Herbal Enemas for a Happy and Healthy Colon

November 17, 2012 by Michelle | Filed under Cleansing and Detox, Digestive Care, Health, Natural Remedies.

Herbal enemas are for more than just cleansing the colon. Herbal enemas are a very efficient way to achieve healing effects because the active substances in the herbs are absorbed by the intestinal walls and go directly into the blood stream. When herbs are taken orally some of the active substances are altered, weakened, or destroyed by the gastric juices before they can be absorbed into the system.

Once administered, hold the herbal enema for 15-45 minutes. The longer you can hold it the better. As this will allow for more absorption of the active substances.

If you have not done a recent colon cleanse or enema, it is recommended to do a cleansing enema before administering a herbal enema to achieve better effects. In this way, you will first clear out the majority of fecal matter before administering the herbal enema and more of the herbal solution will be absorbed. You can use plain water or salt water for your cleansing enema. To see more cleansing enema solutions, read the page  “7 Natural Enema Solutions You Can Use at Home”.

**Important** Before administering any enema please read about the proper procedure for administering an enema and the contraindications for receiving an enema in. The page “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Giving Yourself an Enema and Were Afraid to Ask” talks about this in detail.

Also, please note that many of the herbal enemas listed below are recommended for mild and chronic inflammations of the intestinal tract, but do avoid using  enemas during acute flare-ups of inflammatory bowel conditions. Most herbs are contraindicated during pregnancy and breastfeeding. If you are pregnant, consult a health-care practitioner before administering a herbal enema.

Remember to use only filtered, chlorine-free water in your solutions and heat the enema solution to a comfortable temperature (between 37-40 deg C or 98 and 104 degrees F).

Note that the herbal enema recipes below are in litres, if you measure by quarts then use 1 quart of water for each litre. A litre is 1000ml and a quart is 946ml, the difference is negligible.

Herbal Enema Solutions:

1. Aloe Enema

Aloe Vera is a very soothing and healing plant with strong anti-inflammatory properties. An aloe vera enema is good for those suffering with hemorrhoids, as it will help to stop any bleeding associated with the hemorrhoids and aid in healing. An aloe vera enema will also promote healing of the intestinal tract and will be beneficial for those with irritable bowel or diverticulitis.

Aloe Vera Enema Recipe:

  • 1/3 to ½ cup aloe vera juice
  • 2 litres warm filtered water

Combine the aloe vera juice and the water, mix well. Check  that the temperature is comfortable and administer. Retain for 15- 45 minutes.

2. Burdock Enema

Burdock root is one of the best herbs for purifying the blood and correcting skin problems. A burdock enema aids in the elimination of calcium deposits and is beneficial for improving the functions of the kidneys and bladder.

Burdock Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp burdock root
  • 2 litres filtered water

Add the burdock to the water in a pot and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to an appropriate temperature. Strain the solution and administer. Retain the solution 15- 45 minutes.

3. Catnip Enema

Catnip tea is very calming when taken internally. Taken as an enema it soothes and relaxes the intestinal tract, making it useful for those with stomach and digestive disorders. Catnip enemas ease pain and cramping in the colon, reduce intestinal gas and help relieve constipation. Catnip enemas also help to pull mucous from the colon.

Catnip enemas are good to take in times of cold or flu, they also reduce fever quickly and are safe for use in both adults and children.

Catnip Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp dried catnip leaves  or  4 catnip tea bags
  • 2 litres filtered water

Bring the water to a boil, remove from heat, add the catnip leaves and let steep for 15 minutes. Filter the tea, make sure it is a comfortable temperature and administer. Retain for 15- 45 minutes.

4. Cat’s Claw Enema

Cat’s claw is known for it’s immune-boosting properties and it’s efficiency in healing intestinal ailments. When taken as an enema cat’s claw will cleanse the colon and aid the healing of bowel disorders such as Chron’s, colitis, diverticulitis, leaky gut syndrome, and hemorrhoids.

Cat’s claw enemas can help in the reduction of intestinal parasites and, because of the immune boosting effects of the herb, they may also aid in restoring friendly bacteria in the colon.

Cat’s Claw Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp cat’s claw powder
  • 2 litres filtered water

Bring the water to a boil, remove from heat, add the cat’s claw powder and let steep for 15 minutes. Filter the tea, make sure it is a comfortable temperature and administer. Retain for 15- 45 minutes.

5. Chamomile Enema

Chamomile is a calming herb which promotes relaxation in the body when taken as a tea. A chamomile enema will calm the body as well as the digestive system. Chamomile enemas soothe an irritated intestinal tract and can reduce intestinal cramps or spasms caused by gas or inflammation. Chamomile enemas may also help relieve hemorrhoids, nausea, and sleeplessness.

