You can consciously cleanse your intestines in a healthy way

Colon Cleansing At Home: Instructions and Natural Home Remedies

Purifying, detoxifying, losing weight - colon cleansing is said to have numerous positive effects on the body. We tell you when an intestinal rehabilitation really makes sense and which natural home remedies you can use to clean your intestines.

First of all, let's clear up a widespread misconception: It is nonsense that slag and deposits of excrement residues collect in the body like in a drainpipe. "The human organism excretes end products of metabolism with sufficient fluid intake via the kidneys, the intestines or even through the skin," explains Silke Restemeyer from the German Nutrition Society (DGE). Therefore, with a healthy digestive system, there are no toxins left in the body.

Even if it may sound tempting to "cleanse" the body of the consequences of an unhealthy lifestyle from time to time - from a medical point of view it is not necessary to purify the intestines. Nor is there any reason to want to get rid of the bacteria that are in the intestines, as these are important for intestinal health. When and why colon cleansing can still be useful for your body, read below.

Colon Cleansing and Colon Rehabilitation: What's the Difference?
The term colon cleansing simply describes the act of cleansing the colon using a laxative or enema. For example, she will be in front of a Colonoscopy or when starting a fast carried out. Intestinal rehabilitation, on the other hand, is a longer process in which various measures are used to restore the balance of the intestinal flora. Colon cleansing is usually part of colon cleansing.

When does intestinal rehabilitation make sense?

Around 100 trillion bacteria live in our intestines, which together form the intestinal flora - also known as the microbiome. They break down food, ward off pathogens and produce important vitamins. The intestines play a decisive role not only for digestion, but also for the immune system and the psyche. After all, around 80 percent of all immune cells are located in the intestinal mucosa.

If the intestinal flora is out of balance, this can have negative effects on the entire organism. Causes of a disturbed intestinal flora are, for example, gastrointestinal diseases, an unbalanced diet or therapy with antibiotics, which ensure that more "bad" bacteria settle in the large intestine.

ADisturbance of the intestinal flora, also called dysbiosis, can be accompanied by various symptoms such as gas, diarrhea, abdominal pain, constipation, fatigue, and headache. In the long term, a weak immune system and the resulting diseases can be the result.With the help of an intestinal rehabilitation, the intestinal flora can be rebuilt and various ailments and diseases can be counteracted. This also strengthens the immune system.

Possible reasons for intestinal rehabilitation are:

  • chronic digestive problems (diarrhea, constipation, gas)
  • Irritable bowel, irritable stomach
  • Antibiotic therapy
  • Overgrowth of the intestine with fungi (intestinal fungusCandida albicans)
  • Acne, blemished skin
  • constant tiredness, exhaustion, depressive moods
  • constant headaches or migraines
  • Rheumatism and joint problems
  • recurring infections (colds, bronchitis)
  • Allergies, food intolerances
  • Obesity

Is a colon cleanse suitable for losing weight?

There are over 1,000 different types of gut bacteria. The more diverse the composition of the microbiome, the healthier we stay. The composition of the intestinal flora is significantly influenced by diet. In people who have consumed a lot of sugar, white flour, finished products, animal products, alcohol and soft drinks for years, certain intestinal bacteria (fimicuts) predominate, which utilize the food less efficiently, i.e. extract more calories from it and store them in fat deposits. A colon cleansing as part of an intestinal rehabilitation can help to enrich the intestinal flora with "good" bacteria (Bacteroidetes) and thus make it easier to lose weight, but only if it is seen as an impetus for a long-term change in diet.

Colon cleansing and fasting

Colon cleansing is often carried out in conjunction with a fast, in which solid foods or certain foods are partially or completely avoided for a certain period of time. During therapeutic fasting or alkaline fasting, the intestines are first completely emptied with the help of saline laxatives such as Glauber's or Epsom salts - on the one hand to adjust the digestion to the change, on the other hand to curb the feeling of hunger and thus make it easier to forego food.

