How to Do Your First Coffee Enema, Part 1

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Are coffee enemas on your radar? You’ve likely heard them mentioned in the holistic wellness space, and might even feel the pull to do one, but you also might be nervous! That’s the feeling most of us have in the beginning. The way to overcome the nerves is to learn and make the unfamiliar, familiar.

In this two part series, we will cover:

  • When you might do a coffee enema
  • How to work your way up to the coffee with water/herbal enemas first
  • Everything you need to know to do your first coffee enema, with confidence and ease
  • Plus tips and tricks for even those seasoned in coffee enemas

What is a coffee enema?

The coffee enema is an at-home, self administered procedure where a solution of caffeinated coffee is inserted via the rectum through the use of an enema kit, as a means to detoxify the liver and blood, and a side benefit is it cleanses the colon. This is done in the privacy of your own home and is a tool you can use for life to support detox and reduce your overall toxic load.

How does it actually work?

First, it’s important to know that in order to be effective, the coffee must contain caffeine. Decaf or coffee alternatives will not work, as it is the caffeine and palmitic acids found in caffeinated coffee that do the important work. 

As the coffee solution is taken in via the rectum and retained in the lower part of the colon, the beneficial compounds are absorbed via the hepatic portal veins, traveling to the liver. These compounds cause the bile ducts to dilate, stimulating and releasing the flow of bile (and toxic by products) into the small intestine. Not to mention the boosting of the enzyme GST, which boosts up to 700% your master antioxidant, glutathione. Finally, the liquid itself promotes peristalsis and a release via the rectum. 

When might you implement a coffee enema? 

Here are some real life scenarios when you might pull the coffee enema from your wellness toolbox.

  • Health maintenance: The best time to learn and use this practice is BEFORE you find yourself in a health crisis. Remember coffee enemas detox the body, so emptying your toxin bucket (aka your liver) periodically can be helpful. I like to view coffee enemas as a mini cleanse that can be done in less than an hour. 
  • Curated detox prep or support: Before you start a curated cleanse, you want to make sure your drainage pathways are open so that the toxins you are mobilizing can be safely moved out of the body, and so you don’t experience herxheimer reactions. The coffee enema can be done prior to starting to clear and open this pathway, or during your cleanse to keep things flowing. 
  • Pain relief: There are anecdotes of coffee enemas being used by Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War to manage pain in injured soldiers and then again during WWI, specifically after surgery. In current modern day life, coffee enemas can support pain relief from migraines, headaches, and even menstrual cramps.
  • Skin conditions: An over-accumulation of toxins can create “heat” in the liver. Couple that with slow drainage (aka not having daily bowel movements or stagnant lymph), and the toxins get pushed out into the body to recirculate. The body then tries to eliminate them in other ways, such as through the skin. Rashes, hives, acne, itching, eczema, dermatitis - anything skin related can be supported by cleansing the liver via the coffee enema. 
  • Digestive support: If you experience constipation, sluggish bowels, slow motility, bloating, distension, IBS with constipation, or any gastrointestinal challenges, coffee enemas can support the resolution. Reducing overall toxicity, moving stuck waste, clearing out sludgy bile and/or parasites, can all support restoring proper flow.
  • Parasite or candida cleansing: Liver flukes are a type of parasite that can accumulate, and in some cases clog the liver/bile duct, which can be a contributing factor for constipation. If you suspect liver flukes, you can use a coffee enema to purge this area. Look for tomato peels in the toilet to confirm your suspicions. In addition, you may see candida clearing if there is an overgrowth. Look for long white stringy things in the toilet.  

So should you do a coffee enema?

First, tune in to your intuition - the only person that you should listen to, is you. Is the coffee enema something that is resonating with you OR are you feeling pressured because it seems like everyone is doing it? If the resonance just isn’t there, there is no shame in passing on these. 

