Constipation is an extremely irritating condition. You may be suffering from constipation, if you are unable to pass stool or the stool is infrequent, hard and dry. It is a common problem that afflicts many people. Your digestive system is one of the main systems that help the body to function well.
Your whole fitness depends on a good digestive system. Constipation is a problem and not an illness, but it can become chronic if not taken proper care of. You can suffer from various kinds of ailments due to the malfunction of your digestive system. You can feel heaviness and headaches, lethargy, insomnia, flatulence, gastric trouble or may suffer from loss of appetite.
The cause for constipation in most cases is due to wrong eating habits and a hectic lifestyle. The treatment, therefore, also lies in your home. Many people resort to laxatives or purgatives to deal with constipation.
But, these medicines do not cure the problem, they only provide temporary relief and gradually you become habitual and with time you have to take them in higher doses, which can lead to further complications.
The best and the most effective way to deal with constipation are to eat a proper diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. You should eat a balanced diet and follow a regular exercise regimen to get permanent relief from constipation.
Diet for Constipation
You should eat your food in its natural form. Refined and overcooked food loses its fibre and nutrient contents and does not get properly digested. To maintain a balanced diet, take two parts of fruits and vegetables and one part cereals. If you are above 35 or 40 years of age then eat two meals a day and munch on fruits or salads for in between snacks.
Water is the best therapy to stimulate the bowels. Drink one glass of fresh water with a few drops of lemon juice and honey first thing in the morning. It will cleanse the body from all impurities.
Regular practice of this therapy will activate your digestive system. You should drink at least 3-4 litres of fluids in the form of water, juice, lassi or soup in summers and 1-2 litres in winters. Warm water is better for drinking to keep the digestive tract well lubricated.
Milk is an excellent natural laxative. Drink one glass of hot milk at night just before going to bed. It is an effective remedy for constipation. You can add one table spoon of honey to the milk for better results.
Whole grain food is rich in fiber content and works as a laxative to clear the bowels. You can obtain fiber from multi grain flour and breads. Wheat porridge, oats or barley are extremely beneficial to treat constipation.eat at least one bowl of any of these cereals for your breakfast. Add lentils and legumes in your lunch and dinner menu.
Whole lentils like green moong, black grams are better than the washed pulses. You can also add sprouted moong, grams and peanuts to your salad for extra fiber and nutrients. Add a few drops of lemon juice in the dal preparations and salads for better absorption of iron and proteins. It will help to digest the food faster and better.
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Fresh vegetables like tomatoes, cucumber, cabbage, carrot are best eaten in the salad form. Eat at least one bowl of salad with your meals. Season it with salt and lemon juice to enhance the taste.
Green leafy vegetables like spinach and fenugreek can be added to your soup or vegetables. You can even mix them in the dough to make chapattis. These vegetables are rich in iron and fibre content and they work as natural laxatives.
Fresh fruits are natural body cleansers. They are a rich source of vitamin C, potassium and magnesium and help to maintain a strong digestive system. Always eat fresh and seasonal fruits and avoid frozen or canned variations as they may contain preservatives and extra sugar.
Figs, apple, jamun, papaya, musk melon and mangoes are some of the high fiber fruits that are beneficial for constipation. Eat at least one bowl of mixed fruits before your breakfast. Fruits are best eaten in the morning as they are light on the stomach and easy to digest. It is a good way to start your morning. If you are eating fruits during the day, then keep a gap of at least two hours between lunch and dinner to prevent flatulence.
Certain foods should be avoided to prevent constipation
You should reduce the intake of tea and coffee as they cause gas formation and acidity that may irritate the bowels.
Fried foods also cause heaviness in the stomach and you may feel uneasy while passing the stool. Avoid high starch foods like arbi, lady fingers and urad dal. Starch content in the food act as a binding agent for digestion and cause constipation.
Smoking is injurious to health in every way and it applies for the digestive system as well. Some people smoke a cigarette as soon as they get up to help clean the bowels but a cigarette does exactly the opposite and interferes with the process. Alcohol also causes constipation; you must reduce or quit smoking and drinking alcohol.
Do not eat and drink together. You should drink water at least half an hour before or after your meals. This will help the digestive juices to work better and without an extra amount of liquid. Eat slowly and chew well to let the saliva mix with your food properly. It helps the stomach in digesting the food.
Physical activity is as important as proper diet to cure constipation. Sedentary lifestyle is one of the main reasons for a disturbed digestive system. Take up some form of exercise and make it a regular part of your daily routine. You can go for a walk or do jogging.
Yoga breathing exercises like Kapal Bharti or the Complete Breath stimulates the digestive system and is an effective way to cure digestive disorder.
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