Constipation is the classic cause of hemorrhoids, but diarrhea can create similar pressure, as well. Both, fortunately, can be treated with a high-fiber diet. Bran, specifically wheat bran, is the time-honored cure-all, because it creates a bulky stool. Also look to other whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and legumes. Add fiber gradually, though, so your body can adjust. If necessary, use an over-the-counter bulk-forming laxative, such as psyllium, but avoid other types of laxatives. It's best to get fiber from foods.
Drinking adequate fluids is also essential for good bowel function. Drink several cups -- six to eight -- of water each day. This is especially important if you're getting more fiber.
Too much fiber can actually cause constipation if you're not also drinking adequate fluids.
- Eat a high-fiber diet emphasizing wheat bran. Include five daily servings of fruits and vegetables, opt for whole over refined grains, and make beans a mainstay of meals. If necessary, use a bulk softener but not a laxative.
- Drink lots of fluids, especially water. Set a goal of six to eight cups each day.
- Answer nature's call without delay whenever possible.
- Avoid straining when you're on the toilet. Wait for the urge to hit before you seat yourself on the "throne."
- Avoid sitting for long periods. Break it up with walks.
- Get some physical activity every day.
- Practice good hygiene. Wipe well but not excessively. Use water if necessary.
Hemorrhoids can be an uncomfortable condition -- but with the right diet, you may be able to prevent their onset.©Publications International, Ltd.This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. Neither the Editors of Consumer Guide (R), Publications International, Ltd., the author nor publisher take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this information. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader must seek the advice of their physician or other health care provider.