Intestinal Cleanse Part I: Salt Flush

Nov 15, 2011 by

Image by Hueystar

 

One of the most famous saying in Naturopathic Medicine is “Death Begins in the Colon.” This is because you are what you eat, absorb, don’t digest and eliminate. Essentially the functioning of your body is directly related to the health of your digestion system. That’s because everything you eat makes the very cells that allow your body to function. It’s as simple as that.

Ample research shows that almost every chronic disorder and symptom- whether or not it has an apparent connection to the digestive system- is directly caused by an imbalance in GI track (digestive system). Therefore, it is vital to our health, on the inside and outside, to have a healthy digestive system. If you want to have clear and vibrant skin, thick and long hair, clear eyes, strength and energy, you must have a clean digestive track.

The good news is, that intestinal cleansing is a great way to get on the right track. It is extremely affordable, simple and no starvation is necessary… well, at least not in this cleanse.

This intestinal cleanse is a great way to begin cleansing and certainly has far more long term affects than more popular detoxification programs such as “The Master Cleanse.” That is because we are not simply looking to eliminate harmful foods, but we are also helping the body to get rid of all toxic waste. And believe me… there is a lot of toxic waste hiding in the gut.

 

Part I Salt Flush

 

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First we are going to begin salt flushing. This is the practice of taking a high dose of pure unheated sea salt in a quart of water first thing in the morning. Since we will be on an empty stomach, the salt will cause a purging effect, which will cause you to have a complete, full bowel movement in .5 to 2 hours.

The salt flush is a great way to get your bowels moving while literally pushing out old stagnant waste in the GI tract. Furthermore, it will help to normalize your pH, which is essential in preventing any pathogenic organism (fungus, virus, bacteria) from settling in the gut.

Directions:

Image by JuliaBalbilla

High Quality Pink Salt

 

Choosing high quality salt is difficult. Please be wary when purchasing grey sea salt or himalayan sea salts because frequently these salts are ground with a nickel grinding screen. This leaves heavy metal residues in the salt that is damaging to your body. See more information on Pink Salt to understand the importance of high quality salt.

* I only recommend that you use the PRL Pink Salt or the Sun Fire Salt. Most other salts (even “healthy” salts) can be toxic and are not therapeutic grade for this flush. These toxic salts can cause nausea, bloating and vomiting from the flush.

 

Can I add Less Salt to the Flush?

 

Some people feel comfortable using 2 teaspoons of salt. This is OK as long as you flush. If you do not flush, add another teaspoon the next time you do a Flush.

 

What Can I Expect?

 

Most people experience rapid, bowel elimination within .5 to 2 hours (most people flush within 1/2 hr). You are usually safe to leave the house within 2 hours of the first flush. If no flush occurs (no watery bowel movements), this may indicate a person is extremely salt (sodium) deficient, has internal damage to the lining of the intestines, or has a great deal of toxic body burden. Healthy cells have a preference for potassium over sodium, but when cells are damaged they begin to prefer sodium. So, do not be alarmed if no “flushing” action occurs the first time. Your cells have simply “sopped up” the much needed sodium. In this case, drink another quart of water and go on with your day.

 

How Often Do I Need To Do A Salt Flush?

 

Preferably three to five times a week until water expelled from bowel movement is clear. You may do it as little as once a week if need be, but not the preferred method. For most individuals who begin salt flushing, the bowels may not clear completely. To flush completely means that when you are finished, water was the only thing excreted from the bowels.  This may take a while for some people to accomplish. Once you begin to flush in this manner continue on a maintenance flush of one time a week.

Image by Snoeker

For individuals with severe bowel deficiencies, and/or poor digestion- Salt Flushes are recommended once a day for one week. Then reduce the number of Salt Flushes each following week. This will promote rapid clearance of the GI tract, improve digestion, and restore proper bowel function. Below is the Traditional Ayurveda recommendation for this sequence:

  • Salt Flush once a day for the first week.
  • The second week, flush 3 times.
  • Third week, flush 2 times.
  • Fourth week, flush one time.
  • Then once a week indefinitely.
  • If this is intimidating, start out with one Flush to see how it goes, then work your way up to doing several a week.