In the further course of the fasting cure, regular colon cleansing is also useful, as the colon hardly moves due to the lack of food intake. In this way, the bile, dead intestinal mucous membrane cells and intestinal bacteria can be disposed of. An enema is a gentle yet thorough method for this.

Those who fast to lose weight quickly will be disappointed in the long run. While fasting, as in times of hunger, the body has to fall back on fat reserves and automatically loses weight. However, if the eating habits are not changed in the long term, the yo-yo effect threatens.

Danger: Only healthy and resilient people should dare to fast. Consult a doctor for more than seven days. For pregnant women or people with a weak immune system, not eating is more harmful.

Home remedies for a natural colon cleansing

If you want to clean your colon, you don't have to resort to chemical laxatives. Natural home remedies are just as effective, but gentler on the intestines. The following remedies have a laxative effect:

  • Flea seeds, flax seeds, wheat bran
  • Healing earth (bentonite, zeolite)
  • Glauber's salt, Epsom salt
  • castor oil
  • enema
  • Groceries (sauerkraut juice, plum juice, dried fruit)

The home remedies have different areas of application depending on their mode of action. An enema or Glauber's salt leads to a quick and thorough emptying of the bowel. They should only be used for a short time, otherwise the habituation effect occurs and the intestine becomes sluggish. Psyllium husks and healing clay, on the other hand, have a gentler effect and can be used over a longer period of time - for example in conjunction with an intestinal rehabilitation treatment. Laxative foods, such as sauerkraut juice and dried fruit, are mainly used to treat constipation.

Danger:People with heart and kidney diseases or diseases of the gastrointestinal tract should not use any home remedies for natural colon cleansing without first consulting a doctor. Pregnant and breastfeeding women as well as the chronically ill should only perform colon cleansing in consultation with their doctor.

Do intestinal rehabilitation yourself: Instructions

If you want to do an intestinal cleanse at home, make a detailed plan beforehand. The following steps must be observed:

1. Duration of the intestinal rehabilitation
First of all, be clear about how long you want to carry out the colon cleansing. Positive effects can already appear after two weeks. For a lasting effect, however, it is advisable to carry out the cure for several months.

The duration of the intestinal rehabilitation depends primarily onAge, lifestyle, physical condition and severity of complaints. For healthy people between the ages of 20 and 40, two to four weeks are usually sufficient. For example, if you just want to do something good for your digestive tract after the holidays and want to come back to a more conscious diet, you can already achieve a lot with a 14-day cure.

After taking antibiotics, the intestines take a little longer to recover. An intestinal rehabilitation should take at least four weeks. Anyone who suffers from chronic ailments such as constipation, flatulence, migraines or acne should support their bowels with natural home remedies for several months in order to achieve lasting effects. The recommended duration increases with age. It is therefore important first of all to assess one's own state of health and to define the goal to be achieved. If in doubt, discuss this with your doctor.

2. Choice of home remedies
As part of an intestinal rehabilitation, gentle home remedies such as flea seeds, linseed or healing earth, which are used daily, are particularly suitable. You can choose one remedy or combine different components. At the beginning of the treatment, a thorough colon cleansing with Glauber's salt, castor oil or an enema can also be carried out.

3. Dose and frequency: The dosage of the home remedies can also be individually adjusted and increased during the course of the cure. If you have a sensitive intestine, it is best to start with half the amount of natural laxatives. For more intensive colon cleansing, the dose can be increased gradually over the course of the treatment.

4. Diet: An intestinal rehabilitation should always be accompanied by a change in diet. Those who continue to eat very fatty and sugary foods bring the intestinal flora out of balance again and again. Instead, the diet should be high in fiber and low in acid. Regular fasting days also relieve the intestines.

5. Accompanying measures: Regular exercise and massages help the body detoxify. In addition, there are special dietary supplements that can have a positive effect on the process.

