Colon Diet

There are basically two circumstances under which dietary regimes which act specifically on the colon may be employed. The first, and most common, is having a disease actually affecting the colon, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome or a form of Colitis. If you are suffering from a severe form of colitis, such as Crohn's Disease, or if you are on any drugs, then you should not use any of the following diets without asking your medical doctor or nutritionally qualified physician. The most common diet for the colon is a high fibre diet which aims to give more than 30 g of fibre a day. This is done by a) eating less refined carbohydrate, b) eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, c) eating wholegrain cereals and d) eating larger than usual quantities of pulses and legumes such as peas, lentils, beans, etc. unless they cause excess flatulence. Once again, the twice-a-week rule, applies.

Then there is the food exclusion diet for the colon. Researchers in Cambridge have found that the five most common food groups to cause Irritable Bowel Syndrome, as measured by levels of prostaglandins in the rectum, are reflected in the colon diet which avoids wheat, corn, dairy products, tea, coffee, citrus fruits. These can either be stopped all at once, or one at a time, then reintroduced to see whether previous symptoms disappear when these foods are excluded, and return when they are included again. If you find that any one food seems to make the irritable bowel worse, then you can cut it down, say to twice a week, but remember to find a substitute. If you find that it is causing problems even when you are having it only twice a week, then you should consult your homeopath or nutritionally qualified physician about it.

Natural laxatives

  • Linseed tea: dissolve 1 dessertspoon of linseeds in 0.5 litre (1 pint) water. Simmer for 10 minutes, strain and drink 1 cup 10 minutes before food.
  • Linseed meal: dissolve 1 dessertspoon of linseeds in water and take up to 3 times a day. For best results, allow to soak overnight.
  • Blackstrap molasses: take 1 dessertspoon 3 times a day.

Colon cleansing

The other way in which nutrition can be used to help the colon is if it is felt that toxins are being absorbed from the colon and going up in the portal system to the liver where they are causing sluggishness of the liver, leading to such symptoms as headaches, irritability, hangover feelings, general lack of energy and mild depression. There may also be other specific symptoms such as joint pains. The colon plan is best carried out along with the liver diet, which should not be attempted by anyone with bowel trouble or who is on drugs, without the consent of their medical doctor or nutritionally qualified physician. The ingredients of the colon cleanse are:

  1. Alfalfa tablets: start with one tablet 3 times a day after meals, followed by water, and build up to 4 tablets 3 times a day.
  2. Acidophilus capsules: which are a concentrate of a healthy bacteria normally found in the colon: take one capsule a day, building up to one capsule 3 times a day 10 minutes before food. These capsules should be kept in the refrigerator once the package is opened. Each capsule should be around 500 mg, and if you cannot obtain acidophilus capsules, have one carton of live plain yoghurt daily.
  3. Psyllium husks: start with half a teaspoon a day building up to 3 teaspoonfuls a day taken in a small amount of water. Drink 2 cups of water immediately afterwards. The husks do not dissolve well and you may find it easier to take them in soda water or other aerated drinks as the bubbles appear to help them stay dispersed, thus making them easier to swallow. Psyllium husks are also available in capsules; dose is 3-9/day. If you cannot obtain psyllium husks, use linseeds in the same manner, but starting with half a dessertspoon and building up to 3 dessertspoons.

All these products are natural and should not cause problems such as pain, Constipation or Diarrhoea. Should you feel, however that they are upsetting you, stop everything and then reintroduce them one by one to find out what is causing the trouble. Discuss the problem with your homeopath or nutritionally qualified physician. The bowel programme can be continued for up to 3 months providing it is not causing any problems. If you experience a lot of flatulence it may be that the alfalfa is clearing out the toxins faster than the psyllium husks or linseeds can remove them; stop the alfalfa for a few days to see if this helps.

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