Are You Suffering From Chronic Constipation?

Embarrassing as it may be, we have all suffered from constipation at one time in our life or another. According to the National Health Interview Survey as many as 3 million Americans suffer from frequent if not chronic constipation. While constipation is not recognized as a degenerative disease or serious disorder, people who are constipated often feel bloated, uncomfortable and even sluggish. Constipation by itself is miserable enough, but sufferers often experience painful bowel movements that can become compounded by hemorrhoids that form due to straining.

To understand constipation, it is important to understand how our digestive system works. When we eat, food is ground up in our stomachs so it can be digested. This "liquid" food passes into the small intestine where nutrients are extracted. It then moves on to the colon, where water is removed, allowing a stool to form. If too much water is extracted from the stool as it passes through the colon, it can become hard and difficult to pass leaving you constipated.

There are a number of reasons why people get constipated. These include not eating enough dietary fiber, not drinking enough liquids (water), lack of exercise, ignoring the "urge" to have a bowel movement and plain old stress. Other causes can include having a lazy colon that does not contract properly, causing waste materials to pass through the colon slowly, food allergies that can cause the colon to contract, or mechanical obstructions that inhibit the movement of waste materials. Many prescription drugs and certain neurological disorders can also slow down the movement of waste materials through the colon. Constipation can also be brought on by an abuse of laxatives that over time can damage the nerve cells in the colon and interfere with its ability to contract properly.

Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to relieve chronic constipation naturally.

Recommendations For Wellness

Consume a high fiber diet made up of lots of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. If that is not possible, incorporate a dietary fiber supplement such as psyllium hulls, Natures Sunshine's Nature's Three or their Irritable Bowel Fiber into your daily health routine. Dietary fiber holds water and help to keep the stool soft, while added bulk help to move the stool through the colon.

If other fiber supplements fail in your attempt to become regular, try taking Chitosan (a form of dietary fiber) along with vitamin C. The chitosan binds to fats from the foods we eat making the stool soft and smooth. The vitamin C helps to activate the chitosan in the stomach.

Drink plenty of water, especially if you are taking supplemental fiber.

Try eating a few dried prunes or drinking some prune juice. In addition to adding fiber, prunes have a mild laxative effect.

Avoid sugar and other processed foods.

Begin a regular exercise program to help promote normal bowel movements.

If you think allergies are the cause of your constipation, try an elimination diet to help you to identify what may be triggering your body and causing your colon to contract.

Meditate, do yoga, go for a walk. Do things that will allow you to reduce your stress levels and help your body to relax. This can help relax your colon.

Get a colonic to flush out any old fecal matter that may be trapped within the colon or try a colon cleanse.

Take a good probiotic such as acidopholis or bifidophilus to help promote a healthy environment within the colon.

Peppermint (3910-9) has a long history of helping relax the smooth muscles of the gastrointestinal tract.

Supplementation with magnesium and large doses of vitamin C, have a mild laxative effect on the body.

If all else fails, herbs such as casgara segrada, turkey rhubarb or herbal combinations such as Natures Sunshine's LBS II and LB-X can be used to evacuate the colon. While these should be used with caution, they are less aggressive than many commercial laxatives that are available at the supermarket.

© Copyright Body, Mind & SoulHealer 2005. All rights reserved. Dr. Rita Louise, PhD is a Naturopathic Physician and it is her unique gift as a medical intuitive that enlivens her work. Author of the books "Avoiding the Cosmic 2x4" and "The Power Within", Dr. Rita Louise, Ph.D. a can help you identify what is really going on and provide you with straightforward guidance and advice. She can be reached by calling 972-475-3393 or visiting her website at http://www.soulhealer.com.

In The News:


Flax Seeds, Seeds, and Nuts For Constipation Relief

Here are a variety of home remedies for constipation using... Read More

Olive Oil: One of the Original Seven Wonders?

Is Olive Oil one of Nature's seven original wonders?According to... Read More

Which to Use When: Ice or Heat?

Knee pain after running? Wake up with a backache? Twist... Read More

How to Prevent Snoring?

Snoring is noisy breathing through the mouth and nose during... Read More

How Visualization Is Different from What You May Have Tried for Pain Relief

You've probably tried everything you can think of to ease... Read More

Acupuncturists

An ancient Chinese method of pain relief and disease treatment;... Read More

Love, Appreciation, and the Heart

As I started to write this article a few words... Read More

Holistic Health

Holistic Health involves natural treatment options like holistic health nutrition,... Read More

My All Natural Oasis

About 7 years ago, I decided that my budget could... Read More

Get Hemorrhoid Relief from Herbal Remedies

Here are four different herbs that can give you hemorrhoid... Read More

Some O. H. & S. For You To Consider

Clicking a mouse isn't exactly vigorous exercise, so I thought... Read More

Focus Your Light: Earning Money From Home When You Have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome /Fibromyalgia

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome /Fibromyalgia makes you extremely tired, exhausted and... Read More

Alternative Medicine and Therapies ? What, Why and How of it

Alternative Therapies and alternative medicine has been gaining ground along... Read More

Understanding Massage Therapy

We've all heard of massage and many of us have... Read More

With A Little Help From Our Friends

The quality of one's life to a large extent is... Read More

Health Benefits of Noni Juice

Noni Juice, Morinda CitrifoliaMorinda Citrifolia , a deciduos creeping vine... Read More

Six Smoothie Recipes for Constipation and Acne Relief

I recommend drinking a morning smoothie if you have constipation... Read More

The Importance of Touch

Through the simple process of touch, Reflexology is so effective... Read More

3 Quick Herbal Remedies

In recent years the issue of Alternative Healing has skyrocketed... Read More

Aromatherapy at Home: Beating the Cold Bug

It seems that nearly everyone I know has been either... Read More

Concept of Agni in Ayurveda

Being one of the panchamahabhoota, agni (fire) has the characteristic... Read More

How to Avoid Potentially Harmful Chemicals in Your Area Rugs and Other Home Furnishings

You purchase a beautiful area rug. You know just where... Read More

The Source of All Disease

So why is there disease? The very word means that... Read More

Why Detoxify?

Have you been hearing about detoxification more often? That's because... Read More

Allergies: Why Do You Have Them?

Next time you reach for your Claritin, think about this:Allergies... Read More