6. Build up intestinal flora: The intestinal flora should already be built up during an intestinal rehabilitation, i.e. the intestine should be repopulated with useful intestinal bacteria. The so-called prebiotics and probiotics play a decisive role in this. These can be supplied to the body in the form of tablets or food.

The general rule: The longer you carry out the colon cleansing, the higher the dosage of the components, the less and more alkaline you eat, the more fluids you drink and the more you move, the more thorough and sustainable the colon cleansing will be.

Colon cleansing with psyllium

Indian flea seeds are a tried and tested home remedy for natural colon cleansing. Like flaxseed and wheat bran, they are among the bulking agents that swell up in the intestine and thus increase the volume of the food pulp. This stimulates the bowel movement and facilitates bowel movements. Flea seeds therefore have a regulating rather than a laxative effect. They work more gently and less quickly than, for example, Epsom salt or an enema. The natural colon cleansing usually starts after two to three days.

Since the concentration of digestive mucilage is highest in the shell, finely ground psyllium husks are best for cleaning the colon. You can get psyllium husk powder in the drugstore or pharmacy. As part of an intestinal rehabilitation, flea seeds are often taken in conjunction with healing earth, as they complement each other optimally. The healing clay binds the metabolic products, toxins and harmful bacteria in the intestine that are released from flea seeds, which are then excreted.

Recipe: Flea Seed Healing Clay Shake
Simply mix one teaspoon of psyllium husk powder and one teaspoon of healing clay with 300-400 ml of water. Milk is not suitable as the fleas do not swell in it. Drink the shake quickly in small sips before the flea seeds swell and a slimy substance forms.

Use flea seeds and healing clay once or twice a day to cleanse the colon during a colon cleansing regimen. It is best to take the flea seed mineral earth shake in the morning immediately after getting up about an hour before breakfast and the second shake an hour before dinner. Alternatively, drink it two hours after meals. If you have to take medication - including the birth control pill - do so 30 to 60 minutes beforehand.

Depending on your needs and lifestyle, you can also drink a shake before lunch or replace a meal entirely with a shake. If you carry out a fast parallel to the colon cleansing and only consume liquid food in the form of water, tea, juice and broth, you can increase the dose to four shakes.

Dosage:Dissolve 1 teaspoon of psyllium in 200 ml of water
Frequency: max. four times a day, long-term
Effect: after two to three days
Application: Intestinal rehabilitation, accompanying the fasting cure, for constipation and irritable bowel syndrome

Important:When taking psyllium - but also other bulking agents such as flaxseed and wheat bran - sufficient fluid intake is necessary to prevent constipation. Therefore, immediately after the psyllium shake, drink a large glass of water and at least 2 liters of liquid throughout the day.

Colon cleansing with flaxseed

Flaxseeds are similar to flea seeds in their effects and uses. They can best be absorbed by the body in a crushed form. The linseed oil that escapes when the grains are crushed "lubricates" the intestinal contents and makes them smoother.

Use a coffee grinder or mortar to grind the flaxseed into fine flour just before consumption and mix a tablespoon (5-10 g) of it with 100 ml of liquid. In addition to water, you can also use juice, kefir or diluted natural yogurt. Kefir and yoghurt contain probiotic lactic acid bacteria, which contain "good" strains of bacteria and also have a positive effect on the intestinal flora.

Take the flaxseed shake in the morning on an empty stomach 30 to 60 minutes before breakfast and then drink a large glass of water. To increase the cleansing effect, you can increase the amount of flaxseed during the course of the treatment: Mix two tablespoons in the second week and three tablespoons in the third week with the corresponding amount of kefir and replace breakfast with it.

