- War, poverty, disease, and ignorance are just a few of
the many worries and overt threats that preoccupy us and often times cause
pain and suffering to ourselves and the people we love. Unfortunately it
seems that every time we conquer one problem and inoculate ourselves from
a given danger, dozens more reveal themselves and we are back to square
one or worse.
- Threats will continue to amass, which is a given. But
our ability and power to deal with the challenges we face is the dynamic
variable or secret weapon that entirely depends upon us. Even if we are
well-equipped with effective strategies and alert minds, and can deal with
various adverse conditions as they arise, our preparedness is only at 50%
if we do not have a sound and properly functioning internal system. In
the ensuing battles, not only will effective tactics and reflexes of the
mind be needed, but even more important will be the internal condition
of our physical bodies, as the combined duo of a healthy physical and mental
state will substantially increase our chances of success when faced with
the toxic and emotional challenges that lie ahead. Some say we are a nation
of a thousand illnesses and disorders, when we are in fact a nation of
immense potential and a few problems that unfortunately spawn many ailments.
One of the problems or bottlenecks to better internal health that must
be addressed on a large scale due to it's heightened prevalence across
our nation, is constipation, a danger that lurks in the shadows and affects
over 70% of Americans.
- Stated bluntly, anyone who is not having at least 2 bowel
movements a day is constipated. Yes, at least 2 (optimally 3) bowel movements
a day are vital for optimal health!
- Are you constipated right now? Whether you are occasionally
constipated or suffer from chronic constipation, as 40% of Americans do,
there's absolutely nothing to be ashamed of, as many of your peers are
in the same boat. Drop everything and pay attention, for it's time to look
at ways we can address this problem. First let's review why constipation
can be such a pain in the behind and how it leads to progressively worse
or more dangerous conditions if it isn't resolved.
- The transit time for all foods in your system should
be 16 hours. So if you're interested in testing your digestive timing,
ingest some corn and time how long it takes to appear in your stool. The
time from ingestion to the time the corn ceases to appear in your stool
is the true transit time. To the extent that the interval is greater than
16 hours, you are constipated and waste products are remaining in your
body long enough to cause disease.
- Major danger can arise when we add meat products to a
poorly functioning or constipated system. Red meat that stays in the system
for over 16 hours begins to putrefy and becomes toxic. Not only will this
create discomfort and intense odor, but food that putrefies in the stomach,
colon, or intestines creates a breeding ground for viruses, bacteria, and
- The toxins and diseases that arise from a constipated
system aren't the only reasons for concern. In addition to cancer, heart
disease, diverticulitis, IBS, obesity, arthritis and a plethora of other
conditions that have some link to constipation, the energy and straining
required to relieve a clogged system can cause heart attacks, hemorrhoids,
a ballooning of the intestinal wall, and can negatively affect the prostate.
- According to various reports of the autopsies of two
of our nation's most beloved personalities, upon their passing, John Wayne
was found to have at least 40 lbs of fecal matter in his colon, and Elvis
was found to have 60 lbs. Neither stardom nor wishful thinking can protect
us from this current endemic. We must take action!
- I have often advised a complete overhaul of the diets
and lifestyles that cause constipation. Increasing water (at least six
8-oz glasses per day), fiber (31 grams), and 30 minutes or more of exercise
a day can help to move waste material through the body. Unfortunately many
of the ingrained habits and firmly held routines of most sufferers make
it difficult to achieve an optimal working system and prevent the dire
consequences of constipation. Amazingly, rather than altering their nutritional
intake and making the needed lifestyle changes, many Americans have adopted
the use of laxatives to solve their constipation. This is an incomplete
solution as most laxatives work only at the level of the colon and do not
address the poor circulation, poor liver and gallbladder functions which
cause symptoms such as sluggishness and fatigue.
- Because many people have trouble consuming the water
needed, and refuse to resort to enemas, I often suggest incorporating Vitality
capsules into their lives as a daily internal cleanser that does not interfere
with their everyday obligations. This is a formula that I have worked on
over the years, which is an herbal blend that improves the functioning
of our internal organs and circulation, as well as boosts energy levels.
These vegetarian capsules target constipation and toxic environments in
many ways thanks to the unique herbal blend of ginger, cape aloe, garlic,
cascara sagrada, cayenne pepper, barberry root, and senna leaf, which have
solved the constipation woes of many of my friends, family members and
patients for years. Of course, if taking natural supplements or organic
herbs isn't your cup of tea, and you still want to be free of constipation,
then it's most often necessary to adhere to a disciplined array of lifestyle
changes, such as consuming more water and fiber, adopting a more regular
sleep cycle, minimizing meat intake, and increasing your current levels
of daily exercise.
- Remember, that regardless of what regimen you follow
in your fight against constipation, the decision to get better is solely
up to you. But know that once you decide to get better, your march to better
health will become easier and more rewarding every day. The road to 100%
preparedness starts now!
- RECIPE REMEDY FOR CONSTIPATION
- 1 quart of distilled water
- 2 tbs lemon juice
- 1 cup pitted prunes, cut in half
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Put all ingredients except lemon juice in a pot. Bring
to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in lemon
juice. Eat as is or spoon over oatmeal as a sweetener.
- I used this recipe when cooking for the students of the
Guru. Meditation students did a lot of deep breathing which caused constipation
due to water loss. They also sat for extended periods of time which caused
constipation due to inactivity. This particular side dish/condiment kept
many a devotee comfortable and tastes best with organic ingredients!
- How The Ingredients Work:
- The water provides lubrication necessary for movement.
The lemon juice is a mild astringent which tones and strengthens the intestines.
It is also a mild antiseptic and loosens the material from the intestines.
Prunes provide the bulk or fiber and stimulation to move the intestines.
While the cinnamon is a stimulant it also creates a sense of well-being.
- A spoonful of this recipe brings a relaxed smile to one's
- Please stay tuned for my next article, where I will investigate
the linkages between constipation and depression. Please visit VitalityCapsules.com
and join my mailing list to receive free weekly recipes and health advice.
- Jennifer Daniels, M.D., M.B.A is a graduate of Harvard
University, the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and the
Wharton School of Business. Dr. Daniels loves receiving email, so feel
free to drop her a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
- From David Brandt
- I'm a vegan going on over a year now, with all the benefits
that have come with it (thanks!--you were instrumental in "scaring"
me into a far healthier way of life). I had a surgery recently for an
inguinal hernia, and I read the article on constipation and red meat staying
in the intestines. After the surgery, there was what can only be described
as what Dr. Daniels wrote about, perhaps because my intestines were lined
up correctly. So even though I have not consumed any animal products in
over a year, some still remained FOR THAT LONG! I cannot emphasize enough
how very unhealthy that is.