- Henry Wheeler Shaw
"We are not what we eat, we are what we don’t expel"
Ninety per cent of the health problems and diseases arise from abdomen through wrong eating habits. Abdomen being the store room maintaining supply line for the entire body, most health problems can be kept away if we keep our abdomen fit and efficient which is in our hands - this is the plaint truth.
Most diseases like constipation, haemorrhoids (piles), obesity, abdominal disorders, ulcers, hiatal hernia, diverticulosis, spastic colon, appendicitis, intestinal problems etc. being inter-linked, correspond very closely to the amount of fibre and fat in the one’s choice of food. It is hard to exaggerate the sufferings that could be prevented which arise out of these disease if only a high-fibre, low-fat diet like sprouts, whole grains, vegetables and fruits is maintained. A diet high in fibre, and low in fat yields soft, moist, large stools, eliminates the need to strain and is of great help in preventing and treating these diseases. Meat, fish, eggs and dairy products contain no fibre and are the most acid -forming of all food items and with high fat content. Laxatives are often employed to move the bowels when the stools have become hard, but in the long run these only make things worse because they irritate the bowel walls. The only answer is a diet lot in fat and high in fibre.
Apart from the incurable and dreadful diseases, most troubles as aforesaid start with the abdomen. Diseases like gastritis, indigestion, constipation, ulcer, hepatitis, colitis, etc. often arise from an imbalanced diet, irregular and careless eating for taste or show. The digestive organs are teeth, salivary glands, gullet ,liver, stomach, pancreas, gall-bladder, small intestine and large intestine. The process of digestion is : the teeth break and chew the food with the help of saliva. Then, the food passes through the gullet into the stomach and then into the small intestine, where digestion and absorption of food take place and then finally to large intestine for elimination of the reside through rectum. This digestive process is assisted by many other organs such as liver, pancreas and the lymphatic system. The kidneys filter the blood, resulting in the formation of urine.
Indigestion is a common complaint amongst the middle and upper classes, while it is much less prevalent amongst the poor and working classes. The reasons are apparent. When you take rich food, taste preparations of different types (several items together ) which you can afford, you certainly get tempted and et to your heart’s content, not once, or for one day, but for as long as you care to indulge yourself. The poor cannot afford such excesses. Hence the difference. The rich gets the gift of indigestion, ulcers and many other diseases. God is great. If He had provided unlimited digestive power to the rich, they would have consumed all the good food and drinks available in this world. Milk possibly would not have been available and the poor would not have got even a drop for their children, or for adding to their cup of tea / coffee, or even as a medicine. Other causes of indigestion, apart from over-eating, are drinking water during meals, irregular eating habits, insomnia, emotions such as jealously, fear, anger, etc. lack of exercises and eating fried and heavy food. The barometer for good digestion is that whatever you eat, should be digested without any medicines, antacids or enzyme tablets. See treatment chart.
Constipation is one of the curses of modern civilization. Amongst uncivilized races and in the wild animal kingdom, constipation is unknown. The cause of constipation in simple terms, is disobedience to the natural laws of life. More precisely, it is mainly due to :
All laxatives and purgatives are toxic to the system. They do not act upon the system, instead the system reacts to the drugs and thus the person becomes enslaved to them.
It is rather impossible to cure constipation permanently without resorting to natural food and brisk walk / vigorous exercises. Natural food and physical activity are the most powerful stimulants for bowel evacuation. If the individual does not exercise but leads a sedentary life, the food does not travel through the digestive tract in the right length of time. Its progress is delayed and by the time it reaches the rectum, all the water is absorbed and the residue will be in the form of a dry, sticky mass, very hard to expel.
Lot of roughage and fibre in diet is essential for satisfactory evacuation. It is best to adopt raw diet - rich in enzymes, roughage, low in protein, starches and fats. Natural laxative food such as fresh uncooked vegetables (lettuce, celery, cauliflower, carrot, cabbage, cucumber and spinach), fruits (grape,lemon, apricot, pears, all berries, plum, fresh fig,cherry, banana, apple, pomegranate, guava, papaya,mango and 3) and molasses etc. are helpful in relieving constipation. Roughage can also be had from whole-wheat flour, bran, unpolished rice, fruits,vegetables and wholesome soups. Drink lot of fluids,i.e. 8 to 10 glasses (three litres) of water daily including vegetable and fruit juices. Also take 4 to 6 spoonfuls of roasted gram powder stirred in water or isabgol with a cup of warm skimmed milk. If constipation still persists, take enema. You may take one glass of carrot-spinach and tomato juice (equal quantity) daily, with a lemon squeezed in for some days. Another treatment for constipation is Chinese water therapy. ON rising early in the morning, immediately drink four glasses ( 1.26 litres) of water for 5-7 days. Also do vigorous exercises.
Some people take hot milk daily at night as an aid to stimulate bowel movement the following morning. The aid is not natural, but it does help to some extent and it does some harm also. It is very uncomfortable as it generates gases, making sleep difficult in the night. Instead, you can look at Nature for help. Take some garlic in any form, or trifala powder or 2-4 soaked figs or 8-10 soaked munakka at night. If still constipated, take about 4 or 6 spoonfuls of roasted gram powder stirred in water a few minutes before diner and drink a glass or two of water with it. You may also take mud pack and enema occasionally. All these are natural aids for bowel movement, which will help more than a glass of hot milk. IN case of obstinate constipation, take 4-8 tea spoons of castor oil in a cup of skimmed milk at night intermittantly.