If they are resonating, but you are still a bit nervous, consider two baby steps to work up to the coffee enema - the water and herbal enema. These are gentle options that help get your body, and your mind ready for the coffee enema. Or they are a replacement if you decide you want to do an enema, just not a coffee enema.

Nervous? Start with the water or herbal enema

Instead of using a coffee solution, there’s also the option to use plain water or an herbal solution. While these will not have the same liver and blood cleansing benefits, they will support opening/clearing your colon pathway, moving stuck stool, hydrating and soothing this area. In addition, each herb will have their own supportive properties (see below). 

How to Perform a Water Enema

First, gather your supplies: 

  • Distilled or filtered water 
  • Enema container (see note below)
  • Coconut oil for lubricant 
  • Floor pillow/comforter to lay on
  • Phone to use a timer

Prepare the water for the enema:

  • Boil 4.5 cups distilled water
  • Cool to body temperature
  • Make sure the clamp on container is closed
  • Add water to enema container (bucket/bag)

Perform the enema:

  1. Bring the container to the bathroom + find a place to hang it 2-3 feet above you.
  2. Next, prime the container to remove air pockets in tubing: Over the sink/toilet, open the clamp, let liquid flow until no bubbles remain in the tube. Close clamp.
  3. Remove clothing. Lubricate the tip of the enema tube and/or your anus with coconut oil. For a water enema, lie in whatever position feels good to you - right or left side, feet up the wall, on your back.
  4. Do the first hold. Unclamp the valve a notch or two and let the liquid begin to flow. Slow and steady can be helpful when you first begin vs a fully open clamp. Allow half the enema bag to empty, about 2 cups. Try to get as close to this as you can. But once you feel you are full, stop the flow. Try to retain it for 15 minutes. 
  5. Once the 15 minutes is up, release the solution into the toilet completely. Give yourself a few minutes to let it all come out in waves. 
  6. Do a second hold with the remaining two cups. Aim for 15 minutes, then release.
  7. Once finished, be sure to clean the equipment thoroughly. Options to use boiling water, hydrogen peroxide or castile soap. Clean all the parts. Then hang the equipment to dry so no mold can grow.
  8. Congratulations you just completed a water enema! 

To make an herbal enema:

Simply boil 1-2 tablespoons of chosen herbs (see below) for up to 15 minutes. Cool water to body temperature, strain herbal solution. Then follow the same steps as you would for the water enema. 

A few herbal options + their benefits: 

  • Chamomile: cleansing, soothing, relaxing, calms menstrual cramps, helps hemorrhoids, an excellent alternative to the coffee enema
  • Pau D Arco: anti-fungal properties, assists with candida/parasites
  • Marshmallow Root: mucilaginous, lubricating, soothing to digestive tract
  • Slippery Elm: soothing and supportive for inflammatory bowels, similar mucilaginous and lubricating properties to marshmallow
  • Fennel Seed: calming to nervous system, may relieve gas/bloating

Are you feeling drawn to do a coffee enema? Will you start with a water or herbal enema first?

Check out How to Do Your First Coffee Enema, Part 2 for further detailed instructions on coffee enemas.

Ps - here’s a great first enema kit option: 

As a beginner, the kit that checks all the boxes is from Happy Bum Co. I love that the bag is made from a non-toxic silicone that does not off gas, is see-through and comes with insertion tips that are the best I have used.

5% discount auto applied using the link. 


**If you prefer Amazon, check out this kit as well, that is quite similar.


Jessica Yeager is a lifestyle and inner transformation mentor, for those on the healing journey. She emphasizes building a personal suite of healing tools so you can source solutions from within, and restore balance when your body speaks. Her background as a functional diagnostic nutrition practitioner, culinary nutrition expert, and her own journey overcoming Ankylosing Spondylitis, has led to her mission: find within yourself, that which you are seeking outside yourself. You are the medicine.

Connect with her on instagram @thehealthycurator

Her website:

Her course: Get Empowered with Coffee Enemas

(use code: TASHAROSE for 50% off)

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