Chronic Constipation–Medical Breakthroughs and Chiropractic Common Sense

LOL, I recently read an article on Medscape, a well-respected online medical educational site, about chronic constipation. Here’s the synopsis of the article: a lot of people get constipated. They try home remedies such as water and fiber supplements. When that doesn’t help, medical doctors want to know what else they can do besides prescribing polyethylene glycol, which can help temporarily by inducing diarrhea. One new medical breakthrough is the wireless motility capsule. The patient eats a small bar of “medical food,” followed by a glass of water, then swallows a pill-sized transmitter that collects and transmits data from inside the intestines. This capsule can indeed confirm that the patient is constipated. The issue of whether the capsule must be retrieved once it exits the body is not addressed. However, five or six new drugs are also in the works, so stay tuned. Might one of them be able to fix our collective constipation conundrum without us having to eat better or listen to our bodies?

In another study, this one from Italy, artichokes laced with probiotics (strains of beneficial bacteria that, when ingested, have a positive benefit on our health) are fed to people, and people feel better. Here, the vehicle for delivering the probiotics is not yogurt or milk. Instead, artichoke is used, because these beneficial bacteria love to feed on fiber such as that found in artichokes. The take-home message here is that, by combining our probiotics with the proper food, we are going to benefit more.

I am a big fan of probiotics, which can be dispensed as supplements if you are not getting enough in your daily diet (you’ll find them in fermented foods such as kimchee). We carry Standard Process brand Lact-Enz and ProSynbiotic. Something else to consider: when the spinal nerves controlling the bowels are functioning poorly due to problems in the lumbar spine and pelvis, constipation can result. If that is the case, then a few chiropractic adjustments to the lower back and pelvis can provide relief. It sure beats having to swallow a wireless motility capsule or drinking polyethylene glycol.

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