Are apples good or bad for you?

Are apples good or bad for you?Are apples good or bad for you?

Are apples good or bad for you?  How would you feel about eating apples every day if you were to discover that studies have shown that apples and their many bits and constituents protect and inhibit initiation and the spread of cancers such as liver cancer, breast cancer, esophageal cancer, stomach cancer and potentially many more types of cancer?  Pretty good I expect.

The pectin in apples has amazing benefits as well.  Along with helping you to feel fuller longer, which is a great benefit when trying to lose weight, pectin has been shown to reduce carcinogenic radioisotopes that have accumulated in the organs of children as a result of the Chernobyl incident…as much as 30 – 40% which is amazing.  And this improvement happened in a short period of a little more than 2 weeks time!

Eating apples has been shown to aid in the prevention of plaque formation in the arteries and is a benefit in maintaining a healthy young brain; apples help prevent oxidative damage.

On the down side of eating apples is the fact that they are one of the fruits most heavily sprayed with pesticides.  This makes it so important to consume only organic apples which are much easier to find at farm stands and in regular grocery stores these days.

Did you know you can do an apple cleanse?  Get yourself a bag of crunchy organic apples and for a day (or two…duration is up to you), whenever you’re hungry, grab fresh apple and eat it.  You’ll be amazed at how quickly your hunger leaves you and for how long that pectin in the apple keeps you satisfied.

If you’re not a fan of fasting, this is a wonderful way to ease into the habit of regular fasting without being afraid of getting so hungry you’ll reach for anything insight!

And finally, don’t forget about apple cider vinegar!  It’s an amazing, healthy ingredient to add to foods, drinks, etc.  I strongly suggest you check out this book by Braggs on the many ways to use apple cider vinegar.  Braggs produces one of the best apple cider vinegars you can find!  In fact, check out my own favorite recipe for using apple cider vinegar!

So, if you were wondering…are apples good or bad for you…now you know!  Go get an apple!

Helping You Achieve Major Wellness!

 

Cheryl A Major, CNWC

Cheryl A Major, CNWC

 

 

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How to Make Your Period Come Faster: What Research Really Says

There can be many reasons why you might want your period to come faster. If you suffer from irregular periods, you may want to induce your period sooner to get relief from stress and discomfort. You might think that you are pregnant if your period is late and you want to make your period start earlier so you can stop worrying. Or, it could be that you have a vacation planned and you think that menstruation will spoil the start of it.

Your menstrual cycle is regulated by hormones and these determine when your period starts. It can be very difficult to force your period to come faster. In fact, stressing about how to trigger your period sooner may even delay the start of menstruation even more. So, even though you would like to, it can be almost impossible to make your period start faster.

There are many theories about natural methods to make your period come faster. However, very few of these are backed up by scientific research. In this article, I’m going to look at what research really says about using natural methods to induce your period.

Factors That Induce Menstrual Period

Your menstrual cycle is regulated by an intricate balance of hormones in the body. Your menstrual period starts when there is no fertilized egg that makes you pregnant. If no implantation occurs, the lining of your uterus is shed and menstrual bleeding starts.

Dr. Jennifer Knudtson, an expert in reproductive endocrinology and infertility at the University of Texas, says that hormones stimulate the ovaries to produce estrogen and progesterone. Just before ovulation (the follicular phase), there is an increase in hormones, and that stimulates the growth follicles which contain eggs. If no fertilization takes place, levels of estrogen and progesterone drop and this results in the start of your next period.1

During your menstrual cycle, the fluctuation of hormones in your body is responsible for changes in your breasts, premenstrual cramping, and other signs that your period is about to start.

According to Obstetrician and Gynecologist Dr. Sarah Marshal, various factors can affect your hormones and have impact on your period. For example, stress, being overweight, strenuous exercise, or losing a lot of weight can all influence when your period comes.2

How to Make Your Period Come Faster: What Works and What Doesn’t Work

In order to make your period start sooner, many people look for natural remedies that can affect estrogen and progesterone levels. These remedies are called emmenagogues, and it is claimed that they can stimulate or regulate menstrual flow.

So, when it comes to making yourself get your period quicker, what works and what doesn’t? Let’s look at what research says.

Birth control pill

Taking the birth control pill or hormonal contraceptive is one way to control your period and get it to start when you want to.

Although birth control pills aren’t a natural solution, they are one of the only ways to accurately control your hormone levels of estrogen and progesterone.

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic report that oral birth control pills help to regulate your menstrual cycle to be every 28 days. They also say that the way you take your pill can affect when your period comes, for example: continuing taking your pills will postpone your period so you can skip a period during important events or to reduce bleeding in women who suffer from iron deficiency.3  

Vitamin C

Some people claim that vitamin C can have an effect on your body’s hormone levels and therefore be used to kick-start your period.

The claims that vitamin C can help induce a period seems to be based on research connecting high doses of vitamin C and an increase in estrogen and progesterone. For example, the University of Maryland reports that vitamin C can increase estrogen levels when taken with birth control pills.4  Another research on rabbits found a connection between ascorbic acid (vitamin C) on estrogen/progesterone levels.19

However, there is no research to back up claims that starting to take high doses of vitamin C will make your period start faster. According to Oregon State University, taking large doses of vitamin C can overwhelm your body, so the extra amount is lost in the urine in a matter of hours.20

Cinnamon

Some research suggests that cinnamon could help to regulate your menstrual cycle and prevent menstruation coming late.

According to the journal Environmental Toxicology and Pharmacology, cinnamon has both an estrogenic effect and antiestrogenic effect.5 Research published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology found that cinnamon supplements can help in improve regular menstruation.6

However, studies into the effect of cinnamon on menstruation haven’t confirmed that it helps to induce a period and make it start sooner.

Parsley

It is possible that parsley could assist in avoiding situations where your period is late.

According to the website Drugs.com, parsley is an important source of vitamins and minerals. It has been reported that high doses of parsley have an emmenagogue effect and may help in stimulating menstruation. However, no clinical trials have confirmed the dosage of parsley needed to have any therapeutic effect.7

Juniper berries

Another plant that may have an effect on stimulating menstruation is juniper berries.

