Constipation (Anaha) according to AYURVEDIC MEDICINE
Constipation means an undue delay in the evacuation of the faeces. This may be due to abnormal retention of faecal matter or delay in the discharge of excreta from the rectum.
· Lack of green vegetables, roughage.
· Abuse of laxatives.
· Diminished expulsive power due to weakness of abdominal muscles or pelvic floor.
· Excess intake of astringent foods.
· Sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercises.
· Lack of Peristaltic movement or piles.
· A feeling of rectal fullness.
· Left sided abdominal pain.
· Passage of mucus through the rectum.
· Rectal bleeding.
· Anorectal discomfort.
Undigested food and occult stool get slowly accumulated in the stomach and large intestines respectively and vitiate vata dosha which results in obstruction of digestive tract.
Types of Constipation:
· Amaj anah
· Purishaj anah
In this type of constipation, the patient has symptoms like thirst, coryza, burning sensation in head, abdominal pain and heaviness, nausea, no clear belching.
This is due to retention and putrification of faeces in the large intestines. It causes spasm and colic pain in the lumbar region. Retention of urine and stools, unconsciousness, sometimes faeces in the vomitus, breathing difficulty etc.
General guidelines for diet.
· Rice can be eaten with steamed vegetables, which should be garnished with spices. Khichari also should be used. Strict attention to diet is essential for recovery.
· Starchy, protein and fatty foods should be restricted.
· Meats, sugar, tea, coffee, condiments, pickles, refined and processed foods, white flour and white sugar products should be avoided.
· Heavy gravies, puddings, cakes, chocolates, pastries and alcohol should be avoided. Soft drinks, candies, ice creams and products made with sugar and white flour should be avoided.
· Non-vegetarian foods should be avoided.
· Pomegranate fruit, buttermilk, soup of reddish are beneficial.
Tips for improving digestion
· A very simple way to is to give up the habit of eating too much. Try to regulate eating hours and always leave part of the stomach empty for movement of food during digestion.
· Eat fresh and natural foods. Avoid preserved, canned, or fast foods.
· Never suppress natural urges, such as passing urine, stool or flatus, sneezing, belching, yawning and even crying. Suppression of such urges aggravates toxins in the body.
· Create regular meal times. Maintain at least 4 hours of interval between two meals.
· Eat dinner before 2 hours of sleeping. Take a walk after dinner.
· Consume food in proper quantity.
· Eat when you are hungry.
· Foods should complement, not contradict each other.
· Eating in a pleasant environment is preferable.
· Eating should be paced properly (not too fast or slow).
· Minimize distractions while eating.
· Food should be eaten according to constitution.
· Eat freshly prepared foods as much as possible. If you have to eat leftovers, make sure they are not more than a day old.
· Avoid poor food combinations, such as very hot and very cold foods; raw and cooked food; milk and fish; or milk and meat.
· Avoid microwave cooking. It disperses energy and is ultimately weakening over time. This has been scientifically and empirically proven.
· Food should look and smell appetizing. Pleasant garnishes and attractive table settings helps to instill a sense of harmony at the dinner table.
· Drink spring or purified water. Avoid distilled water, which does not contain any minerals and have a tendency to accumulate them from your system. This weakens bones, teeth, hair, nails and skin. However, various mineral formulations are nowadays available. These can be added to the distilled water to rectify this problem.
· Try to get up early in the morning and drink two to three glasses of water the first thing in the morning. It is preferable to store the water in a copper pot on the previous night. It helps to remove toxins from the body. In winters you may warm this water.
· Regular meditation, yoga and exercise are advisable. Exercise promotes circulation and helps to maintain the blood flow to every part of the body. Exercise to half of your strength.
· Proper rest and sound sleep are advisable.
· Keep your mind relaxed.
· Avoid keeping awake late into nights and try to get up early in the morning.
· Add morning and night walk to daily routine.
· Avoid too hot and too cold temperature.
· Drink two glasses of water in the morning, gradually increasing the volume up to six glasses.
· Drink buttermilk after meals.
· Meals should be of light, easily digestible food and should be eaten when hungry.
· Heavy and spicy foods should be avoided.
· Fresh fruits and vegetable soups should be increased in diet.
· Sprouts, salads, turnips, prunes, apple, pears etc are good.
· Herbs used are ginger, terminalia chibulis, plumbago zeylanica, calotropis.
· Hingwashtak churna
· Haritakvadi churna
· Narach churna
· Arogyavardhini vati
· Triphala ghee
· Pippalyadi ghee
· Panchkarma treatment