Colon cleansing (also called colonic or colon hydrotherapy) is being used worldwide for weight loss and other health benefits. During a colon cleanse most of the fecal matter is flushed out of your colon, which naturally makes you lighter almost instantly. The advocates of colon cleansing claim up to 40 pounds of fecal waste can accumulate as a thick layer on the wall of your colon over time. All this extra weight can supposedly be flushed out with colonics. Let’s take a closer look at such claims and how much weight can you realistically expect to lose with a colon cleanse?
How can you cleanse your colon?
There are many different ways of performing a colonic. You can cleanse your colon with the help of various liquid or powdered substances, which are commonly called colon cleansers. These products can be taken orally (through your mouth) or even rectally (through your anus). If you are anything like me, you will feel a strong preference towards the oral version. Colon hydrotherapy is a form of a colon cleanse that is usually done with water alone. You can also buy a do-it-yourself kit and perform colon hydrotherapy in the comfort of your home. Alternatively, you can have a therapist perform a colon cleanse for you, which is probably a better option for most people, simply because of lack of experience.
Photo: © Nastja Pungracic Photography
How much weight can you expect to lose with a colon cleanse?
My newsletter subscribers know me as the guy who always looks behind the curtains of any weight loss claims, and colon cleansing will certainly be no exception. So, let’s see if science has already conducted some studies into colon cleansing and weight loss. I have managed to find a study that focused on how colon cleansing affects weight loss. The average weight loss after colon cleansing was 2.6 pounds (1.2 kilograms). I also found another study that compared different methods of colon cleansing. The most effective colon cleansing method resulted in an immediate 6.6 pound (3 kilograms) weight loss.
Colon cleansing basically triggers rapid bowel movement, rushing you to the toilet pretty soon after you take a colon cleanser. Some aggressive colon cleansers will even put you through a difficult, diarrhea-like experience. Even though the number on the scale can drop by as much as 6 pounds, this only means you lost most of your stool. As soon as you start eating again, your colon will also start filling back up. This means that after a few solid meals, all that lost weight will return. This makes colon cleansing the equivalent of taking off your clothes before stepping on the scale.
Colon cleansing is only one of the many examples where weight loss results can be completely deceiving. While I can’t go into too many details in this article, you can download my free ebook The Truth Behind The Number On The Scale to learn what is the only thing that really matters for weight loss (and how to measure it).
Have the benefits of colon cleansing ever been confirmed by science?
What does the science have to say about the colonics? I have found a great article that rips apart many claims made by the proponents of colon cleansing. As far as the up to 40 pounds of accumulated old fecal waste claim is concerned, no colorectal surgeon has ever been able to confirm anything even remotely resembling a thick layer of matter forming on the colon wall. While the supposed health benefits (including weight loss) have yet to be confirmed, quite a few adverse side effects have been linked to colon cleansing (vomiting, bloating, cramping, renal failure and even death).
The safest way of cleaning out your colon and also achieving weight loss results is by doing it the natural way. This includes switching to a diet that help clean out your colon (lots of water or watery foods rich in fiber) while avoiding things that put the brakes on your digestion (dry, fiber depleted foods). Regular exercise can also help move things along. The combination of both can produce long term results both for your colon and your weight without the possibility of negative side-effects.
I have been working in the weight loss industry long enough to know that it’s full of hype and false advice. As far as colon cleansing is concerned, there is no evidence that supports any health or weight loss benefits, while there is plenty of evidence of all the risks involved. If you came to my website because you are looking for ways to lose weight, then for your own good, I urge you to stay away from risky practices like colon cleansing. I specialize in using psychology to enable people to take control over their diets, and after a decade of my own struggles and research, I have found this to be the only realistic way to get an edge in this tough weight loss game. But don’t take my word for it, subscribe to my free newsletter, and take a closer look at what I do.