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Tummy troubles

health-and-fitness Updated: Jun 21, 2010 01:19 IST
Dr Anjali Mukerjee
Dr Anjali Mukerjee
Hindustan Times
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Many people suffer from constipation. It is a result of drastic changes in lifestyle, dependence on refined foods and low consumption of fibre-rich foods and water.

What is constipation?
Although some of us do get constipated periodically, many suffer from a chronic constipation problem. A holistic diet and changes in lifestyle can help rid it.

Lesser than three bowel movements a week is a sign of constipation. When severe, a person may have less than one a week too, caused due to improper food habits.

Sometimes, serious medical conditions like tumors in the colon can be responsible.

Relief at hand
Beetroot is a liver cleanser with laxative properties. High-fibre foods like carrots, tomatoes and spinach also regulate bowel movement and eliminate toxins from the digestive system.

Beet contains B vitamins, folate, manganese, potassium, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus. Homemade tomato juice contains nutrients such as vitamin C and lycopene that support digestive health and ease stomach disorders.

Prevention tips
* Drink 8-10 glasses of water and a glass of vegetable juice everyday.
* Use digestion-aiding spices like cumin, coriander, turmeric, fennel and asafoetida.
* Take whole grain foods such as chapatis, parathas, sprouts, beans and oats.

The writer is a nutritionist and can be reached at bodynsoul@hindustantimes.com