Colon cleansing: Not so healthy, analysis says
August 1st, 2011
12:15 AM ET

Colon cleansing: Not so healthy, analysis says

It has been touted as a natural way to improve your heath and cleanse the soul. But doctors are now finding the procedure known as colon cleansing can cause dangerous side effects.

Colon cleansing, technically known as colonic hydrotherapy or colonic irrigation, is a popular treatment, usually performed at spas. It often involves the use of chemicals in the body and in hydrotherapy, the colon is flushed with water through a tube inserted in the rectum.

But oral home remedies are also available and have become popular, especially over the Internet. Now researchers from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. say there's no evidence any of these colon cleansing treatments work and, in fact, when used improperly can cause cramping, kidney failure and in some extreme cases, death.

"There can be serious consequences for those who engage in colon cleansing whether they have the procedure done at a spa or perform it at home," says the lead author, Dr. Ranit Mishori, a family medicine physician at Georgetown University School of Medicine. "Colon cleansing products in the form of laxatives, teas, powders and capsules... tout benefits that don't exist."

Mayo doctor is no fan of cleanses

Although colon cleansing has been around for centuries as a way to rid the body of unwanted toxins, the American Medical Association determined in the early 1900s that the procedure was invalid; there was no evidence to show the methods worked. And even though there still remains no solid evidence these products do what they claim, colon cleansing has been making a comeback, mainly because manufacturers claim it also helps people lose weight.

"If this method were the key to weight loss, it would be amazing. But there is no evidence that this helps people lose weight,” says Mishori. "Manufacturers don't describe how it works. The statements are a little empty. They say it will enhance your immune system, up your metabolism, give you energy. It’s all pretty vague. Some people swear by it, but it could be a placebo effect. And companies can make these claims, because the federal government doesn't regulate their products."

Not expecting miracles, but I love my cleanses

According to the report released this week in the Journal of Family Practice, Mishori and her colleagues examined 20 studies published in medical literature over the last 10 years.

Investigators noted while these reports showed little evidence of colon cleansing benefits, there were a number of side effects reported following the use of these cleansing methods. Those effects included cramping, bloating, nausea, vomiting, electrolyte imbalance and renal failure. And in some cases, ingredients in these remedies were toxic.

"Some herbal preparations have also been associated with aplastic anemia and liver toxicity," Mishori said.

Researchers also noted that many of the "spas" that offer colon cleansing have no trained clinicians and even organizations such as the National Board for Colon Hydrotherapy and others who promote colon cleansing require technicians who perform professional colon cleansing to have little more than a high school diploma.

"When you flush your colon out with a hose, it's like giving yourself an enema on steroids. You shouldn't put things up there that really don't belong there," stressed Mishori. "Imagine 60 liters of water going through your colon. The stress it puts on the system, and the hose, if not used correctly, could puncture the organ."

As for the home remedies, Mishori says there's no need for them. "We poop and pee for a reason. If you are a healthy person, the body does it for you."

When asked what was the best way to cleanse the body, Mishori was quick to respond.

"Eat a balanced diet, exercise regularly," she stressed, "Get six to eight hours of sleep and see a doctor regularly. But no one wants to do that," she said with exasperation. "But they'll use a hose to flush themselves out! The use of these methods are unhealthy. And what's scary is we only examined the cases that were reported to hospitals and doctors. Imagine all the people who are using these products and methods and have side effects and never go to the hospital. We don't know about them. The numbers could be staggering."

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soundoff (3,051 Responses)
  1. dee

    During college, I rented a room from this elderly lady. Her daughter became addicted to home remedy colon cleanses for weight-loss. Over time, she suffered kidney failure and eventually died. It was super sad to hear this story.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. OldGoat58

    So regular colon cleaning is not such a good idea. I don't want to say no sh!t, but NO SH!T!

    August 1, 2011 at 15:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Antonio

    1) Colon cleansing is not the answer but it helps to reduce my headaches before fasting.To save money and time I do colon hydrotherapy at home twice a year before a 30 days water fast. It has cured my chronic acidity in my stomach and has cured a chronic irritation of my throath. I no longer use TUMS and I no longer have problems with my voice.

    2) No large studies have been done because no one make money by selling water but as far as large scale observations, during World War 2, in concentration camps, the prisoners will not get sick with bugs or with flu but the well fed guards would get sick.

