So, I’m sorry to bring it up, but really this is a problem that has or will impact most of us in life. Literally 3 out of 4 people in the US will suffer from these guys at some point in their lifetime. They’re painful, they’re uncomfortable, but most of all they’re considered gross and therefore don’t get discussed much by anyone. Some people are even embarrassed to discuss them with their doctors! You may have guessed it by now. I’m talking about hemorrhoids. I’ll try to be brief and to the point to avoid prolonging the awkwardness, but please know, like I said you’re not alone! Almost everyone goes through this at some point, men and women alike. It is true that women are more prone to hemorrhoids because they often accompany either pregnancy or at the very least childbirth.
So, first off, what is a hemorrhoid? Well, all it is really, is a blood vessel that has gotten twisted and swollen in a less than pleasant location! What is the cause of this? Most often it’s caused by constipation or poor circulation to the area. What’s to be done about that? Diet and exercise, of course. I’m sorry friends, but really there is NO good substitute for diet and exercise. They effect everything. There wouldn’t be enough miracle supplements or pills to replace the physical benefits of a good diet and physical activity! So, the number one way to relieve constipation is to get plenty of water and plenty of fiber. How do you know you’re getting enough water? Don’t stop drinking it is the best advice I can give. Drink 2 bottles worth of water upon first rising, and don’t stop until you’re asleep. The benefits of drinking this much water far out weigh any inconvenience you may experience in keeping up with it. How much fiber should you be getting and how? Most people don’t need fiber supplements. They just need more natural foods. Almost all natural foods that originate in the ground have lots of fiber. Sadly, our modern diets include fewer and fewer plants as time goes on. So, whether your prone to hemorrhoids or you’re looking to prevent them – and you’ll want to- make sure to get a lot of plants in your diet.
So, how do you know if you have hemorrhoids? Well, if you have the uncomfortable kind, you’ll know it. There are some hemorrhoids that don’t hurt, but they should be addressed because eventually they will. They’re generally noticeable by trace amounts of blood during or after a bowel movement. So, what can you do for this? Well, other than tons of water, here are a couple things that I’ve heard help.
- Oranges. Oranges and other citrus fruits contain powerful flavanoids that are helpful for strengthening blood vessels therefor preventing and alleviating damage and pain caused by hemorrhoids.
- Herbal remedies such as Butcher’s Broom and Horse Chestnut are great for improving circulation and reducing inflammation (something you’ll definitely want to reduce.)
- Cold compresses are recommended, in fact, some hospitals provide women who have just given birth with a little tub to fill with cool water to ease the discomfort and keep the area clean.
- Chamomile both as a tea to drink and as a paste for the outer area helps to soothe irritation.
- Finally, out of all the creams and ointments they sell to apply to the outer and inner areas affected by hemorrhoids, I only really recommend non-petroleum jelly. They make this with vitamins A, D and E to promote topical healing. Listen, give it a whirl. It really might be the best quick way to get rid of the discomfort.
So, how do you avoid hemorrhoids, the same way you avoid any ailment: water, diet and exercise. I know that in these modern times we expect a quick fix cure to everything under the sun, but truly, nothing will help like prevention and over all good health. Even with great diet and regular physical activity many people are bound to run into these pesky little trouble makers, but believe me, it will be easier to rid yourself of them if they don’t find, shall we say, a welcoming environment. Sorry, friends for the day’s topic. But, if 15 minutes of uncomfortable conversation can save you weeks of discomfort downstairs, I promise you it’s worth it.