I got my colon cleansed, and my poop taught me this

Colon hydrotherapy taught me exactly what my diet was missing. (Photo: Getty Images)

A few months ago, I noticed I felt more sluggish than usual when it came to using the bathroom. Let me be frank: Things were not smooth sailing with my bowels. After getting firsthand feedback and doing research, all roads led me to getting my first colonic. It literally turned my poopless situation into a better, plentiful one that I’m so happy I had the chance to experience.

One of my best friends told me her mother had a colonic, also known as colon hydrotherapy, and that it instantly made her feel lighter and all kinds of amazing. Obviously I was all ears, and asked if she could share more details, because I was eager and sort of desperate. Her mom put me in touch with certified hydrocolon therapist Tsila Trager of Alist Wellness Center.

Trager briefly explained to me that a colonic is a body detox in which water is introduced through the inner colon area to cleanse the colon of built-up leftover waste, help improve digestion, and encourage overall wellness. I took it a step further and checked out her website, as well as a few other sources, and the treatment seemed legit. I figured what’s the worst that could happen and booked a Saturday morning appointment. YOLO!

To prep for my colonic, Trager instructed me to drink at least one gallon of water the day before my scheduled procedure and to eat healthy, nourishing foods. She also advised that any eating be done two to four hours before my colonic to help me get the most out of my session. I didn’t accomplish drinking a full gallon of water, so I freaked out the night before and contacted her to see if I should reschedule. She calmly told me it was OK and strongly suggested I still come in.

While on my way to the wellness center, I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but I did think it would probably be a little stinky, so I mentally prepared for that. Once inside the small, spotless lobby, I was surprised by the fresh, crisp-smelling air. A voice called out, “Hello,” and a fair-skinned woman about 5 feet tall with glowing skin and brunette hair tucked into a bun appeared. It was Trager. She smiled and sat down with me to talk about how I was feeling and what to expect. I filled out some paperwork, and we headed back to one of the treatment rooms, where it all literally goes down.

Inside the room, there was a television, a bed with a middle opening for what looked like a drain, and the colon hydrotherapy system. Trager told me to undress, slip into a gown, and insert the connected speculum about two inches into my rectum. She left the room, and I did just that. Well, I thought so.

Trager resurfaced and turned the water on to start flushing out my colon. She noticed something seemed a little off and told me I had to push the speculum up farther because it was barely inserted. I didn’t experience any pain, but I think I was just nervous. Embarrassingly, the therapist had to help me out a bit. Bless her heart. Then she turned the water on again and told me whenever I felt like I needed to release just let everything go. With her standing there, I think more nerves kicked in. For the first 15 minutes nothing really happened. We just saw streams of cloudy water run through the connected tube. Seems like Trager could read my mind, so she left the room so I could relax better.

Still nothing. At this point, I felt lost. What did I need to do in order to get a freakin’ bowel movement?! I had never been so anxious to go No. 2 in my life. Strangely, once she walked back in to check on me, waste started to fall through. Trager took a glance up at me and said in the nicest way possible, “You really need to increase the amount of water and fiber you take in. There should be much more than this.” That was the first wake-up call of many from this experience. The process went on for about 45 minutes, and Trager told me to try sitting up throughout the procedure, as gravity will help pull everything down and out. Once she cut the water off, I slid up off the speculum, freshened up with cleansing wipes, and proceeded to the center’s main office to discuss next steps.

There was a small cup of water and a probiotic supplement set up for me to consume after the treatment. Trager reiterated that I needed a stronger balance of water and fiber in my diet. It was like a bell went off in my head, and I realized I really need to make some serious lifestyle changes. Apparently, my poop proved that. Trager pleasantly sent me off with some fresh lemongrass and herbal tea bags to help keep my system moving. She also suggested that my follow-up diet consist of mostly healthy fluids (distilled water, juices, electrolyte liquids, etc.) and recommended avoiding raw vegetables and flesh consumption (i.e., beef, pork, chicken).

I walked out of the wellness center feeling like a brand-new woman. Once I was back in my car, I took a peek in my dashboard mirror and immediately noticed my skin looked tighter and more luminous. I just so happened to have Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter on hand in my pocketbook, and I swiped it along my cheekbone to amplify the glow. I showed my look off on Insta Stories and received lots questions from my followers, who wanted to know more about my skin care routine.

Post-procedure, and being the curious person that I am, I naturally wanted to learn more from Trager. At this point, I felt like she was my trusted poop whisperer. I called her up to chat and make sure I stayed on track. When I asked how many times a day I should go, she said, “Roughly two to three times a day is normal because the stomach should be emptying every two to four hours. Depending on how many meals you eat, you should always be going after.” When it came to questions about color and smell, she explained, “Sometimes the bowel movement is way too dark. That also shows that the acid level is probably just way too high, which means there is a lack of fiber. Typically, if someone has an olive color, not a leafy color, but more of a deep-green olive color, you can see that they really have a good pH balance.”

During our follow-up conversation, Trager also pointed out that if I am a heavy meat eater, I will continue to have a harder time in the bathroom. She added, “Meat is harder to digest in your system, and leads to heavier bowel movements that are hard to release and have really foul odors. Alternatively, with a plant-based diet, you will have an easier time with bowel movements that are lighter and float to the top of the water in the toilet.”

The benefits of colon hydrotherapy may include assisting with treatment of mild skin conditions such as dryness and acne, as well as ridding your body of constipation. It can also serve as an aid in weight loss because you are clearing the body of anything that could be adding extra unnecessary mass to your body. The stream of water inserted during the process definitely will give you the boost needed to get going. Trager says it best: “Just like any plant, if you are not watering it, it’s not going to grow good. The body is just like that. When you start making these changes, it promotes healthy cells and the body starts rejuvenating itself.”

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