Constipation in AdultsLuke Coutinho
If you have poor bowel movement and each visit to the loo is a painful affair, or you don’t feel like going to the loo daily, chances are you are “Constipated”. Constipation is the outcome of modern civilisation and is a condition that plagues millions of adults all across the world . Our body has 5 eliminatory organs: Lungs , Kidneys , Skin , Liver and Colon ( being the most important ! ) and if any of these get clogged up , we have problem. Since the colon holds the most toxic waste from our body , the inability to poop regularly is the no. 1 trigger of most diseases we know of today , right from Acne to the inability to lose weight to Cancer . It also important to understand that constipation is a symptom, not a disease, but chronic constipation can lead to deadly diseases in the long run .
Some of the common causes of constipation are sedentary lifestyle , low fibre diet , excessive tea/coffee, dehydration , overuse of medicines like antacids , iron and calcium supplements, poorly managed stress , less sleep , following the so called “fat-free” diet and not having the right amount of acids in the stomach . Constipation can also be an outcome of certain medical issues like IBS , unactive thyroid or pregnancy for that matter . Nonetheless, a regular defecation is the most important aspect of anyone’s lifestyle .
Lets picture what happens when colon holds on to toxic waste :
- The toxic matter starts hardening up inside the colon which can make defecation very painful leading to fissures and haemorrhoids in extreme cases .
- Formation of toxic gases that can get into the blood stream and circulate all over the body and cells , which can also lead to cell mutations ( cancer ) . That toxic gas is also an answer as to why constipated inviduals complain of bad breath and body odor .
- Excess Estrogen thats supposed to be eliminated can get reabsorbed into the system , leading to estrogen dominance which is one of the leading causes of breast cancer in females . Infact, Constipation is one of the most common trait seen in cancer patients , apart from low Vitamin D3 levels .
- Since 70-80% immunity lies in our gut , a toxic colon can damage immunity .
- Unhealthy communication between the gut and the brain . Inability to produce mood boosters like serotonin, that can lead to depression , low self esteem , unhappy thoughts and sadness .
So no matter what your health goal is , if you are constipated , your first focus should be on elimination. The very fact the toxic wastes have reached your colon , it means it has to eliminated . The faster you get toxins out of your system, the healthier you are and with less chances of contracting diseases and cancer. You will slow down the process of aging and your mental ability and memory will improve. You will feel lighter, all those headaches and migraines may just disappear and your battle with weight loss may just change for the better.
Laxatives and purgatives might seem like an easy option here , but its best to turn them down . They might be really necessary in certain cases , but they only work at a symptomatic level and give short term relief . In the long term they cause bowel dependence , which means our bodies gets used to an external stimulant and even stop responding to it after prolonged use . Thats the worst !
Since its mostly poor lifestyle that give birth to constipation, the ways to naturally cure should also revolve around correcting them .
- Adding roughage to meals and accordingly balancing Hydration :
Fibre adds bulk to the stool and acts as natural broom to sweep the colon clean . This means replacing all refined and packaged foods with fruits , vegetables , whole grains , lentils , legumes nuts and seeds . Idea is to aim for 60-70% raw diet , so that benefits from the intact fibre and live digestive enzymes because proper digestion and elimination go hand in hand. Also note , with increase in fibre intake , water intake should also increase , else one can suffer from more constipation.
- Adequate water intake :
Even a 1% drop can affect constipation . Water aids softening the stools and flushing it out . The Chinese and Japanese swear by this : Waking to a litre of water every morning is a natural and extremely effective cure to constipation as it puts pressure on the colon and kidneys .
- Breaking free from a sedentary lifestyle :
When body moves , gut moves . A simple walk , body weight exercises , planks , twisting asanas can go a long way in cleaning up your colon .
- Handling emotions in a better way :
Fear , worry , tension , anxiety , anger , resentment , haste , jealous are negative emotions that affect the way our body functions including gut and bowel movements .
- Having a regular time and routine around it :
This sounds like a subtle yet powerful lifestyle change . If you ever have an urge to pass stools , never hold onto that and delay because that can lead to constipation .
Lastly some natural remedies that addressing constipation :
-Psyllium husk/ Isabgol is a natural laxative , much better than a synthetic one . It works well for those who are chronically constipated or travel a lot . 2-3 tsp of this mixed with water can lead to a smoother poop the next morning .
– Triphala : 1 tbsp of triphala powder mixed with water before bed helps clean the colon next day .
-Eating 4-5 Soaked prunes / 2 tbsp black raisins/ dried apricots with warm water , 2 hours before bed .
-Steeping ½ tsp of ajwain in hot water and drinking that stimulates motions
– 1 tbsp of castor oil / extra virgin coconut oil before bed helps lubricate the passage .
The takeaway message : When it comes to immunity , detoxification and overall good health , there is no place for Constipation at all . Its a serious issue because everything depends on the way you expel toxic wastes from the colon . Not only do you prevent a disease , but also manage and heal in a better way .
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