According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, some of the common digestive problems in the United States are constipation, diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, heartburn, hemorrhoids, gas and colorectal cancer. The mouth, food pipe, stomach, intestines, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, rectum and anus are the organs which form the digestive system. Any complaint in these hollow organs is considered as a problem of the digestive system.
Some Common Problems of the Digestive System:
Constipation: 4 million Americans suffer from this condition frequently and it leads to 2.5 million visits to the doctor every year. Some of the common causes for the occurring of constipation are inactive lifestyle, intake of diet less in fiber, drinking less water and ignoring the natural call of passing the stool.
Diarrhea: It is the second leading cause of death in infants below the age of five, with a 16 percent rate of mortality. Eating spoiled, raw or uncooked foods, infections caused by bacteria and viruses, irritable bowel syndrome, taking antibiotics and consuming dairy products are some of the reasons behind this condition.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome: While this chronic condition can affect both men and women, the fairer sex is more at the risk of developing it during their menstrual cycle. Alcohol consumption, eating large meals, frequent travelling and change in food habits and style, stress, dairy products, caffeine and intake of certain medications trigger this condition.
Heartburn: Though not serious, it is one of the common complaints of the digestive system. Nearly 42 percent of people in America have this condition at some point in their life. Acid reflux or GERD is the single most cause of heartburn. It is also a symptom of heart pain and heart attack. Smoking and alcohol consumption add to the complications associated with this condition.
Hemorrhoids: Nearly 50 percent people experience this undesirable state of their digestive system and is equally prevalent in the men and women of the age group 45 - 65 years. Overweight, constipation, sedentary lifestyle, straining during physical labor are all responsible for it.
Gas: Generally people produce 1 - 4 pints and pass gas up to 14 times every day. Eating vegetables like beans, cabbage, broccoli, skipping meals, accumulation of undigested sugar, fiber and starches and swallowing of air all produce gas.
Colorectal Cancer: 1 million people are diagnosed with this dreadful disease and 0.5 million lose their life. People above the age of 50 years are especially at the risk of developing this disease. Genetics is responsible in 20 percent cases. Sedentary life style, alcohol consumption, eating food high in fat and meat, obesity, smoking, old age and being male are some of the other causes and risk factors of this ailment.
Conclusion: The present day manner of leading life is a such that the chances of suffering from these above mentioned conditions is very high. We deliberately skip meals, drink less water and more alcohol, eat fast foods replacing fresh vegetables and fruits, travel frequently for work-related commitments and have no time for physical activities. Being sedentary is the norm of the present day.
Only a timely realization and a strong commitment to lead a healthy life can save us from the inevitable suffering from digestive system problems in our later years.