Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the lowest part of your rectum and anus. When you poop, sometimes the walls of these blood vessels stretch so thin that the veins bulge and get irritated. Swollen hemorrhoids are also called piles.
Internal and External Hemorrhoids
Internal hemorrhoids are far enough inside the rectum that you can’t usually see or feel them. They don’t generally hurt because you have few pain-sensing nerves there. Bleeding may be the only sign of them. External hemorrhoids are under the skin around the anus, where there are many more pain-sensing nerves, so they tend to hurt as well as bleed. Sometimes hemorrhoids prolapse, or get bigger and bulge outside the anal sphincter. Then you may be able to see them as moist bumps that are pinker than the surrounding area. And they’re more likely to hurt, often when you poop.
Causes of piles
Some people may be more likely to get hemorrhoids if other family members, like their parents, had them.
A buildup of pressure in your lower rectum can affect blood flow and make the veins there swell. That may happen from extra weight, when you’re obese or pregnant. Or it could come from:
- Pushing during bowel movements
- Straining when you do something that’s physically hard, like lifting something heavy
People who stand or sit for long stretches of time are at greater risk, too. You may get them when you have constipation or diarrhea that doesn’t clear up. Coughing, sneezing, and vomiting could make them worse.
Symptoms of piles
In most cases, the symptoms of piles are not serious. They normally resolve on their own after a few days.
An individual with piles may experience the following symptoms:
- A hard, possibly painful lump may be felt around the anus. It may contain coagulated blood. Piles that contain blood are called thrombosed external hemorrhoids.
- After passing a stool, a person with piles may experience the feeling that the bowels are still full.
- Bright red blood is visible after a bowel movement.
- The area around the anus is itchy, red, and sore.
- Pain occurs during the passing of a stool.
Piles can escalate into a more severe condition. This can include:
- excessive anal bleeding, also possibly leading to anemia
- fecal incontinence, or an inability to control bowel movements
- anal fistula, in which a new channel is created between the surface of the skin near the anus and the inside of the anus
- a strangulated hemorrhoid, in which the blood supply to the hemorrhoid is cut off, causing complications including infection or a blood clot.
6 ways to prevent piles
1. Have fiber content food
Hemorrhoids are more likely to occur in people who have infrequent bowel movements. One of the easiest, most natural ways to become more regular is by filling up on fiber either through your diet or supplements. “Adding fiber to the diet is the universal recommendation of both family doctors and gastroenterologists,” says Dr. Kussin. “It may increase gas, but this is a small price to pay for the benefits.” Aim to get 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day. Great food sources of fiber include:
- Legumes, such as split peas, lentils, black beans, lima beans, and baked beans
- Whole grains, such as barley, bran flakes, oatmeal, and brown rice
- Vegetables, such as artichoke, green peas, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts
- Fruits, such as raspberries, pears, apples, and bananas.
2. Drink Enough Water to prevent from piles
This hemorrhoid prevention strategy is simple and cheap, yet so few of us actually do it. Along with eating a healthy diet full of fiber, adequate hydration from water is the key to having healthy bowel movements. “Drinking enough water helps prevent constipation and therefore decreases straining,” says Richard Desi, MD, a gastroenterologist at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. Drinking six to eight glasses of water each day doesn’t just keep your digestive system running smoothly, it benefits your entire body.
3. Get Plenty of Exercise
According to Dr. Desi, exercise and hemorrhoids have a love-hate relationship. “Exercise helps keep the colon more regular,” he says. “However, engaging in activities that increase abdominal pressure and/or straining (such as weightlifting) can lead to the formation of hemorrhoids.” Staying active reduces your time spent sitting and putting pressure on the veins in your lower rectum. If you have a history of problematic hemorrhoids, you might want to steer clear of lifting heavy weights or other strenuous activities and opt for more moderate exercise routines such as yoga, swimming, or walking to prevent hemorrhoids from flaring.
4. Be Careful About piles When It Comes to Laxatives
When you’re constipated, some fiber supplements, particularly psyllium capsules, have a track record of helping get you more regular, which can prevent painful hemorrhoids. As far as laxatives go, they can help as long as you choose the correct ones. “The safest laxatives are those that work with your body rather than those that stimulate or simulate normal physiological activities,” Kussin says. “Some laxatives work by stimulating intestinal contraction to move the contents along. This might increase hemorrhoid pressures and cause symptoms.” To prevent hemorrhoids or to treat hemorrhoids that are active, Kussin suggests osmotic laxatives that simply increase the amount of water in the gut and reduce constipation.
5. Don’t Fight the Urge
When you have to go, go. This is one of the simplest ways to prevent hemorrhoids. “Ignoring Mother Nature has its risks, and hemorrhoids are one of them,” Kussin says. “If you obey your body when it screams at you, the chance of problems is less. You listen to everyone else when they scream at you; why not listen to your own body, too? When you wait until you decide you have the time to move your bowels, success will be far more elusive and straining far more likely.”
6. Avoid Straining
Straining and putting more pressure on the veins in your rectum is one of the most common causes of painful or bleeding hemmorhoids. In some cases, this can happen as a result of pushing too hard when trying to have a bowel movement. Other situations can cause straining too, such as lifting heavy objects, a chronic cough, or even pregnancy. If you have issues with hemorrhoids, Kussin advises being aware of the strain you’re putting on your bowels and avoiding it as much as you can.
Foods to have during piles
People suffering from piles must a diet that is high in fibers. Fiber intake can be increased by including the following foods–
- Whole unrefined grains such as oat bran whole wheat, brown rice, dried bean, barley and lentils
- Fruits and vegetables including apples, spinach, oranges, peaches, mushrooms, sweet potato, and raspberries. Fruits eaten as they contain more fiber than fruit juices.