    3) Hydrocolon Therapy, water fast or juice fast or anything that keep you colon empty for a period work like a miracle for any diseases because the immune system that normally keep 70% of the troops in the colon while there is food, when it is empty, it goes to all the other parts of the body, curing it. Your immune system become, over 300% stronger

    August 1, 2011 at 15:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • vivek

      correct, starvation works. both for the prisoners and for us. but you don't have to wash your colon to starve yourself. as for your own results, try simply starving.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:20 | Report abuse |
    • Ellie

      What a sickening thing to say Antonio,"during World War 2, in concentration camps, the prisoners will not get sick with bugs or with flu but the well fed guards would get sick." Have you ever read a history book? Your statement should be included with Holocaust denial.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:24 | Report abuse |
    • K

      @Antonio –

      I don't know where you read that in WWII prisoners in concentration camps didn't get sick or get bugs. They died in huge numbers from typhoid fever, influenza, etc and also suffered from "bugs" no matter which way you mean it. Maybe they didn't get lice, but that's because they were shaved bald on arrival. You're wildly inaccurate.

      Seriously, that alone makes me throw out every other "fact" you stated.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:30 | Report abuse |
    • random person

      "during World War 2, in concentration camps, the prisoners will not get sick with bugs or with flu but the well fed guards would get sick."

      OMFG, this is a lie. As one example, epidemic typhus killed hundreds of thousands of concentration camp prisoners. Why don't you go cozy up to Michele Bachmann, who endorsed the opinion that black children were better off during slavery.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:59 | Report abuse |
    • Michael

      Yes, by all means, Antonio, starve yourself. Anyone who thinks WWII concentration camp prisoners were healthier than their guards NEEDS to take themselves out of the gene pool. What a waste of carbon!

      August 1, 2011 at 16:36 | Report abuse |
    • Gethetruth

      Your acidity is probably from eating unhealthy foods with high fat and your throat infection is probably from drinking soft drinks from soda fountains ( they are all contaminated with strepto). Colon is found only in terrestrial organisms and it function is to absorb water as need for maintaining water balance. There are no toxins in the Colon, and the Colon is no longer than a soda can. These are invented therapies to make money. Next will be flushing your ears to remove toxins !! The stupidity of some people mind boggling. AMA and FDA are corrupt organizations. As for Chinese or Indian or any traditional medicine, they prevailed when there was no scientific studies but the medical properties of substance they used are the basis of a number of modern medicines.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:52 | Report abuse |
    • clancy

      You are a dumb-ass, pun intended. What history books are you reading?

      August 1, 2011 at 18:19 | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      I think Antonio might be a colonic hydrotherapy technician.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:46 | Report abuse |
  4. Bonzo

    Rectum? Damn near killed 'em!

    August 1, 2011 at 15:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JOM

      haha that's alway funny.

      August 1, 2011 at 19:56 | Report abuse |
  5. Snake Oil

    Colon cleansing is just the latest 'cure all' from snake oil salesmen. There will always be gullible people ready to hand over their money. Modern medicine, pharmacology, and better nutrition have greatly increased the average life expectancy in the developed world. Colon cleansing and other ridiculous homeopathic cures, which were around long before modern medicine, can't make the same claim. It is truly scary how many people don't seem to be able to discriminate pop science from real scientific study. Even more troubling is how quickly people are willing to risk their health using dangerous remedies. The level of paranoia about big government and the AMA is also troubling. I think there are some meds people can take for paranoia;-)

    August 1, 2011 at 15:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • richk

      what a fool

      August 1, 2011 at 15:23 | Report abuse |
    • Snake Oil

      I believe you are the fool. Therefore I must be correct.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:32 | Report abuse |
    • richk

      I could rip your comment apart in so many ways you double-standard lovin' idiot, but I choose to not waste my time with someone like you. Do us all a favor and go take your beloved meds.......

      August 1, 2011 at 15:42 | Report abuse |
    • Snake Oil

      Please do entertain all of us with your boundless knowledge and logical fallacies!

      August 1, 2011 at 15:45 | Report abuse |
    • richk

      You like using the word "fallacies" don't you?

      August 1, 2011 at 15:48 | Report abuse |
    • harry

      God is Love
      Love is Blind
      Ray Charles is Blind
      God is Ray Charles

      August 1, 2011 at 16:05 | Report abuse |
    • Annas still dead

      uh, guess you haven't tried it. Watch the movie Fat, sick and almost dead.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:46 | Report abuse |
  6. richk

    leave politics out of this you paid troll..

