Constipation is another very common digestive ailment often caused by lack of water, lack of vegetable fiber and lack of exercise. The large intestine is stimulated by exercise to contract, also known as peristalsis, and expel its contents. Lack of fiber from fresh vegetables and other whole foods is needed to provide bulk to move food along. A lack of beneficial bacterial flora or probiotics aggravates the problem. Diseases associated with constipation are diverticulitis, diverticulosis and colon cancer. When a person does not have at least one bowel movement per day the size of a banana, they are constipated. Ideally, in fact, we should have a bowel movement after each meal. Without regular and effective bowel function, we risk higher levels of toxicity and chronic disease. Bloating, cramping, diarrhea, nausea, gas, increased thirst

Drugs for constipation can cause harsh side effects including dependence, bloating, nausea, gas, cramping and the potential to lose the bowel lining through the rectum. Due to the severity of complications, I advise patients to avoid them and use natural methods.

Water – 8 oz every hour with either lemon juice or a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar is an extremely important addition to add to our daily routine to keep the bowels moving, prevent bladder infections, keep mucous levels low, thin the blood and flush toxins out of the body. If you drink coffee, you will need to drink extra water to make up for the diuretic effect.

Regular exercise such as walking, running, swimming and any sport essentially as well as specific yoga poses, meditation and relaxation exercises can help stimulate peristalsis.

Fiber: Be sure to include plenty of fruits and vegetables in the diet daily.