We've had the cucumber cleanse (do yourself a favor and don't click), the garlic vagina trend (same advice), vaginal steaming (just why), and the less said about banana peels and penises the better. Now there's a new trend to add to the horrifying list of dangerous and baffling things you should not do to your "down there" regions: firing boullion into your anus.
Ok, this one caught us off guard too. In a Twitter thread that's been widely shared over the last few days, Dr Silas Agbesi Joy has explained in detail why you shouldn't pump stock cubes into your anus in order to make your buttocks look bigger.
First off, this is actually a thing that people appear to be doing – especially in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where bigger buttocks are often seen as more desirable. There's even a song titled “Ntaba ya Bandundu” that references the practice of inserting Maggi stock cubes as a suppository or mixing them with water to create an enema.
“You have already used eight from the ten you took from the kitchen”, the song starts, sung in the Lingala language “use the remaining two to season the beans”.
For reference, the cubes contain iodized salt, sugar, chili, pepper, cloves, onion, corn starch, monosodium glutamate (MSG), palm oil, soya lecithin, and caramel color.
In 2018, a Vice documentary looked into the practice, speaking to women who had gone through the process, or else were tempted by it.
Some are unaware of the potential health problems it could cause, while others know about it but carry on regardless.
"There are risks involved," one woman explained to Vice in the video. "The doctor advised me never to do it again."
The belief – though not backed up by scientific evidence – is that the salt will cause the tissue to expand, making the buttocks look larger and rounder. The practice has led to people developing infections and even death, according to reports on Afrik News.
Explaining the risk of the practice, Dr Silas Agbesi Joy wrote that it could lead to hypertension or worse.
"If you crush the seasoning cubes which contains largely salt and inject it into your anus, the lining of the anus would absorb a huge portion of that salt into your bloodstream," he continued. "Excess salt in the bloodstream is a major contributor to hypertension, especially in Africans. A person, in theory, can develop hypertension from this practice."
In essence, as a general rule, you should always play it safe and not put cooking products into your anus.