Natural herbal & homeopathic remedies for constipation (atonic/spastic) - irregular bowel movements

Constipation
HEALTH HERBS & NUTRITION - REMEDIES - DIGESTIVE SYSTEM - constipation

· General Description

· Symptoms

· Causes

· Herbal & Homeopathic Remedies

· Helpful Dietary Habits

· Dos and Don'ts

Natural herbal & homeopathic products for constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

General description and overview of constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

When stools become pretty hard and difficult to pass, or the frequency of bowel movements reduces drastically, you know you are facing this extremely common problem called constipation.

Irregularity in bowel movements is though, case specific – ranging from thrice a day to once in three days. Both can be considered normal depending upon the general health of the person and nature of the bowels. It’s a myth that if you don’t go to the lavatory even once a day, you are constipated, although regular bowel movements are still considered essential to health.

Constipation can be broadly divided into two types, atonic which is due to a lack of muscle tone and spastic which is characterized by irregular bowel movements. Constipation can have serious long term implications like colon cancer.

Herbal & homeopathic products recomended in constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

Natural Moves

Helps maintain healthy bowel movements and regular open bowels.

Product Details

DigestAssist

Helps maintain digestive comfort and promotes healthy digestion.

Product Details

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Symptoms of constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

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Dry and hard stools, usually accompanied by pain while passing.

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Less frequency of stools than required by your body.

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Bloating and wind instead of bowel movements although the build up to these brings almost the same feeling.

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Causes of constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

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Lack of fiber and fluids intake or lack of physical exercise - This is atonic constipation. Digestive food in the colon becomes dehydrated, hence dry and hard and therefore more difficult to move through the system. This causes a rise in pressure in the bowel and subsequent discomfort.

Natural remedies for constipation (atonic/spastic) - irregular bowel movements. Excessive intake of strong tea and coffee and large consumption of meats also contribute to constipation.

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Nervous disorders and stress, irritating foods, some obstruction of the large bowl, hypothyroidism and excessive smoking cause spastic constipation.

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Hormonal changes – women experience bouts of constipation during pregnancy and menopause.

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Reluctance to empty the bowels! – may be habitually or due to pain encountered during bowel movements, perhaps because of hemorrhoids (piles) or other fissures in the anus lining.

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Drugs containing codeine, especially if taken in larger amounts as in the case of cough syrups, can also cause constipation. Other culprits include antacids containing calcium or aluminum, antihistamines, calcium supplements, sedatives,

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Herbal & homeopathic remedies useful in constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

There are many natural laxative and holistic treatments that can help treat symptoms of constipation and promote easier digestion, without the side effects commonly associated with OTC or prescription drugs. Natural laxative treatments that include herbal and homeopathic remedies can restore balance and regularity to the digestive system and bowel.

Nourishing herbs such as Aloe Ferox, Taraxacum officinale (Dandelion), and Passiflora incarnata have natural laxative properties and also act as a tonic for the liver. Other herbs that may also have a beneficial effect on the digestive system are Psyllium, a natural bulk forming laxative and Cascara and Senna to stimulate bowel movements. Remember to source your natural remedies from reputable companies to ensure maximum effectiveness and safety.

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Foeniculum vulgare (fennel) was a favorite herb in medieval times and was used to stop stomach rumbles and colic. It was commonly used after meals to prevent flatulence, indigestion, colic and other digestive problems. Fennel has strong calmative and anti-inflammatory properties.

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Pelargoneum graveolens ('maagpyn bossie' or stomach pain bush) is a traditional medicinal herb used by indigenous people of South Africa. It has a wide variety of uses and is an effective calmative and anti-spasmodic herb, reducing stomach cramps and pain.

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Aloe ferox is a succulent and well known therapeutic herb native to South Africa. Aloe ferox has many different uses and writings from as early as 1500BC in Ancient Egypt document its benefits. Amongst other benefits, Aloe ferox is known for its tonic effect on digestive functioning. It is also a natural remedy to support healthy bowel movements. Recent research and studies have shown Aloe to be particularly effective in maintaining healthy digestion and routine, healthy stools.

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Taraxacum officinalis (Dandelion) is found in many parts of the world today, and was previously commonly used by Native Americans. It contains bitter principles that have a tonic effect on the liver and digestive system by supporting the flow of bile. It is also a source of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin A, D, C, various B vitamins, iron, lecithin, silicon, potassium, magnesium, zinc and manganese. It is of benefit in maintaining healthy fluid levels in the body. Dandelion is also considered to be an excellent cleansing tonic for the liver and recent studies suggest that it is especially beneficial with regards to digestive health.