    August 1, 2011 at 15:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Donna

    Although I f ind what the article states as a fair conclusion of the studies, it is evident in reading the article, that bias opposing colonic therapy exists. No argument was given to why nontraditional practices exist, or the traditional skeptical bias of such practices persist while often they are very quick to accept new "traditional" therapies minus the scrutiny. Let's consider what is recommended when you turn fifty, hmm sounds like a colon cleanse? With the insertion of a endoscopic camera. This is a very valid and worthwhile cancer screening, but is contrary to the statement about putting things where they shouldn't be. Also there is no follow up proposal of studies examining the possible benefits, think about it in plumbing terms, lot's of sludge builds up, which could impact nutrient absorption. Just a hypothesis worth checking out. In short this article, and its language indicates little interest exist to actually seeing if there is any benefit. Stick to your pills and sedentary american lifestyle, other options do not exist.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:15 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark

      Any treatment intended for use on humans should be rigorously tested to see if it actually does more good than harm. That's simple common sense, and is the reason why a "traditional bias" exists against colon cleansing... I don't think you can argue an undue bias existed against colon cleansing in the early 1900s when they first began testing and found no real benefits, and the most recent studies seem to have upheld that result.

      As for the existence of traditional and alternative medicinal "cures", the article alludes to the placebo effect, a poorly understood psychosomatic mechanism by which the mind somehow makes the body cure itself. Essentially, if you want to be cured and believe hard enough that drinking tea, cleansing your colon, praying to an idol, etc. will cure you, then you'll get a beneficial effect when you do these things! Given this alone, I'd predict a huge market opportunity for people who can come up with mystical cures and bring other people to believe in them and buy into them... they say there's a sucker born every minute.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:43 | Report abuse |
    • random person

      Colonoscopy is recommended to look for signs of colon cancer, not to remove unspecified "toxins". The glop they make you drink is to evacuate the large intestine and enable the doctor to see the entire intestinal wall, not because it has any medicinal benefit to the patient.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:02 | Report abuse |
  8. David

    For some people left overs stay in the colon and do not get pushed out. Have you guys seen those pictures of people who took the medicine and then they mention the stuff comming out was like leather and still bore the shape of the part of the colon it was attached to. It is that stuff that needs to be use by the colonic cleanser.

    By using it I felt energized and refreshed and felt mentally alert but nothing leathery came out in my case.

    But I think the average person should at least at minimum clean their colon out once a year or once every 3 years.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Really? No, really?

      This is pure bunk. I've worked in surgery as a nurse and will tell you the truth........there's nothing solid collecting in your colon that buils up over time! Waste your money if you like, but if you had material hardening in your colon...well, you would end up in the hospital pretty quick because your colon would not be able to push out the waste. Geez...all it takes a little common sense. And if someone asks...then why do you sometimes need an enema before a colonoscopy or like exam? The same reason they tell you to fast (besides the fact they will also give you some light anesthetics or relaxing type of drugs)...so your colon is clear of the last 12/24/36 hours of food you've ingested. Many times, fasting alone will allow this material to clear out of your colon adequately.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:10 | Report abuse |
    • healthcare

      David, I agree with you. I have seen the outcomes of these procedures and they do indeed take the shape of the intestines. I have many stomach issues like IBS, etc. I have researched this pretty well and plan to get one done.I see it as a way to get relief from constant issues and to prevent toxin buildup. I think anyone who discards the procedure needs to re-examine the benefits that the patient will feel.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:36 | Report abuse |
    • Mark C

      "But I think the average person should at least at minimum clean their colon out once a year or once every 3 years."

      Gee, thanks Dr. Half-Wit, I'll take your medical advice for what it's worth: absolutely nothing.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:35 | Report abuse |
    • Anatomy 101

      Sorry David, but those results are either completely fake or caused by ingredients IN THE CLEANSE to change the appearance of your waste so they can claim that is material that was "stuck" in your colon.
      The walls of the colon secrete mucus and the old cells on the colon walls regularly shed and are replaced by new cells. This makes it impossible for anything to "stick" to the walls of the colon. The entire colon is lined with muscles that regularly move in a ripple or wave-like motion to propel digested matter forward. You don't need to be a doctor to know this, an introductory human anatomy class (or even just looking at a text book) will teach you this information.
      If this basic function does not work, it is due to serious medical problems but even in those cases, the colon still moves waste through eventually just not as well as in a healthy person. There still aren't pieces of food sticking or hardening anywhere in the intestines.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:42 | Report abuse |
  9. Buddy

    This is a lot of crap. Seriously folks.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Carrie

    This is absolutely incorrect. I've been doing hydrotherapy for 4 years and havent had any problems or side effects mentioned above. The water has ZERO chemicals and actually HAS to be filtered water. I get them done once a month, sometimes twice depending on what kinds of foods I've been eating. The results have been amazing: clear skin, clear mind, better food choices, more energy, etc. I get so frustrated with these kind of articles becuase they are absolutely NOT TRUE. Ugh!

