It is not the most attractive part of the body and not an area we generally speak about in polite conversation, which is probably why our bowels are one of the furthest places from our mind when we think about our general health.
However, let us be clear, healthy bowels are one of the cornerstones of a healthy body and can offer the first warning signs that something is wrong. It can be a signal that you are under too much stress, overeating fatty foods or have too little fruits and vegetables in your diet.
Here are our top tips that will help you maintain happy, healthy bowels and improve your overall health.
Your bowels expel waste best when your body is supplied with an adequate amount of fluids. Your large intestines are like a giant sponge and, in a pinch, absorbs the water you need to function. When there is not enough liquid present in your body, your colon absorbs whatever fluids are available in your waste. This dries out your stool, making it difficult to have a bowel movement.
Most experts recommend we consume at least 2 litres of water a day to stay adequately hydrated, but this amount may need to be increased depending on your activity level during the day or even the amount of caffeine you consume.
Other than water, consuming herbal teas, clear soups and fresh fruit or vegetable juices are good ways to keep yourself hydrated.
Limit caffeine and alcohol intake
Anything in excess is no good for us, but when it comes to having healthy bowels, alcohol and caffeine can have a real adverse effect. Caffeine is probably the more deceptive of the two. Many people report needing to have a bowel movement after drinking coffee through the day, and that makes sense. Caffeine is a stimulant, but it is also is a diuretic which means it increases the amount of liquid being expelled from your body. Too much caffeine from coffee, energy drinks and the like can, therefore, cause constipation. Alcohol has a similar effect. A night of heavy drinking can lead to bowel issues in the short term and a lifetime of nights like these has been proven to be associated with stomach and bowel cancer.
Jack Spratt your diet
Remember that nursery rhyme about odd couple Jack and Mrs Spratt? Mrs Spratt didn’t have a taste for lean meat while Mr Spratt couldn’t eat fat. Not to take sides in this marital dispute but it turns out that Jack had a point. While there are good fats our body needs to maintain healthy bowels, a heavy fat laden diet can be the cause of a multitude of bowel issues including some forms of colon cancer. Again, everything in moderation. Cut back on the bacon and burgers and substitute for turkey and chicken once in a while.
If you want to learn about more ways to keep yourself healthy naturally give us a call here at The Tonic Tree or feel free to send us a question throughout the contact us page.