Drugs.com reports that juniper berries or juniper essential oil could help stimulate menstrual flow. Because juniper can also have an abortive effect, you shouldn’t consume it if you are pregnant.8

Black cohosh

Black cohosh is plant native to North America. The National Institutes of Health report that this plant has a long history of use among Native Americans to treat various conditions including menstrual irregularities. 21

Today, however, black cohosh is most commonly used for menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes and night sweats, as well as vaginal dryness.21  This is because black cohosh root seems to have some effects similar to the female hormone, estrogen. However there is no evidence to support the claim that black cohosh can make your period come faster.

The University of Maryland reports that pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid black cohosh as the herb may stimulate contractions and lead to premature labor or miscarriage.22

Heating pads

Many people claim that heating pads placed on your pelvis can help to trigger an early period, however, there is no research that backs this up.

Of course, placing a heating pad on your pelvic area to try and get your period to come faster won’t do any harm. In fact, a heating pad will help cope with any pain and pelvic discomfort before your period.

Dr. Michael Zinger who is a practicing Reproductive Endocrinology doctor says that warm pads can help to alleviate menstrual cramps. It is claimed that heat helps to relax the muscles in the uterus and thus prevents pelvic cramping.9

It seems as well that a heating pad placed on the pelvic area improved blood flow to the uterus. However, there was no evidence that placing a warm pad or going for a warm bath would induce a period and make it come faster.

Turmeric

Research into curcumin, which is the active ingredient in turmeric, has found that it has some estrogenic effects. However, before you start consuming more turmeric to induce your period, there are some facts you should consider.

The journal Breast Cancer reported that curcumin has only a weak estrogen effect. This means that it may not be helpful in helping to make your period come faster.10 The book Herbal Medicine reports that turmeric has been used for centuries as a traditional medicine to help regulate menstruation.11 But, no modern scientific studies have found any evidence to use turmeric to get your period faster.

However, turmeric does have some benefits in helping to reduce discomfort during your menstrual cycle.

According to the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine, curcumin supplements can help to reduce the severity of premenstrual syndrome. Curcumin helped to reduce pain and cramping before the period because of its anti-inflammatory effects. Participants in the study took curcumin for seven days before their period was due and 2 days after to get relief from menstrual pains.12

Deal with stress to help regulate periods

One natural way to help make your period come quicker is to reduce stress. Of course, this will only work if stress is making your periods come late or causing you to have a long menstrual cycle.

The Journal of Clinical & Diagnostic Research reported that emotional or psychological stress can cause menstrual irregularities. Researchers found that irregular periods, infrequent periods, or even absent periods could all be caused by too much stress.13

If you are concerned that stress is making your periods irregular, you could try some of my natural remedies for anxiety. For example, many essential oils have stress-relieving properties.

Warning About Making Your Period Come Sooner

There is no strong scientific evidence that taking natural remedies or herbs can help induce your period and make it come quicker. It is also good to remember that some herbs that act as emmenagogues can have an abortive effect. For example, parsley, juniper and black cohosh can have abortifacient effects and cause miscarriage if taken in higher doses.

Reasons for Irregular Periods

If you are worried that your period is late or has become irregular and you want it to come on time, it is good to know about some of the common reasons for abnormalities in your menstrual cycle.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

One reason that your periods may have become irregular and don’t come on time could be due to polycystic ovary syndrome.

Dr. Richard Lucidi from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine explains about PCOS. Polycystic ovary syndrome is a hormonal disorder where there is too much male hormone androgen. This causes many follicles to grow on the ovaries and can result in menstrual abnormalities.14

One way to treat POCS naturally and help regulate your menstrual period naturally is to take cinnamon. The American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology reports that cinnamon can be an effective natural treatment for women with polycystic ovary syndrome.6

Fluctuations in hormone levels can delay period

Periods that start coming a few days later than usual are sometimes due to hormonal fluctuations in your body.

As I’ve explained in this article, the timing of your period depends on various hormonal factors in your body. OB-GYN Dr. Traci Johnson says that imbalances of your estrogen and progesterone levels could delay your period. Also, stress can play havoc with your hormones and may also be a factor why your period hasn’t come when you expected it.15

Thyroid problems

Thyroid problems could also be a reason why your period has become irregular.

According to Canadian Medical Association Journal, thyroid dysfunction is often to blame for menstrual irregularities. Doctors will usually carry out blood tests to determine levels of thyroid hormone before they recommend treatment to regulate your menstrual cycle.16

Having late periods is just one sign of a thyroid disorder. Other signs that your thyroid isn’t working properly include unexplained changes in weight, loss of hair, mood changes, and heart palpitations. Some natural ways to care for your thyroid health include getting enough vitamins and minerals, cutting out processed foods, and taking probiotics.

Over-exercising

Strenuous physical exercising could be one reason why you are having irregular periods.

Dr. William Blahd on WebMD says that increased exercise that results in late periods are common among endurance athletes.17

However, according to British Journal of General Practice, moderate exercise may be useful for reducing the symptoms of menstrual disorders. It was found that regular exercise can help to reduce menstrual cramping and improve a woman’s quality of life.18

Read these related articles:

Medical References

  1. MSDManuals. Menstrual cycle.
  2. WebMD. Normal menstrual cycle.
  3. MayoClinic. Birth control.
  4. UMM. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid).
  5. Environ Toxicol Pharmacol.2008 Jan;25(1):75-82.
  6. Am J Obstet Gynecol.2014 Nov;211(5):487.e1-6.
  7. DrugsCom. Parsley.
  8. DrugsCom. Juniper.
  9. WebMD. Heating pads as home remedy for menstrual pain.
  10. Breast Cancer (Dove Med Press). 2017; 9: 153–161.
  11. NCBI. Turmeric, the golden spice.
  12. Complement Ther Med.2015 Jun;23(3):318-24.
  13. J Clin Diagn Res. 2015 Mar; 9(3): QC01–QC03.
  14. Medscape. Polycystic ovarian syndrome clinical presentation.
  15. WebMD. Why is my period so random?
  16. CMAJ. 2014 Aug 5; 186(11): 850–852.
  17. WebMD. Missed or irregular periods.
  18. Br J Gen Pract. 2009 Apr 1; 59(561): 241–242.
  19. J Clin Gynecol Obstet. 2012;1(4-5):63-66
  20. Linus Pauling Institute. Questions about vitamin C.
  21. NIH. Black Cohosh.
  22. umm.edu. Black Cohosh.

