Thoughts on the daily enema from the enema forum
Are Daily Enemas Harmful? (taken from enema forum)
The copious enema - The purpose of this mode of applying the enema is to introduce the largest quantity of water possible to fill the entire colon without overdistending it. Four to six quarts (liters) are often necessary. Frequently quantities of old putrefying faecal masses, semi-hardened by long retention, make their appearance after a copious enema has been thoroughly administered every day for a week or more, showing that a single flushing of the colon, no matter how thorough, is not sufficient to achieve effective cleansing. In this class of patients the copious enema should be administered daily for two or three weeks if necessary, while the patient complains of gaseous distention of the bowels and fetid flatulence.
From Home Handbook of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine - J.H.Kellogg M.D. 1903
There are some hygienic students who have adopted the idea of cleansing the bowels with warm water once or twice a week, and yet they find that they are not properly cleansed. They still have periods of biliousness and misery. They wonder at themselves for being so rash and bold as to take an enema twice a week, and begin to feel that they have reached a point of positive danger.
What an erroneous and absurd idea that the enema should weaken the bowels. Exercise ought to strengthen muscular tissue and what could give the bowels more gentle exercise than the proper use of them? Distend and contract an organ for a short time two or three times a day, and it will gain in strength from the exercise. What more gentle means of exercising the large intestine than by the enema? The enema does no more than kindly to dilate the constricted region, which when dilated, evokes a harmonious concerted action of all the nerves and muscles to pass along and down the burden of feces, which, without the aid of the flood of water, they had been incapable of moving, and would have had to leave to poison the system.
Enemas do not have the power to weaken that part of the bowel involved in disease. For 20 years I have found that almost every case of intestinal foulness, diarrhoea, indigestion and self-poisoning was due to too much activity and vigour of the bowels, as a result of proctitis, colitis etc.
Many doctors, I am sorry to say, encourage with a chuckle this foolish attitude - “Any time to stool you can manage to get, so that you stool at least once a day, or once every two or three days; stool when its normal for you to do so.” By the use of the enema you can secure two or three stools a day, as desired, and while you are preventing self-poisoning, you are regaining a normal habit, which for so many years may have been denied you. The enema regularly and properly used, is the remedy par excellence. The length of time during which enemas are to be used, whether months or years, will depend on the character of the disease that made its use necessary.
Before taking the large injection, relieve the bowels of any gas and faeces if possible. Then take a small injection, using just enough to bring relief of as much faeces and gas as possible. Repeat the small injection once more before taking the large injection. Free evacuation of the contents of the bowels can be accomplished twice a day by the injection at first, of three to four quarts of water - to obtain a good flushing of one’s sewer.
Do not give up treatment under which you have improved if it requires one, two or three years to accomplish what you have so well started out to do. Do not longer perpetuate the dire results of a foul alimentary canal and consequently a diseased body.
From Intestinal Ills - Jamison MD - 1920.
The difference between helpful and potentially harmful enemas lies in the amount of water injected and the frequency of use. Using a cup or two of water to induce a bowel movement may eventually cause dependency, will not strengthen the colon and may after years of this practice, result in distention and enlargement of the rectum or sigmoid colon. An average colon empty of new food will usually hold about 4 quarts of water. That is the average. A small colon might only hold 3 quarts, a large one might accept 6 quarts, or even more. You could make your own enema can from a two gallon plastic bucket with a small plastic hose barb glued into a hole drilled in the bottom or lower edge. You may have to work at increasing your tolerance for discomfort or it will take you a long time to achieve the goal of totally filling the colon with water. Be brave! And relax. When increasingly larger enemas are administered until the colon is completely filled, beneficial exercise and an increase in overall muscle tone are the results.
Correctly given, enemas serve as strengthening exercises for the colon. This long tubular muscle is repeatedly and completely filled, inducing it to vigorously exercise. The result is a great increase in muscle tone, acceleration of peristalsis and eventually, after several dozens of repetitions [of one enema a day for three to six months], a considerable reduction of transit time.
For me, the most interesting part of my own colon cleansing experience was when I had my own barium enema and X-ray. I was privately certain that mine would look normal, because after all, I had been on a raw food diet for six years, and done a considerable amount of fasting, all of which was reputed to repair a civilized colon. Much to my surprise my colon looked just as mangled and dysfunctional as everyone else’s’, only somewhat worse because it had a loop in the descending colon similar to a cursive letter “e” which doctors call a volvulus.
I ended up giving myself over a hundred colonics at the rate of three a week over many months. I then out of curiosity had another barium enema and X-ray to validate my results. Sure enough the picture showed a colon that looked far more ‘normal’ with no vulvulus. That little “e” had disappeared.
From How and When to Be Your Own Doctor - Dr. Isabelle A. Moser with Steve Solomon June, 1997.
Some physicians threaten their patients with disaster if they take enemas, but I can’t see the sense of this because in 37 year’s experience I have never seen anyone whose colon appeared to have been damaged by repeated washings. Recently I saw a woman who had taken enemas every day for 17 years, but X-rays of her colon showed nothing unusual. Furthermore the mucosa was perfectly normal. In another case in which the woman had taken enemas everyday for 10 years, I was able to study a pile of films which she had had made of her colon at yearly intervals. These showed no change in the size or shape of the bowel, and in this case also the mucosa was normal.
