Coffee Enemas

While coffee enemas have become more popular of late mainly for their ability to assist in detoxification in the body, few people appreciate where this practice came from, or how it was introduced.

As is often the case, necessity is the mother of invention Coffee enemas had their genesis with Dr Max Gerson, a German physician suffering from debilitating migrane headaches, who in the 1920’s sought to find a solution to his own pain when conventional treatment failed him.  His initial experimentation focussed on diet to prevent the onset of migranes.  At the time the notion that diet could have anything to do with health and disease was considered radical.  However, Dr Gerber persisted, using himself as his guinea pig and in the course of treating his own and his patient’s migranes, he stumbled upon a cure for skin tuberculosis.    This discovery led to further investigation into dietary interventions for health conditions, and he went on to successfully treat and cure several degenerative diseases such as skin tuberculosis, heart disease, type II diabetes and most famously, cancer.


Dr Gerber’s therapy restores the body’s innate ability to heal itself. By considering toxicity and nutritional deficiency as the root cause of most degenerative diseases, the Gerson Therapy uses a plant-based, organic only diet to treat a wide range of conditions.

Fresh, organic juices are consumed daily providing an abundance of nutrients, enzymes and minerals that are easily absorbed.  (This type of diet is similar in many ways to the Wahls Protocol, created by Dr Wahls to treat her own multiple sclerosis).  Raw and cooked vegetables are plentiful in the Gerson diet, and coffee enemas are used to aid in the elimination of toxins from the liver.   All of this enhances oxygenation in the body by more than double, and since oxygen deficiency in the blood contributes to degenerative disease, this new force within the body allows for increased detoxification, regeneration of the liver, reactivation of the immune system and improved cell metabolism.


What Is an Enema?

An enema involves injecting a liquid into the rectum via a tube for cleansing purposes or for stimulating the action of the bowels. It can be used for constipation especially when laxatives are not working. It is faster acting than a laxative. They are also used for clearing the bowels before some medical procedures such as a colonoscopy and before childbirth.


How does an enema work to detoxify?

Caffeine will travel up the hemorrhoidal to the portal vein and to the liver. Gerson noted some remarkable effects of this procedure. For instance, patients could dispense with all painkillers once on the enemas. Many people have noted the paradoxical calming effect of coffee enemas.

And while coffee enemas can relieve constipation, Gerson cautioned: “Patients have to know that the coffee enemas are not given for the function of the intestines but for the stimulation of the liver.”

Years later Dr Lee Wattenberg and his colleagues were able to show that substances found in coffee – kahweol and cafestol palmitate – stimulates the activity of a key enzyme system, glutathione S-transferase. Glutathione is an important anti-oxidant and this system detoxifies a vast array of electrophiles from the bloodstream. This enzyme group is responsible for neutralizing free radicals, the harmful chemicals now commonly implicated in the initiation of cancer.

In addition, theophylline and theobromine (two other chemicals in coffee) dilate blood vessels and counter the inflammation of the gut. Since the enema is generally held for 15 minutes, and all the blood in the body passes through the liver every three minutes, enemas represent a form of dialysis of blood across the gut wall.

While coffee enemas boost detoxification of the liver some patients do find the nature of their delivery prohibitive.   A coffee suppository may be an alternative and can provide a convenient way to detoxify.  Speak to the friendly team at Synergy Compounding to find out more about coffee suppositories.