Chamomile Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp loose chamomile  or  4 bags of chamomile tea
  • 2 litres filtered water

Bring the water to a boil, remove from heat and add the chamomile. Let steep for 15 minutes. Cool to an appropriate temperature, filter and administer. Retain for 15-45 minutes.

Cautions and Considerations:

  • Those with an allergy to ragweed should avoid the use of chamomile.
  • Chamomile is a gentle sedative and may cause drowsiness.

6. Fenugreek Enema

Fenugreek seeds are used internally for inflammatory conditions throughout the body. Fenugreek seeds become mucilaginous when added to water, this mucilage helps to lubricate and protect the mucous membranes of the body. Because of their mucilaginous character, fenugreek seeds, when used in enemas are very soothing in cases of inflammations located in the digestive tract. They also protect against the formation of ulcers in the intestinal tract and relieve pain from existing ulcers.

Fenugreek Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp fenugreek seeds
  • 2 litres filtered water

Soak the fenugreek seeds in the water overnight. In the morning, boil the water with the seeds for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool to a comfortable temperature. Strain, administer and retain for  15-45 minutes.

7. Garlic Enema

Garlic is a strong anti-biotic, anti-fungal and anti-parasitic herb. Garlic enemas have been used traditionally to eliminate intestinal worms and other parasites. They are also becoming well known for reducing candida levels in the colon. A garlic enema can rid the colon of harmful bacteria which causes diarrhea and other symptoms of irritated bowel, giving relief of symptoms in just a few hours.

Garlic enemas aid in the elimination of toxins and mucous from the colon, and are also known for their effectiveness at reducing fever.

Allicin is the substance which gives garlic it’s beneficial properties. Crushing the garlic is necessary to release the allicin in garlic. After crushing let the garlic sit for 15-90 minutes before using to increase the amount of allicin being produced.

Taking garlic thorough enema is more effective than eating garlic, as it delivers the allicin directly into the colon. When garlic goes through the digestive system in undergoes various chemical changes and most of the allicin has been broken down into other components by the time it reaches the intestines.

Garlic Enema Recipe:

  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 litres filtered water

Crush the garlic cloves and let sit for 15 minutes. Add the garlic to the water and let the mixture sit for at least 2 hours or as long as overnight. This increases the amount of allicin in the solution. Strain the mixture and heat to an appropriate temperature. Administer and retain the enema for 15-45 minutes to achieve the most from it’s antibiotic effects.

It is also common to combine garlic with an epsom salt enema or a catnip enema.

Cautions and Considerations:

  • If you have a high level of infection from candida or parasites, a garlic enema may provoke a strong die-off reaction. To lessen the severity of the die-off reaction start with one clove of garlic in your enema solution and gradually make the solution stronger by adding one clove per day. Do not use more than 4-5 cloves of garlic in a single solution.
  • Garlic is a natural anti-biotic which may also kill some of the good bacteria in your colon if used in enemas regularly. To re-establish beneficial bacteria in your colon you can either alternate a garlic enema with an acidophilus enema, or supplement with oral probiotics and fermented foods.
  • When using raw garlic in an enema you may experience a warming sensation around the anus, this normal. Stronger solutions may give a slight burning sensation and irritate the soft tissues in the anal canal. If you have a known sensitivity, then start with a more diluted solution.

8. Neem Enema

Neem is an excellent anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-septic herb. The herb also detoxifies the blood and stimulates the immune system to fight off infections. Neem enemas can reduce candida, parasites and other infections of the colon. Neem enemas are also useful in the treatment of ulcerative colitis and skin conditions.

Neem Enema Recipe:

  • 1 Tbsp neem leaf powder
  • 2 litres filtered water

Boil the water, remove from heat and add the neem powder. Steep for 15 minutes. Filter and make sure the temperature is comfortable. Administer and retain for 15-45 minutes.

9. Pau d’Arco Enema

Also referred to as taheebo or lapacho, pau d’arco is a strong anti-fungal anti-viral herb which is often used to treat various infections in the body. A pau d’arco enema can aid the treatment of internal yeast or fungal overgrowth (candida) in the colon and will also aid in the reduction of parasites.

Pau d’arco enhances the ability of the immune system to fight infection and is useful to those with a weakened immune system. It also purifies the blood, and can lessen the severity of conditions related with toxic blood, such are psoriasis and dermatitis. When taken as an enema, the active substances in pau d’arco reach the bloodstream faster than when taken orally.

Pau d’Arco Enema Recipe:

  • 2 -3 Tbsp pau d’arco inner bark
  • 2 litres filtered water

Place the water and the pau d’arco in a ceramic or glass pot. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Let the mixture cool to a comfortable temperature. Strain, administer and retains for 15-45 minutes.

