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Civilization has brought along with it several unpleasant health problems that are resistant to any sort of medical treatment. One of them is piles, also known as haemorrhoids.

This disorder is peculiar to humans. Animals are free from it because they are not required to stand on two legs. If we human beings happen to walk on all four legs, the force of gravity would be pulling back and forth our digestive organs and internal channels of blood, instead of head to rectum as it happens.

Causes of piles

A very common and obvious cause for piles is obstinate constipation found in 50 per cent of the sufferers. But piles occurs even where there is no constipation. When there is circulatory obstruction in the flow of blood in the rectal veins, the walls of the veins become weak. The pressure of the excrement or waste, in the lower portion of the bowels, tend to flatten the blood vessels and distend the membranes, thereby causing piles.

The second common cause is congestion of the liver. Liver receives blood from two sources : oxygenated blood through hepatic artery from the abdominal blood vessel and venous blood through the portal vein, from the stomach and intestines. In this the direct pressure on the portal vein does not allow the blood to force its way through the constricted part of the vein. It is, therefore, held back in the rectal veins and makes them swell with blood.

If the food we take is deficient in essential nutrients, the undigested faeceal matter is retained in the bowels, and gets constipated. This exerts pressure on the rectal veins.

Piles sometimes protrude from the rectum. This depends on how far in the rectum the affected veins are located. The muscles of the rectum strangulate them partially and prevent their return.

Internal and external piles

External piles can be seen and felt at the edge of the anus. It can be of various sizes, found either singly or in clusters. They develop when a vein is distended and ruptured. The bloated vein causes the tissues to swell. The seepage of blood through the weak walls of the vein coagulates and hardens. The patient complains of a pressure and fullness near the anus (outlet of the rectum) and cutting pain for short duration.

In internal piles, there is always a group of veins and arteries involved. The dilated blood vessels expand and contract as per the quantity of blood held in congestion.
Those with internal piles complain of itching and heat inside the rectum. The other symptoms are pain and oozing of blood from the piles while passing stools.

Straining at passing of stool is another important cause. Also straining at childbirth causes piles.
Persons who are afflicted with piles are mostly those who suffer from obstinate or chronic constipation, and those who are obese.

Special instructions for managing piles

Do not stand or walk for prolonged periods. Only then the blood pressure in the veins can be reduced and protrusion corrected by the pull of gravity.

Drink plenty of water and follow a diet consisting of fresh fruits, like musk melon and papayas, whole meal bread, milk (skimmed), vegetables like cabbage, spinach, dry fruits like black currants and figs, all citrus fruits and whole grains. Fresh coconut and dry coconut are also beneficial in treating piles. If obese, reduce weight.

Avoid all artificial food. Rice and dals cause constipation hence it is a must to avoid them too.

Treatment for piles

Hot sitz bath for non-bleeding piles, cold sitz bath for bleeding piles, in the morning and at bed time. Cold groin compress and inverted spray (see page 160, 161 & 162) at least once daily.

Breathing Exercise
Nos. 1,2,5 and 6. (See page 189 & 190)

Household remedies for piles

  • Soak 100 gms raisins overnight and take it with the water it was soaked in, in the morning.
  • Bananas at bed time.
  • Include beetroots, yam and cauliflowers and plenty of green vegetable in the meals.
  • Take one teaspoon roasted jeera powder in a glass of butter milk twice daily.
  • In half cup of onion juice, add one teaspoon ghee and two teaspoon sugar and take twice daily.
  • Boil a teaspoon each of jeera, aniseeds, coriander seeds in a glass of water, reducing it to half; filter it, add one teaspoon ghee and take twice daily.
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  • About The Author


    Gopakumar Nair belongs to a Hereditary Ayurvedic family of Kerala who were Practising Ayurveda and traditional Medicine for 200 Years . They can be traced back to over six generations. His experience under the guidance of his guru Valiya thampuraan has earned lot of trust and popularity.

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