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Types of Mucus: What the Color of Your Mucus Tells About Your Health

The color of your mucus in your nose, mouth, throat, and lungs is usually a clear thin fluid that helps to keep tissue in your airways moist. The color and consistency of mucus secretions can tell a lot about your health. If you have an infection, the color of mucus can change to a green or yellow color and become a lot thicker and stickier. If you cough a lot or you have a serious respiratory infection, the color of mucus can turn brown, pink, or even red.

The production of mucus in your airways plays a key role in keeping you healthy. Mucus helps to remove germs and trap bacteria before they can start to do damage. When you get an upper respiratory infection, mucus goes to work to help get rid of the bugs. You may find that as the infection gets worse or better, the color of the phlegm or mucus you cough up changes. It can start off clear and white, before turning yellow and then green.

In this article, I am going to examine what the color of mucus can tell about your health. Along with the other symptoms of green, yellow, white, brown or pink mucus, the color of mucus can help to identify what is causing the thick mucus to appear.

What is Mucus and Why the Color of Mucus is Important

Everyone produces mucus and it is an important fluid to help prevent respiratory infections and irritations.

Dr. Luqman Seidu on WebMD says that mucus is produced by the tissue in the mouth, sinuses, nose, throat, gastrointestinal tract, and lungs. Mucus is important because it contains enzymes that kill off germs and bacteria. Mucus becomes sticky and gooey and changes color as the enzymes in your mucus go to work if you have an infection.1

According to Dr. Seidu, your body produces from 1 liter to 1.5 liters per day of the sticky clear substance. Even though the color of mucus changes when you get an infection, your body usually doesn’t produce more. We think that there is more mucus because of the changes in its consistency.1

Other reasons why mucus consistency and color can change are due to irritation, allergic reactions, or respiratory infections that cause coughing up mucus.

Why does mucus change color during an infection?

Dr. Seidu explains that your body sends out white blood cells during an infection as a defense mechanism. These bacteria-busting cells contain a green enzyme, and when there are many white blood cells, the phlegm or mucus will turn yellowish-green color.1

If your nose dries out because of too much blowing your nose or rubbing it, some small blood vessels in your nose could break and bleed. The old blood can mix with your already green-colored mucus to turn phlegm brown or other shades of color.

Let’s look at what the color of mucus can tell about your health.

Clear Mucus with No Color

Clear mucus with no color is a good indication that your upper respiratory system and digestive system is in good health.

According to Dr. Jonathan Hern, who is an ear, nose and throat specialist at Frimley Park Hospital, healthy mucus is clear, thin, and watery. This thin clear fluid helps to keep your sinuses, throat, and nose moist and healthy. Clear mucus with no color also helps to humidify the air we breathe to prevent irritation in your respiratory tract.2

What Yellow or Green Mucus Means

Coughing up yellow or green mucus usually means that you have an infection in your lungs, sinuses, or upper respiratory tract.

Dr. Jonathan Hern who was quoted earlier, says that mucus caused by an infection is usually yellow or green. However, it’s a misconception that green mucus means a bacterial infection. Viral infections, more often than not, result in green or yellow mucus.2

Here are the most common health conditions that cause you to cough up yellowish-green mucus.

Bronchitis

Coughing up yellow or green mucus or blowing yellow snot from your nose is often a result of bronchitis.

Bronchitis is inflammation of your upper respiratory system and that irritates the mucus-producing tissue in your bronchial tubes. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that bronchitis usually results in a cough with thickened mucus. The mucus (or sputum) can be a yellowish-grey or green color.3

Other symptoms of bronchitis include chest discomfort, fatigue, and shortness of breath along with common cold symptoms. The cough may last for several weeks after you got rid of the infections.

There are many natural remedies for bronchitis that can help you stop coughing up yellowish-green mucus. For example, garlic is a natural antibiotic that is an effective natural remedy for chest infections. You can also try some of my great essential oils to relieve bronchitis symptoms or these foods to cleanse your lungs.

Sinus infection

You might have yellow or green snot from your nose or cough up greenish phlegm if you have a sinus infection or sinusitis.

Your sinuses are located in the center of your forehead and at either side of your nose. Your sinuses are usually filled with air and are lined with tissue that produces mucus.

Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD says that a cold infection or allergies can lead to sinusitis. This results in thick, yellow phlegm and snot from your nose that smells bad. Along with blowing yellow mucus from your nose, you will usually have a headache, pain around your forehead, and a blocked-up nose.4

Some natural treatments you can make at home for sinus infections include inhalation with essential oils to clear your nasal passages and break up green mucus. Also, horseradish and grapefruit seed extract (GSE) are effective treatment for sinusitis as they both unblocks your nose and kills off microbes that cause yellow/green sinus mucus.

Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a potentially serious bacterial lung infection that can cause you to cough up thick yellow or green mucus.

Doctors from the National Health Service (NHS) report that pneumonia is usually caused by bacterial or viral infections. Tiny sacs in your lungs become inflamed and fill up with fluid. This will cause phlegm that is a yellowish green color and possibly even brown mucus. Other signs of pneumonia include difficulty breathing, fever, rapid heartbeat, and a general feeling of being unwell.5

Pneumonia can also cause severe chest pains on your left side or right-sided chest pain, depending on which lung is infected. If you suspect you have pneumonia, it’s important to get proper medical attention as it can become a life-threatening condition.

