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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Colon Anatomy, Healthy Colon Function, and Constipation

Hey y'all!

A few weeks ago I wrote a post introducing detox herbs. I began a series on detoxification using herbs by first explaining the role of the colon in detoxification. Today I want to describe a common health issue, constipation, that can occur in the colon if we do not eat a healthy diet and regularly cleanse our colons. This may seem like Too Much Information for some readers, but we need to be educated about how our bodies function if we want to pursue great health and longevity. 

Please allow me to once again state that I am not a doctor or a health professional and do not pretend to be. Nothing I write on Bluebonnet Natural Healing Therapy has been approved by the FDA or any other "authority." I do my best to provide accurate, scientifically-proven information, and provide links to all of my sources in the body of my posts. My purpose for blogging is to provide a free education for my readers so each of you may make informed choices concerning your personal health and the health of your family.

Let's quickly review where the colon is located in the human body:

You can easily see the colon (large intestine) with each part labeled- image by

Here is where the colon is located in relation to the rest of the organs in the digestive system:

A lot of times we think of each body part as individual units, but actually, everything is squished together and acts as a whole. This image does not add the kidneys, bladder, spinal column, or reproductive organs, nor the heart and lungs above the abdomen- image by

Here is a short video describing the digestive process. Let's imagine the model is eating nutritious food rather than pizza:


If we live a healthy lifestyle, we will experience healthy colon function. We will have nearly the same number of bowel movements every day as we have meals. For most Americans, this concept is unheard of. In fact, the Mayo Clinic defines constipation as having less than three bowel movements a week! However, according to board certified physician and surgeon, Dr. Joseph Mercola, M.D.,  and many other natural health advocates and practitioners, if we are not having at least one bowel movement every day, our colons are clogged and sluggish. We are constipated.

By the way, the two links in the above paragraph share excellent information on constipation and regularity.

Some people have overactive colons, which is called Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Colon cleansing can help with this, too. I will discuss IBS in a later post.

As mentioned in the video, the large intestine absorbs nutrients and sends fecal waste down to the rectum for elimination. The longer this process takes, the longer the toxic waste material sits in the large intestine. This waste literally begins to rot away the lining of the intestinal wall.

Fortunately, our bodies are designed with a lining of mucous called the intestinal mucosa, which protects the inside of the intestines. However, if the transit time for colon waste is too long, the mucous lining builds up in an effort to protect the body and can even harden into plaque. If this happens, it is very difficult for the large intestine to absorb nutrients. The body believes it is starving, and begins storing fat in fat cells located all over the body.

I cannot say for sure if every person has mucoid plaque. I can say that I had a huge build up of mucoid plaque, and removed it by cleansing my colon. Each time I have done a thorough colon cleanse, I have effortlessly lost at least ten pounds in a one month period. While some medical doctors believe that mucoid plaque is a myth, my own personal experience and these images from Dr. Bernard Jensen's Bowel Management Handbook suggest otherwise:

image courtesy of

image courtesy of

image courtesy of

Next week I will describe some serious medical issues that can occur if we continue to neglect our colons and bodies as a whole.


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