The product, which retails at $135, is called the Implant O’Rama, which sounds more like a high-traffic Irish plastic surgery clinic than an enema bottle with tubes sticking out (although in fairness, the bottle is green). The Implant O’Rama is featured in the site’s Detox Guide, specifically in a section called “Supercharge Your Detox.”
There’s a deeper dive into the world of enemas in a linked article called “The Nuts and Bolts of Colonics,” which explains the difference between the two procedures. According to in-house Goop doctor Alejandro Junger, enemas work using your colon’s own gravitational force, while colonics reach farther up into the colon using some sort of additional mechanized pressure. He does clarify that the Implant O’Rama is only for those who know what they’re doing (yet still opt for at-home enemas).
So what does science have to say about all this? Let’s start with Implant O’Rama’s own website, which states that none of the information they present has been evaluated or approved by the FDA and is “not necessarily based on scientific evidence from any source.”
The National Institutes of Health National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health isn’t enthusiastic about DIY enemas — or detoxes or cleanses in general. According to the organization: “There isn’t any convincing evidence that detox or cleansing programs actually remove toxins from your body or improve your health.” Specifically, they note that colon-cleansing procedures — like the one touted by Goop — may come with serious side effects, especially for those with a history of gastrointestinal disease, colon surgery, kidney disease or heart disease. Less serious side effects include cramping, bloating, nausea and vomiting.
While different substances have been used in enemas, including water and herbs, coffee is a popular choice for its stimulant properties. Given how drinking coffee has been known to jump-start a bowel movement or two, it’s hardly surprising people are attempting this process in reverse — but to be very clear, there is no empirical evidence suggesting this works. In fact, according to Dr. Michael F. Picco at the Mayo Clinic, coffee enemas sometimes used in colon cleansing have been linked to several deaths.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to start the new year with a renewed focus on wellness. And if you’re looking for a few realistic (and not harmful) ways to get healthy in 2018, we have a few suggestions.