Cystic fibrosis

Cystic fibrosis is an inherited medical condition that can cause chronic coughing where a person brings up greenish-yellow phlegm.

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that a defective gene causes mucus to become sticky and thick. This can block up tubes and airways in the chest. The main symptom of cystic fibrosis is a thick mucus and cough. People with cystic fibrosis often have repeated lung infections and a chronic blocked-up nose.6

Doctors also say that cystic fibrosis puts a person at greater risk of developing other respiratory infections like pneumonia, bronchitis, or sinusitis.

How to get rid of yellow or green mucus caused by an infection

Having bronchitis or a sinus infection can be frustrating when you constantly cough up thick yellow or green-colored phlegm.

According to Dr. Neha Pathak on WebMD, a nasal saline rinse is one of the best ways to get rid of thick nasal mucus. Salt acts as an antimicrobial agent and also helps to reduce the thickness of the mucus.7

How to get rid of thick yellow or green mucus naturally:

This is how to make your own remedy to reduce the thickness of yellow/green snot. For this, you will need a neti pot to irrigate your sinuses.

  1. Mix 1 teaspoon salt with 2 cups of warm water that has been boiled and cooled (this is to prevent infections from tap water).
  2. Tilt your head at a 45-degree angle over a sink.
  3. Gently pour the saline solution into your nostril.
  4. The liquid should flow out of your other nostril.
  5. Blow your nose to get rid of excess liquid.
  6. Repeat with the other side.
  7. Repeat at least 2 times a day until your sinus infection has cleared and you no longer have thick mucus in your sinuses.

Dr. Jayakar Nayak, who is an ear, nose and throat specialist at Stanford Medical University Medical Center, says that you can rinse your nasal passages with a saline solution as needed. It is nearly impossible to overdo the saline nasal rinsing to get rid of yellow or green snot.7

The Causes of Brown Mucus

Brown mucus is usually caused by the same reasons as yellow or green mucus, however, the brown color comes from old blood.

According to Dr. Luqman Seidu on WebMD, brown mucus that you cough up or blow out your nose often happens if your respiratory passages are dry. The irritation in your nasal passages from rubbing or blowing your nose can cause slight bleeding. Brown mucus is the result when some old blood mixes with the yellow mucus in your nose.1

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Chronis obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one lung condition that can result in coughing up brown phlegm.

According to the journal Respiratory Medicine, COPD causes an increase in quantity and thickness of sputum. The bacterial infection that often accompanies COPD usually results in bringing up mucus that is yellow to brown in color.8

There are many reasons to strengthen the health of your lungs. Being active, enjoying a healthy diet, and stopping smoking immediately are just some ways that you can boost your lungs’ health and help avoid lung disease.

Why Mucus Can Be White Color

Sometimes you might notice that mucus can be a thick white color. What can it mean when you cough up or spit out white mucus?

First signs of bronchitis

One of the first signs of bronchitis is white mucus that starts to clog up your airways along with an irritating cough.

According to doctors from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, bronchitis usually starts off as a dry cough. You may also have other symptoms like a fever, aches in your lower back, and a sore throat. However, if the bronchitis is caused by a viral infection, you might cough up small amounts of white phlegm.9

Bacterial sinusitis

Rather than cause green phlegm, doctors from WebMD say that white snot is usually a sign of a bacterial infection that has affected your sinuses.2

Gastroesophageal disease (GERD)

Stomach acid that irritates the lining of your esophagus can result in coughing up whitish mucus as well as having a feeling of something stuck in your throat.

Stomach juices that escape back up your esophagus create a condition called gastroesophageal disease (GERD) and result in acid reflux. According to the journal Annals of Thoracic Medicine, the increase of acid in your airways causes coughing and mucus secretion.10

Dr. Jennifer Robinson on WebMD says that excess throat mucus is a common symptom of reflux.11

Congestive heart failure (CHF)

Congestive heart failure happens when the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. In some cases, people with congestive heart failure frequently cough up white mucus.

According to the American Heart Association, CHF results in bringing up white mucus because of excess fluid in the lungs. If you have chronic coughing, you may also notice white mucus that has tinges of blood. Other symptoms of CHF are shortness of breath, tiredness, lack of appetite, and increased heart rate.12

Because your heart is located on the left side of your chest, you should never ignore left-sided chest pains. Some ways to care for the health of your heart are exercising, healthy diet, and cutting out stress as much as possible.

What Does Pink or Red-Colored Mucus Mean

Coughing up pink or red-colored mucus usually means that there is some blood mixed in with the mucus.

Any health condition that results in chronic coughing can damage and irritate your airways, resulting in pink-tinged mucus. Sometimes the mucus could be pink or red depending on the amount of blood in the mucus. You could cough up blood-streaked mucus when you have pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, or sinusitis.

Lung cancer

If you persistently cough up pink mucus, you should visit your doctor for a chest examination. The website Cancer.net says that some of the signs of lung cancer are persistently coughing up phlegm, coughing up blood, and a cough that won’t go away. You may also experience unintentional weight loss and/or chest pains.13

You can help keep your lungs healthy and reduce your risk of developing lung cancer by regularly consuming garlic.

Reasons for Mucus that is Black Color

Sometimes you may even notice that you cough up or blow out your nose that you have black secretion.

Fungal infections

In rare occasions, fungal sinusitis can cause black mucus to appear when you blow your nose or cough. According to Dr. Charles Patrick Davis on MedicineNet, some types of fungal infections that affect the sinuses can result in dark, black-like fluid from your sinuses.14

Breathing in black dust

The Journal of Cytology reports that black-colored mucus can be the result of breathing in black dust. This condition often affects coal workers or others who work in heavy industry where black dust is present.15

Smoking

The Journal of Cytology also says that people who smoke crack may frequently cough up blackened mucus.15

When to See a Doctor for Abnormal Mucus

Usually, there is nothing to worry about if you have yellow, green, brown, or even occasional pink mucus. Generally, the conditions that cause abnormal mucus with a strange color resolve themselves in 1 to 2 weeks, and the color of your mucus should return to normal.

