Detoxification is an important tool to maintain health in this age we live in where the entire planet from pole to pole regularly tests for the presence of toxins and pollution. When it comes to detoxing protocols, none hold a candle to the coffee enema.
So powerful are coffee enemas for rapidly and effectively removing toxins from the body that the most successful alternative cancer therapies in the world rely on them extensively with several per day recommended for extreme cases. Regular administration increases levels of the potent antioxidant glutathione produced by the liver up to 700%!
Protocols offered by the Gerson Institute and holistic oncologist Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez MD (tragically deceased under suspicious circumstances) heavily rely upon this modality.
When a person first contemplates the use of coffee enemas to cleanse body systems from accumulated toxins, a very common question initially comes to mind, “Will a coffee enema help or hurt beneficial gut flora?”
The answer to this question is two-fold. First, there is no scientific literature on the subject that I have come across that definitely studied the subject. However, there is plenty of clinical data from a couple of sources I consider trustworthy.
The first is Dr. Lawrence Wilson MD, who has clinical experience with over 40,000 patients or students through the years who have done enemas. To date, Dr. Wilson reports no indication of flora disruption. Here is what he has to say on the subject:
I have a lot of experience with coffee enemas, as we recommend them to everyone – at least 40,000 people so far. Coffee enemas do not interfere with the intestinal flora, and they can significantly speed up the healing of the intestinal tract by helping to remove parasites in the colon and stimulating bile flow from the liver.
They also help remove toxic metals and toxic chemicals from the body and normalize liver and pancreas secretions that are very beneficial for digestion. Coffee enemas, of course, can also assist with constipation and removing debris from the colon to assist the colon and the entire body to heal. I do not recommend colon hydrotherapy more than a few times per year. Otherwise, it is too yin because it involves a lot of water. Coffee enemas are better in this regard, as they involve much less water.
In my experience, if a food allergy test indicates you are sensitive to coffee or caffeine, it does not mean you cannot do coffee enemas. Just start with a small amount of coffee. Many times you will be fine, and the coffee enemas will help to slowly reduce all of your food sensitivities (1).
In addition to Dr. Wilson’s observations over many years and with thousands of patients, the staff at Biodynamic Wellness, a clinic in San Diego, also reports no adverse effect on beneficial gut microbes when a program of detoxifying coffee enemas is commenced. This from Biodynamic Wellness founder Kim Schuette:
I haven’t seen any proof of gut flora damage. The coffee is not making its way up the whole colon; just halfway up the descending colon and then through the left hemorrhoidal veins to the portal vein. Upon release the coffee most likely follows the same route, from what I understand. When people are concerned, I have them do retention (rectal) implants of bifidobacterium. I also suggest these for those with neurological disorder and autoimmune conditions, especially Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis and IBS.
I can say that I’ve run comprehensive stool analyses (which examine probiotic levels, along with parasite and dysbiotic bacteria levels in the gut) of people doing coffee enemas and their beneficial levels didn’t seem to be affected.
Thus, the evidence at the present time in a clinical setting is that coffee enemas do not harm beneficial microbial colonies in the gut. This has been verified by comprehensive stool analyses of those using coffee enemas for cleansing purposes.
Be Careful of the Container Used for Coffee Enemas
While there is good clinical evidence that coffee enemas (not bulletproof coffee enemas) present no problem for beneficial gut flora, one thing you should be concerned about is the container used to hold the coffee.
The cheap enema bags at the drugstore should be avoided because they are difficult if not impossible to clean which can, over time, lead to an introduction of pathogens into the gut along with the coffee enema. In addition, the materials used to make these cheap enema bags might be a source of toxins which leech into the concentrated, highly acidic coffee that is brewed for enema purposes.
In my opinion, the best and safest container to use is a glass enema bucket made of shatter resistant, medical grade glass. If glass is too expensive an option or not something you wish to use, the next best choice would be a stainless steel bucket (these are used by the Gerson Institute) or a medical grade silicone bag.