 

What if I Don’t Flush?

 

It is common for some individuals to do Salt Flushes several times and experience little or no flushing action. This is most often because you are salt deficient and you have not reached your saturation level. Although this can be discouraging, especially if water retention occurs, it is recommended to continue doing them until a complete flush takes place ( if you desire, you may try increasing the salt dosage.) Many benefits will come from the intake of high amounts of quality salt. The small intestine neutralizes most common tissue toxins, and prolonged use of high quality salt will encourage rapid cell detoxification- thus improving overall health.

 

What Should I Eat During this Cleanse?

 

While the salt flush protocol will be effective even if you do not change your diet, in order for it to have the most profound results I would suggest the following:

Image by Schmitzoide

1. Eliminating all dairy- dairy is highly congesting as it is mucous- forming in the gut.

2. Avoid all Processed Foods- anything that is purchased in the middle aisles of the market. You may eat minimal amounts of raw or organic packaged items.

3. No Artificial Sweeteners- no diet foods, no fake sugar… this includes all 0 calorie flavored drinks. No splenda and sweet n low.

4. No White Flour- this includes all white flour baked goods, bagels, bread, pizza crust, pie crust, crackers and desserts. Please only eat whole grains such as brown rice, quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat or sprouted wheat products. Gluten free items are also great options.

5. Focus on a Whole Foods, Plant-based Diet: whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds. These foods are gentle on the intestinal tract as they are high in fiber and nutrients. Check out THK Kitchen for more ideas. Don’t worry, there really is a lot to eat!

6. Oh ya- Salba. This is a great superfood that is certain to help with the eliminatory process. I love making this into a breakfast bowl. Check out the recipe here and purchase it here.

7. Stay hydrated. Drink 1/2 your weight in ounces of water daily. You have to have enough water to keep things moving through the gut. Remember… we want your food processed and then moved out. We need at least 1 bowel movement daily, but are shooting for 2-3.

Image by cobalt123

 

Maximize Your Salt Flush Experience by Adding Pink Salt to Your Drinking Water

 

As stated previously, individuals that are deficient in sodium will not flush very well. To maximize your experience, it is recommended to add Pink Salt to your drinking water. Typically a few pinches of salt per 8 oz. of water or 1/2 tsp in 16 oz once daily. Not only will this build your sodium reserves, it will help to hydrate you beyond that which ordinary water (filtered or not) can. Sodium deficiency causes people to become dehydrated at the cellular level, regardless of how much water is consumed. Sodium carries the negative charge necessary to deliver water directly into the cells. Make it a daily habit to add high quality salt to your drinking water, and never go with out it!

 

Taking Precautions

 

While this is a very gentle detoxification process, like all cleanses, we must take precautions. If you have not been incorporating healthy salts into your diet on a regular basis or if you have been leading a unhealthy lifestyle then I suggest that you start of slow. I would urge you to first begin with 1/4 tsp of either Pink Salt or Sun Fire Salt in a quart-size mason jar of water (3 cups) with 1/2 lemon daily. Try to drink that first thing in the morning. This will allow your body to restore its reserves so that you may successfully move into a symptom-free salt flush. If your salt reserves are lacking, one of two things is most likely to happen: 1) you will have no flush and you will swell or 2) you will become very nauseous and may vomit. So please start slow, and you might even want to begin the flush with a half of a tbs and then work up to 1 tbs on your next flush.

Now that I Have Finished the Salt Flush Protocol, What’s Next?

 

Now that your bowels have begun to eliminate properly, we are going to start the second phase of intestinal cleansing with the Aloe Intestinal Cleanse.

 

To a Clean and Happy Gut!

Lauren 

 

 

References:

This protocol is thanks to Health Beyond Hype

 

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43 Comments

  1. Camilla

    ok this is part one how do I get to part two?

