16 Natural Ways To Cleanse Your Colon With Remedies And Prevention Tips

Simple home remedies to cleanse the colon and flush out toxins effectively.

Medically Reviewed by Dr. Saba, BHMS, MD
By Shaheen Naser

While we eat every day, it is natural for some food and waste to accumulate inside our digestive system, including the colon. However, this accumulation can turn toxic in the long run. Hence, you must be aware of the ways to cleanse your colon from time to time. This process helps detoxify your body, improves your digestive health, and aids in better nutrient absorption.

The process of colon cleansing is also known as colon therapy or hydrotherapy. It involves flushing liquids into the colon to wash off the toxic waste deposits. However, you also can carry out this process naturally.

As an alternative to hydrotherapy or the typical colon cleansing procedure, you can use certain natural ingredients to flush toxins out of your system. While most of these may seem effective, their efficacy is only based on anecdotal evidence. Hence, caution and medical supervision are advised while employing these methods. Read on to know more.

What Is A Natural Colon Cleanse And How Does It Work?

A natural colon cleanse is an effective way to naturally detoxify the body. It aims to remove any accumulated feces from your colon and intestinal tract. Colon cleansing is also referred to as colon therapy.

There are three ways you can cleanse your colon:

  • Take Supplements: You may take them orally or via the rectum to help your colon expel its contents. Such supplements are easily available in supermarkets, pharmacies, and other drugstores.
  • Colon Irrigation: It is a process in which colon hydrotherapists pump gallons of water via a small tube inserted into the rectum.
  • Self-Administered Coffee Enemas: This is an alternative therapy for colon cleansing. However, ensure you consult a naturopathic practitioner before implementing this method.

Any of these methods can be effective in cleansing your colon. However, studies supporting these practices are limited. But a natural colon cleanse could have certain benefits.

What Are The Benefits Of A Natural Colon Cleanse?

A natural colon cleanse is believed to help expel undigested substances from your body. Cleansing your colon enhances your vitality by:

  • Helping you lose weight
  • Improving your overall mental and physical health
  • Improving the functioning of your immune system
  • Reducing your risk of developing colon cancer

Medical Treatment Options

Conventional colon therapy involves cleansing the colon using water or laxatives. Colon hydrotherapy uses water to remove the contents of the colon (1). Other methods employed are barium enema, intravenous pyelography, etc., especially in the preparation for intestinal surgery (2).

There is no scientific backing for the effectiveness of these methods. Frequent colon therapy is also suspected to have serious consequences, including dehydration and the inability to defecate naturally. Hence, exercise caution and do not overdo it.

We will now explore a few natural ways to cleanse your colon.

Home Remedies For Colon Cleansing

1. Garcinia Cambogia

Supplementation with Garcinia Cambogia (Malabar tamarind) suppresses your appetite and increases your metabolism. This is due to the presence of a compound called hydroxycitric acid (HCA). Garcinia Cambogia not only helps flush out all the toxins from your body but may also help control body weight and treat inflammation and glucose tolerance (3), (4).

You Will Need

Garcinia Cambogia supplements (500-1000mg)

What You Have To Do
  1. Consume Garcinia Cambogia supplements.
  2. You can also add Garcinia Cambogia to your daily diet.
How Often You Should Do This

Consume Garcinia Cambogia supplements 1 to 2 times daily.

2. Apple Juice

Apple juice to cleanse the colon

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The pectin (fiber) in apples has insoluble and soluble properties (5). It helps in bulking up your stool and makes it easy to pass. This may aid your weight loss efforts. Additionally, apples may also prevent and inhibit the growth of colon cancer cells (6), (7). 

You Will Need
  • 1 apple
  • 1 cup of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Take an apple and cut it into pieces.
  2. Blend the pieces with a cup of water.
  3. Consume the apple juice.
  4. After 30 minutes, drink a glass of water.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this multiple times daily for at least 3 days.

3. Lemon Detox Drink

Lemons are rich in vitamin C which enhances metabolism and may aid detoxification (8). The nutrient is also a natural antioxidant that protects your body from free radical damage (9). As per a study, a lemon detox diet (predominantly involving lemon juice) could also reduce body fat (10).