So, the next time you see on social media that coffee enemas are dangerous because they disrupt gut flora, rest easy if someone you love who has cancer is using them to detoxify as part of the healing process because the clinical data shows absolutely no evidence of this.
Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist
Hello Sarah, thanks for the information… what do you suggest doing if i feel sick for a day after i do a water enema? It may be that the valves (elio ceacral valve) don’t close properly or a naturopath told me it may be my liver… i have 3 young kids i cannot permit myself to be sick. I eat organic, almost sugar free gluten free besides einkorn, i take 50 billions non casei probiotics daily. I juice and eat smoothies almost daily too. If you have any input or can direct me to someone who can help that would be really appreciated 🙂 Thanks for all your research for us!
I would consult a GAPS Practitioner about this. If you don’t have one in your area, I would suggest a Skype with Biodynamic Wellness to get their input.
My healthy 29 yr old daughter started daily coffee enemas approx 5 months ago using the thorough instructions Dr. Lawrence Wilson gives however she is now dealing with major IBS symptoms. Having said that she also moved to Chile a month ago so now we’re wondering could it perhaps be parasites??
She is stopping with the enemas and has started the GAPS diet 2 days ago. Seems so odd!
Why do you say “not bulletproof coffee”? It’s the only kind I have. What kind do you recommend? Is organic important?
If you click the link on bulletproof coffee in the article … it will take you to another article that explains why not to use bulletproof coffee as an enema.
I’ve been doing these for years! Love coffee enemas and always feel great after doing them. Thansk for shedding light on the gut flora issue. It seems as if there is something good for your health someone comes along and tries to poke a hole in it. This is why we scare more people out of health rather than into it.
Coffee Enemas worked real great for cancer for Steve McQueen, and Michael Langdon.
They both died…
I know a couple of women that use to do coffee enemas for there health, it turned out, it caused them more problems then what they started with!!
Nothing works for everyone, does it? Who knows what the rest of their alternative cancer protocol looked like. Dr. Gonzalez MD had great success even with Stage 4 cancers.
Get your facts right, Annie. Steve McQueen was first misdiagnosed by his regular doctor for more than a year until they found he had huge tumors in his lungs (from asbestos exposure, but the fact that he was a heavy smoker didn’t help). Then his regular doctors used radiation (even though there isn’t any medical evidence that radiation ever did anything for the kind of cancer he had – in fact, that kind was then, and is now, considered uncurable by regular medicine). Then they put him on drugs that (again, no medical evidence that those drugs ever did anything for the kind of cancer that he had). This was regular medicine, mind. Then McQueen tried the ‘alternative’ route (even though he still smoked and drank and ate sugarladen stuff) and this seemed to work. Then his regular doctors had the great idea to operate on him (even though, you guessed it, there is no medical evidence that operating on his kind of cancer ever worked) and he died on the operating table. And then the media was full of ‘Steve McQueen died of quackery!’. Yeah, he did, alright; the quackery of his REGULAR doctors.
Going alternative *after* conventional chemo/radiation rarely works. In fact, Dr. Gonzalez MD did not accept patients who had already had chemo/radiation as it made them so toxic he found it impossible to work with.
Not only that, but if the patient (after conventional chemo/radiation/etc) then dies, the Powers That Be (and this includes their lapdog, the media) will spin it as if it is the alternative medicine which killed the patient. In Steve McQueen’s case, he had pleural mesothelioma, a cancer associated with asbestos exposure for which there is no known cure. No known cure. That means that all the conventional medicine in the world would not have helped, and indeed, as it was shown, non of the medical procedures he underwent had any positive impact. He was a dead man walking. And yet, as we’ve seen with Annie’s comment above, one whiff of, one single flirt with ‘alternative medicine’, and people will associate his unfortunate but unavoidable death with the alternative medicine and not with the uncurable status of the cancer or the allopathic ‘medicine’ that he suffered before seeking relief from the alternative route. It’s never “are you sure you’re going to have those metastatic tumors surgically removed? Steve McQueen did, and he died of a cardiac arrest on the operating table!”, but always “be careful with coffee enemas! Steve McQueen tried them, and he died!!11!!”, as if it was the coffee enemas which killed him.
