Constipation is a condition in which the frequency of the elimination of feces is reduced to even lesser than thrice a week. The feces are hard, difficult to eliminate and black in color. Ideally, a person should have at least one or two bowel movements per day. Not eliminating the feces on a daily basis, can lead to accumulation of wastes in the body. Accumulated wastes produces such toxins that can have harmful effects on the whole body system.
There are many medicines that are available in the market to treat constipation, but majority of people prefer to treat it at home using various home remedies or alternative herbal medicines. The reason behind this is that long term usage of over-the-counter laxatives, can make the person dependent on them. In order to avoid this, people prefer home remedies such as olive oil to relieve constipation. Olive oil for constipation can be quite effective. Here are the benefits of using olive oil, followed by the procedure to use it.
Benefits of Olive Oil for Constipation
Olive oil is rich in iron, vitamin E, vitamin K, antioxidants, omega 3 and omega 6 essential fatty acids which improves the overall health of the body. It is very helpful in keeping the gastrointestinal tract in a healthy condition. It stimulates the gallbladder to release more bile juice which helps in the digestion of fat. Olive oil also protects the mucous lining of the colon which may get stressed during the excretion of hard stool. Following are some of the most important benefits of olive oil for constipation.
✔ Softens the Feces
In constipation, it is seen that the feces become very hard and hence, the person is not able to eliminate them easily. Regularly taking olive oil propels muscle contractions in the intestines, thereby stimulating the bile flow and thus, softening the feces in the process. Soft feces, unlike the hard ones are easily eliminated and hence, constipation is cured.
✔ Reduces Intestinal Dilation
Olive oil is extremely effective for constipation in babies. It is often seen that babies are not able to eliminate feces easily, resulting in accumulation of stools in the intestines. When this happens, the intestines dilate, causing stomach pain in the babies. Due to this pain, babies hold back feces to avoid the pain. Regularly, massaging olive oil on the baby's stomach, helps in relieving his pain and thus, he is able to eliminate stool.
✔ No Side-effects
Olive oil has no side-effects. Long term usage of medicines can aggravate constipation, but olive oil is a natural oil which is extracted from the fruits of the olive tree, hence, even if it is not able to cure severe cases of constipation, it will not aggravate the situation.
How to use Olive Oil
▶ When you wake up in the morning, take one tablespoon of pure, extra-virgin, high quality, raw olive oil. You can continue this for a few days. If you still feel constipated, you may start taking one tablespoon of olive oil, in the evening, one hour before dinner.
▶ Another way to take olive oil is to eat it with some fiber rich fruit such as orange, apple, etc. Take one tablespoon of olive oil in the morning, followed by an orange or whatever fibrous fruit you have. Repeat the same in the evening with perhaps a fiber rich vegetable, such as, a broccoli.
▶ Use olive oil in salad. Mix olive oil with fresh lemon and use it in place of other sauces. This will not only help you in constipation but will also give your body a healthy treat.
▶ You can prepare a cocktail of olive oil and orange juice. Mix a tablespoon of olive oil in a glass of orange juice and have it every morning on empty stomach. This will lubricate your digestive system and will relieve constipation.
Olive oil can be used to relieve mild cases of constipation. But if prolonged use of olive oil is still unable to give you relief from constipation, then consult a doctor for further treatment, as constipation can also be a result of serious conditions like color cancer, lupus, etc. Hence it is always better to consult a doctor in the initial stage itself.
Olive oil alone cannot treat constipation. It has to be complemented with a lot of other lifestyle changes such as a high fiber diet, lots of fluid, regular exercising, etc. Hence it is very important to take care of things which may contribute to constipation.
Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.