Finding Relief from Constipation: An Ayurvedic Approach

Finding Relief from Constipation: An Ayurvedic Approach

by Kottakkal Support June 07, 2024

Constipation, the infrequent or difficult passage of stools, is a common problem. Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of medicine, offers a holistic approach to address this issue by focusing on restoring balance within the body.

 Understanding the Ayurvedic Cause of Constipation

Ayurveda identifies vata dosha, associated with air and space elements, as governing movement in the body, this includes elimination. When vata becomes imbalanced, its dry, cold, and rough qualities can disrupt the colon's natural flow, leading to constipation. Additionally, weak digestive strength can result in ama formation which is a toxin caused by improperly digested foods. Ama is a sticky substance throughout the digestive system that hinders elimination.

 Daily Practices for Relief

  • Diet: Focus on warm, cooked, and moist foods rich in fiber (grains, fruits, and vegetables) and healthy oils (ghee or coconut oil). Avoid cold, dry, and processed foods like crackers, chips, raw salads, and iced drinks.
  • Hydration: Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your body hydrated and prevent dryness.
  • Yoga: Specific postures like the Pawanmuktasana II series can stimulate peristalsis and improve digestion.
  • Breathing Exercises: Kapalbhati pranayama promotes relaxation, which can benefit overall well-being.
  • Self-Massage (Abhyanga): Daily oil massage can improve circulation and lubricate the digestive system.
  • Sleep: Maintain a consistent sleep schedule with an early bedtime (around 10 pm) and consistent wake-up times (around 6 am) to regulate the body's natural rhythm, including elimination.
  • Stress Management: Chronic stress can worsen vata imbalance. Relaxation techniques like meditation or walks in nature can be beneficial.

 Addressing the Root Cause

Constipation often results from a combination of factors, with diet being the most common culprit. Other potential contributors include emotional stress, medications, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inconsistent eating habits, hypothyroidism, travel, magnesium deficiency, holding in bowel movements, food allergies or sensitivities, and certain medications.

Signs of Healthy Elimination

Healthy stools are well-formed, have the consistency of a ripe banana, are light brown in color, and have a mild odor. Many people experience improvement simply by addressing improper diet and lifestyle choices.

 Common Lifestyle Habits to Consider

  • Lack of Movement: Sitting all day can stagnate the colon. Aim for regular movement throughout the day.
  • Sleep Disruptions: Staying up too late or sleeping during the day disrupts the body's natural rhythm.
  • Rushing Your Morning Routine: Leaving too early for work can disrupt your natural urge to eliminate.
  • Exercise Timing: Exercising too early in the morning may disrupt your natural urge for some people.
  • Difficult-to-Digest Foods: Uncooked, cold, dry, or dense foods can slow digestion.

 Chronic Constipation and Its Effects

Prolonged constipation can disrupt the natural digestive flow, leading to indigestion, gas, bloating, headaches, sluggish liver, piles, and lower backache. Certain medical conditions like Parkinsonism and hypothyroidism can also cause constipation.

Seeking Professional Help

If you experience chronic constipation, consulting an Ayurvedic doctor or practitioner can help identify the root cause and recommend a personalized plan that includes dietary and herbal remedies.


Herbal Support for Chronic Constipation

  • Gandharvahastadi Kashyam balances vata dosha, the main herb castor helps dissolve excess gas and stool, eases elimination, and supports a healthy digestive system.
  • Gandharvahastadi Oil  balances vata dosha, the main herb is castor and is useful for many vata disorders and helps improve the elimination of ama and stool.
  • Abhaya Arishtam balances vata and kapha dosha, removes ama from the gut, increases digestive fire, digests ama, eases gas and bloating in the stomach, and supports a healthy colon.
  • Kalyana Ksharam balances both vata and kapha dosha, the main ingredient castor helps support constipation, bloating, urinary disorders, and piles. This herb is an effective carminative and has diuretic properties. 
  • Sukumara Leham balances vata and pitta dosha, the main ingredients are dashamula and punarnava, supports female reproductive health, helps healthy bowel movements, appetite and digestion.
  • Trivil Leham balances both vata and pitta dosha, the main herb is trivrit which supports healthy bowel movements, helps to remove ama from the liver and digestive tract.



Kottakkal is committed to offering the highest quality Ayurvedic Healthcare. We offer two ways to have an Ayurvedic consultation. 1. Free 15-minute Consultation with our Ayurvedic practitioner, Julie Wardwell, for when you need a product recommendation for a basic health problem. 2. In-depth Consultation with our Ayurvedic doctor, Vaidya Vishwanath Guddadar for when your condition is chronic with multiple symptoms.


Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Kottakkal Ayurveda products and information are not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure, or prevention of any disease. If you have serious, acute, or chronic health problems, please consult a trained health professional. If you are seeking the advice of a trained Ayurvedic professional, call (800) 215-9934 or email us at We will provide you with information to consult with Ayurvedic professionals. Always check with your doctor before taking herbs when pregnant or nursing.


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