DIABETES EDUCATON- DIABETES AND CONSTIPATION
Welcome to another great weekend with us at the Diabetic Concepts, I like to thank you for your comments and questions that you sent via the usual means, I urge you to continue to write to enrich the column as many persons are gaining from the information in this site.
This week we shall take a close look at a condition that disturbs many persons living with Diabetes especially when uncontrolled, characterized by persistently high blood glucose levels, Constipation.
Constipation is difficulty of passing stools or the infrequent passage of hard, dry stools as a result of food moving slowly through the large intestine.
Most people experience constipation from time to time however, it appears more common in people living with diabetes with poor blood glucose control. Usually, lifestyle changes and better eating habits can aid relieve the symptoms and prevent recurrences.
Constipation, gastro paresis, erectile dysfunction amongst other are forms of autonomic neuropathy that affects persons living with diabetes and the management of autonomic neuropathy has evolved over the years. However, there is no consistently effective treatment for diabetic autonomic neuropathy. The symptoms are handled as the present. There is a need to see a specialist instead of handling this condition alone by a person living with Diabetes should it persist.
Constipation mostly arises from insufficient amounts of fiber and fluid in the diet. Fiber can be obtained in plants based foods such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Water soluble fibers are soft textured and helps soften the stools. Water insoluble fibers passes through the intestine largely unchanged and adds bulk to the stools, these helps to stimulate bowel contractions.
Other factors that can cause Constipation:
a. Inadequate exercise
b. Advanced age
c. Muscle disorder
d. Structural abnormalities
e. Heavy consumption of junk foods
f. Poor glucose control in people living with Diabetes
g. High level of calcium and low level of thyroid hormone can cause constipation.
Constipation can be very uncomfortable and it is especially inconvenient in persons living with Diabetes and can give rise to many different ailments:
- Bad breath
- Body odour
- Coated tongue
- Hemorrhoids (Piles)
- Obesity etc.
Constipation has been observed to be involved in some forms of colon cancer. Regular bowel movements are an important mechanism for removing toxins from the body.
Recommendations on How to Handle Constipation:
A. Eat high fiber foods such as fresh fruits, raw green leafy vegetables, whole grains like oatmeal and brown rice daily.
Soluble fibers: Beans, Barley, Oats, Bananas, Peaches, grapes
Insoluble fibers: Cereals, seeds, wheat bran, whole grains and skins of many fruits and vegetables.
B. Drink more water at least 2 to 4 liters daily.
C. Eat a low fat diet and avoid fried foods.
D. Avoid foods that stimulate secretions from the mucus membranes example, dairy products, fats and spicy foods.
E. Do not consume dairy products, soft drinks, meat, white flour, highly processed foods, salt, coffee, alcohol or sugar. This is because they are difficult to digest and have little or no fiber.
F. For quick relieve of constipation, drink a large glass of water every ten minutes for half an hour to flush out toxins and relieve constipation.
G. Use of laxatives
H. Exercise: physical activity speeds the movement of waste through the intestine.
Until I come your way next weekend with another interesting discuss, I urge you to watch what you eat to prevent constipations in other to enjoy a great weekend.