You Will Need
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1-2 teaspoons of honey
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 glass of lukewarm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Squeeze half a lemon and add the juice to a glass of lukewarm water.
  2. Add salt and honey and mix well.
  3. Consume this lemon detox drink.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this every morning on an empty stomach.

Note: Since lemon is acidic, rinse your mouth with plain water after you consume it to prevent erosion of the tooth enamel.

4. Yogurt

Yogurt to cleanse the colon

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Yogurt is a natural probiotic that may help restore the beneficial gut flora (11). The intestines contain lots of good bacteria, the absence of which may cause a series of digestive and health problems. Yogurt is also a rich source of antioxidants (12). Daily consumption of yogurt helps in maintaining the level of probiotics in your body, which, in turn, could help in colon cleanse (although direct research in this aspect is lacking). 

You Will Need

A bowl of plain yogurt

What You Have To Do

Consume a bowl of plain yogurt.

How Often You Should Do This

Have plain yogurt 1 to 2 times every day with no added sugar or fruit.

5. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has antioxidant and antibiotic properties that can be beneficial for a healthy gut and colon (13). The antibiotic property of apple cider vinegar is due to the presence of bacteria called acetobacter that aid digestion and the proper functioning of your gut. The acidic nature of apple cider vinegar adds to the acid in your stomach, eliminates toxins, and could help you lose weight (14).

You Will Need
  • 1-2 tablespoons of organic apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 tablespoons of honey
  • 1 glass of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add apple cider vinegar to a glass of lukewarm water.
  2. Add honey and mix well.
  3. Drink this concoction every morning.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this once daily.

Note: Rinse your mouth with plain water after you consume this drink as it contains honey, and excess of it on your teeth could contribute to dental cavities.

6. Raw Vegetable Juice

Vegetable juices to cleanse the colon

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Drinking juices extracted from raw vegetables is quite helpful in cleansing your colon and detoxifying your body. It could also help with weight management (15, 16, 17).

You Will Need

Any one of the following veggies: spinach, beetroot, carrot, tomato, cucumber

What You Have To Do

Blend any or a combination of the vegetables mentioned above.

How Often You Should Do This

Several times during the day.

Note: Avoid canned or ready-made juices as they lack the nutrients and minerals available in actual juices. Also, try to use the juice from organic vegetables.

7. Sea Salt Water

Intake of salt water increases your bowel movements and helps expel various toxins, bacteria, and accumulated feces from your colon. The sodium in the salt pulls water from your tissues into your intestines. Salt water colon cleansing is also comparatively safe and ensures that your body doesn’t lose too many electrolytes (18). 

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of unrefined sea salt
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a tablespoon of unrefined sea salt to a glass of water and bring it to a boil.
  2. Cool and drink this solution in the morning.
  3. After consuming the saline water, massage your stomach gently in a downward direction, towards your colon.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this solution once every morning on an empty stomach.

Note: Be prepared for a possible flushing action on your intestines with several loose bowel movements.

8. Ginger 

Ginger contains a bioactive compound called gingerol that possesses antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties (19). It is often used to treat digestive problems and reduce weight. You’ve probably heard of it for treating the nausea of seasickness or car sickness. Ginger also promotes colon health and aids digestion. It may also play a role in cleansing your colon, though more research is needed to understand the mechanism (20), (21).

You Will Need
  • 1-2 inches of ginger
  • 1/4 cup of lemon juice
  • 2 cups of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Extract two teaspoons of ginger juice using a small juice press.
  2. Add this to two cups of hot water.
  3. Add the lemon juice and stir well.
  4. You can divide this solution into two or more parts and consume it throughout the day.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this solution throughout the day.

Note: Lemons are acidic, so it is a good idea to rinse your mouth with plain water after you consume the drink.

9. Magnesium Citrate

Magnesium citrate is an osmotic laxative. It softens the stool and causes frequent bowel movements. This is more effective when used with sodium picosulphate (22). It may also aid weight loss and promote overall health.

You Will Need
  • 2-4 teaspoons of magnesium citrate powder
  • 1 glass of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add magnesium citrate to a glass of warm water and mix well.
  2. Drink this solution every morning.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this once daily.

Note: Only take this amount of magnesium citrate for one week because increased bowel movements may cause mineral loss.

