Mala-mutra pravartanam (defecation & micturition)

Previous article was about the definition of health as per ayurveda, how and why to wake up in the morning. This article deals with seemingly not so important topic and next step of dinacharya…. defecation and micturition

In the previous article, while defining health we did mention that one is in perfect health if one has balanced excretory functions (समधातुमल क्रियः). It means that this unimportant act of the morning holds a lot of value for ayurveda and hence all Ayurvedacharyas

Let us see why

  1. Ayurveda lays a lot of emphasis on digestive fire. So, from the beginning of food consumption to the end of the digestion i.e., excretion…each step holds a value. Now if we wake up with food completely digested, first thing the body will do is to eliminate it. And if all the systems of the body are working effectively the elimination will be quick and freshness will be felt immediately, throughout the day. This means that we can determine our well-being through the health of excretory system.

  2. What exactly is the way of defecating and why?

Traditionally it was a squatting posture but over the time, with evolution and development, a much specialised sanitary system has come up. Our bathrooms have become our status symbol; and also a comfortable place to sit, socialize, cry and yes groom also. But do we realize that though squat pose was just a default pose but nevertheless it holds a good scientific reasoning. Squatting actually initiates action somewhat similar to pawanmukta asana or wind relieving pose. It presses our lower abdomen thereby initiating a wind movement and also opens the rectum channel.  This ensures faster and complete evacuation. Squatting further improves lower limbs muscle strength thereby reducingincidences of piles, fissures etc. With increasing use of European toilets incidence of piles and fissures have also increased. To be able to squat one can keep a table underneath the legs as has been depicted in one of the pictures.

  1. Now a days it is not uncommon to see many of us using mobiles or newspapers  inside the toilet.  This habit can be due to any reason but mostly minds gets so gripped that it stops focussing on what is important and we end up spending more time inside toilet. Thereby one slowly forgets to evacuate quickly and as it is strong wind movement(apana vayu or adhogata vata) this can lead to suppression of the urge. As per ayurveda suppression of urge of flatus, in long term, can be the cause of  abdominal tumor,udavarta (painful upward movement of vayu in abdomen), debility, obstruction to pass flatus,faeces and urine, diminished or loss of vision and heart diseases.

  2. Also never supress nor initiate urge as this can lead to pressure on the anal region and weaken the muscles. After wards wash and clean the anal region preferably with water as water not just cleanses, but relaxes the muscles and nerves thereby stopping the after urges. Wash the hands and legs properly, though legs were mentioned due to older system but hands and face should be washed properly.

  1. It is always good to have some indoor plants in your washroom. In old Indian system toilets were not considered hygienic. Therefore the rooms were built outside but with time toilets have not just made a place in our homes but also bedrooms and our hearts  .    We physically maintain a lot of hygiene as these are no more toilets but washrooms where we shower also. Therefore having plants and diffusers inside is a good idea. It is though considered good to have a separate toilet but in today’s time it is completely personal choice.

  2. Some more insturctions mentioned are as follows
    Face north Direction( as ayurveda values direction a lot)Shouldn’t speak (for focus on the act)Shouldn’t  remain naked and keep head covered(being a vata movement and may be because earlier days people went in jungles)

  3. Few herbal remedies for those who are trying to get into routine  to overcome constipation in the beginning.

  1. 3 gms of trifla powder can be taken with warm water before sleeping in the night. You can mix it in the water and drink. It is bitter in taste and might not be appreciated by your taste buds but is worth trying.(to be taken under doctors supervision)

  2. Pawanmukta asana can be performed after you wake but empty the bladder first. Do only if you know the technique otherwise should be learned from a yoga instructor first.

  3. A glass or two of lukewarm water is good to cleanse the intestines. It will help to initiate the urge.Have patience because body takes some time to understand and adjust the circadian rhythm. But once the habit kicks in, will definitely improve the health and awareness level to a greater extent.

  4. Empty stomach warm oil massage, in a circular motion can help improve intestinal motility.

If you missed the Part 1 of this series you can click the link below to catch up on the missing information.

Namaste and happy reading