However, in some cases, you should see your doctor if thick, discolored mucus persists and you can’t get relief. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic and WebMD recommend seeing a doctor for thick mucus in the following circumstances:16, 17

  • Your symptoms last for more than 10 days and natural remedies don’t give any relief.
  • You blow yellow or green mucus from your nose and have sinus pain or a fever.
  • You have blood in your nasal mucus after a head injury.
  • You cough up large amounts of blood-tinged mucus.
  • You have difficulty breathing and a persistent wheezing cough.
  • You cough up green mucus from your lungs (not from your nose) which lasts for longer than 2 days.
  • You have a high fever and signs of yellow mucus from your lungs.
  • The coughing up thick mucus causes you to vomit.

Read my other related articles:

Medical References

  1. WebMD. The truth about mucus.
  2. WebMD. The truth about mucus.
  3. MayoClinic. Bronchitis.
  4. WebMD. When a cold becomes a sinus infection.
  5. NHS. Pneumonia.
  6. MayoClinic. Cystic fibrosis.
  7. WebMD. What your mucus says about your health.
  8. Resp Med. 2005 Jun;99(6): 742-747.
  9. Cedars-Sinai. Bronchitis.
  10. Ann Thorac Med. 2009 Jul-Sep; 4(3): 115–123.
  11. WebMD. Laryngopharyngeal reflux.
  12. HeartOrg. Warning signs of heart failure.
  13. CancerNet. Lung cancer.
  14. MedicineNet. Sinusitis.
  15. J Cytol. 2013 Oct-Dec; 30(4): 274–275.
  16. MayoClinic. Nasal congestion.
  17. WebMD. Pneumonia – when to call a doctor.

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Clear Urine: What Does It Mean and Is It a Reason for Concern?

Clear urine with a tint of yellow color is usually a sign of healthy urine and that you are well-hydrated. Most people would assume that urine that is completely clear with no color at all would be a good thing. So, you might be surprised to learn that clear, colorless urine can sometimes be a symptom of certain health issues. In fact, completely clear urine could indicate that your body is missing important electrolytes.

Urine can be any color from a very pale light color to dark yellow that has a distinct smell. In most cases, drinking more fluids helps to make your pee a lighter, straw-like shade of yellow. However, if your pee has no color at all and is clear or transparent, it could be a sign that you are drinking too much water. If your body is lacking water or you have a urinary infection, you will notice that your pee is a darker color. Of course, some foods can also change the color of your urine.

In this article, you will find out what it means if you pass completely clear urine. I will also answer many questions related to the color of your urine and when to see a doctor. For example, what does it mean if your urine is not clear but foamy? What could be the reasons for a strong smell from your pee?

What Does Yellow or Clear Urine Mean?

There is a lot that the color of your urine can tell about your health. According to doctors from the Mayo Clinic, urochrome is a pigment that is responsible for making your pee a yellow color. The amount of fluid you drink will usually determine the concentration of urochrome in your pee. This turns normal urine any shade of color from clear pale yellow to dark amber.1

Chief urologist at the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute Dr. Bradley Gill says that urochrome (or urobilin) is metabolized from bile. This is filtered through the kidneys and then excreted from the body when you urinate. Factors like drinking lots of water, using diuretics, diabetes, or consuming certain foods and multivitamins that are pigmented, can cause urine to turn from a clear pale color to a darker amber color.2

The European Journal of Nutrition reports that checking the color of an individual’s urine is a way to analyze the amount of their fluid intake. Usually, the clearer a person’s urine then the more volume of fluids they are drinking.3

Reasons Why Your Urine is Clear

What does it mean if your urine is clear or transparent? Before looking at the various reasons for clear pee, it’s important to realize that normal urine should be a light pale color.

According to Dr. Janine Cook from the University of Maryland, normal urine should have a yellowish tinge to it. Therefore, healthy urine from a person who is well-hydrated should be straw-colored. Urine that is diluted too much has a water-like appearance. Dr. Cook says that urine should not be colorless.4

Clear urine as an indication of diabetes

Passing a large amount of clear urine could be a symptom of a type of diabetes called diabetes insipidus.

Diabetes insipidus is different from diabetes mellitus which can be type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that one of the common symptoms of diabetes insipidus is frequently passing clear urine in excessive amounts. A person with diabetes insipidus will also suffer from a chronic thirst which causes them to drink more and thus dilute urine, making it appear watery.5

The lack of color in the urine indicates a low level of electrolytes like sodium and potassium. This can lead to muscle cramps, fatigue, or loss of appetite. Dehydration is also another serious complication of diabetes insipidus.

According to the Victoria State Government, drinking plenty of fluids and switching to a low-salt diet are some ways to manage diabetes insipidus. Doctors also regularly check electrolyte levels to make sure that the body doesn’t become mineral deficient.

Diuretic medication

Taking diuretic medication can cause urine to become diluted and clear, making your urine look like water.

Diuretic medications are often prescribed to help regulate high blood pressure and to get rid of excess fluid from your body. Because your body excretes more fluids when taking diuretics, your urine can become very pale and almost clear.

Clear vs. cloudy urine in urinary tract infection

In some cases, a urinary tract infection can still be present even though your pee is totally clear. In this case the term clarity doesn’t indicate color, but the lack of cloudiness.

Although the typical signs of a urinary tract infection (UTI) can make your urine appear dark and cloudy with a bad smell, your pee can sometimes appear clear even though you may have a UTI.

The journal Pediatrics reports that clear urine can also be an indicator of a UTI. The report found that 18% of patients whose urine sample was clear had an infection in their urinary tract. The report recommended that doctors check for bacterial urinary infections if a patient shows UTI signs even if they have a clear urine sample.6

It’s important to treat the first signs of a urinary tract infection if you think you have one. Some of the other signs of a UTI include a burning sensation when you pee, pelvic discomfort and pain, and a constant urge to urinate.