(sorry, I clicked the ‘post comment’ button too soon)
Things like that get up my nose. In fact, I just looked up Steve McQeen on Wikipedia, and even though they don’t suggest that it was doctor Kelley’s (Dr Gonzalez’ mentor) treatment which killed him, they do find it necessary to immediately claim that dr Kelley’s treatment has been seen as ‘quackery’ by allopathic medicine and that there had been rumours that this treatment might’ve cost him (gasp! horror!) up to 40.000 dollars for a month of treatment. Strange that Wikipedia doesn’t see fit to tell the public how much the chemo/radiation and other allopathic medicine (that, even according to allopathic medical science, would be totally ineffective in a case of pleural mesothelioma anyway) had cost McQueen. A round of chemo treatment will easily top that 40.000 dollar estimate, but hush hush about that! C’m on, Wikipedia! If you’re going to suggest that a ‘quack’ like dr Kelley was a charlatan because he *might* (according to rumours) have asked 40.000 dollars for a month of intensive treatment in Mexico, then do tell the public how many tens of thousands, perhaps hundred of thousands, his ‘regular’ doctors recieved for ‘treatment’ that EVEN THEIR OWN SCIENCE TOLD THEM WOULD NOT WORK.
I have done these from time to time. I do have a lot of energy afterwards. I find it very hard to hold for the allotted time. I can only do 30sec-1 minute, possibly 2 min. How do you overcome this?
Here’s what Dr. Wilson MD suggests:
Trouble holding the enema. You may have some intestinal gas. Before doing your enema, try to expel the gas. One way to do this is to bend over at the waist or do some stretches to expel gas.
If the problem continues, leave the enema tip inside you with the clamp open during the entire time. This allows air and gas to escape back into the bag or bucket. The bag or bucket must be at a higher level than your body for this to work.
It may help to place a small pillow or rolled up towel under your buttocks so the water flows down hill into your colon.
If you lie on a bed or mat for your enema, another way to encourage the water and coffee to stay inside is to elevate the foot of the bed slightly with bed risers.
Be sure to breathe deeply and relax when a cramp comes. Occasional cramping is normal as the body moves bile, feces and toxins out of the liver and small intestine areas.
At times, using less water and/or less coffee will make the enema easier to retain. Or try the upgraded coffee. Be patient and experiment a little. Usually, the problem will subside with these suggestions.
I always do a water enema first then you can hold the coffee enema.
When I’ve done coffee enemas, I’ve made the coffee adding 2 teaspoons of sea salt for every 2 liters of water used to make the coffee, essentially making the coffee with saline water. Even a saline enema is easier to hold than a plain water enema. The amount of salt in the water is equal to your own body’s salinity, and it doesn’t reduce the coffee’s effectiveness at all.
Thanks Sarah for this article, as I have wondered this myself a few times.
I have been using coffee enemas on a weekly basis for the last 10 years or so, and have found them to be indispensable for healing and just an overall feeling of well-being. I have avoided getting sick a few times, as soon as I felt I was coming down with something, just by doing a daily coffee enema for a few days.
I am shocked to see Dr. Gonzales passed away! Good grief…what is this world coming to….I bet he was taken in the same way that Dr. Gerson, Dr. Rife were, and all the other gifted doctors that discover the TRUTH in healing.
Thank you for this most informative article…….I was recently wondering about gut flora & coffee enemas……have done them in the past & felt amazing…….lighter, energetic, and actually blissful when doing enema……want to try coffee enemas to see if they help autoimmune / low thyroid / adrenal issues.
Could a coffee enema be a danger to someone who has had their gall bladder removed.
Wendell, I would shoot Biodynamic Wellness an email and ask. I don’t think it’s a problem, but a certified practitioner would be best to answer this question after quickly reviewing your history.
can these be done if you are breastfeeding?
Detoxification is really not a good idea in any form if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.