CONSTIPATION PROBLEM IN WINTERS
Although constipation is common all weather problem many individuals face however due to less water intake in winters can leads to bowel disruptions and discomfort. Individuals find it difficult to pass bowels regularly and have a clear gut due to slow metabolism in winters.
WHAT IS CONSTIPATION ?
Individual having fewer than 3 bowel movements within a week is defined as Constipation. But how often you go varies in every individual. Many people have bowel movements multiple times a day but others have only one to two times a week. Bowel movement pattern is unique in every individual. The key features of constipation that defines it are :
Painful bowel movement and difficulty in passing stool
Stool is hard and dry
Feeling of not fully empting the bowel.
It happens when colon absorbs too much water contain from the stool that dries it out making it hard in consistency and difficult to push out of body.
WHAT ARE THE CAUSES OF CONSTIPATION ?
Common symptoms of constipation are :
Low fiber diet
Change in regular routine , such as eating or traveling or going to sleep at different times.
Resisting urge of bowel movement
Eating large amount of cheese or milk.
Due to certain medicines like antidepressants, NSAIDs, allergic medicines etc.
Certain underlying medical conditions like stroke, diabetes and Parkinson's disease.
Under active thyroid gland
Colon or rectum problems like IBS, diverticulosis or intestinal obstruction
WHY CONSTIPATION IS MORE COMMON IN WINTERS ?
Common factors that contributes in development of constipation in winters are:
Less intake of water due to cold weather
Decreased physical activities leading to more sedentary lifestyle causing reduced blood supply in pelvic region.
High sugar intake
High caffeine intake in form of coffee and tea. Caffeine is diuretic leading to more water loss and aggravating constipation.
High consumption of milk can also leads to constipation in some individuals.
WHAT ARE SYMPTOMS OF CONSTIPATION ?
Some common symptoms of constipation includes :
Dry, Hard and Lumpy stool
Fewer than three bowel movements in a week
Difficult and painful to pass out stool
Stomach cramps or ache
Feeling of nausea and bloating
Feeling that bowel movement is incomplete
Feeling being blocked up
AYURVEDIC PERSPECTIVE :
According to ayurveda constipation is caused by dry and cold characteristic of vitiated vata dosha . Vata dosha is the easiest in all doshas to go out of balance . During winter season air become more cool which highlights bodily vata which in turn aggravates digestive fire enhancing appetite.
It digestive fire is not feed properly it can lead to vitiation of vata dosha. Vitiated vata dosha can affect the nutritive fluids in body along with aggravated digestive fire.
Sometimes due to increase in digestive fire the appetite of person increase and it triggers over eating which contributes in development of constipation.
So to cure constipation we have to combat the vitiated vata dosha accordig to ayurveda.
DIETARY HABITS AND TIPS TO COMBAT CONSTIPATION :
Diet habits play important role in development or cure of constipation in person. Some of the diet habits that helps to easy constipation are :
Vata pacifying food :
Favor warm foods , warm drinks and well-cooked food, rich in protein and fat. Favor food rich in madhur( sweet), amla (sour) and lavan (salty) taste to pacify vata. Avoid cold, light , katu (bitter), tikta (pungent) and kashaya ( astringent) food which further vitiated vata
- Eat fruit like ripe banana in between meals as it is mild laxative to easy constipation.
- Apple also helps to regulates bowel movements thus helps in constipation .
- Guava is a common fruit in Indian households. It is helpful in many health conditions . It is a rich source of vitamin-a , calcium, fibers . It helps to facilitate bowel movements . So consuming it daily can ease one's constipation.
Eat fruit like ripe banana in between meals as it is mild laxative to easy constipation.
Apple also helps to regulates bowel movements thus helps in constipation .
Guava is a common fruit in Indian households. It is helpful in many health conditions . It is a rich source of vitamin-a , calcium, fibers . It helps to facilitate bowel movements . So consuming it daily can ease one's constipation.
Fibrous Diet :
Add fiber rich foods like wheat , oat ,brown rice , spinach, coriander leaves , pumpkin etc to keep bowel movements in check.
Drink a cup of hot milk mixed with one teaspoonful of ghee as it helps to soften hard stool thus easy constipation.
Add spices like cumin, black pepper, fennel, carom seeds and cardamon in food while cooking as they enhance the taste of food along with encouraging optimal uptake and excretion of waste.
Take half to one teaspoon of triphala steeped in a cup of hot water for 5-10 minutes and drink it at night. It helps to improve bowel movements along with excretion of toxins from the body thus helps to cure constipation.
Castor oil :
Castor oil has mild laxative properties that helps to enhance movement of intestine. Taking 2 teaspoons of castor oil with warm milk at night helps to ease constipation.
Luke warm water :
Start day with warm water and drink plenty of water throughout the day to flush out harmful toxins from body thus easing constipation.
Aloe vera :
Regular intake of aloe pulp helps to cure constipation as it has mild laxative properties.
Isbgol or phyllium husk is a common remedy for constipation as well as diarrhea. It is gentle bulk forming laxative . For constipation mixed 2 teaspoons of isbagol in lukewarm water as it stimulates contraction of intestine and also helps to speed up passage of stool through digestive tract.
PANCHAKARMA THERAPIES FOR CONSTIPATION :
Panchakarma is a effective ayurvedic procedure for treatment of various diseases. It helps to flush out toxins from body thus helpful in cleansing persons bowel. Therapies recommended for constipation are :
Vasti karma : The use of medicated herbal decoction or oil administered through anal rout. It is primary treatment for Vata dosha which is main factor in manifestation of constipation according to ayurveda thus helps to ease constipation.
Virechan : It is medicated purgation therapy which is helpful in easing constipation and also remove toxins from the body.
Phalavarti :Coarse wick of cloth smudged with laxatives inserted into anus for initiating bowel movements to ease constipation.