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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Natural Home Remedies for common ailments-2: Constipation

Constipation is a common disturbance of the digestive tract. This condition is characterized by irregular movements of the bowels, or they do not empty out completely when they move. This condition is the chief cause of many diseases as it produces toxins which spread to the rest of the parts of the body via the bloodstream. This condition can be very distressful to the patient.
Causes and Symptoms
The most common symptoms of constipation are infrequency, irregularity or difficulty in passing stools. The other symptoms include a coated tongue, foul breath, loss of appetite, headache, dizziness, dark circles under the eye, depression, nausea, pimples on the face, ulcers in the mouth, constant fullness in the abdomen, diarrhea alternating with constipation, varicose veins, pain in the lumbar region, acidity, heart burn and insomnia.
The most important causes of constipation are a faulty diet and style of living. Intake of refined and rich foods lacking in vitamins and minerals, insufficient intake of water, consumption of meat in large quantities, excessive use of strong tea and coffee, insufficient chewing, overeating and wrong combination of foods, irregular eating habits may all contribute to irregular bowel movements.
1.Bael fruit: All fruits generally, except, banana and jack fruit, are beneficial in the treatment of constipation. Bael fruit is regarded as the best of all laxatives. Its regular use for two or three months throws out even the old accumulated faecal matter. It should be preferably taken in its original form and before dinner. About 60gms of the fruit are sufficient for an adult.
2.Pear:Patients suffering from constipation should take this fruit exclusively in his diet or its juice for a few days, but, in ordinary cases, a medium sized pear taken after dinner or with breakfast will have the desired effect.
3.Guava:When eaten with seeds, this fruit provides roughage to the diet and helps in the normal evacuation of the bowels. One or two guavas should be taken everyday.
4.Grapes:This fruit is very beneficial and has good laxative properties. One should take at least 350gms of this fruit daily to achieve the desired results. When fresh grapes are not available, raisins, soaked in water can be used. They should be eaten early in the morning, along with the water in which they were soaked. They should be soaked for 24-48 hrs.
5.Orange:Taking one or two oranges at bedtime again on rising in the morning is good for constipation.
6.Papaya and Figs: Half a medium sized papaya should be eaten at breakfast for it to act as a laxative. Both fresh and dry figs have a laxative effect. Four or five dry figs should be soaked in water overnight in a little water and eaten in the morning.
7.Spinach: Among vegetables, spinach has been considered to be the most vital food for the entire digestive tract. Raw spinach juice-100ml, mixed with an equal quantity of water and taken twice daily, will cure the most aggravated cases within a few days.
8.Other Remedies: Half a lime, squeezed in a glass of hot water with half teaspoon salt is also an effective remedy. Drinking water which has been kept overnight in a copper vessal, first thing in the morning, brings good results.
Dietary Considerations
The most important factor in the cure of constipation is a natural and simple diet consisting of unrefined foods, bran, lentils, green and leafy vegetables, fresh and dry fruits and milk products in the form of butter, ghee, and cream. Food should be properly chewed. Have meals regularly and on time. Avoid sugar and sugary foods.
Other Measures
Exercise and toning up the muscles also helps in treatment of constipation. Fresh air, outdoor games, walking, swimming etc. play an important role in strengthening the muscles and thereby preventing constipation.

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