You can check these natural remedies for urinary tract infection, for example drinking baking soda water can help to neutralize the acid in your urine. This can reduce the discomfort that a UTI causes and help to get rid of the infection quicker. If your urine is dark, you should increase your fluid intake to help make your pee lighter and clearer.

Dangers of Drinking Too Much Water that Makes Urine Completely Clear

It is important to drink enough fluids to flush toxins from your kidneys and keep your body healthy. In fact, there are many health problems associated with dehydration and a lack of fluids.

However, drinking too much water is also dangerous for your health. According to Dr. James Lewis, over-hydration can cause an imbalance of electrolytes in your body. This can result in fatigue, nausea and vomiting. Sometimes, athletes are at risk from over-hydration if they drink excessive water without balancing electrolytes.7

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic report on the dangers of drinking too much water. They say that excessive water intake results in hyponatremia which is when you have abnormally low sodium levels. One of the causes of hyponatremia is drinking too much water and losing fluid through sweat at the same time.8

Drinking coconut water is a great way to rehydrate yourself and keep your electrolyte balance in check.

What Urine Color Can Tell About Your Health

Apart from passing clear colorless urine, there is a lot that the color of your pee can tell about your health.

Let’s look at what it means when your pee is anything but a pale clear yellow color.

Milky white urine

Urine that is milky white could be a sign that you have a urinary tract infection (UTI). The Postgraduate Medical Journal reported that the milky color in urine might be due to conditions such as UTI, presence of lipids in the urine (lipiduria), chyluria which is a rare condition in which lymphatic fluid is present in urine, and excretion of uric acid in urine.9

Urine that is pink or reddish

Urine that appears pink to reddish color may or may not be a symptom of something serious in your urinary tract. For example, the pink or red tinge to urine may be due to blood in your urinary system. This could be due to bleeding because of an issue with your kidneys or urethra. Or, it could be menstrual blood that is combined with urine.9

However, doctors from Harvard Medical School report that eating beets will also turn your urine a pinkish color. This, of course, is nothing to worry about and will pass in a day or two.10

Brown colored urine

There are a number of reasons why you could notice that your urine isn’t pale clear but is dark brown. For example, dehydration, hypothyroidism, diabetes, or blood could cause brown-colored urine.

Dr. Mellissa Conrad Stöppler on MedicineNet says that darkened urine could also be the result of liver issues or obstructions in your urinary tract system.11

Blue urine

Urine that looks bluish could be caused by certain medications. The Mayo Clinic says that some medications like amitriptyline, indomethacin, or Propofol can turn urine from yellow to have a hint of blue in it.1

Green-colored urine

Depending on the concentration of blue pigment in your urine, your urine may look greenish. The Postgraduate Medical Journal reported that blue pigments and yellow urine mix together to turn pee green.9

Pee that looks bright green could also be a sign of a urinary tract infection. The Journal of Anaesthesiology Clinical Pharmacology reported that UTIs caused by Pseudomonas bacteria strains can turn urine green.12

Black pee

In rare occasions, some people pass grey-black pee. According to some doctors, this dark-colored urine is caused by a metabolism issue in the body where the urine becomes too alkaline.9

Frequently Asked Questions About Urine That Isn’t Clear

If you usually pass pale to light yellow urine that is clear without any cloudiness, then this is usually a sign that your kidneys are working properly and you are drinking enough water.

However, other abnormalities in your urine could be a sign of other health issues. Here are the answers to many questions about what urine can tell about your health.

What does it mean if my urine isn’t clear but foamy?

Passing foamy urine usually means that your bladder is full and the urine hits the water at a rapid pace. This causes bubbles to temporary appear in the water when you pee.

According to Dr. Erik Castle from the Mayo Clinic, having bubbles in your urine every so often is nothing to worry about. However, if you frequently have foamy urine, it could mean that you have a kidney problem and too much protein is being excreted in your urine.13

Why do I have an ammonia smell from my urine?

Some of the reasons why your urine could smell of ammonia could be due to foods you have eaten or an infection in your urinary system.

For example, the Cleveland Clinic reports that asparagus can make your urine have a whiff of ammonia. Also, foods containing vitamin B6 can give urine a strange ammonia-like smell.14

However, sometimes pee that smells of ammonia could be a sign of kidney disease or liver disease. According to information published by PubHealth, if your liver is functioning properly, ammonia is converted into urea. If there is a dysfunction with the liver, ammonia will be detected in the blood and urine.15

If you have a persistent smell of ammonia from your urine, you should visit your doctor to arrange a urine specimen test.

What causes my urine to smell off?

Your urine might give off a strange smell due to consuming other foods or beverages. For example, many coffee drinkers say that their pee smells of coffee after a few cups of coffee. Other foods that can affect the smell of your pee are garlic, fenugreek, alcohol, and salmon.

Should I be worried if I notice white particles in urine?

Noticing white particles and bits in your urine from time to time is usually nothing to worry about. Sometimes, white stuff in your urine can turn pee from a clear pale appearance to a cloudy and murky liquid.

In some cases, white particles in your urine could be a symptom of a UTI, cystitis, a yeast infection, or a problem with your kidneys. For example, doctors from Harvard Medical Schools say that infections of the bladder or urinary tract can turn your urine cloudy and give off a strong odor.16

Also, the Australian organization Women’s Health reports that bacterial vaginosis (BV) or a vaginal yeast infection can cause a white or grey vaginal discharge. You will also have a burning sensation when using the bathroom.17

If you have a bacterial infection in your vagina, you can try some of my great natural remedies for BV. You can also find natural ways to treat a vaginal yeast infection in my article entitled home remedies for candidiasis.

My urine test shows crystals in urine – should I be worried?

Dehydration, a change in your urine’s pH levels, kidney stones, or a urinary tract infection could also cause crystals to form in your urine.

If your urine sample shows that you have too many crystals in your urine, your doctor will run more tests to find the underlying reason. Usually, drinking plenty of water is the best way to flush your kidneys and prevent abnormalities in your urine.