I have asked hundreds of physicians, if they had ever seen enemas do harm, but all that an occasional one could tell me about was a scratch on the rectal wall produced by the tip on the end of the tube. I have therefore no fear of enemas, and I cannot see why so many physicians now object to them as they do.
From Nervous Indigestion and Pain - Dr. Alvarez. 1950.
Some years ago we saw a lady from Indianapolis who had used an enema every morning for 22 years. She had been a poor invalid suffering almost continuously from sick headaches and bilious attacks. When cathartics no longer worked she began using the enema for the relief it gave her. She was warned by her physician, that this would paralyse her colon. She kept on with its use. She never had any more sick headaches or bilious attacks. At 70 as young as ever she said that the enema had saved her life and continued to keep her in good health.
From Health via Food - W.H. Hay MD. - 1934.
An American doctor of osteopathic repute, who in early life was subjected to a most crude form of intestinal ‘short-circuiting’, has been obliged to use the enema daily over a period of twenty-five years and maintains that she is in very much better health today, with no signs of sagging or prolapsed colon.
From The Fast Way to Health and Vigour - H.R.Brown - 1960
If I were to write the story of all the cases in which enemas or colonic irrigations seemed to lift the patient from the very jaws of death it would fill volumes. Mrs Lumbar Pain once told me that she had suffered from pains in her back every day for years. After close questioning I advised daily enemas for a month. At the end of the month she told me that she did not believe it possible for anyone her age (50) to be so free from pains in the back. In my experience about 85% of back pains can be relieved by treating the bowels.
An eminent heart specialist came to see me one morning and asked me to listen to his heart. It was skipping badly and had upset his nerves. I suggested colonic irrigations, and he protested vociferously, but he finally agreed to take daily enemas. Two days later he came in smiling like the famous chesire cat. He told me that when he was having his enema that morning he felt “as if a pocket was emptying itself”. Immediately his heart seemed to steady down. My past experience had been that I could stop skipping heart and extra systole more frequently and more rapidly by treating the bowels, especially by colonic irrigation or enemas, than by any heart medicines.
The idea that water irritates the bowel wall is absurd; nor can the water wash away any necessary secretions from the bowel wall. The argument that enemas promote constipation does not stand up under careful investigation. I have never seen a case where a long series of enemas or irrigations failed to improve later bowel activity. I believe that the chief value in this therapy, however, is not simply in emptying the colon, but in cleaning infected and degenerated areas in the bowel wall which are more or less common to all adults, areas through which infection and toxins enter the lymphatics and blood stream, carrying disease to our hearts, liver, kidneys and other organs.
From Man Alive You’re Half Dead - Dr. D.C. Munro 1953
We were taught before coming to you that colonics and enemas were dangerous. Now I can definitely say that they have saved our lives and brought abundant health to both of us. One important fact is that my wife had normal natural movements after 11 months of daily enemas and colonic irrigations.
From Are You Slipping - Norwalk Press, Publishers, Denver, Colo - 1961.
I take between 2 and 3 enemas everyday, and have done so for the past 15 years. I do this early in the morning and I feel very relaxed for the rest of the day. Healthwise I haven’t had a cold or flu during this period of time.
Anonymous - 2002.
I have consistently taken two or more enemas daily for the past 20 years. Yes - I’m dependent on them, but that’s okay. I start each day with a hot soapy enema and at least one hot rinse enema. I am in excellent health, have maintained a consistent weight of 172 pounds during the whole time, and feel so mellow for many hours after my enema sessions. A good diet does really appear to take care of the electrolyte balance.
From Frank – 2004.
When she was asked Mae West claimed that her secret for staying looking so young was taking daily enemas. Mae West took enemas of a gallon (4 liters) of water twice a day, one in the morning and one at bedtime.
From David Russell - 1998
The giving and receiving of enemas on a relatively frequent basis is not historically very harmful. Doctor John Harvey Kellogg MD, is reported to have taken a daily colonic irrigation for many years. He was actively practicing medicine till into his nineties. Daily irrigations, which are much more washing than a simple enema would have caused some ill effect far before this age if it was going to. That this man took so many colon cleansings and lived far longer and better than his contempories tends to prove that the regular use of well designed and proper temperature enemas are not harmful but rather helpful. Over the years I have come across a number of people who have taken enemas on a daily basis for as long as 70 years, up to the age of 90 or more, with no adverse effects. Cleansing the colon seems to enhance health and longevity.
The opposition to colonic irrigations or home enemas, based on the farce of protecting the public is ludicrous. The public is in far more danger from almost all over-the-counter medications than it is from colon cleansing. Throughout several thousand years of human history enemas have been given. There is, to my knowlege, in that entire time no record of a properly given enema or series of enemas causing any harm. Thus a properly given enema has proven to cause less harm than almost all modern medications or treatments.
From A Colon Therapist – 2002.
Compiled by Howard Hamilton, South Africa. Send any feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com