    August 1, 2011 at 15:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Snake Oil

      It must be true because it worked for you.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:31 | Report abuse |
    • Relictus

      Water is a chemical. Filtered water contains many chemicals – minerals, mostly, for taste. There is chemically pure water. Your local homeopathic practicioner does not have access to it, and probably – like you – does not know the difference. Honestly, ignorance makes me sick. 🙁

      August 1, 2011 at 15:40 | Report abuse |
    • The Mel

      Carrie: Ever hear of the placebo effect? That would be you – and you've been 'sold' to believe this cr@p! There's a sucker born every minute.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:50 | Report abuse |
    • no thanks

      just because something makes you feel good one time, doesn't mean, it's good for you all the time ... the fact that you are doing this on a recurring basis, only increases the possibility that you might feel the long term effects down the road ... so i would definitely be more cautious about your monthly practice ...

      as far as my personal experience with Colon cleanse, i've done it once ... and like you said I felt great ... but I haven't had the need to do it again, and I still feel great ... would I reconsider it again, absolutely, it's been almost 3 years ... but if I had a need to do it on a frequent basis, I would probably start thinking, the solution is elsewhere

      August 1, 2011 at 16:00 | Report abuse |
    • Kelly

      THANK YOU Carrie.. I stand in agreement with you, unlike all these opinionated idiots who obiviously haven't ever tried or needed to. All they know is to read one article from 1 testing and 1 Dr. I have had this done 2x within the last 2 mths and yes, like you, felt wonderful, more enery, lost the bloating in my stomach and so forth.. PEOPLE.. quit believing and arguing with everything you read..

      August 1, 2011 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
    • Andrew.Rx

      Yes you make better food choices because of colon cleansing. You ever stop to think that all of those positive benefits have nothing to do with the colon cleanse and everything to do with proper nutrition.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:45 | Report abuse |
    • iRex

      You can't make good food choices without having your colon washed out? How can you even list food choice as a benefit?

      August 1, 2011 at 18:36 | Report abuse |
    • Patricia

      I totally agree with Carrie. You have to get rid of the toxins in the colon in order to feel better. If your not going to the bathroom you are going to get sick. Why do you think people get the flu? It's pretty commom sense here. The only reason this article came out because people are trying to get healthier so that means less visits to the Dr. so less money for them and the pharmaceutical company.

      August 2, 2011 at 08:38 | Report abuse |
    • Karen

      "This is absolutely incorrect. I've been doing hydrotherapy for 4 years and havent had any problems or side effects mentioned above"

      Well, I've never been mugged, so clearly muggings never happen, and anyone who says they've been mugged is lying. Do you see how incredibly self-centered your point of view is now, Carrie?

      Also–ever stop to think that maybe you feel better because you made a commitment to eat healthier foods after you started cleaning out your colon?

      Kelly: "All they know is to read one article from 1 testing and 1 Dr."
      I make no assumptions about your knowledge–don't make assumptions about mine. You want my qualifications? I'm a PhD candidate in Biology, and I teach anatomy to medical students. My knowledge on this issue is not based just on this article. I've had serious health issues in the past, and don't take my doctors' opinions as gospel, because I know that they are human and fallible. But I've also studied enough medicine to know that "western", science-based medicine is the best method we have for determining how to care for ourselves. Why? Because everything has to pass rigorous testing on a lot of animals, and then a lot of people before it gets accepted into the mainstream. A simple, "I got a colon cleanse and felt better!" is not sufficient evidence to make it a standard practice. But one person's testimonial is enough for a naturopath to fleece people out of their money. That's why I trust in the scientific method–it's not just a body of knowledge, it is a continually evolving body of knowledge based on tests and evidence. And yes, sometimes it gets things wrong for a bit, but then it corrects itself. Naturopathic, homeopathic, and traditional medicines don't do that.