According to doctors from the Mayo Clinic, gout is one symptom of having too many urate crystals in your urine because of uric acid in your blood. Again, drinking plenty of fluids is one way to help prevent toxins and other substances in your urine becoming too concentrated.18 This can be one way to prevent gout recurring.

My doctor says that there are leukocytes in my urine – what does that mean?

Leukocytes are white blood cells that will show up in a urine test and usually means that your body is fighting an infection.

Some reasons for the presence of white blood cells in urine are infections, an inflammation, kidney stones, or an enlarged prostate.

For example, the journal Therapeutic Advances in Urology reports that very often leukocytes show up in urine in cases of bladder inflammation (cystitis).19 Also, the Mayo Clinic says that urinary tract infections often result in nitrites or white blood cells in urine samples.20

What color should my urine be?

Urologist Dr. Bradley Gill on Medscape says that urine should be a light yellow to golden color. Also, urine should be clear, not hazy or cloudy and any changes in your urine should only be temporary.2

If you notice persistent foamy urine, have pain when you pee, or notice that your urine has turned from a clear pale yellow color to a dark and/or cloudy color, you should visit your doctor.

Read my related articles:

Medical References

  1. MayoClinic. Urine color.
  2. Medscape. Discoloration, urine.
  3. Eur J Nutr. 2016; 55: 1943–1949.
  4. J Analyt Toxic. 2000 Oct;24: 579-588.
  5. MayoClinic. Diabetes insipidus.
  6. Pediatrics. 2000 Nov;106:e60.
  7. MSDManuals. Overhydration.
  8. MayoClinic. Hyponatremia.
  9. Postgrad Med J. 2006 Feb; 82(964): 126–129.
  10. HealthHarvard. Urine color and color changes.
  11. MedicineNet. Dark urine.
  12. J Anaesthesiol Clin Pharmacol. 2017 Jan-Mar; 33(1): 128–130.
  13. MayoClinic. Foamy urine: what does it mean?
  14. ClevelandClinic. Urine changes.
  15. NCBI. How does the liver work?
  16. DrugsCom. Urinary tract infection in women.
  17. WomensHealth. Thrush and other vaginal infections fact sheet.
  18. MayoClinic. Gout.
  19. Ther Adv Urol. 2011 Feb; 3(1): 19–33.
  20. MayoClinic. Urinalysis.

The post Clear Urine: What Does It Mean and Is It a Reason for Concern? appeared first on Healthy and Natural World.

Posted in Health | Comments Off on Clear Urine: What Does It Mean and Is It a Reason for Concern?

Pain Around, Above, Below or Behind Belly Button

Having pain around, above, below, or behind your belly button can be a worrisome experience. Some reasons for aches and pains around your belly button can be fairly harmless and resolve themselves quickly. However, sharp, incessant pains below or behind your belly button could be a symptom of a more serious condition. You might also find that pain above or below your belly button radiates to your pelvic area, legs, or chest.

Some common causes of belly button discomfort and pain are due to issues with your digestive system. For example, trapped gas, irritable bowel syndrome, or Crohn’s disease can all cause aching pains around your belly button. However, some reasons for pain behind the belly button can be potentially serious. Appendicitis pain usually starts off near the belly button before radiating to the right side of your abdomen.

Because there are many organs behind the belly button, it can be difficult to know the exact cause of the stomach pain. Therefore, it’s important to know the symptoms of pain that originate around or near the belly button. For example, is the belly button pain constant? Does the pain behind your belly button get worse when you move? Or, is the pain below your navel only worse after eating?

In this article, I will look at the most common causes of belly button pain that you feel below, above, behind, or around your navel. In some cases, you will also find out how to get rid of pain in your lower abdominal area.

What Organs are Behind the Belly Button

Before looking that the reasons for belly button pain that can be mild aches or severe stabbing pains, it’s important to know what organs are behind your belly button.

Your lower abdomen contains many important organs in the body that can be painful if infection or inflammation affects them. Dr. Matthew Hoffamn on WebMD explains that all your digestive organs are in your abdominal area.1

If you look at a picture of the area behind your belly button, you will see that most of your digestive system is there. Right behind your belly button is your small intestine and part of your large intestine. Below your belly button to the right of your abdomen is your appendix. Above your belly button are your pancreas, gallbladder, and stomach. 1

Any one of these organs around the belly button could cause varying degrees of pain if they become inflamed or infected.

Symptoms of Pain Near the Belly Button

Doctors also call belly button pain umbilical pain. Depending on the cause of your belly button pain, you might have other associated symptoms.

The type of pain around your belly button isn’t usually an issue with your navel itself, but is referred pain that occurs in organs near the belly button.

For example, some causes of belly button pain can make your abdominal area feel very tender to touch. Conditions like appendicitis can cause stabbing and burning pains that radiate from behind the belly button to your lower right-hand side. You may also have a fever and nausea if your appendix or intestines are infected or inflamed.

If an abdominal hernia is to blame for your pain above, below, or behind your belly button, you may also notice a bulge. The lump in your abdomen or pelvis may be discolored and cause dull to moderate navel pain.

Causes of Pain Around, Above, Below, or Behind the Belly Button

Let’s look in more detail at the most common reasons that could be causing pain in and around your belly button.

Excess gas can cause pain around the belly button

Excess gas can cause lower abdominal pain after eating that feels like it’s originating around your belly button.

Because your intestines are right behind your belly button, any gas pains will be felt behind or around your navel. Dr. Norton Greenberger from Harvard Medical School says that gas can expand the intestines causing cramping abdominal pains. The aches and pains around your belly button happen as your intestines expand and contract or cause spasms.2

Along with the sharp pain behind your belly button, you might have signs of abdominal bloating.

Usually, gas that causes pain behind your belly button only lasts a short time. Usually, making yourself pass gas gets rid of the abdominal pain fairly quickly. You can also try some of my home remedies for gas and bloating. These are also very effective ways to prevent excess gas causing belly button pain.

Constipation and pain below or behind the belly button

Another digestive-related cause of belly button pain that can cause severe discomfort around your belly button is constipation.