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Ispaghula – This annual herb is mostly found and grown in India and parts of Western Asia. Its small oval boat shaped seeds are pinkish in color and consist of 30% mucilage along with proteins, sterols and lipids. The mucilage present in ispaghula is not absorbed by the digestive tract and so stools are made softer and bulkier, thereby becoming easy to pass out. Its laxative nature that brings about this gentle action of improving both the movement and softness of the stools makes isapghula one of the best herbal remedies for constipation.

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Rhubarb – This fantastic remedial herb is usually grown in China and Korea and extensively used because of its laxative properties. This tall herbaceous plant has thick bulky and fleshy rhizomes which are the ones with curative powers. Anthraquinone glycosides, an anthracene derivative is the main compound in rhubarb rhizome that is responsible for its laxative quality. It stimulates the intestinal muscles and increases the absorption of water and electrolytes. It also contains tannins and flavonoids which are ironically responsible for constipation if less doses of rhubarb are taken. Rhubarb is also grown in Europe, but the best medicinal herbs still come from China and Korea only.

   

Herbal & homeopathic products recomended in constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

Natural Moves for constipation (atonic/spastic) - irregular bowel movements

Natural Moves

Helps maintain healthy bowel movements and regular open bowels.

Product Details

Digest Assist for constipation (atonic/spastic) - irregular bowel movements.

DigestAssist

Helps maintain digestive comfort and promotes healthy digestion.

Product Details

TOP

Helpful dietary habits in constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

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Fiber – Fiber helps tremendously in combating constipation by increasing stool bulk, speeding up the passage of food residues through the large intestine, keeping the intestines in good order and reducing the risk of bowel disorders.

- Fiber and some forms of starch are fermented in the large bowel and provide the bulk that helps to stimulate the muscles of the colon in order to facilitate the digested food through the gut.

- There are basically two main types of dietary fiber - soluble and insoluble. Both have fantastic ability to retain water (soluble fiber absorbs water too) and hence both act like a sponge in the stomach and the gut, and increase stool bulk and make it softer and easier to expel.

- Excessive fiber intake may cause intestinal obstruction if required amounts of fluid are not taken simultaneously. Also, sudden increase in fiber intake may induce problems such as diarrhea, cramping and flatulence. Around 30g of fiber a day is sufficient and this level too should be attained slowly by increasing the intake gradually.

Herbal supplements & remedies for constipation (atonic/spastic) - irregular bowel movements & helpful dietary habits. Most of the herbs and spices that are traditionally used in cooking help in digestion as well, along with the taste they impart to the food. Most common amongst them are dill, caraway, horseradish, bay, chervil, fennel tarragon, marjoram, cumin, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom.

 

- Oat bran, pulses and most fruits (Bael, apples, figs, pears, bananas, pinneaple) and vegetables (leafy vegetables like spinach, cabbage, carrots, cluster beans) contain lot of soluble fiber. Insoluble fiber is mainly found in rice, bran, strawberries and nuts. Both type are found in wheat, bran, whole grains, (whole meal pasta and whole meal bread) and dried fruits. Other rich sources of fiber include green peas, popcorn and prunes.

- Dietary fiber is best taken from natural foods and not supplements, as many supplements do not provide the nutrients such as various vitamins and minerals which the natural foods are rich in.

- According to medical historians, even Bible has reference to the extraordinary effects of fiber on the digestion process!

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Avoid too much bran - Although bran has since a long time been a kind of obsession for certain people because of its fantastic fibrous nature, its excessive intake has invoked a fair share of problems in quite a few cases. Anemia is one common problem as bran contains phytic acid which inhibits body’s absorption of iron, abdominal bloating and flatulence. It also inhibits absorption of calcium; hence women at risk of osteoporosis should also avoid it.

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Fluids – Fluids are as important as fiber, in effect there is no use of fiber without fluids. Excessive fiber intake with commensurate quantity of fluids is essential. Lots of both are essential to keep the stool soft and help it pass easily through the colon. A minimum of 6-8 glasses of fluid should be consumed on a daily basis by any adult. Although liquid can be taken in any form, water is still considered as the best option.

