Thursday, March 30, 2006

Does Vegetarian Diet Help Constipation?

Question for Savvy Vegetarian:

I am 26 yrs old and most of my life I have struggled with constipation, which led me to develop hemmoroids, I recently had them removed and the doctor has me drinking citrucel and metamucil, however these fiber supplements are hard for me to swallow, and I can't quite find the right balance in the pill form. I have been doing research on the vegetarian lifestyle and I would like to know if this would help me become healthier and feel better? - C.R.

Savvy Veg Advice

Dear C.R.,
Ouch! Poor you!
A vegetarian diet would definitely help, especially one that has a lot of liquid and fiber. In general, if you're prone to constipation, that means that you're a 'dry' or 'vata' person, in ayurvedic terms, and need a juicier diet. That means favoring fruits and vegetables, cooked grains, and legumes; also soups, stews, cooked cereal, salads, fresh fruit, juices, herbal teas, water etc. over drier and heavier foods. Easy on the cheese, chocolate, caffeine, too - they have a drying and binding effect.

There's a lot of research to support these suggestions, and I also know it works from my own experience. Adjusting my diet to my physical characteristics through Ayurveda was very helpful to me. Regular mild exercise like walking is good too.

Ayurvedic tips on constipation are available at MAPI (Maharishi Ayurvedic Products International)

Of course, you should check with your doctor before you make radical dietary changes while you recover from surgery.

I hope the SV 10 Tips and Nutrition Reports are helpful - please let me know how you're doing - Judy K. at Savvy Vegetarian

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