Constipation

It is the function of the colon to turn digested foodstuffs into feces by compacting the unabsorbed materials and reabsorbing most of the water. The bowel then moves or expels the feces out of the body through a squeezing action (peristalsis) of the intestinal walls. If there is a lack of bulk or size to the material, there is a less efficient peristaltic action and the feces take longer to pass. Too little water or too little fiber in the diet with contribute to a lack of bulk in the stool.

Constipation will affect everyone at some point in their life. Most periodic episodes are due to low water intake and low fiber diets as described above. Excessive coffee intake will also contribute to constipation by acting as a diuretic, which causes the absorption of more water from the digestive tract and will leave the stool with too little bulk. Lack of exercise and excess stress both minimize the peristaltic action of the intestinal muscles and can cause constipation. Various supplements like iron or excess calcium, as well as numerous prescription medications have been known to cause constipation.

All of these can result in hard, compact, and difficult to pass stools. Perhaps there is no bowel movement for more than a day. Most of these causes of constipation are easily remedied with increased water intake (ideal is 48-64 oz per day) or adding dietary fiber. Fiber sources can include vegetables, fruit, and whole grains or ever over the counter products. It may take 24-72 hours for some cases to resolve.

The body is designed to have at least one elimination of solid wastes every day. Many people have one bowel movement every 2-4 days and consider it normal. It may be that this has been the pattern for as long as they can remember, but it is not normal. The colon is a holding tank for waste matter and if it is not emptied every 18-22 hours then toxins build up and are reabsorbed into the body. This consider is often referred to as “autotoxemia” or self-poisoning and can lead to many degenerative diseases.

The most common cause of chronic constipation is intestinal inflammation. Any inflammation or irritation in the small intestine will cause rapid movement of undigested foods through the small bowel dumping into the colon. This term is referred to as colonic dumping syndrome. As the poorly digested foods reach the small bowel they require longer to ferment and compact, and will linger in the colon. This provides food for yeast and bacteria to grow out of control. These bacterial and yeast overgrowths can be associated with virtually any symptom as they continue to grow more numerous. Causes of intestinal inflammation and subsequent colonic dumping include H. pylori infections, chronic intestinal parasites, and gluten or lactose intolerance. With certain tests it is possible to discover the underlying cause of constipation and restore the bowels to healthy function.

Treatment:

  • Excess levels of stress will cause the autonomic nervous system to become unbalanced. Good bowel function requires good parasympathetic response and stress increases the sympathetic response. The autonomic nervous system is like a teeter-totter in that both ends cannot be up at the same time. Reducing your stress through prayer, deep breathing, reading, massage, meditation, or some other means will shift the body from sympathetic to parasympathetic.
  • Another cause of sympathetic dominance is poor blood sugar control. As the level of glucose drops, the body reacts as if there is a low grade panic. And since eating shifts the body to a parasympathetic state, it is helpful to eat small regular meals to keep the body from becoming too sympathetic dominant.
  • Chiropractic manipulative therapy, especially to the thoracolumbar junction, can influence autonomic nervous system and up regulate spinal nerves that innervate the Myenteric plexus.
  • Avoid coffee as if causes the body to lose water. As the water volume inside the body drops, the water in the digestive system is drawn into the blood stream leaving less for the digestive tract. This can lead to compact stools.
  • Fiber rich foods include: asparagus, green leafy vegetables, beans, fresh fruit, Brussels sprouts, carrots, whole grains, peas, cabbage, okra, and sweet potatoes. Sauerkraut is especially helpful for constipation.
  • Enemas are often helpful in periodic episodes of constipation but if overused, they can cause permanent shut down of peristalsis and thus become necessary in order to have any bowel movements.


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5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan or 5-hydroxy-l-trytophan) is a natural suppplement that converts in the brain into serotonin. Serotonin is an important brain chemical involved in mood, behavior, appetite and sleep. Serotonin is known as 5-HT, or 5-hydroxytypta
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Buffered C Crystal

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Derived from sugar beet, contains naturally occurring mineral bicarbonates which make a sparkling, effervescent drink and form ascorbates in solution
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A low-allergy-potential fiber drink mix designed to support healthy intestinal transit time and bowel regularity. One serving provides approximately 83% insoluble and 17% soluble dietary fiber.
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HealthE-Sustain

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HealthE-Sustain is a medical food formulated to provide specialized nutritional support, including amino acids and prebiotic factors, combined with readily digestible, low-allergenic-potential macronutrients for patients with leaky gut syndrome. Featur
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Super Aloe 450

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Cape Aloes Our Super Aloe 450 is formulated with the finest and most effective Aloe Ferox available, and packaged for quick relief of constipation without the use of synthetics. Regarded as one of the best on the market, our Super Aloe provides a natura
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Last Updated: Monday, 21 August 2017 04:46