Colonics Preparation… the Do’s & Don’ts

Have you decided to get colon hydrotherapy and want to get the best results while maximizing the benefits? Well, let us first congratulate you for taking this step and investing in your health! Now, let’s explore ways to improve the outcomes of your treatment. After all, you have been storing up all of that toxic waste in your colon over a lifetime, so imagine how great it will feel to clear out as much of it as possible! 

With years of experience and over a thousand colonic treatments under our belt, we’ve developed a list of suggestions to help make your experience more comfortable and successful. You may be wondering how we gauge the success of a treatment. Well, as you may have guessed, it’s all about what comes out and how much of it.

Here are some suggestions to help you prepare for an effective colon hydrotherapy. It is ideal to start this process at least 3 days prior to your first colonics appointment.

Do Drink Water

Drink at least 8 glasses of water each day. If this is difficult for you, try drinking 8 cups of herbal teas such as peppermint, fennel, licorice or chamomile. Alternatively, you can just drink hot water with lemon, grated ginger, fresh mint leaves or cinnamon sticks. All great ways to make drinking water more tasty.  If you don’t have enough water already, the large intestine soaks up water from your food waste making the stool very hard and difficult to pass.  This is one of the most common ways constipation occurs.  While colon hydrotherapy is a powerful way to combat constipation, it is even more effective if you are well hydrated.

For more tips on constipation, check out our blog here.

Do Eat Vegetables

Incorporate as many green vegetables and salad leaves into your daily diet as possible. Vegetables should represent 70% of your plate. If that seems too much for you to do, aim for at least 50%. 

For some, raw veggies will cause bloating and gas. If you experience abdominal discomfort from raw vegetables, try them lightly steamed or cooked in broth. And, be sure to discuss this with us so we get to the root cause of what’s causing your abdominal discomfort and help you strengthen your digestion. A healthy gut can easily digest raw veggies.  And a plate full of veggies is a colon full of fiber, which helps us eliminate waste!

Do Chew Your Food

Did you know you are supposed to chew 20-30 times before swallowing? I know that sounds like a lot, but chewing your food well decreases undigested food and gas pockets in your colon. As my grandfather used to say, “Your stomach does not have teeth, so chew your food.”  Putting down your utensil or your sandwich between each bite is a helpful way to allow more time for chewing.  In our line of work we see A LOT of undigested foods pass through the colon, and food stands a much better chance at making it’s way out in a timely fashion if it has been well-chewed.

Do Drink Vegetable Juices

If you have a juice machine, this is the time to pull it out! Start with juicing celery first thing in the morning and other vegetable juices throughout the day. Just remember to drink vegetable juice on an empty stomach and wait 20 minutes before consuming other foods (we want that goodness to absorb quickly and not get tied up in digestion). Adding a little ginger (about 1 inch), turmeric and lemon will make your juice even more effective. If you are new to vegetable juicing, you may want to include a small apple or pear to add a little sweetness.  Fresh juices are hydrating, will ease the burden of the digestive tract and some even have a mild laxative effect – all great things prior to a colonic.  

Remember, whenever you juice, use only organic ingredients. Juices are concentrated. You don’t want to consume concentrated pesticides!

If you don’t have a juicer, here are some great places near by that offer organic vegetable juices:

Charleston:  The Daily, Huriyali. 

Mount Pleasant:  Clean Juice, Whole Foods, Blend.

West Ashley:  Whole Foods. 

Summerville:  Fusion Smoothie & Juice Bar 

In addition to adding some healthy habits like juicing and drinking water to get ready for your colonics, there a few things to avoid – or at least cut back on – in the days leading up to your appointment. Like everything in life, balance is key. So, take these with a grain of salt and do your best to give your colon a rest before your colon hydrotherapy.