Dosage: 1-3 tablespoons of flaxseed dissolved in 100-200 ml of water, juice or kefir
Frequency: once a day, long term
Effect: after two to three days
Application: Intestinal rehabilitation, accompanying the fasting cure, for constipation and irritable bowel syndrome

Colon cleansing with healing clay

Healing earth is a tried and tested and inexpensive home remedy for gastrointestinal problems and has now even established itself as a medicinal product. It is rich in minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, iron, silicon and copper, which neutralize excess stomach acid. That is why healing clay is often used for ailments such as heartburn, flatulence and diarrhea. Mineral earth alone has no laxative effect. However, it can support colon cleansing as it binds metabolic products, toxins and harmful intestinal bacteria in the intestine, which are then excreted naturally.

Usually beBentonite or zeolite used - two mineral earths of volcanic origin. They are available as powder, granules or capsules in the drugstore, pharmacy, health food store and supermarket. For internal use, 1 teaspoon of healing earth is dissolved in 200 ml of water two to three times a day and drunk in small sips.

If you are taking medication, you should wait around two hours before consuming the healing clay. Otherwise the active ingredients could also be bound and excreted without being able to develop their effect. Talk to a doctor or pharmacist to be on the safe side.

Dosage: Dissolve 1 teaspoon in 200 ml of water
Frequency: two to three times a day, long-term
Application: Intestinal rehabilitation, accompanying the fasting cure, for constipation, irritable bowel, irritable stomach and heartburn

Well-tried natural remedies: Healing earth is a mineral-containing powder that binds metabolic products and supports colon cleansing. (Source: Katja Lenz / t-online)

Colon cleansing with castor oil

Castor oil contains ricinoleic acid, which inhibits the absorption of sodium and water from the intestines. The additional influx of electrolytes and water increases the volume of the stool, which stimulates bowel activity and liquefies the stool. Two to three tablespoons of castor oil, taken on an empty stomach, causes a natural colon cleanse after two to eight hours. Since the taste of the oil leaves something to be desired, capsules from the pharmacy can also be taken as an alternative.

Dosage:2-3 tablespoons of oil on an empty stomach or as a capsule
Frequency:one-time, short-term
Effect:after two to eight hours
Application:at the beginning of a fast, in case of constipation

Colon cleansing with Glauber's salt and Epsom salt

Saline laxatives such as Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) and Glauber's salt (sodium sulfate) work on a similar principle to castor oil. They bind the water in the intestines and cause the stool to soften and the intestines to be stimulated by the increased volume.The saline laxatives are available from the pharmacy.

Epsom salt and Glauber's salt are drunk as a solution together with water. To get rid of the bitter taste and to compensate for the loss of fluids, you should drink plenty of herbal tea or water. With these home remedies, natural colon cleansing begins after three hours at the latest. Due to their strong laxative effect, bitter and Glauber's salts are not suitable for permanent use, but should only be used once, for example at the beginning of a fast or before a colonoscopy. Since the salt irritates the intestinal mucosa, it is better to use other home remedies for people with sensitive intestines, impaired kidney function and children.

dosage: Dissolve 20-40 g of salt in 500 ml of lukewarm water and drink in small doses
Frequency: one-time, short-term
Effect: after one to three hours
Application: at the beginning of a fast, before a colonoscopy

Colon cleansing with enema

With an intestinal irrigation, fluid is introduced into the anus and this stimulates defecation. There are two options for colon cleansing:

  • Enema: With a so-called irrigator, up to two liters of water can be introduced into the intestine, which cleanses up to the large intestine. The intestinal tube is inserted up to 30 cm into the anus. One therefore speaks of a "high intake".
  • Enema: An enema holds up to 250 ml of fluid and only cleans the rectum. It is mainly used for constipation.

Colon cleansing with an enema is often carried out at the beginning of a fasting cure or colon cleansing to relieve the colon and get in the mood for a change in diet. The health effect, however, takes place mainly on the mental level: After the colon cleanse, the body feels lighter.

From a medical point of view, an enema colon cleansing is only necessary in preparation for a colonoscopy or in the case of chronic constipation, since the colon cleans itself naturally in healthy people and no waste products or toxins remain there.

