Flaxseed and psyllium are commonly used in herbal colon cleansing products to help flush toxins from your body, says Colon-Cleanse-Information.com. Colon cleanse supporters claim that a colon cleanse can help you shed excess weight, improve bowel function and improve your general well-being. However, there is no medical evidence that colon cleansing provides any health benefits.
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About Colon Cleansing
The main purpose of a colon cleanse is to eliminate toxic build-up and promote the reabsorption of nutrients into your system, says Colon-Cleanse-Information.com. The theory behind it is that when toxins -- mainly impacted fecal matter -- build up, they slowly poison your system and affect your general health and well-being.
Flaxseed has long been used as a natural laxative because it expands in your system, on contact with water, and adds bulk to stools to aid their passage through your intestinal tract, says the University of Maryland Medical Center. Flaxseed is also rich in fatty acids, which may provide relief from irritable bowel syndrome.
Psyllium is a soluble fiber that forms a gelatin-like mass in your gut and helps push food and waste through your system, says the University of Maryland Medical Center. It is often used to treat diarrhea, constipation and irritable bowel syndrome because it firms up stools to move them more swiftly through your digestive tract.
Use fresh flaxseed within 24 hours of grinding and refrigerate the oil to retain the active ingredients, says the University of Maryland Medical Center. You can also buy flaxseed in powder and capsule form. Psyllium is available in dry seed or husk form -- which can be mixed with water -- or as a laxative in capsule and tablet form.
Benefits and Precautions
The Mayo Clinic says colon cleansing is not necessary because the body is capable of removing toxins without assistance. However, advocates believe that colon cleansing can relieve constipation and diarrhea, promote regular bowel movements and proper absorption of vitamins and minerals, enhance the functioning of the immune system, increase energy levels and promote general health, says Colon-Cleanse-Information.com.