Herbal Supplements
Diarrhoea and Herbal Remedies
The average person gets diarrhoea about four times a year. It is a digestive system disorder that usually reveals in loose, watery stools which occur more than three times in one day.
This condition is the result of the mucous membrane irritation that leads to the abnormally large quantity of water in the motions and subsequent excessive contractions of the bowel. As a rule, there is no reason to be alarmed since the problem goes in a day or two.
However, diarrhoea may be the sign of other problems which should require medical attention. Also, the disorder may cause some health problems, such as dehydration caused by the body’s lack of fluid. Diarrhoea varies in its types.
Secretory diarrhoea is the result of the increased secretion or absorption inhibition; osmotic diarrhoea is connected with the water loss due to osmotic load; and inflammatory diarrhoea occurs when the mucosal lining is damaged and decreases the ability to absorb protein-rich fluids. Diarrhoea may also be the result of abnormal motility.
Common diarrhoea symptoms include watery stools (which may vary from slightly watery to extremely watery with cramps), nausea and vomiting, crumps, loss of appetite, and sometimes fever with headache. If diarrhoea lasts during 2 weeks without improvement, it is considered to be chronic.
Most common and widespread reason of diarrhoea is a food poisoning and bacterial (usually staphylococci) and viral infections. It is also possible to catch those bacteria and viruses from others, so to avoid transmission, it is necessary to wash hands after the toilet and visiting public places. Bacteria and viruses produce toxins that affect the mucous membrane and cause indigestion. The use of certain medicines may cause diarrhoea, too. Chronic diarrhoea is usually the result of the other related health conditions: inflammation of the bowel, coeliac disease, and hormonal changes (diabetes or an overactive thyroid gland).
Traditional Approaches
Anti-diarrhoeal medications should only be taken on doctor’s advice. They usually include compounds that prevent fluid losses and reduce irritation. Antibiotics are usually prescribed for severe diarrhoea cases and are not favoured since their action may lead to chronic diarrhoea. Drinking plenty of fluids will help prevent dehydration.
Alternative Approaches
Mild forms of diarrhoea may be successfully treated with herbal supplements and their combinations.
Carob (or algarroba) is the herb rich in tannins that provide an astringent or binding effect on the mucous membranes of the intestinal tract. The preparation made of 15 grams of carob powder mixed with apple sauce is known to treat diarrhoea both in children and adults.
Another herb containing tannins is cranesbill. Its use goes back to the indigenous tribes of North America that used its properties to treat diarrhoea.
Psyllium seed with its rich fibre content is able to make stool more solid and handle other related diarrhoea symptoms.
Bladderwrack (Fucus vesiculosus) is rich in alginic acid, a type of dietary fibre that successfully relieves diarrhoea.
For the cases of infectious diarrhoea, goldenseal is used. Its major compound berberine provides antimicrobial activity and reduces inflammation of the mucous.
And finally, chamomile reduces intestinal cramping and eases the irritation and inflammation associated with diarrhoea.
2011-10-15 16:09:39
This atircle went ahead and made my day.
2010-08-29 17:48:58
i think you spelled Diarrhea wrong. just letting you know encase you didn't.
2010-08-29 17:48:05
i was doing an annotative bibliography for a project and it said that you spelled Diarrhea wrong. Unless you meant something else. or who knows it may be an alternative spelling. Just letting you know encase you didn't.
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