    • lauren

      Hi Camilla! You can find the cleanse here. This is a cleanse I made that I have been using with my clients that has been working wonders :)

  2. Stefanie

    Hi Lauren!

    So I’ve got my first Salt Flush (with PRL Salt) in my gut right now! I feel…uncomfortable and slightly nauseous, but I definitely feel things working in there! Is this nauseous feeling normal? That water was WAY saltier than I was expecting!
    I realize you probably won’t respond to this before things start to take effect. My intent was to do a few of these this week but I just wanted to make sure that what I’m feeling is normal before I proceed.

    Thanks!

  3. Savitree

    This is a good end game to a start protocol ie egg yolk cleanse the night before. I have just done 5 days in a row of this with mostly raw fruits and veggies wow amazing purgeings it isnt that difficult once you clean your diet up a little before starting and getting your mind right this is what im going to be doing for awhile. Tip for the easier salt flush. put 2 tsp of salt in One litre of slightly warm water and lemon juice u don’t need to drink 2 salt litres waste of time but u can just drink lukewarm water inbetween to help u get the salt down or one whole liter plus after more efficient just as effective and faster hats off to all who are flushing your woes away! Hail to the Kale

  4. Savitree

    love your site pics are inspiring

  5. I have had digestion issues since getting heavily radiated 22 years ago for cancer. I am a vegetarian and adhere to a strict diet, including, no dairy and some meat like buffalo once every 3 months or so.

    Question: I did a sea salt flush every day for about 1 week. I used the pink fine Real Salt. I had to quick because of a rise in BP and my kidneys hurt.

    Please advise. Peace…

    • lauren

      This is not uncommon for those who are quite toxic. In your state, it is best to start with something even more gentle, such as a warm water enema. As for the kidneys, I would suggest using nutrients to increase their functioning. I would recommend Premier Research Lab’s Neuro ND, which is fully reduced ALA, known as DHLA. Kidneys are very susceptible to damage from radiation, so it is not a surprise this is what you are experiencing. Neuro ND is the most powerful antioxidant, and targets the kidneys directly.

  6. Rachel

    Hi! I was just curious, is this safe for nursing moms? I do believe I have some trouble eliminating toxins and I know I need this flush, but I am fearful that it may cause a huge toxin flush. Please let me know your thoughts!
    Thanks,
    Rachel

    • lauren

      Hi Rachel, in general it is not recommended to do cleansing or detoxification while your breastfeeding. If you want to improve your ability to eliminate toxins, I would suggest taking live-source B vitamins. In addition, you should make sure you are having at least one full bowel movement a day. If you are not, you can increase your fiber, healthy unheated sea salt, and essentially fatty acids. If necessary, you can use enemas.

  7. Responder

    Hi

    I have read in multiple sources that putting less than a certain amount of salt (usually they say a teaspoon /liter but i guess depends also on the type of salt) is actually unhealthy and dangerous because (as you mention) the cells absorb too much salt while if there’s a minimum x ratio of salt in the water the cells don’t absorb it at all and so the salt goes out. if it gets in the cells then it’s too much salt for the body…

    so maybe safe you recheck and update the post if necessary.

    good luck!

    • lauren

      Hello, this will completely depend on your current state of minerals in the body. Everyone is different so you cannot say what would be best for everyone that is why I have that disclaimer in there. Thanks!

  8. Just bought himalania fine oink salt (brand storming.com). Says it is unrefined. Would this be ok to use for this cleanse? Thanks!

    • lauren

      Hello Gemma, I am actually not personally familiar with that brand, so I cannot comment on the quality of it. I only use the brand I recommend because I can testify to its quality and purity, which is important when taking it in large dosages.