If you still want to cleanse your colon by enema at home, you should inform yourself thoroughly beforehand or consult a doctor. If used incorrectly, side effects such as an imbalance in the electrolyte balance, circulatory problems or digestive disorders can occur. And not only that: Inflammation and injuries in the sensitive intestinal tract are also possible consequences of the use - for example, if you are not careful enough when inserting the instruments or if the water is too hot.

dosage: 1-2 liters of lukewarm water or chamomile tea
Frequency: one-time, short-term
Effect: within 15 minutes
Application: Colon cleansing, before a colonoscopy, at the beginning of or during the fasting cure, in the case of constipation

Diet during intestinal rehabilitation

Even if you don't have to fast during colon cleansing, diet plays an important role. A healthy diet rich in minerals and containing fiber stimulates digestion and helps detoxify the body. Whole grain products, fruit, vegetables and legumes are particularly recommended. Adequate hydration also helps with bowel emptying.

Diet tips for colon cleansing:

  1. Avoid foods and beverages that contain refined sugars and sweeteners.
  2. Avoid white flour products.
  3. Avoid finished products and other products that contain many additives.
  4. Avoid dairy products like milk and cheese. They have a slime-forming effect and therefore hinder cleaning. Natural yoghurt, quark or kefir are fine in small quantities, as they support the development of the intestinal flora due to the lactic acid bacteria they contain.
  5. Reduce the consumption of meat, fish and soy products to a maximum of twice a week. You should avoid sausage completely.
  6. Make sure you drink enough - it should be two to three liters a day. Unsweetened herbal teas and still mineral water are best.
  7. Refrain from alcohol. It puts a strain on the liver and thus hinders detoxification.
  8. Reduce your coffee consumption to a maximum of three cups a day. If possible, completely avoid coffee and other caffeinated drinks for a while.
  9. Reduce the consumption of salt to a minimum.

The following table also shows you which foods can be safely consumed during an intestinal cleansing cure and which are rather unfavorable.

Cheap foodUnfavorable foods
Leaf salads, herbs, sproutsWhite flour products
legumesmeat and sausage
whole grain productsfish
Pseudograins (millet, quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat)Milk, cheese
Nuts and seedscoffee
native, cold-pressed organic oilssalt

Accompanying measures

You can support and accelerate the effect of a colon cleanse with the following measures:

  1. Move:To get your digestion going, you should incorporate enough exercise into your everyday life.
  2. Massages:A light stomach massage can also help stimulate bowel movement. Circling your hand around your belly button in a clockwise direction several times a day. Full-body brush massages support the lymphatic system in detoxification.
  3. Liver wrap: The liver is an important detoxification organ in the body. A liver wrap ensures better blood flow to the organ and thus supports the entire metabolism.
  4. Freshly squeezed juices: Juices made from fruits and vegetables provide the body with vitamins and minerals. Combine vegetables, herbs and fruits of your choice, add some lemon juice and anti-inflammatory spices such as ginger or turmeric and juice everything one after the other. Make sure that the proportion of vegetables is always greater than the fruit in order to keep the fructose content as low as possible.
  5. Tea:Herbal tea is an effective home remedy for intestinal problems and can be used as a support for intestinal cleansing. Herbs that have a beneficial effect on the intestines are above allAnise, fennel, caraway, coriander and senna leaves. They contain essential oils that soothe the stomach and intestines, stimulate digestion and have an antispasmodic effect. You can use the herbs individually or prepare a mixture of herbs.
  6. Bitter substances: Kitchen herbs (savory, tarragon, rosemary and thyme), vegetables (broccoli, chicory, Brussels sprouts, artichoke) and leafy salads (dandelion, cress, rocket, radicchio) contain many bitter substances that stimulate digestion and aid detoxification.
  7. Food supplements: With the help of various dietary supplements, certain enzymes, vitamins, minerals and intestinal bacteria can be supplied to the body, thus supporting the detoxification and building up of the intestinal flora. They are usually used after colon cleansing to provide them with the best possible breeding ground. Next Probiotics are for example Powder made from barley grass, spirulina, chlorella, alfalfa or grapefruit seed extract suitable for daily nutritional supplementation during an intestinal rehabilitation cure.