Ano-Rectal Diseases Piles Causes / Symptoms : Prevention : Treatment : While for cases of third and fourth degree piles, the only solution lies in a formal operation, called haemorrhoidectomy, in the case of first and second degree piles, Naturopathy works wonders and cure in certain , provided the patient extends full cooperation and adopts the follow-up procedures at home. The treatment part of Naturopathy consists of dietary regimen, hydrotherapy, mud-therapy and Yogic exercises. Naturopathic treatment provides relief from constipation and improves the return of blood circulation from pile masses through a cleansing process, i.e. fasting, enema, rest and intake of 8 to 10 glasses of liquids including lemon water for 5 to 8 days, depending on the condition. Fasting helps in cleansing the blood stream by removing toxins from the blood ( toxemia). As aforesaid, fibrous diet ( with roughage ) is very important as it makes the stools well formed and does not allow constipation. Besides, treatments like mud packs, enema, cold hip bath, warm hip bath and an ice pack applied to the anus for 3-5 minutes are given to cure piles. Hot ( two minutes ) and cold (half a minute) pack on the anus (alternate) four times each morning and evening is very useful. Exercises including various Yogic asanas are also contributing factors in treating piles. Fissures Fistulae
Most ano-rectal problems arise from faulty eating habits. Individuals not taking enough fibrous food are prone to constipation and therefore, more prone to various ano-rectal problems. Not responding to the natural process of defecation, irregular bowel movements, lack of fluid intake also lead to this problem, besides causing local infections around the anus. Swelling around the anus or formation of a mass in the rectum resulting in piles is common. If the piles are swollen or protruding, hot and cold contrast pad on the anus should be applied. Keep the anus clean by carefully wiping with damp tissue. Bed rest helps to reduce both swelling and pain. Avoid straining while passing stools. Eating plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain cereals, sprouts ( which provide roughage) help to get rid of piles. Drink adequate liquids. Avoid tea, coffee, alcohol and spices.
Piles is a very common ailment. The term ‘haemorrhoids’ is also used to denote piles. It is not confined to older persons only, but is prevalent amongst all age groups, even in young children. The symptoms are - appearance of blood in the stools, a lump near the anus and an accompanying pain. Men suffer from this ailment more than women. However, every case of bleeding in the stools need not necessarily be a case of piles. Piles are labelled internal or external depending upon whether they erupt in the mucous -membrane part of the anal canal which is insensitive to pain or the skin-covered part of the anal canal, respectively.
‘Nature cure firmly believes that the root cause of piles is constipation which arises from various reasons, besides bad dietary habits.’
Diet plays a major role in prevention as well as curing piles. While piles is a common condition affecting the Western population which consumes a diet with low fibre content, it is seen that ethnic Africans who consume high fibre diet are not prone to this malady. This is one of the reasons why a diet with a high fibre content is generally advocated by Naturopaths as it also avoids constipation. Such a diet consists of fruits, vegetables, wheat bran, unpolished rice etc. Spicy and fatty food including fried food and rich in calories must be avoided at all costs, as these cause constipation.
The treatments for piles are :
It is important to bear in mind that constipation should be avoided, the habit of sitting on commode every morning be cultivated, practice of applying pressure should be avoided and some sort of exercises like games, brisk walk and Yoga must be made a daily games, brisk walk and Yoga must be made a daily routine. Besides, some oily substance like cream or vaseline be applied intermittently with the finger inside the anus.
Fissures are linear tears or cuts in the anal canal and its mucus membrane. People who have tense, sedentary jobs are likely victims of fissures. The problem is often associated with other bowel disorders, such as chronic diarrhoea or severe constipation. Chronic fissures are periodically healed but recur with pain, little pus and sometimes with bleeding as a streak. A small strip of mixed membrane may protrude from the anus forming a nodule called a sentinel pile. The first step in healing the fissure is to cure the constipation as early as possible. Hot and cold contrast pack is a corrective treatment. Avoid irritants, spicy and sour food including pickles and chutney. The system should be cleansed thoroughly with fasting and enema followed by daily exercises - either brisk walk or Yoga. Diet must be very light and fat free, but consisting of fibre and roughage.
Fistulae in the anus is a common problem accounting for a quarter of ano-rectal problems. It is generally formed at the outer end of the rectum or anal canal due to infection and spreads to the internal regions of rectum forming a tunnel, through which pus dribbles down resulting in itching, tenderness or pain on bowel movements. Fistulae are generally treated by surgery but in some cases they recur in spite of repeated operations. Most of the cases respond to Naturopathy very well with no recurrence thereafter, provided the patient strictly follows the principles of Naturopathy. Treatments, exercises and diet control are to be followed as suggested above.
Causes / Symptoms :
While for cases of third and fourth degree piles, the only solution lies in a formal operation, called haemorrhoidectomy, in the case of first and second degree piles, Naturopathy works wonders and cure in certain , provided the patient extends full cooperation and adopts the follow-up procedures at home. The treatment part of Naturopathy consists of dietary regimen, hydrotherapy, mud-therapy and Yogic exercises. Naturopathic treatment provides relief from constipation and improves the return of blood circulation from pile masses through a cleansing process, i.e. fasting, enema, rest and intake of 8 to 10 glasses of liquids including lemon water for 5 to 8 days, depending on the condition. Fasting helps in cleansing the blood stream by removing toxins from the blood ( toxemia).
As aforesaid, fibrous diet ( with roughage ) is very important as it makes the stools well formed and does not allow constipation. Besides, treatments like mud packs, enema, cold hip bath, warm hip bath and an ice pack applied to the anus for 3-5 minutes are given to cure piles. Hot ( two minutes ) and cold (half a minute) pack on the anus (alternate) four times each morning and evening is very useful. Exercises including various Yogic asanas are also contributing factors in treating piles.