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Is TikTok's 'internal shower' actually good for you? We asked an expert

If you’re on TikTok, you’ve probably seen people try the ‘internal shower’ hack – which users say will help with constipation.

No one likes being backed up and when you’re in that situation any home remedy seems like a good bet.

One that’s doing the rounds involves mixing water with two tablespoons of chia seeds and lemon juice (for flavour), then letting it sit for five minutes before drinking.

This is meant to then make you need the toilet, acting as an ‘internal shower’ – cleaning you out from the inside.

Plenty of people have been trying and recommending it, including dieticians.

Have you heard about the internal shower?It requires you to have three ingredients, a glass of water, 2 tablespoons of Chia seeds and some lemon juice for flavour!All you need to do is mix these ingredients together until the Chia seeds have absorb some water and expanded.This drink provides you with approximately 40% of the recommended daily fibre target! Would you try this to help manage constipation?#constipation #constipationrelief #ibshelp #internalshower #bloatingremedy #ibsdiet

Water and fibre – which chia seeds are rich in – will encourage more bowel movement, but consuming such a concentrated amount should be done with caution.

It’s easy to go over the recommended amount of fibre and then cause further issues – like diarrhea or even more constipation – as one nurse on TikTok warns.

Internal shower review #internalshower #internalshowerdrink #constipationrelief #gastroenterology

Lola Biggs, nutritionist at Together Health, tells Metro.co.uk: ‘For optimum digestion it is important to ensure we provide the gut with enough fibre, around 30g a day ideally, but it is thought that many only reach half of this.

‘Chia is fibre rich and mostly insoluble form, therefore drinking this chia, water and lemon cocktail may be useful.

‘However, it is important to note that adding fibre to the diet too quickly can cause tummy upset, so slow and steady is the way.

‘It is also risky to have too high expectations – everyone’s gut health is unique to them, there is no quick fix.’

Trying the internal shower 🚿 pretty much the same expression when trying oysters #internalshower #detox #chiaseeds #chiaseeddrink #detoxdrink #selfimprovement

Signe Svanfeldt, nutritionist at Lifesum warns ‘too high doses of dietary fibre for those that aren’t used to it can actually have the opposite effect of what’s being shown in these videos’.

‘If you’re suffering from constipation for a longer period of time, you might need to contact your health care professional for more support,’ Signe adds.

What to try instead

Signe says there are things to include in your daily habits to help relieve constipation, or maintain healthy bowel movements.

These include:

  • Staying hydrated 
  • Eating a sufficient amount of dietary fibre (for adults it is recommended to eat around 30g per day)
  • Daily physical activity

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  • Posted on June 13, 2022