it is that’s stressing you and take appropriate actions towards correction.
  6. people running on a treadmillLet’s get physical. A regular exercise routine is one of the most difficult steps to incorporate into a colon cleansing routine. However, it’s paramount. Physical exercise is perhaps the best way to stimulate a healthy bowel movement. You don’t have to kill yourself doing it, either. A simple brisk walk is oftentimes more than adequate. There’s no need to stop there, though. Any cardiovascular workout will do it. Hit the treadmill, spend some time on the elliptical, go swimming, go for a run, or do some calisthenics. Not only will it help you poop better, it will help you feel better in general. A little exercise also fits into the calmness that was mentioned above. It’s a fine time for you to space out and get your mind off of things.

Colonics and Colon Cleansing Products

Outside of combining a colon-cleansing diet with a few lifestyle changes for achieving and maintaining a clean colon, there are several different routes that people frequently choose to take. In this section I will provide you with a brief description of the most common colon cleaning methods.

  • Enemas. An enema (a.k.a. colonic irrigation) is the administration of a liquid into the anus via an enema bag. The liquid is generally straight water or water mixed with sodium phosphate. There are, however, numerous enema recipes that can be found with a quick Google search. An enema bag (either re-usable or single use) comes equipped with a small nozzle that is designed to, once lubricated, be inserted into the anus. Gravity allows the liquid to flow from the enema bag into the colon. Once the procedure is complete (sometimes sooner than anticipated) evacuation occurs, and the process can be repeated if desired.
  • Colonic Hydrotherapy is another type of colonic irrigation. This colonic cleanse method is administered by a colon hydrotherapist. After a nozzle has been inserted into the anus, warm water is gently pushed into the colon to soften and loosen compacted doody. Most colonic hydrotherapists use a closed system in which a race to the toilet is not needed. The waste water flows back out through a tube and directly down the drain. The tube generally has a transparent section so you can, if desired, see exactly what is coming out of you. The high colonic is generally recommended for those people suffering from severe constipation or bloating.
  • Colon cleansers and supplements. For the most part, it would be a waste of your time for me to delve too far into this subject. Most commercial colon cleansers are taken orally and are a combination of various diuretic herbs and roots that are carefully blended with the intent of making you shit yourself silly. Most of these prove to be extremely effective to that end. I’m not saying anything bad about them. They are very popular, and people swear by them. I would, however, talk to an actual doctor before using one of these. Some of the more well known brands include Colonix Colon Cleanse by DrNatura, Colonetix, and Super Colon Cleanse.

Natural Colon Cleansing

bag of flax seedFlaxseed. This bulk-forming seed is very high in insoluble fiber. This basically means that it is not easily digestible and is therefore quite efficient at forcing its way through your system, leaving your colon nice and clean. Flaxseed is taken from the flax plant Linum usitatissimum and is native to the eastern Mediterranean and India.

bottle of psyllium fiberPsyllium fiber, in my opinion, is the best natural colon cleanser available. It can be purchased from any pharmacy and is extremely inexpensive. It is available in capsule form or as a powder to be mixed with water or juice. It is a bulk forming laxative derived from the seed husks of plants of the genus Plantago and is extremely effective at producing bowel movements. You can order some Metamucil Psyllium Fiber supplements from Amazon.

Bottle of BentoniteBentonite is a clay that is available as a gel, a powder, or in a capsule. The idea behind this natural colon cleanser is that, due to its highly absorptive nature, as it passes through your colon it absorbs toxins. These toxins, along with the bentonite, then pass out of your body with a very satisfying “plop.”

Bottle of Cascara SagradaCascara Sagrada is an extremely (sometimes overly) effective laxative derived from the bark of the American buckthorn tree. The laxative effects of Cascara Sagrada come from compounds known as anthroquinones which cause muscle contractions in the colon. It is available in capsule form, as a liquid extract, and even as bark. Just keep in mind that this product may leave your colon far cleaner than you ever expected.