Editor-s Choice: Oxy-Powder®

Laxatives

What is considered a normal bowel habit varies greatly from person to person. Healthy individuals can pass anywhere from 3 to 21 stools per week. Constipation is defined as a decrease in the volume and frequency of bowel movements, often accompanied by discomfort during evacuation and bloating in the lower abdomen. Straining or difficulty moving the bowels more than 25% of the time, or passing fewer than 3 stools per week are very strong indicators you are experiencing constipation.

Constipation often resolves itself, or it can be relieved by increasing exercise and making dietary improvements. Eating fiber rich foods (such as fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains) and drinking plenty of water help maintain healthy bowel habits. When constipation persists, however, many people turn to a laxative for quick results. There are many different types available and each works in a different way while presenting their own side effects and degree of efficacy.

The Stimulant Laxative

Stimulant laxatives (such as Cascara sagrada, Senna, and Bisacodyl) empty the bowels by irritating the intestinal lining. This causes the bowel muscles to contract and leads to a bowel movement. A stimulant laxative is available in either oral or suppository form. This type of laxative is popular because it produces quick results; but it also delivers unpleasant side effects and the potential for long-term complications.

Side effects of a stimulant laxative includes cramps, nausea, and electrolyte deficiency. Some stimulants can even turn your urine pink or red. If taken over a long period of time, a stimulant laxative can even affect the natural way the bowel functions. The digestive system may become lazy and thus unable to produce a bowel movement without using ever more laxatives in an ongoing, addictive cycle.

The Osmotic Laxative

An osmotic laxative, such as Magnesium Hydroxide or Lactulose, draws water into the bowel to soften the stool and help it pass more easily. This type of laxative takes a little longer to work and produces a liquid or semi-liquid bowel movement. Even though the osmotic laxative is considered safe for occasional use, dependency can result if you use it for extended periods.

The Bulk-Forming Laxative

Bulk-forming laxatives, such as Psyllium, adds bulk to waste in the form of non-soluble fiber. This type of laxative causes the stool to swell and become bulky, creating pressure on the inner lining of the intestine. This causes muscle contractions that stimulate a bowel movement. A bulk forming laxative generally brings relief within 12 to 24 hours, although it sometimes takes two to three days to produce a bowel movement. Psyllium husks and powders must be taken with plenty of water and can cause serious complications if swallowed dry since they could swell in the throat. Bulk forming laxatives must be used daily in order for them to be effective.

The Lubricant Laxative

A lubricant laxative coats the bowel and stool with a waterproof, oily film. This slippery coating helps waste retain water and keeps it soft for easy elimination. The most common of the lubricant laxatives is mineral oil. It takes about 6 to 8 hours to produce a bowel movement after ingesting lubricant laxatives.

Side effects from using a lubricant laxative are uncommon but can be severe. If droplets of mineral oil are inhaled, for example, pneumonia can result. The risk of pneumonia developing increases if you lie down after inhaling the oil, so it cannot be taken at bedtime. Additionally, patients who are elderly, bedridden, pregnant, or very young present an increased risk of complications with this method. Mineral oil can also cause malabsorption of nutrients. For this reason, a lubricant laxative cannot be taken within 2 hours after meals. The lubricant laxative also produces anal itching from seepage (which can stain clothing), so it may not be wise to take this form if you’re planning to go out anytime soon.

The Emollient Laxative

Stool softeners, or emollient laxatives, allow water to penetrate the stool, creating a softer, easier to pass bowel movement. This type of laxative does not actually induce a bowel movement, but eases discomfort so the stool may pass without straining. It takes two to three days for this type of laxative to take effect. Stool softeners should not be used for long periods especially if you take other medications. Some of the ingredients may counteract with or increase toxicity of your medications and could damage your liver.

Organic Colon Cleansing – The Safe Alternative to Laxatives

A safe way to relieve constipation is by using Oxy-Powder®, available through Global Healing Center. Oxy-Powder® helps the colon remove impacted mucus, toxins, and waste and helps restore regularity and optimal bowel health. This product works gently, without any embarrassing or unpleasant side effects. Oxy-Powder® takes effect gradually over a 12-hour period, so you won’t experience any sense of urgency or loss of bowel control.

Oxy-Powder® uses ozonated Magnesium Oxides and natural citric acid to effectively cleanse the colon without harming friendly intestinal bacteria. Colon cleansing permits better absorption of nutrients from the foods you eat and helps strengthen your immune system as well since you’re clearing out all that toxic sludge. You can experience an increase in energy, elevated mood, and a decrease in bad body and breath odors.

A laxative should provide effective, reliable, noticeable results without causing addiction, without causing you to lose bowel control, without diminishing your body’s natural digestive function, and especially without presenting any harmful side effects. It’s as simple as that, so conduct your own research and then choose the constipation reliever that’s right for you!

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