Don’t Drink Alcohol

Even if you just drink socially or simply enjoy a glass of wine with dinner, it is best to avoid all alcohol for a few days prior to your colonics treatment. Your body doesn’t treat alcohol like other ingested items. Rather, the digestive system works hard to eliminate it because of its toxic properties. Alcohol is converted into acetaldehyde, a chemical classified as a cancer-causing agent which is particularly toxic to the liver, our main organ of detoxification. Tobacco smoke and asbestos both share this highest Group 1 carcinogen rating. In addition being toxic to our bodies, alcohol introduces a lot of sugar to the digestive tract (feeding potential pathogens such as yeast) and is dehydrating. As a general recommendation, we suggest liver protective supplements such as milk thistle when consuming alcohol. 

Don’t Drink Carbonated Beverages 

The gas in these frizzy drinks create gas pockets in your bowel which trap waste. The fewer the gas pockets, the more comfortable your irrigation treatment will be.  In addition, many people don’t realize that carbonated drinks leach calcium from your bones. So, you are better off drinking them infrequently. Or, you can do your bones a favor and stop drinking them all together.

Don’t Smoke

We all know it is bad for our lungs, but did you know that smoking is also very dehydrating? If you are a current smoker please try to avoid smoking as much as possible in the days prior to your colonic treatment. This also includes cannabis. Even if you are able reduce smoking, it will help your body to stay hydrated for your treatment. 

Don’t Eat Gas-Forming Foods

Some foods can really be gas producing and you have probably had a few embarrassing moments in public already because of them. The good thing is colonics can help clear out a lot of wind and trapped gas.

The main gas forming culprits are wheat, dairy, legumes and cruciferous vegetables. 

o It is ideal to eliminate gluten and dairy from your diet prior to your colon hydrotherapy appointments.

o If you love pasta, try kelp or buckwheat pasta instead and eat it in smaller quantities. Remember vegetables should be 70% of your plate.

o Legumes such as beans and lentils are best eaten if they have been sprouted as they are easier to digest and less likely to cause gas.

o Vegetables from the cruciferous family such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, onions, leeks are best eaten in small portions and make sure you chew them properly so that your enzymes break them down.

Don’t Eat Fast Food

Processed foods get stuck inside the gut. They lack dietary fiber which dramatically slows their transit time through your GI system. They also lack nutritional value. 

Although it’s best to avoid processed foods all the time, please be certain to say no to these convenience foods in the days leading up to your treatment. Avoid all meals that come from a drive-thru, along with sugary foods, artificial sweeteners, white flours, chocolate, sweets, biscuits, and pastries. 

Don’t Take Laxatives

Laxatives are very irritating to the colon and your digestive system. In fact, they weaken the muscles of the colon, which over time exacerbates constipation. These seemingly harmless solutions help give relief when you’re constipated but, they can exacerbate constipation in the in the long run as your colon becomes dependent on them and loses its ability to function well.

It’s important to note that herbal teas and herbal laxatives (such as senna),  can be just as problematic as over the counter and prescription laxatives when used over long periods of time. The occasional use of these herbal solutions is fine.

Colon hydrotherapy works to exercise and reactivate the colon, which helps restore natural bowel regularity.

Why Bother with the Preparation?

At this point you are probably thinking why bother with this preparation and this feels overwhelming. Isn’t a colonic meant to clean me out anyway?

Of course it does, but if you are looking to improve the results of your colon hydrotherapy and clean out as much toxic waste from the colon as possible, it can make a big difference if you arrive fully hydrated and having eaten sufficient amount of fiber in advance.

Doing the preparation will mean you maximize your benefit from each colon hydrotherapy appointment.

Colonics is not a quick fix for a poor diet and lifestyle. During your appointments with us, we’ll provide you with many ideas on how to incorporate healthier foods into your day to day life. We are committed to helping you feel your best!

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Dr. Tara Meyerink

Dr. Tara is a Doctor of Clinical Nutrition and is a National Board certified Integrative and Functional N Nutrition Practitioner.

She believes that getting to the root cause of health issues is the key to sustaining health and wellness. Teaching clients the “why” behind recommended action steps for health improvement empowers them to learn to listen to their body and pro-actively take responsibility for their health. She believes one never stops learning.

Dr. Tara worked 20+ years in public education and educational administration prior to becoming a healthcare provider. She has authored and co-author peer-reviewed publications, does public speaking regarding longevity and nutrition, and mentors/supervises functional nutrition residents/candidates for their national boards.