March 30, 2008

5 Keys To Good Colon Health

by Max Hill

1. Herbal Support for the Colon Muscles Many people have constipation or partial constipation. Partial constipation is where you do not have as many bowel movements a day as meals you eat. In other words, if you eat 3 times a day you would expect to have 3 bowel movements a day. Having this many bowel movements is often not usual; but it is 'normal'.

To enable this, 'colon cleansing' is often used. A herbal formula is by far the best and easiest way to achieve 3 regular bowel movements a day. The top herbal formula, proven by tens of thousands of people who have used it, is one based on the original formula of the renowned Dr John Christopher. Dr Christopher taught naturopathy and herbalism in America in the 70s and 80s. His formula is fantastic and many slightly different versions exist, some of which credit Dr Christopher and some of which don't!

His herbal formula is based on the herb cascara sagrada (Rhamnus purshiana) supported by 6 or 7 other herbs, including fennel, cayenne pepper, barberry and ginger. It needs to be taken every single day, not just occasionally. (Though sometimes '6 days a week' is recommended, and this is fine.)

2. Fibre and A Good Diet The second requirement for good bowel function is lots of fibre in the diet. This is most easily achieved by eating lots and lots of vegetables. Brown rice and whole wheat and other whole grains are also high in fibre. When using a cascara-based formula as above, the formula is often supplemented with Psyllium Husks. These are the outer casing of a seed of the Plantago variety, which provide lubricating fibre which absorb water and swell up.
This is why you must drink extra water when using Psyllium. Psyllium helps to bulk up the stool making it easier to pass along the bowel. It is wise to drink around 2 litres of water daily anyway, for good health and to achieve soft stools.

3. Friendly Bacteria - Acidophilus et alMany people have a deficiency of 'friendly bacteria'. Bacteria are present in large amounts in the bowel, and in the stool. The 'wrong type' of bacteria, the 'unfriendly bacteria' easily take over in the the bowel so to achieve good bowel health it is helpful if the friendly types are supplemented. These include acidophilus bacteria. The best supplements contain additional types of friendly bacteria too. The best contain patented strains of these which are hardy enough to survive the journey through the stomach to the bowel.

4. Regular ExerciseExercising the abdominal area is important to good bowel health. Vigorous exercise such as racket games which involve stooping and yoga exercises are usually helpful.

5. Calm NervesBowel health is greatly affected by the nervous system. Poor nerves and stress often lead to inflammatory bowel conditions such as diverticulitis, colitis and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).

The answer is in steadily building the nerves (eg with herbs or homoeopathy) and learning to relax more. One powerful route to relaxation is through regular meditation .

Using herbs, there are 3-month herbal programmes available which help build the nerves and the adrenal glands, which are important to boost nerve health.

Max Hill has been a natural health practitioner for 25 years, using herbs, acupuncture and naturopathy. He has studied with some of the leading lights of alternative therapy of the last two decades. Max has written extensively for, as well as