      August 2, 2011 at 16:08 | Report abuse |
  11. richk

    you sure are obsessed with Bachmann and anal exercise aren't you?

    August 1, 2011 at 15:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Glenn Beck

    You tell her, Rich!
    Be quite, Michelle, you're going to ruin it for us!

    August 1, 2011 at 15:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. bachmanntwit

    @richk... someone got up on the wrong side of the bed today !

    August 1, 2011 at 15:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. @Antonio -

    I don't know where you read that in WWII prisoners in concentration camps didn't get sick or get bugs. They died in huge numbers from typhoid fever, influenza, etc and also suffered from "bugs" no matter which way you mean it. Maybe they didn't get lice, but that's because they were shaved bald on arrival. You're wildly inaccurate.

    Seriously, that alone makes me throw out every other "fact" you stated.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. The Mad Sh!tter

    I just lost a lot of respect for CNN for publishing what I believe to be the worst, most deceptive article on colon cleansing I've ever seen. This is nothing more than a armchair debunker article that is so misleading, it's downright evil. You might as well say drinking water is bad for you and then point to the article about the girl who died after drinking two gallons of water all at once (also known as water intoxication).

    Evidence for the benefits of a PROPER colon cleansing is endless, so I'll just post one of the best sources of information about the subject and leave it at that.

    "Dr. Jensen's Guide to Better Bowel Care: A Complete Program for Tissue Cleansing through Bowel Management" by Dr. Bernard Jensen, ISBN 978-0895295842

    Also, see the EXCELLENT information posted at http://www.colonblow.com/. Their products are overpriced in my opinion, and you could do just as well with a can of the original course Metamucil purchased at Walmart, but I found the information to be well presented and invaluable. Their products are high quality though, so if you have the money to throw around, you won't be disappointed with their products.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:34 | Report abuse | Reply
    • duncanh

      I love your screen name!

      August 1, 2011 at 15:40 | Report abuse |
    • Snake Oil

      Oh boy! I'll read his book while I'm on the crapper.

      August 1, 2011 at 15:42 | Report abuse |
    • The Mad Sh!tter

      @duncan uuuuhhhh THANK youuuuuuuu, thank you very muuuuuuch!

      August 1, 2011 at 15:46 | Report abuse |
    • Really? No, really?

      Hey, everyone could probably use a little extra fiber. And who doesn't feel better after a nice relieving of the bowels...sometimes 'pounds' lighter it seems...and yes, feel a decent sense of accomplishment as well. But there is nothing solid building up and increasing over time in your bowels unless you have a tumor of some kind or a small family of gerbils living there. I worked gastrointestinal surgery for about 5 years.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:29 | Report abuse |
    • MSfrom CA

      Its snake oil – we all know its snake oil After millions of years of evolution (or a couple days creation, whatever) we are supposed to believe our bowels need external help to get rid of invisible undetectable "toxins" – please. Eat right and exercise and your body will take care of itself – its an amazing machine!

      August 1, 2011 at 17:12 | Report abuse |
  16. nick

    Do not always trust a doctor. They want your money and love your bad health. Trust your nutritionist.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • The Mel

      nick says: "Do not always trust a doctor. They want your money and love your bad health. Trust your nutritionist." The Mel says never trust your 'nutritionist' – they want your money. Tool!

      August 1, 2011 at 15:52 | Report abuse |
    • Patricia

      Exactly!! Drs. just want your money. They have to pay for that big house payment. They need you to stay sick.

      August 2, 2011 at 08:49 | Report abuse |
  17. lhayes

    The part of the article saying that there is "no solid evidence" has been duly noted.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Mzlora

    I hope this means you are eating them, not inserting them.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. cmul

    Then again what can you expect from a community that approves drastic measures like gastric bypass, but cleansing your colon can kill you. Really the medical community has become a joke and just money hungry individuals who care more what goes into their pockets than curing people. So much for the hippocratic oath.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. MSfrom CA

    Hello.... All you anti-regulation people.... this stuff is dangerous and basically a scam. All of this pseudo-medical or outright phony medical stuff needs to be regulated. A friend of mine fell into similar phony medicine with essential oils. She ended up with an allergic reaction and big welts on her arms. She was STILL convinced she had invisible undetectable parasites in her system. This stuff makes money because it is plausible and plays on the way our brains work. It all needs to be regulated.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. MDC

    "the American Medical Association determined in the early 1900s that the procedure was invalid; there was no evidence to show the methods worked."

