A persistent health fad that often involves squirting water up your rear and into your colon doesn’t sound too pleasant, and experts say it’s not good for you either.
The colonic irrigation and other “colon cleanses” that claim to clear toxins out of your system, whether with water going up or pills going down, can cause all sorts of health problems without any evidence that they help. In addition to the danger that irrigation will puncture the colon because too much force is used, or cause a bacterial infection or inflammation, the unproven pills could create imbalances in electrolytes and gut bacteria, dehydrate you or damage the kidneys, Time magazine notes. People have also reported side effects of vomiting and diarrhea.
“It’s a very popular subject for patients to bring up,” Dr. Brooks Cash, a professor of medicine at the University of South Alabama, told Time. “A lot of people think it will help with weight loss.”