Constipation remedies are usually required when somebody suffers less than one bowel movement a day. This bodily function varies from person to person, but anything less than the norm is classed as constipation.
The ideal situation would be to have two movements a day. Constipation can be caused by inadequate fiber intake, low fluid intake, lack of exercise, and some medical conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and diabetes.
Herbal Remedies for Constipation
There are many natural remedies for constipation. As each person’s normal bodily functions differ, the ideal constipation remedy would be something mild in order to not trigger the reverse effect and bring about a dose of diarrhea.
- Increase fluid intake. The best and most natural fluid is water, although any fluid can help, including juices and teas. This softens stools and aids easier passing through the colon. Hibiscus tea, aloe juice, and prune juice all have a laxative effect.
- An increase of dietary fiber is another natural remedy for constipation. This can include an increase in fruits and vegetables or adding bran to meals. One of the best forms of natural fiber is psyllium. Psyllium seed and husk can be bought in capsule or powdered form, depending on preference. The powder can be mixed with any fluid, although fruit juice is probably best in order to mask the earthy taste of the powder. One of the best constipation remedies, it works as a bulking agent, softens the stools, and helps to clear the intestines of blockages.
- Taking herbal laxatives. Cascara sagrada, buckthorn, and fenugreek all have a mild laxative effects and are very good constipation herbs. When drunk in tea form, they also increase the fluid intake. Possibly the best known of the herbal remedies for constipation is senna, which is mild and best taken at bed time so it can work overnight.
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- There are some herbal supplements that can increase bile and so aid the digestive system in breaking down foods. This ensures that food is passed more earily through the system. These supplements include dandelion tea and milk thistle, which is usually taken in capsule form. A qualified practitioner can also recommend a constipation natural remedy that is suitable for you.
- Oils found in nuts and flax seed are also natural constipation remedies. Eating a bowl of bran cereal with a spoonful of nuts and flax seed in the morning can give you almost the entire recommended amount of dietary fiber intake of the day. Add to this throughout the day a small handful of prunes or an apple or two, and it makes getting your daily dose of fiber very doable. Be warned, if you are not currently eating the recommended amount of fiber, then the increase should be done slowly so as to avoid stomach cramps and excessive gas.
- An increase in exercise can stimulate bowel movement, even by small amounts such as a brisk walk around the block.
Chronic or unexplained bouts of constipation should be diagnosed by a medical professional. Pregnant women or people taking medication for other illnesses should also seek the advice of their doctor.
Constipation could be an underlying symptom for many serious medical issues, so any concerns should be addressed accordingly.
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HERBAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF REMEDIES