10. Flax Seeds

Flax seeds and water to cleanse the colon

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Flax seeds are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids (23). The daily consumption of flax seeds is a sure shot way to cleanse your colon due to the combined bulking effect and laxative effect of its compounds. While the omega-3s are wonderful for your overall health, the seeds also contain antioxidants and fiber that could help increase your bowel movements. This way, it may help flush out the toxins from your body (24), (25).

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of powdered flaxseeds
  • 1 glass of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Take a tablespoon of ground flaxseeds and mix with a glass of warm water.
  2. Consume this mixture 30 minutes before you have breakfast and before going to bed.
  3. You can also add some honey for flavor.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this mixture twice a day.

Note: Keep ground flax seeds in the freezer as they may go rancid very quickly. In case you are adding honey, rinse your mouth after drinking.

11. Aloe Vera Juice

Aloe vera can help increase bowel movements (26). The presence of bioactive compounds and antioxidants imparts exceptional detoxifying and laxative properties to aloe vera, which can help cleanse your colon (27), (28).

You Will Need
  • 200 mg of aloe vera gel
  • 1-2 cups of water
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon juice
What You Have To Do
  1. Add two teaspoons of lemon juice to a cup or two of water.
  2. Add 200 mg of aloe vera gel to this mixture and blend well.
  3. Refrigerate the aloe vera juice for 3 to 4 hours and consume it.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink small quantities of the prepared aloe vera juice multiple times a day.

Note: Lemons are acidic, so rinse your mouth with plain water after you have this drink.

12. Baking Soda

Baking soda is alkaline, which helps balance the pH of your stomach. As per anecdotal evidence, baking soda has laxative properties that may help treat indigestion and cleanse the colon.

But do exercise caution, as consumption of baking soda in excessive amounts can cause metabolic abnormalities and hemorrhage (29).

You Will Need
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 glass of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix half a teaspoon of baking soda with a glass of warm water.
  2. Consume this solution every morning.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this solution once every morning.

Note: Baking soda neutralizes stomach acid as it raises the pH of your stomach. Hence, take it an hour away from eating so that it won’t interfere with the acid in your stomach (or with its ability to digest your food). Ensure you use only small amounts at a time. Large amounts can drastically alter the pH levels and lead to fatal effects.

13. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil contains medium-chain fatty acids (like lauric acid), which impart powerful antioxidant properties. These fatty acids can help improve antioxidant status and prevent lipid oxidation (30), (31). Some believe these properties could also help cleanse the colon, though concrete research is lacking here.

You Will Need
  • 2 tablespoons of organic coconut oil
  • Lemon juice (optional)
  • Yogurt (optional)
What You Have To Do
  1. Consume organic coconut oil multiple times until you have had 14 tablespoons of it in a day.
  2. Do not consume any solid food during this period (especially that which lasts from 3 to 7 days).
  3. Before following the coconut oil detox diet, you can try taking a teaspoon of coconut oil, thrice daily, along with your normal diet and see if the taste suits you.
  4. If the taste of coconut oil is “too oily”, you can add some lemon juice or yogurt.
  5. If you are planning to go for a coconut oil detox, it is important that you are well-versed with its potential side effects before going ahead with the procedure.
How Often You Should Do This

Consume coconut oil multiple times daily for 3 to 7 days.

Note: Pregnant women should stay away from the coconut oil detox diet. Individuals with chronic diseases should consult with their health care practitioner before going for coconut oil.

14. Castor Oil

Castor oil is a powerful laxative that can quicken and increase your bowel movements. The ricinoleic acid present in castor oil has potential laxative effects (32, 33). It may work as a colon detoxifier by expelling the unwanted toxins from your body.

You Will Need
  • 1-2 tablespoons of castor oil
  • 1-2 tablespoons of orange or lemon juice (unsweetened)
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix castor oil and the orange or lemon juice in equal amounts.
  2. Drink this on an empty stomach, early in the morning.
  3. After every 15-30 minutes, drink a glass of hot water until you have emptied your bowels at least 2 to 3 times.
  4. Consume yogurt or other fermented dairy products. This will stop your bowel movements.
How Often You Should Do This

You must only do this once in 1 or 2 months.

