TikTok swears 'internal shower' drink will make you poop

Sometimes people can get support. It happens. If you find yourself unable to, uh, make it to the bathroom, you might actually benefit from TikTok's so-called "internal shower" drink, aka the gooey, chunky concoction — which, by the way, has been viewed more than 9 million times — It promises to flush your system with the help of water, lemon, and plenty of chia seeds.

The formula is designed to "flush" your digestive tract, moving things along and sending you to the bathroom for an efficient bowel movement. It may indeed work, says gut health nutritionist Amanda Sauceda, MS, RD. "When you add water to chia seeds, they cause the seeds to swell due to the presence of fiber, and the gel may aid in bowel movements," she tells Bustle.

Sauceda says most people don't get the recommended 21 to 25 grams of fiber per day, so if you're having trouble with bowel movements, increasing your intake may actually help. "Fiber, especially soluble fiber, helps make bowel movements easier and easier," she says. The problem is, it's possible to consume too much fiber, especially when throwing away drinks made from chia seeds.

"It's definitely easy to overdose because chia seeds are high in fiber, but in small amounts," she says. "Too much fiber, or too much fiber too quickly, can make you constipated, which may mean the drink won't do you any good and just make you feel sick." It can also cause constipation in the opposite way. Diarrhea – This is a sign to stop drinking this cure-all.

That said, if you want to give it a try, here's what else you need to know about in-house shower drinks.

How to Make an "Inside Shower" Drink

View on TikTok

To give your body an "internal shower," fill a cup of water, add the juice of one lemon, and stir in two tablespoons of chia seeds. Wait about 15 minutes for the chia seeds to expand, then drink. (Quick tip from TikTok? Give the chia seeds a quick stir before drinking—you don’t want to swallow big chunks.)

Chia seeds expand to a gel-like consistency, which helps stool move through your system. But lemons are also a factor, says Dr. Dana Ellis Hunnes, a senior clinical nutritionist at UCLA Medical Center. She tells Bustle that tart juices may help stimulate your intestines, thereby increasing gastrointestinal motility, or peristalsis.

While the internal shower should be working "within minutes," not everyone will find themselves rushing to the toilet. "This is a long-term strategy, not a short-term solution," says Soda, "so don't expect to have a bowel movement soon after drinking it." This can take up to an hour, sometimes even longer.

If you haven't gone the next day, repeat the process. As long as your body can tolerate the extra fiber and you don't feel too gassy or bloated, drinking this drink two days in a row is fine, Soda says.

Other ways to move things forward

If you're worried about abdominal pain, try adding fewer chia seeds to the mix. "Your gut doesn't like change," Soda explains. "If your gut isn't used to large amounts of fiber, eating two tablespoons of chia seeds at one time may be a big surprise to your gut. I would start with a teaspoon or two and then adjust the dosage based on what your gut feels comfortable with."

Another tip? Go for a walk or try some type of sport or exercise. "Moving your body is one of the most underrated ways to help with bowel movements," says Soda.

And don't forget to add other types of fiber to your diet to get the recommended 25 grams of fiber. "Chia seeds should make up only a portion of your daily fiber intake," Soda says, so eat other foods rich in soluble fiber, such as black beans, Brussels sprouts, avocados, figs, apples, sunflower seeds and oats . This may work if you still can't poop after taking an internal shower.


Amanda Sauceda, MS, RD, Gut Health Nutritionist

Dana Ellis Hunnes, PhD, MPH, RD, senior clinical nutritionist at UCLA Medical Center