We Sent Our Editor For Colonic Irrigation

Words: Al Needham
Saturday 05 February 2011
reading time: min, words

"I’ve packed up fags and cut down on booze. It’s either give up chips or have a go on this. Sod it. Why not?"


The idea was simple enough; it was January, every other magazine was trotting out its ‘New Year, New You’ rammell, and we wanted to do something similar. The problem was that giving up fags and ale - or dragging ourselves to the gym - was boring to write about and even more boring to read.

Then we got an email from Caitlin Campbell, a nice young lady from Connecticut who has just set up a practice called the Natural Cleanse near The Park, asking if any of us fancied a bang on her colonic hydration set-up. And I thought; I’ve packed up fags and cut down on booze. It’s either give up chips or have a go on this. Sod it. Why not?

So, dear reader, let me take you to a clinic just across the road from where Scruffy’s used to be. I’ll give you a minute or so to finish your tea. Are we ready? Good…

Caitlin, the first question I have to ask is, well… why do people need pipes shoving up their arses?
The answer to that is because we spend our lives putting so much crap into our bodies that’s really not supposed to be in there. Our bodies are not equipped to cope with smoking, the amount of alcohol we drink, kebabs at two in the morning, etc. What colonic hydration does is give our organs of excretion – our colon, liver, kidneys, lungs and skin – the chance to eliminate what we put in there.

I’ve got a rough idea of what happens - because I’ve seen those sort of videos - but could you tell me the truth?
Well, first we’re going to go through a little consultation, where I ask you about your diet and lifestyle. Then you’re going to get on the table, and we’re going to introduce a plastic speculum and pump in and let out warm water for 45 minutes or so.

How much warm water?
About 50 to 75 litres.

How much is that?
It’s that tank on the wall, about three times. (The tank is the size of a Mac Classic, or one of those big portable tellies with a built-in video recorder)

That is a lot of water.
It is, but we need that much to remove the stagnant waste that has accumulated in the pockets of the colon. I’ve told people what I’m about to do, and they think it’s the comedy event of the decade.

As an American, do you find us Brits are a bit more reticent about this sort of thing?
Well, I think men from both countries are absolute wimps when it comes to their assholes, but that’s starting to change – I’m seeing a lot of younger men who don’t have as much of a hangup about it. Look, not only is this is going to benefit your organs, it’s going to tell us what’s wrong with your current diet and what you need to change.
(One consultation about my personal health later – which is none of your business, actuleh - I was given a skirty-towelly thing and asked to get me drawers off in a changing room. I must admit by this time, I was getting rather nervous; after all, the last thing anyone else had shoved up my arse was a doctor’s finger, on the morning of the 1975 Grand National…)

So what are you expecting to find?
Well, from what you’ve told me about your diet, you’re eating too much bread than you should and not drinking enough water, so I’ll be looking for a yeasty, frothy discharge that clings to the tube. That’s pretty much the most common reaction I get from people.
(She then unwraps a hermetically-sealed package containing plastic speculum roughly the side of a small, thin candle, and a pipe).
Shall we put some music on?

Ooh, what music goes with it?

It’s just soft instrumental music. I don’t want anything too distracting or intense. Normally, I’d put on some Rage Against The Machine, but it’s not really suitable for this – I wouldn’t want anyone to start ranting about politics while they’re having their colon treated…
(As the music – which sounds like the kind of stuff they play on QVC when they’re flogging the Feng Shui rammell – plays, we reach the point where I lie on the padded table, face the wall – that has a massive poster of a colon on it – and the speculum ets slathered with shea butter and takes a one-way journey to ArseTown. I’ve not transcribed this bit, because it would be me going “Oooooh”, taking sharp intakes of breath as I gingerly get on my back, and nervously cackling away to myself like a schoolgirl as the warm water is introduced…)

Ooer, I’m surprised that this is a lot less uncomfortable than I expected.
You’re holding a lot of water, which is good. You’ve got a big holding capacity.

So have you had any, erm, accidents since you started practicing?
No, I haven’t. All throughout my schooling, I’ve been prepared for incidents such as people fainting or the pipes clogging and everything ending up on the floor, but nothing bad has ever happened. Don’t be my first!

Do you ever stop every now and again when you’re at work and think; ‘You know what? My job is mental’?
Not at all. I’d much sooner do this than work in a call centre. In a minute I’m going to give you an abdominal massage to make sure the water’s circulating, and then I’m going to open the valve and see what’s coming out. (Checks pipe). Hmmm.

What are you seeing at the moment?
Clear water.

Ah, skill!
Er, no. That’s indicating that you have impacted faeces and you’re severely dehydrated. I’m really devastated, Al – it looks like we have a sad colon in here…
(The problem, dear reader, is that I don’t even like farting in the same house as anyone else, particularly nice young ladies. By now, I have about 12 litres of water inside me - which is the average daily cider intake of a Jeremy Kyle guest – and I’m involuntarily refusing to expel it. In the end, I have to slosh over to the bog to get rid, where I do an impersonation of those Coke bottles that American kids stuff with Mentos and throw on the floor so they rocket twenty feet in the air. We decide that I need to rehydrate and have another go later on…)

OK, I must admit I was thrown on the first go, what with being British and all…
Well, you need to remember that everything is going through the tube. We’re not going to smell anything.

Why are you using just warm water? Don’t people use coffee?
Well, coffee can be used as a stimulant, but I feel it’s too harsh – particularly for first-time users. I can use a blend of herbs and extracts, so I can adjust the treatments for different ailments.

What’s the nastiest stuff you ever seen?
In really dehydrated cases, you get black, shiny, almost leathery flakes, which is known as mucus plaque – a thick crust that’s not naturally shifting by itself. And yes, I see sweetcorn all the time, and seeds and tomato skin. I can actually feel your bowels moving now… we’re getting some very good results here…
(As the tank empties and refills and the water goes in and the water goes out and Caitlin scans the pipe like a 1920s banker would read a ticker tape, two things hit me; how quickly you get used to this sort of thing – once you get over the panicked feeling that you’re going to involuntary pebbledash one side of Derby Road – and how easy it is to hold a conversation with a pipe up your ringpiece.)

So how often should the average person do this?
I usually recommend a course of three treatments over six weeks. If you’re serious about it, I think people really should be doing this at least once every four months.

I think for straight males, you definitely need more than one, just to get over the hang-up with bumhole-related palaver.
Well, yes. At the very least, one treatment is giving your colon a workout – which is better than no workout – and you’re flushing out a lot of stuff you want rid of.

By the end of the treatment - when I’ve been properly hydrated and made sure I’ve got rid of every drop of water and I’ve put my kit back on - Caitlin gives me a few leaflets to help keep my colon in tip-top fashion (calm down on the meat, bread and other processed foods, ramp up the fruit and veg and get more water down you). Was it worth it? I have to say it definitely was. After all, if you’re having a serious think about your diet, it makes sense to get rid of whatever’s there first, and if your idea of a detox is a bit more than ‘not getting kaylide or noshing kebabs for a weekend’, it makes sense to tackle the problem from both ends.

As I walk down the street towards Canning Circus, I have to say that I feel a bit lighter. Actually, I experience the euphoria that only a properly massive clearout can do for a person. I’d bounce down the street and click my heels, but I’m too scared of, well… y’know.

Caitlin can be found at The Natural Cleanse, 2 Derby Terrace, NG7 1ND. Telephone 0757 692 8991. New Year deals are still on. LeftLion would like to point out that no garden hoses were used at any point during the colonic hydration process.

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