    No. The American Medical Association STATED it was invalid as a matter of opinion; this does not make it so. Where is the clinical trial? This article is the epitome of bad science that it claims for colonics.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JeramieH

      Colon cleaners have the burden of proof to show they're valid and effective in controlled, laboratory environments. Care to cite a source of this research?

      August 1, 2011 at 16:44 | Report abuse |
    • MDC

      As a scientist, my argument is against the lack of scientific methodology, not for the validity or invalidity of colonics.

      One cannot CLAIM by "appeal to authority" as a basis for scientific rigor. For the AMA to decide "medically," that colonics have no validity, the burden of proof rests upon them. The danger lies in their (and CNN's) misuse of their "position of authority." From chemotherapy to statins to acetaminophen, their position has not been honest with the trusting patient.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:13 | Report abuse |
  22. Seriously, people

    Take off your tinfoil hats. Why is the guy* selling you a colon cleanse inherently more trustworthy than the guy** who went to medical school?

    *Or girl, whatever.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. MSfrom CA

    You feel bad, you ignore it; you feel worse, you still ignore it. Finally, its so bad you try a colon cleanser (or essential oils or whatever). You get better. Your brain is hard wired to take a short cut and make a connection between these things. Chances are your body fixed the problem itself and it was just a coincidence that you got better after taking the phony remedy. This is VERY difficult to undo. That is why we need scientific studies to compare two groups – one that did nothing and one that took the snake oil. It doesn't matter if you can find 100s or even 1000s of people over 100s or 1000s of years who think the stuff works – you have to test it.

    August 1, 2011 at 15:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Yamada

      I buy certain npooucs off ebay, I post on coupon forums, and other coupon clipping sites where you pay for their time to clip them. You can also trade them on these coupon/rebate sites. There are lots of sites but I have a few sites that I like to frequent and get coupon previews so I know if I should bother buying the paper or save my money. I also get coupon inserts from the paper recycling bin. It's easy access (no digging in dumpsters or climbing) and free for anyone. I take a couple which are usually right on top when I'm dropping off my papers already. It's right down the road from my house. I can't always count on it, but I usually get extras each week. Some stores will even give you the coupon inserts on old papers if you ask. This will depend on the store and area.

      April 7, 2012 at 15:12 | Report abuse |
  24. Gnarlton

    Why is it that when your car is broken you don't seek out an "alternati­ve mechanic?

    August 1, 2011 at 16:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. rep

    "...You shouldn't put things up there that really don't belong there."

    August 1, 2011 at 16:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • healthcare

      tell that to the city of San Francisco.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
  26. mr clean

    I have been cleaning my colon regularly since 40 . It feels great to get out the claw and no more skid marks . I do it at home not a spa and I just use warm water . I thought I had invented something new I would recommend it for anyone who wants a clean butt

    August 1, 2011 at 16:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Anggun

      I got what you think, thanks for tunpitg up. Woh I am glad to deed this website through google. Thanks For Share The Best Colon Cleanse Review Do the HCG Diet Articles, Books, Tips to help you be successful on the HCG Diet Do the HCG Diet.

      April 14, 2012 at 13:25 | Report abuse |
  27. CChavez

    Equally important is to a colonoscopy every three years

    August 1, 2011 at 16:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Lindsay

    These "toxins" you speak of...don't put them in and you won't have to force them out. The body gets rid of them on their own anyway. If you have GI problems, examine your diet and make changes, try probiotics. Forcing things out of your body is not a healthy way of treating yourself.

    August 1, 2011 at 16:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Andrew.Rx

    Please tell me exactly what "toxins" are being removed by a colon cleanse. I have had idiots come in asking for colon cleanse kits which amount to nothing more than a laxative and then come back and complain when they feel weak after having diarrhea for a few days. How is that rapid loss of electrolytes working out for ya? Btw you must feel pretty good now that those bad "toxins" are out of your system.

    August 1, 2011 at 16:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. chlyn001

    Good point.

    August 1, 2011 at 16:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. btechno

    LOL...hello, ulcer!

    August 1, 2011 at 16:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. jim taralli

    I think the writers of most of these comments could use a good enema.

    August 1, 2011 at 16:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Sy2502

    I find it so funny that some people will impugn the reputation of scientific studies by the American Medical Association, but happily go ahead to trust some random quack with no scientific credentials. Of course, actual studies must have an agenda, but the guy who makes a living selling you his sneak oil must only have your well being at heart!

