Generally, diarrhoea occurs when agni (the digestive fire) becomes weak. We help you cool off the agni!
Generally, diarrhoea occurs when agni (the digestive fire) becomes weak. As a result, absorption and assimilation become minimal, and the undigested foodstuff gets eliminated as a liquid, watery stool.
To relieve diarrhoea, Ayurveda aims to strengthen agni and to pacify whatever dosha - generally pitta - is aggravated. Indigestion, nervousness, or eating some wrong food or food combination can also create diarrhoea.
The first line of defense against diarrhoea is to immediately reduce pitta in your diet. Follow the guidelines for the pitta-pacifying diet, especially keeping away from spicy and fermented foods.
Four Food Cures
- Cook one or two apples until they are mushy, then add 1 teaspoon ghee, a pinch of cardamom, and a pinch of nutmeg. Eat slowly. This mixture is not only delicious, it will also help stop diarrhoea right away.
- If you don't have apples, you can use bananas, only you don't have to cook them. Chop 1 or 2 ripe bananas into pieces, and as with the apples, add 1 teaspoon of warm ghee and a pinch each of cardamom and nutmeg. Bananas are high in potassium, which helps to bind the stool.
- Another effective remedy for diarrhoea is to cook rice with yogurt. Take about a cupful of cooked basmati rice, add 1 tablespoon of ghee and 3 or 4 tablespoon of plain fresh yogurt, stir together, and eat.
- Another remedy using yogurt is to blend together equal parts of yogurt and water (about ½ cup each), add about 1/8 teaspoon of fresh grated ginger and drink.
- Try ginger powder (about ½ teaspoon) with 1 teaspoon raw natural sugar. Mix together, and chew the mixture with some warm water. Take 2 or 3 times a day for 2 to 3 days.
- Another simple remedy is the following:
Ghee 1 teaspoon
Nutmeg ½ teaspoon
Ginger powder ½ teaspoon
Natural Sugar 1 teaspoon
Mix together and eat. Like the ginger-sugar mixture above, take this formula 2 or 3 times a day for 2 to 3 days.
- For acute diarrhoea, mix ½ teaspoon fennel powder with ½ teaspoon ginger powder, and chew this mixture 2 or 3 times a day.
- Try drinking a cop of hot black coffee with a little lime juice (about 10 drops) and a pinch of cardamom or nutmeg.
- If your diarrhoea appears to be the result of high pitta, use this herbal formula:
Shatavari ½ teaspoon
Arrowroot ½ teaspoon
Mix together, and take with ½ cup warm water 2 or 3 times a day.
- You can also use sat isabgol (psyllium husks) to combat pitta diarrhoea.
- This may sound strange, as psyllium is often used as a laxative. However, in pitta diarrhoea, an excess of pitta accumulates in the gastrotestinal tract and irritates the wall of the colon, creating the diarrhoea. So at bedtime, take 1 teaspoon sat isabgol mixed into a cup of fresh yogurt. That will absorb pitta and bind the stool, helping to correct the diarrhoea. Be sure the yogurt is freshly made, not old.
Diarrhoea can sometimes cause dehydration. To prevent this from happening, add 1 teaspoon of natural sugar, 1 teaspoon of lime juice, and a pinch of salt to a pint of room-temperature water, and sip throughout the day.
NOTE: If the diarrhoea continues beyond three days, it would be wise to consult a doctor.
Poppyseed Porridge: You can also make your child a porridge of poppy seeds. Bring ½ cup milk and ½ cup water to a boil, then add about 1 teaspoon poppy seeds. The seeds will swell and become soft. They will make a nice, easily digested porridge. It is a good food that helps to stop diarrhoea. As a bonus, your child will also sleep soundly.
Calcium Supplements: Babies may also get diarrhoea when they are teething. Teeth are a by-product of asthi dhatu, or bone formation. When babies start growing teeth, especially the incisors or canine teeth, vata in the asthi dhatu gets provoked, their digestive fire becomes weak, and they may get diarrhoea. At that time, they need more calcium. You can give the child a simple calcium supplement in the correct dose for children.
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