The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
Colon Cleansing
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Web sites and blogs are advising patients that periodic “cleansing” of the colon is necessary to rid the body of toxins.

ORAL PRODUCTS — Colon cleansing products may be legally marketed as dietary supplements as long as no claims are made that they diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease; as with all dietary supplements, their purity is suspect.1 Oral colon cleansers are available as capsules and powders to which water is added before use. The ingredients vary from one product to another, but generally include fiber (e.g. psyllium, flaxseed, bentonite) and laxatives such as cascara and magnesium oxide, and may also include vitamins, minerals, amino acids, herbs and probiotics. The laxative ingredients may be included in the powder or as a separate herbal tea. Users are generally instructed to drink 6-10 glasses of water daily. The recommended duration of use varies from a few days to several ... more      

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