Dehydration, Diarrhea, and Constipation
Diarrhea pulls vast quantities of water from the body; very often intravenous fluids must be given to babies, children and adults suffering from the flu because of this fluid loss. Death often results from this loss from gastrointestinal illnesses, food poisoning, cholera and dysentery. Drinking plain water and most other drinks just doesn't help enough; too much of the water just goes right through the system, losing even more than they can drink. Some electrolyte drinks, such as the World Health Organization electrolyte formulation and Pedialyte, are very effective at replacing fluids and, with the former, as many as 80% of the victims of cholera and dysentery can be saved if they get the fluids in time. If they could get them into a hospital with sterile I.V. fluids the survival rate might be as high as 92%.*
International relief teams in Bangladesh, Peru and Rwanda have done even better with Vitalyte and almost as well as they might have with hospitalization, which is impossible for the vast numbers of afflicted people, saving as many as 88% of the victims of cholera and dysentery in refugee camps. The teams also used Vitalyte to keep themselves hydrated so they could keep pushing themselves around the clock.
Parents give Vitalyte to their children when they are feeling miserable from diarrhea caused by the flu, and they feel better and recover much more quickly than with any other fluids; the Vitalyte works even faster and more effectively than the competition. And, the parents find that they can function more quickly, feel better and recover faster. It's especially beneficial for people suffering from dehydration and the malaise that goes with radiation therapy and chemotherapy; they are dehydrated, not only from the nausea and diarrhea that often results from the treatments, but the therapy also causes fluid losses from the cells.
Constipation too? Yes, but, in this case, dehydration causes constipation. The colon usually pulls excess fluids from the digested food material in the intestines so you won't become dehydrated; certain viruses, bacteria and treatments interfere with this recovery process and diarrhea or, at best, loose bowels, and dehydration results. On the other hand, if you are otherwise healthy, but somewhat dehydrated, the intestines won't be able to leave enough water in the intestines to enable a bowel movement or, if you don't have a bowel movement often enough, so much water will be pulled from the colon that the material forms a "plug." The main reason that older people have to turn to these artificial means of maintaining regularity is that they don't think to drink enough water, and better yet electrolytes, and in turn are constantly dehydrated. Most laxatives and the products used to "maintain regularity" cause water to be pulled into the large intestines, loosening the material to be eliminated. This is one big benefit of getting enough fiber in you diet; the fiber holds water, permitting regular elimination. This is why fiber is also important in preventing several serious intestinal problems, including colitis and some forms of intestinal tumors.
You can see that drinking plenty of fluids, as well as getting enough fiber in your diet, is really all you need to do to maintain regularity. Sometimes however, you just can't do the things you know that you should and you find yourself somewhat constipated. Try a few daily glasses of Vitalyte and see how quickly and effectively this restores normal function! And, don't forget to get plenty of grains, fruits and vegetables as natural sources of fiber in your daily diet.