    August 1, 2011 at 16:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Satoru

      I found this post while Googling First off, very well written I arpcepiate your effort. I've linked you to a relevant article, which you may find interesting.

      April 9, 2012 at 16:25 | Report abuse |
  34. crapola

    Crappin and peeing... the body's natural way of "flushing toxins".

    August 1, 2011 at 16:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. btechno

    It's amazing how gullible some people are. The majority of the 'dietary and nutritional supplement' market is completely bogus. The labels are required to state "not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease" for a reason.

    August 1, 2011 at 16:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. ColoFun

    The health merits of colon cleansing will be debated forever, let's just not forget the true value of colon cleansing: fun and entertainment!

    August 1, 2011 at 16:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. jc


    August 1, 2011 at 16:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Michael

    Will your husband's clinic also seek out slavery opportunities for black children, seeing as they would be better off for it?

    August 1, 2011 at 16:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Lala

    I found a good and healthy remedy for my GI problem: I take Align, a probiotics and metamucil daily. I've been on it for two years now and I no longer have IBS. What more, my cholesterol level is finally normal again! Colon cleansing is too risky. It would only take one session to cause rupture to your lower GI.

    August 1, 2011 at 16:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. healthcare

    For those who think a colon cleanse has no benefits and doesn't remove toxins, what do you say about toothbrushing? you clean out your mouth, which has less bacteria than a rectum. But you still think it doesn't help?

    August 1, 2011 at 16:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andrew.Rx

      There are bacteria which are beneficial to our health and those that are not. Plaque forming bacteria would be the latter. Now since colon cleansing is so beneficial, please link me a study showing that and which toxins in particular they are working to remove.

      August 1, 2011 at 16:56 | Report abuse |
    • Mark C

      Jesus god you really are an imbecile.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:26 | Report abuse |
    • YeahItsMe

      I think you are using your tooth brush for both cleaning your mouth and cleaning your colon.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:48 | Report abuse |
  41. Alex Romanovich

    I don't buy this. Benefits from colon cleansing practices have been well studied and observed throughout the history of medicine. We can't be throwing that out because yet again modern treatments have come along that are non-effective or dangerous. In what area of medicine can you not find such "treatments" these days?

    August 1, 2011 at 16:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark C

      As the article says, they have been well-studied, and invariably been found to be useless and even dangerous.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:27 | Report abuse |
  42. me

    Actually, evidenced based medicine has found that hot pepper (like jalepenos and habeneros) LOWER the risk of peptic ulcer disease. Keep it up, Scab-boy!

    August 1, 2011 at 16:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Bob

    Running water up my b*tthole is no good ?

    August 1, 2011 at 17:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Truthwillsetyoufree

    Love it when the doctors start explaining how vitamines are bad, colon cleanses are bad. Herbs are bad. STFU stop raping the American people and shut up

    August 1, 2011 at 17:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Kevin

    Non of these treamtments replace just eating properly.

    August 1, 2011 at 17:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Arugula

    I'm always astounded by people who will rail against the medical community and how everything's a scam and all they want is your money, but will turn around and pay gobs of cash for any "non-traditional" remedy with a good sales pitch.

    August 1, 2011 at 17:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Cyrus

    Colon cleansing is becoming more popular because people are becoming more anal.

    August 1, 2011 at 17:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • meemee

      And they are becoming more anal because of what they swallow.

      August 1, 2011 at 18:48 | Report abuse |
  48. Kostonian

    Obviously anything taken to extreme can become a problem – shoving a garden hose up your behind is one thing, a gentle cleaning via colonic irrigation is another.

    The medical industry needs sick people to make the $$$ that their accustomed to making.

    August 1, 2011 at 17:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Marc M

    It's funny seeing people say things like "TCM has thousands of years under its belt".

    And yet the life expectancy is higher now than it ever was.


    August 1, 2011 at 17:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. adam hunter

    Some people are just so stuck in their ways that even when presented with undeniable facts, they will still go on believing in magical placebos. People that believe in this junk will deny that the world is round, even after you show them satellite pictures taken from orbit. I can tell you from personal experience that it is nearly impossible to get people to give up the fantasy that these magical cures work. I believe some people's brains are simply more susceptible to brainwashing than others, or they just never really understood science and math, or cared to learn. I honestly can see no other explanation.

    August 1, 2011 at 17:34 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.