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Dr. Vikram Chauhan - MD (Ayurveda)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Constipation - Herbal Remedies for Constipation

Herbal Remedies for Constipation

Inability to defecate completely in one go is called Constipation and sometimes person goes again and again trying to clean the bowel but in vain is also called constipation.

Ayurveda considers constipation as the root cause of most of the illnesses. Constipation leads to accumulation of toxins within the body and causes blockage of various energy channels impeding the flow of nutrients, hormones leading to malfunctioning of various organ systems.

Reasons for constipation
There are many common reasons for constipation. Stress is also one of the major factors. Faulty diet which is devoid of fiber rich fruits, irregular routine, late night sleep, excessive consumption of non-vegetarian diet, junk food are the major reasons for constipation.

Getting rid of constipation

Avoid using laxatives- Do not try different types of laxatives. Try to find out the reason first. The constipation may be because of sleeping late at night and giving more laxatives will help in cleansing for once or twice but it may cause problems later on.
So avoid using laxatives.
As per Ayurveda, our body is made up of 5 elements – Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Ether. All the reasons for constipation mentioned above cause imbalance of Air element in the body which dries up the stool in the large colon and also causes dryness in other parts of the body. Therefore imbalance of Air componenet ( Vata) is the cause of constipation.

To avoid these, one should try to balance Vata component as much as possible. Try to eat herbs like fennel after meals, which helps to minimize Vata and assists in digestion. Other herbs and spices like cumin, celery, thyme, turmeric, coriander, cumin, which are used in Indian cooking are all Vata pacifying.

Bed tea is another cause of constipation. Tea is basically an astringent and therefore good for loose motions but still many people become habitual to go to toilet only after consuming a cup of tea early in the morning, but that is not right as per Ayurveda.

Consuming a lot of fresh water ( atleast 10 glasses every day) is a very good remedy for constipation. It is just like flushing our toilet with water. It cleanses the intestines and also maintains their tone.

Consuming fruits is very much recommended as fruits are rich in natural fiber and they clean the intestines just as we scrub our floor. The fruits like melons, mangoes, apples, grapes, guava, peaches, pineapple etc. are rich in roughage and must be consumed everyday.
Non-vegetarian diet and junk food like pizza, burgers, noodles, pasta and foods made up from very refined flour should not be consumed.

Ayurveda also has specified various time periods in a day when there is increase and decrease in the level of tri-energies of the body i.e. the Vata, Pitta and Kapha. (made up of 5 elements).
Vata gets imbalanced during the period before midnight, about 8 PM to 12 PM. If we are awake during this period, this leads to more imbalance and causes more vata related problems. So we should also listen to our bio-rhythms which the God has specified for our biological system.

Herbs for constipation

1. Aloe vera juice – Kumari saar is a very useful herbal remedy for constipation. 20-30 ml of Aloe vera juice ( Kumari Saar) taken twice daily, empty stomach with equal quanity of plain water detoxifies naturally. It not only clears the intestines without any problem but also helps in removing the endotoxins from within the blood. It also nourishes the body as it is rich in natural vitamins and minerals. It can also be mixed with a juice

2. Triphala – Tri means 3 and Phala is Fruit. This is a combination of 3 fruit powders namely Haritaki, Bhibhitaki and Amalaki. Triphala is also known as Vara which in Sanskrit language means ‘ The best”. So this is the best herbal remedy for constipation. It is non- habit forming mild laxative and also best anti-ageing formulation. This is available all over the world in powder form as well as capsule form, but the powder form is much better and recommended. It should be taken 1 teaspoonful twice daily, with lukewarm water, after meals

3. Ghee – Ghee or Butter – Oil is a also recommended in Ayurveda for lubrication of the intestines. Small quantity of it should always be taken along with food to eliminate toxins, aid digestion and lubricate the intestines.

4. Senna – Herbs like senna are not very mild laxatives and they are also habit forming. Their use should be very limited as they disturb the natural tone of the colon.

5. Isabguha husk ( Psyllium husk) – This is another wonderful remedy for clearing up the bowels. This is a bulk forming agent i.e. makes the stool, as it absorbs water and swells in the intestines and helps in putting the pressure on intestines to evacuate.

6. Drastic Purgatives – There are herbs like Jamalghota ( Croton tiglium), Nishoth ( Turpeth), Indervaruni (Citrullus colocynthus), Snuhi, ( Euphorbia neerifolium), Ark ( Madder), Swarnkshiri ( Argemone mexicana) are all strong purgatives and they should always be consumed under guidance of a medical or Ayurvedic specialist. They are also very useful in some cases where their use is justified.

7. Liver Cleansers – Picrorrhiza kurrao (Kutki) is another herb which helps the body to cleanse itself by the action of this herb on liver. This herb grows in Himalayas and stimulates liver to release bile salts and bile acids to emulsify the fats and thereby reducing the incidence of galls stones, promoting healthy digestion, promotes healthy metabolism of various hormones in liver and also helping in constipation.

Article By – Dr. Vikram Chauhan, MD ( Ayurveda ) , Phone : + 91- 9876643604

1 comment:

  1. You are right Dr. Nicholas, Medical diagnosis of every disease is important before starting any medicine.. These herbs are rich in natural fiber and other natural active ingredients..