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Thiamin – This vitamin B-Complex member is vital for producing energy needed for the cells of smooth muscles and secretory glands. Lack of thiamin means lack of muscle tone and deficient gastric secretions resulting in poor appetite, indigestion and ultimately constipation. Almost all foods except sugars, fats and oils contain some amount of thiamin. Fresh peas, green leafy vegetables, milk, eggs, pork, liver, fish, meat, pulses, nuts and whole grain cereals are excellent sources of thiamin. Care should be taken as to retain the water used in cooking vegetables as that water contains nearly 90% of thiamin of the vegetables used.

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Avoid refined oils – All oils which have been removed from their sources, such as olive, soy, vegetable, may induce chronic constipation. These oils make a film in the stomach and inhibit digestion of proteins and carbohydrates, thereby delaying complete digestion by as much as 20 hours. This causes decaying of the food, produces toxins and flatulence. Oils taken in their natural or ‘whole’ form such as in avocados, corn and nuts are beneficial as then these nutritional oils are released slowly.

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Avoid allergic foods – If you have spastic constipation, which is usually characterized by sharp pain, then you check whether consuming cabbage, cauliflower or beans aggravate this problem. If the answer is in affirmative, avoid them. Milk also creates constipation in many people. Check out if dairy products are unsuitable to you and take appropriate action.

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Avoid large meals – In general with all constipation patients and in particular with spastic colon patients, it should be a thumb rule to avoid large meals. Instead, take small, regular meals to aid digestion and avoid distending of the digestive tract.

Some excellent home made remedies are:

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Take ½ a spoon of lemon juice and 1 teaspoon of honey and mix it in a glass of warm water. Drink it first thing in the morning. Make the ingredients and quantity half in case of small children.

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Eat around 250g of grapes every day. If grapes are not available, soak 15 raisins in a glass of water for at least 36 hours and eat them. Drink the residual water as well. Try doing this early in the morning. Make it 8 raisins in case of small children.

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Liquorice is a natural laxative and simply chewing a few sticks of it may help you a lot.

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Take equal amounts of flax and oat bran and double the quantity of crushed psyllium seeds and mix them. Put around 2-3 teaspoon of this mixture in water and take around 2 hours before going to bed.

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Soak around 10 dates in a glass of water at night and churn it in the mixer in the morning. Drink it and see the result for yourself.

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To make bowel movements in children generally better, give them 7-8 apricots a day. Cucumber is another quality alternative. A piece or two will do extreme good to your child.

Dos and don'ts and precautionary measures in constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

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First things first, check out if you are really constipated. Look for the symptoms and not the frequency of your bowels. Many cases of constipation are actually of perceived constipation wherein the patient feels that he has constipation as he is not having daily or regular bowel movements, mostly after seeing umpteen laxative advertisements.

Homeopathic medicines for constipation (atonic/spastic) - irregular bowel movements & precautions. Do not exert too mach pressure while sitting on the toilet seat. Unnecessary strain will only aggravate the problem and might also give you anal fissures or hemorrhoids.

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Act swiftly when nature calls and never delay it. Most people have this peculiar tendency of avoiding going to the loo when it is most required and this disturbs the natural defecating cycle of your body. The best times to use the bathroom are usually early in the morning and just after meals. So, if you have had irregular bowel cycle, sit compulsory on the toilet of at least 10 minutes in the morning (after 2-3 glasses of water and bed tea, if you do take tea) and after your meals. This should regularize your bowels timings.

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Tension is another usual suspect of constipation. If you self diagnose yourself with constipation due to stress or tension, try to keep yourself calm by adopting different methods like listening to good music, yoga etc. Consult your doctor for more avenues specific for you.

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Laughter is the best medicine for even constipation. It gives double whammy to constipation by firstly, having a massaging effect on the intestines and secondly, relieving stress.

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Beware of the chemical laxatives extensively advertised and available in the pharmacies. They are habit forming and make your colon so lazy that your bowels won’t come unless you use them.

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Exercising is very good to tone up your intestinal muscles and moving food through the bowel faster. Walking is actually the best exercise for constipation, even for pregnant women. You should normally take a walk of 45 minutes to an hour if you have constipation. Pregnant women should walk for at least 20-30 minutes.

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Herbal & homeopathic products recomended in constipation and Irregularity in bowel movements

Natural Moves

Helps maintain healthy bowel movements and regular open bowels.

Product Details

DigestAssist

Helps maintain digestive comfort and promotes healthy digestion.

Product Details

 

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