- Beans such as chickpeas, peas, baked beans and kidney beans.
- Nuts, seeds, and hummus are also rich in fiber.
1. Blueberries are good cure for piles. Blueberries are a good source of soluble and insoluble fiber. They are a boon to anyone suffering from hemorrhoids or piles.
2. Figs are old remedies for constipation. Dried figs, are also an excellent remedy for constipation.
3. Spinach is known own to be the one of the vegetable for the digestive tract and for the cleansing and regenerating of the intestinal tract. It also promotes proper bowel movement.
4. Okra The okra fiber absorbs water and adds bulk to the stool, and causes it to move faster through the intestines .It helps to prevent constipation and the formation of hemorrhoids. Okra lubricates and soothes the intestinal tract
5. : Beets help in preventing the formation of hemorrhoids and may help to reduce the risk of colon cancer.
6. Papaya helps to ease constipation with its protein-digesting enzyme called papain.
7. Oats Oatmeal for breakfast helps to keep away hemorrhoids .. Oats are highly nutritious and one of the best source of soluble fiber.
8. Prunes are a good source of fiber which helps in preventing constipation. Patients are advised to take prune juice for piles as it has the tendency to give relief from constipation. Carrot and radish juice is equally beneficial.
9. Brown rice is also an important food that is preferable for the patients suffering from piles and Hemorrhoid. It is better to concentrate on such healthy rice instead of the polished rice.
10. Drinking water is really important if you really wish to get rid of piles. Drink as much as water throughout the day so that you can increase blood circulation in your body and remove the problem of piles.
Foods to avoid during piles
Red meat is a very harmful food which needs to be avoided especially when you are suffering from piles. Even the processed meat should be avoided when you are suffering from piles. This is highly stated by many physicians for keeping the patients suffering from piles healthy.
You must be surprised to know even the bakery items must be avoided when you have the problem of piles. The items of bakery which must be avoided include pies, puffs, cakes, pastries, flour bread etc. People with the problem of piles must avoid having these items.
The spicy food items composed of red chili and other spices must be avoided if you are suffering from piles. The physician also recommends not consuming such spicy items. Rather it is always better to have healthy and boiled food. The vegetables, fruits and other cereals without much oil and spices will be preferable.
Spicy foods like hot peppers and curries can irritate the stomach and worsen digestive problems.
Caffeinated drinks like coffee and alcoholic drinks can cause dry stools that may worsen hemorrhoids.
A lot of greasy or fatty foods increases work for the digestive system and raise the risk of stomach pain and heartburn as well as hemorrhoids. Avoid deep-fried foods. Reduce the intake of fat, especially saturated fat, by using less butter and switching to low-fat or nonfat dairy products.
Avoiding low-fiber foods can help in treating hemorrhoids.
Indian diet plan for piles
Green leafy vegetables are high in antioxidants and nutrients thus are good for digestions. Eat plenty of spinach, kale, cabbage, asparagus, broccoli, tomatoes, cauliflower, onions, cucumber, squash, turnips, carrots, celery and zucchini. Make these Greens an integral part of your Indian diet plan for piles.
Whole grain foods with bran cereals alleviate the strain applied while passing stools. Healthy foods like brown rice, oatmeal, bran cereals, whole grain flour, whole wheat pasta or multi-grain breads are good options to include in Indian diet plan for piles.
• Fresh fruits with skin are high in fiber. The vitamins, minerals and nutrients in fruits improve the digestive system function, easing the bowel movement. Include fruits like apples, strawberries, blueberries,raisins, prunes and grapes. Fruits that can be eaten without skin are papaya, banana, oranges, grapefruit and muskmelon.
• Sprouts are rich in fiber, vitamin C, proteins and calcium. All these nutrients help treating hemorrhoids. Consume at least 1 cup of sprouts daily. But dont eat raw sprouts as they will worsen the symptoms. Eat sprouts in soft cooked or steamed or boiled form to avoid irritation to the bowel.
• Consume psyllium husk to relieve constipation and loosen the stools. Psyllium husk is rich in soluble fiber. It makes the stool bulky and reduces the pressure during defecation.
Drink at least 3 – 4 litres of water daily. Sometimes only fiber or dietary changes do not work. Thus, increasing water intake aids easy passage of stool, thus relieving constipation.
• Consume probiotics or curd or buttermilk to aid proper digestion. Probiotics increase gut immunity and integrity. It fights back with any infection or inflammation. It relives haemorrhoid symptoms.
Sample of Indian diet plan for Piles
Let us just practice one diet to avoid and prevent piles.
Early Morning on Empty stomach
- 1 glass warm water with lemon juice.
- 1 bowl oats with milk
- + 1 small elaichi banana or apple
Mid – morning:
- 1 cup Yogurt or curd or 1 glass Buttermilk.
- 1 cup green salad
- 1 cup curd
- 2– 3 Roti (wheat flour or multi grain flour with bran)
- ½ cup Brown Rice
- 1 cup dal
- 1 cup vegetable
- 1 big bowl of vegetable Khichadi (Mung dal and rice)
- 1 cup green salad
- 1 cup vegetable
- 1 glass Carrot juice
- + ½ cup boiled /pressure cooked Sprouts
Mid – Evening:
- 1 cup Vegetable soup (No straining)
Same quantity as lunch
Bed time :
1 glass warm water
* Important Note – No matter which menu you choose for yourself , make sure that the diet is cooked in minimum amount of oil with as little as possible or without any spice. Use less of ginger too.
While they can be painful and debilitating, piles do not usually pose any ongoing threat to health and can be self-managed up to grades III or IV. If a complication develops, such as a fistula, this can become serious. The surgical options for more advanced piles are normally outpatient procedures with minimal recovery time.You need to intake sufficient good foods to control, prevent and avoid piles.