Effective Home Remedies for Constipation
Gradually, constipation has become a common problem in a sense that most of us almost think of it as routine. Nothing else but the modern day lifestyle is to be blamed to give rise to this condition. Some of the most common perpetrators would certainly be junk food consumption, alcohol abuse, smoking and overeating. Those affected by it usually feel bloated, uneasy with the inability to pass stool easily.
Recently, a popular survey done by a global marketing research agency, 14% of India's urban population were found to be suffering from chronic constipation. The common symptoms these people experienced, besides being able to pass stool were irritability, lack of interest in work, mood swings, worry and embarrassment. Then there was also abdominal swelling, nausea, weight-loss and in some severe cases, even vomiting.
What Could Cause Constipation?
Constipation can be of different kinds. Occasional constipation,
chronic constipation, travel-related or age-related constipation.
Besides travel, age and pregnancy related constipation, the others can be triggered by any of the following factors:
1. Change in diet - You might be eating more greasy food than usual or
may have started a new weight-loss program, any change in your diet
could trigger the odd bout of constipation. There are certain foods
that can also bring this on: high-fat or processed food, alcohol or
even too much caffeine.
2. Lack of Fluids - On days that you don't drink enough water you
might be constipated. Also note that artificial beverages don't count
as fluids because they actually trigger constipation instead of
driving it away.
3. Lack of exercise or a sedentary lifestyle could slow down your
metabolism. And this could hinder digestion which could cause
4. Medication - Certain kinds of painkillers or medicines can bring
your system to a halt and cause constipation. If needed, you can take
a stool softener. Even vitamins and iron supplements could create a
problem and if they do, you should check with your doctor.
For those of you who usually dismiss constipation as an occasional
visitor, our advice would be 'don't! Recently, a 2015 study pointed
out that the number of people reporting to U.S. emergency rooms for
constipation has been going up. And so has the cost of those visits,
which reached $1.6 billion in 2011. Doesn't sound so trivial anymore,
does it? And in the long run, these symptoms could get far worse: You could develop hemorrhoids, rectal prolapse and even anal fissures.
These problems sound painful enough and just so you don't have to
experience them first-hand, we've got a bunch of home-remedies that'll put your system back on track in no time.
Loosen Up - This is probably the most well known cure for occasional
constipation. Take some warm water and add lemon juice and honey to it. Lemon is a stimulant for your digestive system and can help flush out toxins. Honey cuts the sour taste and some researchers believe that it works as a mild laxative. You could also use some salt instead of honey for two reasons: salt is rich in magnesium which encourages contraction of the bowel muscles and two because it helps flush toxins from the stomach and small intestine.
How to have it: Warm some water and add about 1 teaspoon of lemon juice and half a teaspoon of honey or a pinch of salt.
Grease it Right - It's important to oil the tracks and so doctors
suggest you add more olive oil or ghee to your diet. Castor oil works
too. It's a great laxative as it increases the movement of the
intestines and helps clean them out.
How to have it: Take a spoon full of oil or use a measuring cup to be
sure. Have it on an empty stomach and wait for around 8 hours or so
for it to work its magic.
Get Your Fiber Fix - On an average, a woman needs around 25 grams of fiber a day and a man needs somewhere between 30 and 35 grams a day.
In order to get your digestive system back on track, you must make
sure what you're eating the right amount. Oats are high in fibre and
so are lentils, flaxseeds and chia seeds. Prunes are also rich in
fiber and a natural laxative, so you can have them as is or drink some prune juice. Raisins are another great way to get your system going. You can have them as is or soak them in hot water, crush and then eat. Include vegetables like broccoli and spinach that are rich in insoluble fiber. so are figs and honey.
Juices and dosage
For best results, adults drink just a half to a full cup of juice, once per day, preferably in the morning. You should also aim to drink eight or more cups of liquid each day to help stay regular.
The most popular juice to relieve constipation is prune juice. Each 8-ounce glass contains about 2.6 grams of fiber. That’s 10 percent of your daily requirement. While the fiber may bulk up your stools, the sorbitol in the prune juice helps soften them, making them easier to pass. Prune juice is also a good source of vitamin C and iron.
Eating dried plums, or prunes, is another way to ward off constipation. In fact, one study suggests that prunes should be considered a first line therapy when dealing with constipation.
Apple juice may provide you with a very gentle laxative effect. Apple juice is often recommended for children who have constipation because it has a relatively high ratio of fructose to glucose and sorbitol content. But for this reason, it may also cause intestinal discomfort in large doses.
Another great option is pear juice, which contains four times more sorbitol than apple juice. This juice is also often recommended for children who have bouts of constipation. Pear juice isn’t as rich in vitamins as prune juice, but many kids prefer its flavor.