By Mariela Amiri, Traditional Naturopath & Patient Coordinator
A coffee enema is a type of colon cleanse used in alternative medicine. During the procedure, a mixture of brewed, caffeinated coffee and water is inserted into the colon through the rectum.
The purpose of coffee enemas is to promote the removal of pathogens and free radicals from the blood and decrease the toxic load on the liver. They can help reduce the burden on a system that is being bombarded with the stress and toxins of everyday life.
The Benefits of Coffee Enemas:
- Boosts immunity
- Increase energy
- Stops yeast overgrowth
- Supports detoxification in people with autoimmune diseases and cancer
- Removes parasites from the digestive tract
- Removes heavy metals from the body
- Relieves symptoms of depression
The coffee solution is not held in the liver. In fact, it’s held in the colon. The vessels in the lower part of the descending colon and rectum carry the solution to the liver. The potent compounds in coffee are absorbed by the hemorrhoidal and mesenteric veins that route to the liver.
The coffee enema itself does not produce bile. The coffee does cause some stimulation of the liver to produce bile, but it’s the potent compounds including caffeine, theobromine and theophylline that dilate blood vessels, bile ducts and relax smooth muscles, increasing the flow of bile.
Electrolytes are lost during evacuation, and therefore coffee enemas should always be balanced by juice or minerals. The body does not become dependent on coffee enemas to have a bowel movement.
A variety of coffee is appropriate for use, ranging from gold, green and white, to light and medium roasts. Dark roasts are not appropriate because the potent compounds have been roasted out. Gold, green or white beans are very potent, with light to medium roasts typically well-tolerated by most. If you are new to coffee enemas, green, gold or white beans may not be best to start with. Instead, start with a medium or light roast. Coffee must be organic and we recommend fair-trade, sustainable coffee
Coffee Enemas Are Not Recommended for People with the Following Health Concerns:
- Currently undergoing chemotherapy
- Currently in renal, cardiac or respiratory failure
- Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis or other conditions with bleeding and/or ulceration in the digestive tract
- Ileostomy (no colon)
- Those with Hypertension and/or tachycardia
- Pregnant women (consult with your primary physician or Gerson Practitioner)
- Those experiencing acute or chronic diarrhea (until investigated by a physician)
- First 6-8 weeks post-surgery (always check with your primary physician)
How to Perform a Coffee Enema:
To perform a coffee enema at home, you need to purchase an enema kit along with organic coffee. Below you’ll find directions for how to make a coffee enema recipe.
- Enema kits can be found in certain health food or drug stores, and definitely online. There are several types available. No matter the type you use, look for one that has a tube and nozzle attached to either a bucket or bag that hangs above you when you lie down.
- After choosing a enema kit, you need to purchase coffee beans. You want to purchase only certified organic coffee and regular (not decaf) beans that are free from all chemical sprays — this is important considering the quality of the coffee determines how effective the detoxification process will be.
- Best to do one immediately after having a bowel movement if possible, which makes it more comfortable, effective and easier to retain for longer. You can also do an enema even if you haven’t recently had a bowel movement (for example, if you’re constipated), but many people like to perform enemas in the morning directly after going to the bathroom.
- Some practitioners recommend taking an activated carbon charcoal binder before and after a coffee enema to help bind to toxins released from the bile duct so they can be eliminated from the body.
- It’s recommended to do an enema about once a week.
A step-by-step guide for administering a coffee enema safely:
- Brew your coffee. Filtered water is highly recommended by most experts and might offer fewer risks than tap water (which contain traces of minerals or chemicals). Add 1-3 tablespoons of organic coffee beans to your pot along with 3-4 cups of filtered water. Then bring to a boil and let simmer for 15 minutes.
- Let the mixture cool down to a little warmer than room temperature (70-85 degrees) once it’s boiled for about 15 minutes. It’s important to allow the mixture to cool because there’s a higher risk for injury and side effects when a solution that is too hot.
- You’re now ready to perform your enema, so choose a location that’s comfortable where you can lie down for about 15 minutes, such as the bathroom floor with some towels. Wherever you choose to be, take your enema kit and place the bucket or bag at least 1 meter above you and the ground. So if you’re lying on the floor, you might try hanging the bucket or bag on a towel rack, shower rail, etc. This helps gravity push the coffee liquid down faster so it’s better able to enter your digestive tract and do its job.
- Pour your coffee liquid into the enema bag or bucket and hold the tube and nozzle shut. Locate the lever on the tube and nozzle that helps you stop and start the flow of the enema. Before beginning, make sure the valve is shut so no liquid escapes. Use a lubricant such as coconut oil to coat the tip of the enema nozzle, which will make it easier to insert into your rectum without being uncomfortable. Lay on your left side.
- Use the valve that helps you to start the flow of coffee and keep the liquid slowly entering your rectum through the nozzle until the bag or bucket is emptied. Take your time and squeeze in so the liquid doesn’t escape as much as possible. Sit however you are most comfortable. That helps you keep the coffee inside of you for about 12 to 15 minutes — 15 minutes is the max time that you need to effectively cleanse your system, so at this point you can stop holding in and can go to the bathroom.
- Medisential Enama Kit (Amazon $39.99)