Many people suffer from colitis, a condition that’s characterized by colon inflammation. A lot of factors can cause this illness, and there are a number of home remedies that can help treat it - if you or someone you know is suffering from colitis, read on to learn more about this condition.
What Is Colitis?
Colitis is a gastrointestinal condition that inflames the colon. The colon is the final part of our digestive system and excretes water and salt from solid waste before eliminating it from the body. In general, colitis is an umbrella term for a large number of temporary and chronic conditions. It can also have a specific diagnosis, or it can be a symptom of an illness caused by something else.
Types Of Colitis
Colitis can have several different causes. That’s why there are different types that are characterized by different causes. Some of these types are:
- Amoebic colitis is the result of an infection caused by amoebas in the digestive tract (Amoeba Coli or Entamoeba histolytica).
- Ischemic colitis is caused by the collapse of an artery that flows into the colon, leading to a lack of oxygenation in the organ tissues.
- Colitis due to an irritable colon is commonly referred to as the nervous colon system and affects the colon’s function or ability to move food through its
- digestive tract.
- Viral colitis is a colon inflammation caused by the presence of a virus in the gastrointestinal tract.
- Idiopathic colitis. Colitis is considered idiopathic when the cause of the inflammation isn’t detectable.
- Polyposis colitis. This type of colitis is caused by polyps which are abnormal growths in the colon tissue.
- Ulcerative colitis. Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory illness characterized by inflammation and ulceration in the colon’s interior walls.
Symptoms Of Colitis
Symptoms of colitis may vary since it can be caused by a variety of factors. However, some of the most common symptoms are:
- Stomach cramps
- Abdominal pain
- Inflammation in the abdominal area
- Blood in the stool
- Oral thrush (canker sores)
- Joint inflammation
- Stomach pains
- Rectum ulcers
- Blisters on the skin
- Weight loss
Natural Remedies For Colitis
If you think you have colitis or any other gastrointestinal discomfort, we recommend that you visit your doctor as soon as possible. Programs like PODERsalud can help you access medical consultations quickly and from the comfort of your home. Having said that, if you’ve already been diagnosed with colitis and are receiving treatment, the following remedies can help you decrease your symptoms and accelerate your recovery.
Aloe Vera Juice Or Aloe Vera
According to an NIH study, aloe vera is an effective remedy for colitis. There are plenty of different ways to consume this plant, but this is the easiest way:
- Add lemon juice to the blender
- Cut a leaf of aloe vera in half and open it like a book. Using a spoon, take out two spoonfuls and add it to the lemon juice
- Add two cups of water and blend until everything is well blended
- Dilute the mixture with two more cups of water until you have a liter of liquid and drink daily
Flaxseed has properties that are great for digestive health, and it's highly recommended for treating colitis. Eating flaxseed is easy; just follow these steps below:
- Put a cup of flaxseeds and two cups of water in a jar or bowl
- Let the seeds soak overnight
- In the morning, strain the seeds and drink the water
Although it's mostly known for being a candy flavoring, licorice root has anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and antacid properties. These properties make it perfect for treating colon inflammation and the symptoms associated with colitis. To consume licorice root, try the following:
- Boil a cup of water
- Once the water is at a rolling boil, add a spoonful of licorice root powder
- Let the mixture boil for five minutes
- Strain the tea to remove the rest of the plant and drink twice a day
Chamomile Herbal Tea
Chamomile tea is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which helps reduce gas and bloating. Chamomile is easy to find and can be found fresh, dry, or even in tea bags. Making this tea is easy:
- Add a spoonful of fresh or dry chamomile or a tea bag
- Let the tea steep for five minutes
- If you're using loose leaf chamomile, strain the tea to get rid of the excess plant pieces
- Add a spoonful of honey if you;d like
According to a study published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine, papaya extract is an effective remedy for many different gastrointestinal problems including colitis. You can take extracts like Caricol® (which was the subject of this study) or eat fresh papaya, drink papaya juice, or have a papaya smoothie.
We all know that drinking water is crucial for our body to function, but did you know that it's also essential for preventing conditions like colitis? Drinking at least two to three liters of water a day (two for men, three for women) will help your gastrointestinal system work as well as possible and therefore decrease colitis-related symptoms.
Fruit And Vegetable Smoothie To Fight Colitis
This smoothie recipe includes different ingredients with properties that help combat colitis. All the ingredients have been individually proven to be effective in reducing symptoms. The recipe is as follows:
- Blend the following ingredientes:
- 1 ½ seeded peeled cucumbers
- 1 lemon
- 3 carrots
- ½ green apple
- 1 cup of lettuce
- Strain the smoothie
- Drink this two to three times a week and see if your colitis symptoms decrease
How to prevent colitis
The best way to combat colitis symptoms is to adopt healthy dietary habits and control your stress levels. The most important things you can do are:
- Increase your fiber intake by eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Mayo Clinic explains that fiber improves intestinal mobility and decreases “bad” cholesterol levels (LDL) and blood glucose. That’s why a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains helps prevent colitis and other gastrointestinal and cardiovascular ailments, type 2 diabetes, and obesity.
- Drink plenty of water. Like we mentioned before, water is vital for your organs to function well, including the digestive system. According to Harvard Medical School, drinking water aids digestion and prevents constipation. This is because water is absolutely essential for the metabolism to properly break down foods.
- Take care of your mental health. We recommend exercising, therapy, relaxation techniques, or using a natural relaxation remedy such as linden blossom tea or valerian. Here are more ways that you can relieve stress.
- Avoid tobacco and alcohol. Both alcohol and tobacco are irritants for the digestive tract. Avoiding them will help prevent a multitude of adverse conditions including colitis.