Cautions and Considerations:

  • Due to it’s strong anti-fungal nature, the use of pau d’arco may cause some die-off reactions. If you have a serious infection of candida or parasites in the colon start with a weaker concentration of pau d’arco tea in your enema and increase the concentration gradually

10. Slippery Elm Enema

Slippery elm is one of the best herbs to take for any problem in the gastrointestinal tract. It aids in the correction of both constipation and diarrhea. It also helps to heal hemorrhoids, and inflammatory conditions of the bowel such as Chron’s and ulcerative colitis.

Slippery elm is demulcent in nature, which means that it soothes and protects the mucous membranes of the body by forming a mucilaginous film or coating over the mucous membranes. This coating property of slippery elm heals the intestinal walls, relieves mild pain, irritation, and inflammation. Slippery elm protects the intestinal walls from excess acidity and the formation of ulcers. Using slippery elm in an enema is a great way to obtain it’s benefits.

Slippery elm, is not only good for healing and soothing, it is also a very rich source of nutrients. It is very good to take as an enema when a person has trouble eating or keeping food down because the vitamins, minerals, and amino acids in slippery elm will be absorbed through the bowel walls and help nourish the body.

Slippery Elm Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp Slippery Elm powder
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1.5 litres warm filtered water

Boil 2 cups of water, remove from heat, add slippery elm powder and let steep for 5 minutes. Blend the mixture and add it to the remaining 1.5 litres of water. Make sure the mixture is an appropriate temperature, administer and retain for 15-45 minutes.

Do not be tempted to use more of the slippery elm powder in your mixture, slippery elm absorbs a lot of water, and using too much will cause the enema solution to be too thick.

11. Yarrow Enema

Yarrow is a diaphorietc herb, administering it in an enema is good in times of colds, flu or fever.

Yarrow is very soothing and healing for the mucous membranes of the body, therefore, yarrow enemas will aid in the reduction of abdominal cramps and inflammation in the intestinal tract. Yarrow enemas are useful in the treatment of hemorrhoids, diarrhea, and intestinal gas. Yarrow also helps to loosens and flush excess mucous from the intestinal tract.

Yarrow Enema Recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp dried yarrow
  • 2 litres filtered water

Boil the water, remove from heat and add the yarrow. Let steep for 15 minutes, strain, cool to an appropriate temperature and administer. Retain for 15-45 minutes.

Cautions and Considerations:

Yarrow contains lactone and salicylic acid which, in some people, may cause allergic reactions such as nausea or headache. If you have a known allergy to asprin, which has a high concentration of salicylic acid, avoid the use of yarrow.


References and Resources:




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11 Responses to “Herbal Enemas for a Happy and Healthy Colon”

  1. Dana Owens says:

    Can You mix a couple ingredients together?

    • Michelle says:

      Hi Dana, I have already written in the article that one can combine a garlic enema with a catnip enema or epsom salt enema – so the answer is yes, you can mix some things together. I wouldn’t mix more than two. If you are mixing two herbs, 1/2 the amount of each herb (to avoid a too strong solution) and choose ones that seem compatible based on the information provided. You can always alternate enema solutions, then you can feel the effects of each individually and get a better idea of what works best for your body.

  2. Martin says:

    Thanks for the info on enema’s. I came across this web.site looking for confirmation on Slippery elm enema.
    Thanks, Martin.

  3. Kim says:

    How often can you do a herbal enema?

    • Michelle says:

      Hi Kim, it really depends on what you are trying to acheive by doing an enema, which herbs you use, and individual factors. There is no set prescription for any body.

  4. Victoria says:

    Great info I have leaky gut and auto immune associated psoriasis. I take slippery elm, aloe, L- Glutamine and probiotics orally so makes sense to administer the other end!! Any other useful tips or reading matter you could advise? Also daily enemas, a good idea? Never done one as of yet. Thank you so much!!

    • Michelle says:

      Hi Victoria. I’m glad you find the information useful. I unfortunately cannot give individual advice on my website. Some more research and I am sure you will find your answers. Best of health! Michelle

    • AM says:

      Read “GAPS Gut and Psychology Syndrome” by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. BEST way to heal intestinal tract!

  5. miabee says:

    Can i do an enema while breastfeeding? I have Candida and my 18 month has really bad eczema and i feel bad that the yeast is passing on to him. I was thinking to use the pau d’Arco tea in my enema. Any recommendations? Is it safe?

    • Michelle says:

      A saline solution enema would be safe while breast feeding, but I do not recommend an enema with pau d’arco, this herb is to be avoided while pregnant and breastfeeding. Although you would not be drinking the tea, the colon does absorb and there is no way to tell how much of the pau d’arco would be absorbed. To play it safe avoid taking strong herbs in any form.

  6. Heather says:

    I have both Crohn’s & colitis and have been bound for over a week and nothing has helped thus far so I am about to try the Slippery Elm Enema…I pray it works <3

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