Superfood for the intestines: Barley grass is an important part of many colon cleansing programs and colon cures. Japanese scientists found in a study that barley grass extract activates the intestinal flora and reduces existing toxins in the intestine.

Colon cleansing program: sample day during colon cleansing

In the morning:

  • After getting up, drink a glass of water with the juice of half a lemon and a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. Meanwhile, brew a herbal tea.
  • Then take the first flea seed healing clay shake. Immediately afterwards, drink a large glass of water and one or two cups of tea.
  • Wait about 30 to 60 minutes for breakfast. Use the time, for example, for a run or some yoga.
  • For breakfast, for example, an alkaline muesli with oat flakes, seeds, nuts and fruit, a freshly squeezed juice or smoothie or a whole grain bread with a vegetarian spread are suitable.
  • Optional: take the probiotic after breakfast.


  • Allow at least four hours to pass before lunch. Drink water and herbal tea regularly in between. Fresh fruit, a freshly squeezed juice and a handful of nuts or dried fruit are suitable as a snack.
  • If you want to take three shakes a day, drink the second one hour before lunch.
  • For example, eat a large salad, soup or steamed vegetables with side dishes such as potatoes, quinoa, buckwheat, millet or legumes for lunch. Meat, fish and soy products should be served no more than twice a week.
  • After eating, take a short digestive walk.

In the evening:

  • Drink your second or third shake about an hour before dinner or, alternatively, two hours afterwards.
  • For dinner, choose an easily digestible meal, such as vegetable soup or steamed vegetables plus a side dish.
  • End the day with some yoga, meditation or a book.
  • Go to bed early during the regimen and allow yourself at least seven hours of sleep.

Possible side effects

Exhaustion, headaches, insomnia, dizziness and sweating are known as so-called "fasting crises". They occur mainly in the first few days of intestinal cleansing as a result of detoxification and subside during the course of the treatment. Possible accompanying symptoms are:

  • blemished skin
  • Bad breath
  • a headache
  • fatigue

In order to minimize these side effects as far as possible, make sure you drink enough fluids, maintain oral and body hygiene as well as plenty of rest and sleep during the intestinal rehabilitation.

After colon cleansing: build up the intestinal flora

Let's summarize: Colon cleansing is useful if the function of the bowel is restricted as a result of an illness, antibiotic therapy or poor diet and this results in chronic digestive problems. Then a colon cleansing can be the basis for an improvement, but only if it is done in connection with the build-up of the intestinal flora. Only a permanent rethink in relation to diet and lifestyle will help to get rid of the symptoms in the long term. An intestinal rehabilitation cure - carried out once or twice a year - can thus become a healthy ritual.

Colon cleansing before colonoscopy

A colon cleansing is usually performed before a colonoscopy. Only when the intestine is "clean" can the doctor recognize tissue changes and make a reliable diagnosis. It also makes it easier to insert the endoscope into the colon. Colon cleansing is done the day before the colonoscopy. Colon cleansing preparations from the pharmacy (PEG solution) or saline laxatives such as Glauber's or Epsom salt can be used in combination with several liters of liquid.

In addition, seeds containing fruit and vegetables (e.g. grapes, tomatoes, kiwi) and foods rich in fiber should be avoided for several days before the examination, as seeds and fibers remain in the colon for a particularly long time and can clog the endoscope. Natural home remedies such as linseed or psyllium, but also castor oil or healing earth are therefore not suitable for cleansing the colon before a colonoscopy.

Important NOTE: The information is in no way a substitute for professional advice or treatment by trained and recognized doctors. The contents of t-online cannot and must not be used to independently make diagnoses or start treatments.

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