Note: Pregnant women must avoid consuming castor oil as it may cause miscarriage. Though research is lacking, we suggest you speak to your doctor about this before taking castor oil.

15. Green Tea

Cup of green tea to cleanse the colon

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Green tea is a home remedy that can cleanse and heal your body naturally. It contains catechins, a group of polyphenols that exhibit antioxidant properties and help reduce colon inflammation (34). Some believe it may also help induce bowel movements, although we need more research here.

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of green tea
  • 1 cup of hot water
  • Honey (optional)
What You Have To Do
  1. Steep a teaspoon of green tea in a cup of hot water for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Allow it to cool a little and add some honey.
  3. Consume the tea.
How Often You Should Do This

You can drink green tea 3 to 4 times daily.

16. Cayenne Pepper 

The capsaicin in cayenne pepper helps in decreasing your appetite (35). Some believe this may ease bowel movements and help with colon cleanse. Capsaicin also has a digestive stimulant action (36). Cayenne pepper also has antioxidant properties, and it could detoxify your system and improve your metabolism.

You Will Need
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 1 glass of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add cayenne pepper powder, honey, and lemon juice to a glass of warm water.
  2. Mix well and consume it.
  3. Avoid consuming solid foods during this period.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 6 to 12 times daily for 10 days.

Note: Lemon is acidic, so it is advised to rinse your mouth with plain water after you consume the drink.

Note: Some detox diets may include medical risks like dehydration, impaired functioning of bowels, and metabolic acidosis. Consult your doctor before going ahead with such diets, especially if you are on any medication.

Before trying these remedies to cleanse your colon, it is important that you are well aware of the potential risks and side effects:

Health Risks And Side Effects Of Colon Cleansing

Despite the benefits of colon cleansing, it could cause certain side effects, which include:

  • Dizziness (which is often a symptom of dehydration)
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Onset of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Allergic reactions
  • Insomnia (37)

If you plan to go for a colon cleanse, it is important to remember the side effects it may cause. Also, it helps to know how to prevent colon issues so that you do not have to go for a cleanse in the first place.

Prevention Tips For Colonic Issues

  • Consume foods rich in fiber like cereals, whole grains, bran, oatmeal, fruits, and vegetables. This could help increase your bowel movements and enhance colon health.
  • Increase your intake of fluids.
  • Avoid the use of tobacco.
  • Decrease your alcohol intake.
  • After the age of 50, have yourself screened for colon cancer at regular intervals.

A natural colon cleanse is an effective way to detoxify the body. It aims to remove any accumulated feces from your colon and intestinal tract. Colon cleansing may help you lose weight and improve overall mental and physical health. The easy-to-follow home remedies listed in this article can help you detoxify the body without any medical interventions. However, these remedies are not backed by scientific research and may cause side effects. Consult your doctor before trying any home remedy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is colon cleansing really necessary?

Colon cleansing isn’t actually necessary for healthy individuals. That is because your body is already designed to expel waste and toxins naturally without any external intervention. However, if your diet and lifestyle have caused you to have limited bowel movements or you know you need detoxification, you can try cleansing your colon.

How is a laxative different from a natural colon cleanse?

A laxative is used to gain quick relief from constipation and mainly to restore an individual’s bowel movements. Colon cleansing acts similar to laxatives, but over a long period, say 10 days. Also, colon cleansing flushes the entire digestive system while laxatives cleanse only the colon.

How much weight can I lose following a colon cleanse?

On an average, colon cleansing has helped individuals lose weight up to 1.2 kg. However, the results may vary for different individuals. Also, there is no research stating that this type of weight loss attempt is healthy. So we do not recommend it.

How frequently should we clean our colon?

Colon cleanses can be done once every month for 6 months, and then once every four months. However, instead of doing a colon cleanse, you can follow a healthy diet rich in fiber and fluids to enhance your overall health.

Sources

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Check out our editorial policy for further details.
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author
Shaheen holds a postgraduate degree in Human Genetics and Molecular Biology. She is a Geneticist with proficiency in Biotechnology, Immunology,... more

Dr. Saba

(BHMS, MD)
Dr. Saba is a gold medalist with 6+ years of clinical experience. She specializes in treating both chronic and acute... more

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