      • Hope Kerrigan

        I personally checked on this brand as they carry it at Whole Foods and generally… I can trust products that I buy from there to be of the highest quality. However, before I begin your salt cleanse, I wanted to be absolutely certain so I wrote to them and this is their response to me: “Hi Hope – We would like to confirm that there is no usage of a nickel grinding screen. Additionally, Himalayan Pink Salt is gourmet food and therapeutic grade. Due to its naturally rich elements and trace minerals, Pink Salts recognized for remedying the body and relaxing the mind; specifically helpful for soothing sore muscles and easing skin irritation. Thank you!” Hope this helps in an additional recommendation. Thanks!!

        • lauren

          Hi Hope – great research!! I love that you took the initiative. That’s the way to do it :) Good Luck with the flush.

  9. Sari

    Hello! Thank you for this post! I’m just wondering though, am I supposed to grind the salt to make a tablespoon or do I make a tablespoon with it when it’s not ground, in their normal size? Thank you!

    • lauren

      I would only used the finely ground sea salt, otherwise it could be too harsh on the body.

  10. Cori

    Hi there,

    I’ve been having digestive issues since January. There have been Ct scans, xrays, colonscopy, bloodwork, gluten free diet change, gym regiments, magnesium citrate supplements, dairy free diet and nothing was ever really diagnosed except possible ibs. I tok a trip overseas too (in August) a nd came sick as a dog with virus and bacterial infection. Took anitbiotics for the bacterial infection and then more for another from the previous antiobics…and now alkost 2 months later dealing with something internally again. Had more tests like beginning of year and with chest pain and breathing issues ruled out any blood clots in the lungs. I’ve switched my diet again since when I came back from trip I lost a lot of weight and then struggled with appetite. Done a wormwood & black walnut complex tincture for 10 days then off 5 and now doing diatomaceous earth daily now (day 5) and eating mostly organic veggies no fruit unless pineapple is blended with carrot juice and kale and pumpkin seeds. Mostly sticking to an anti parasitic diet…minimal meat chicken or shrimp. Hahaving apple cider vinegar and probiotics daily. Will the salt flush help flush any parasites out? Sorry for the long story before my actual qustion I just wanted to make sure I’m not killing myself doing all this stuff before I do the salt. If that doesn’t help, my next step is an MRI.

    Thank you for your time,
    Cori

    • lauren

      Hi Cori, no the salt flush will not kill parasites. To target parasites you need to find out what type of parasite you have (or where it is located, intestine vs liver/gallbladder), and then use therapeutic herbs to target it. If you email me directly at lauren@theholykale.com I can see if I can recommend a practitioner in your area. Doing a parasite cleanse must be guided in order to proper clear them.

  11. nichole

    I bought all natural Himalayan pink sea salt form fruitfulyeid. Is this a safe brand to use for the flush?

    • lauren

      Hi Nichole, I have never used that brand so unfortunately I cannot make a comment on it.

  12. Kristina

    Hi Lauren,

    I was just wondering what salt/water intake you might recommend for a small female weighing about 105 lbs. I took the full dose of 1 tbs. in 32 oz. of water this morning and vomited a large amount after about 10 minutes, but still flushed about an hour later. Could I reduce the amount by half and still achieve results? Or was the vomiting a symptom of salt deficiency in my body and I just need time to get used to it?

    Thanks for your help

  13. I saw a previous post about not using cleanses when breastfeeding. I am however breastfeeding my toddler who is 21 months now (he feeds minimally 2-3x’s day mostly at night). If I did the flush first thing in the morning would it still be safe to nurse at night? would the toxins mostly be out of my system by then? I’d like to work on my gut health and currently we make our own sauerkraut and take calmmag. Is there any other things I can do while nursing or reduce the salt? ideas…?

    • lauren

      Hi Heather, it is just a general recommendation to not detox while breastfeeding because you are moving toxins in the body that could transfer to the breast milk. A salt flush is more about pushing toxins out of the body via the bowel, so I wouldn’t be as concerned, but in order to err on the side of caution I would discuss this with your MD. You can try using more healing agents such as Aloe Vera juice, fermented foods (like you are doing), taking a probiotic and cutting out hard to digest foods such as cows dairy, gluten and soy. I hope that helps Heather!

