The Red Lights of Laxative Use

Medically, laxatives are used to ease the passage of stools for the purpose of preparing the bowel before surgery, or simply to relieve constipation. Nowadays, laxatives are considered by many as a weight loss supplement and have gone over-the-counter in the form of slimming tea.

A dieter’s tea or slimming tea is an herbal supplement that aids in weight loss by “cleansing” the body from toxins through inducing frequent bowel movements. These products contain herbs that act as natural laxatives. Under the impression of losing the flab out into the bowel, these supplements are selling like hotcakes—for women and even men. While weight loss is a guarantee upon continued regimen, one cannot be assured whether the loss came from the flab, or from the fluid. Laxatives act primarily by stimulating the lower portion of the bowel—the part responsible for absorption of water from the alimentary canal and into the bloodstream. As a result, the person taking laxatives will experience frequent, loose stools which will eventually lead to dehydration. Furthermore, habitual usage causes the large intestine to rely much on stimulation by the laxative for it to produce peristalsis (bowel movement), which is called the Lazy Bowel syndrome. Warning signs of developing this collection of symptoms are the following:

  • Abdominal pain and bloating.

Lack of stimulation to the bowel would result to fecal impaction inside the hollow intestine. Blockage of the passage of wastes of metabolism would build up causing the abdomen to distend.

  • Nausea and vomiting.

This would result as toxic metabolites eventually build up in the bloodstream and stimulate the vomiting center of the brain.

  • Severe electrolyte Imbalances.

Chronic diarrhea causes the depletion of the body’s major electrolytes responsible for muscle contraction, including the heart which could lead to irregularities in the heartbeat. Any slight disturbance in the electrolyte balance would be fatal.

Many of us, particularly women, don’t care what the various charts say about our height-weight ratios. We’re striving for a certain look, and unfortunately that body image may be impossible for some of us to attain. We try to lose weight, but would not even dare to shed a drop of sweat in order to achieve this. The endless attempts to lose weight rapidly are nothing but a huge failure. No sooner, weight loss will become the religion for many. The next thing you’ll know, you’re popping weight loss pills behind bars, alone, in a strange room, under the impression of an eating-disorder, Bulimia.