  14. DJ

    I’ve been looking for a good flush to try and think this may be the one. You say that after drinking the salt water mixture most people begin to flush within 1/2 to 2 hours. But my question is, how long does it last? Do I need to plan this for a day when I’m not planning on leaving the house? I normally wake up about 5:30 and leave at 7 AM to take my daughter to school. I then go back home and get ready to go to school myself which I leave for at 9 AM. So how long should I be planning on being close to a restroom?

    • lauren

      Hi DJ – Every person is different, but for the most part the flush happens only once. With that being said, to be on the safe side, I would try to do it on a weekend when you can plan to be at home for a few hours. We wouldn’t wanting you to get into an uncomfortable situation!

  15. Bryan

    I recently had extreme pain in my lower right abdomen. I was checked to make sure it was not Appendicitis. And was told to flush out my system. I used Krinos Athena Sea Salt. It is labeled “Free flowing – Iodized Naturally Sundried” I had it on hand. I used slightly more than 1 TBSP for 1 liter of water. I haven’t had a flush, and drank more water. I assume that I have a sodium deficiency. Although I had suspected this due to low blood pressure and my somewhat negative approach to adding salt to my diet. Just wondering if I am going by somewhat sound logic or if there is another direction I should be looking.

    • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

      Hi Bryan, yes it most likely is due to sodium deficiency. When you are deficient, the body soaks up all of the sodium consumed to use for functions in the body including the remineralization of the cells. Therefore, I would try again. I would also look into purchasing aloe vera juice, as that might be even more helpful than a salt flush at this point. Aloe is a natural anti inflammatory and with the pain you are experiencing, it is very likely that you are dealing with inflammation.

  16. Diana

    Does it have to be purified water?

    • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

      Purified water – yes, filtered of any kind.

      • JohnnY

        The yogi’s in India just go to the beach and drink sea water. I tried this and you will see the best results. I initially tried mixing a table spoon of sea salt with purified water that I boiled and I got an okay flush. But now just go to the beach if you can and drink as much sea water and you will be flushing those toxins out and feeling the way you need to be. It is the most awesome and not as nauseating and weird feeling as the other method.

        • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

          Hi John – thanks for the recommendation. If the sea water is clean, this could be a great option!

  17. Erika

    Hi Lauren,

    I’m concerned about the amount of water you recommend to take with this flush. 2 quarts of water within the first few hours of your day but also continuing with the recommended daily water intake. It seems like you’d actually be depleting your sodium reserves with all the water, even though you are taking salt with the flush.

    • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

      Hi Erika, your water should contain minerals. If you are drinking distilled water, then you need to add minerals back in. You can also add mineral drops/ electrolytes to your water if you have a purified water that strips it of minerals. Otherwise drinking lots of water will not deplete your reserves.

  18. Cassidy

    Hi Lauren. I was just curious what the 1/2 lemon meant. Do you want us to include lemon juice or actually eat a lemon? I know it sounds silly but I’m just curious. I think I’m going to order the pink sea salt and just want to make sure I don’t miss any of the ingredients. Thanks

    Cassidy

    • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

      Hi Cassidy, the juice of 1/2 of a lemon :)

  19. ian

    Hi Lauren,
    I live in the U.K and have found a company selling Cornish sea salt. They say its pure and natural and comes straight from the sea. There is a 3 stage filtration process that it goes through. I was just wondering will this be OK to use.
    thanks
    Ian

    • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

      Hi Ian, I would just give the company a quick call and ask them about the quality and their testing processes. It is always best to make sure.

  20. Damn, thank you very much for posting this! It is going to help me when I research Himalayan Salt at the market! Super Wonderful!

  21. Drew Thompson

    I bought REAL SALT Nature’s First Sea Salt. Do you know of this product. Should it be ok?

    • Lauren aka The Holy Kale

      I believe so, but start with a smaller dose just to be sure. You may also want to contact the company directly just to ask about their processing and manufacturing.

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