The journal Pediatric Emergency Care reported that around 25% of patients who attend the emergency department for pain in their lower abdomen have constipation. It was reported that constipation can cause moderate to severe pain in the area behind your belly button. Relieving constipation helped to get rid of the pain around the belly button area.3

Constipation is just one reason why your digestion doesn’t work correctly. You can try prunes or figs as a natural laxative for constipation relief. Other natural remedies for constipation include castor oil, eating more fiber, and drinking plenty of water.

Appendicitis can cause pain behind the belly button

Appendicitis is a serious cause of stabbing stomach pain that starts off behind the belly button and spreads to your right lower belly.

The location of your appendix is on the right side of your lower abdomen. However, Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD says that pain caused by appendicitis usually starts behind or above the navel. As the appendix inflammation gets worse, the pain radiates to the lower right abdomen. Appendix pain can feel like dull or sharp stabbing pains that are felt in the lower back or upper abdomen. You might also have cramping sensation in your rectum.4

Other symptoms of appendicitis that cause pain in your lower abdominal area are constipation or diarrhea, abdominal swelling, and inability to pass gas.

It’s important to seek prompt medical attention if you have symptoms of appendicitis like severe right-sided stomach pain. An inflamed appendix requires surgery before it becomes a more serious, and sometimes fatal, medical condition.

Abdominal hernias cause pain around the belly button

If you notice a bulge near your navel and have stomach pain and discomfort, you could have an abdominal hernia.

That majority of hernias occur above, below, or under your belly button. Dr. Jerry Balentine on eMedicineHealth says that hernias in the abdominal area or groin happen when part of an organ or fatty tissue pushes through a weak spot in the abdominal wall. This can cause a noticeable bulge and slight to severe pain around the hernia.5

Umbilical hernias

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic report that umbilical hernias usually occur in babies and causes a bulge at the belly button. Sometimes, the bulge near the navel is only seen when your baby coughs or cries. However, umbilical hernias can also affect adults, and if you notice a bulge at your belly button that causes discomfort, then it could be an umbilical hernia.6

If you have a bulge above or below your belly button or your child’s belly button, you should speak to your doctor for advice.

Urinary tract infections as a reason for belly button pain

Sharp pain near the belly button and a burning sensation when urinating could be a sign of a urinary tract infection.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) affect more women than men and are sometimes a reason for pain under the belly button in females. According to the National Kidney Foundation, pain around the belly button, painful sensation when peeing, and discolored urine that smells bad are all symptoms of a urinary tract infection.7

Some women also complain of intense pain in their lower abdomen when they have a UTI.

You can treat the first signs of a urinary tract infection naturally by drinking baking soda and water. Baking soda remedy helps to neutralize the acid in your urine and reduces the burning sensation when you use the bathroom.

Crohn’s disease and pain below the belly button

Suffering from Crohn’s disease is one reason why you might have right-sided stomach pain above, below, or under your belly button.

Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel condition that causes a lot of discomfort in your digestive system.

According to Dr. Noel Williams on eMedicineHealth, Crohn’s disease usually causes cramping or incessant pains around the right side of your belly button. You may also suffer from chronic diarrhea that contains mucus or have constipation. Other common symptoms of Crohn’s disease are indigestion, bleeding when passing stools, or bloating after eating.8

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that it can be difficult to manage the symptoms of Crohn’s disease. They suggest keeping a food diary to help identify which foods aggravate your symptoms and cause digestive upset.9

Irritable bowel syndrome and painful symptoms around your belly button

Another digestive condition that can cause sharp aching pains behind your belly button is irritable bowel syndrome.

According to gastroenterologist Dr. William Salt II, the painful symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are usually felt below your belly button. Very often IBS causes sharp stomach pains on your left side, however, they can occur anywhere in our abdomen.10

There are many natural ways to manage the painful discomfort of IBS and get rid of a gurgling stomach. For example, enteric-coated capsules containing peppermint oil can help to treat IBS naturally.

Pregnancy and belly button pain

Belly button pain above, below, or around your navel is common during pregnancy. As long as you don’t have severe abdominal cramping in pregnancy, you usually don’t have anything to worry about.

According to doctors at the UT Southwestern Medical Center, pain around your belly button can start in your second trimester. Sometimes, the area around the belly button becomes very tender and sore to touch. One reason for belly button pain could be an umbilical hernia. Or, your belly could become more sensitive as your abdomen stretches.11

If you are pregnant and start to get sharp stomach pains around your belly button and have nausea and vomiting, you should speak with your healthcare provider. This could be a sign of a urinary tract infection and needs to be treated as soon as possible.

Infected belly button piercing and navel pain

You might have a sore belly button if you have had your belly button pierced and it has become infected.

The belly button is prone to infections after piercing, therefore you should take precautions to prevent belly button infections. If you notice redness around your belly button, pus draining from the wound, and have pain below your belly button, you should speak to a doctor.

According to midwife Tekola King, belly button jewelry is safe during pregnancy. However, you should not get a new piercing in your belly button if you are pregnant. You may have even worse belly button pain as your belly stretches and grows.12

Other reasons for pain around, below, above, or behind belly button

Stomach pain around or near your belly button is often the result of gastrointestinal issues. The American College of Gastroenterology reports that acid reflux, heartburn, intestinal infections, and food allergies can also cause pain and discomfort in the middle of your lower abdomen.

When to See a Doctor about Belly Button Pain

If you find that the pain behind your belly button doesn’t go away and becomes more than a dull ache, you may need to see a doctor.

According to doctors from the Mayo Clinic, you should seek medical advice for pain around your belly button area in the following circumstances:13

  • Severe pain that comes on suddenly.
  • Dull aches around your navel or abdominal discomfort that last for more than a few days.
  • Severe tenderness in your abdomen.
  • Unexplained abdominal swelling or weight loss.
  • Nausea and vomiting that doesn’t go away.

Article sources:

  1. WebMD. Picture of the abdomen.
  2. MSDManuals. Acute abdominal pain.
  3. Pediatr Emerg Care.2017 Oct;33(10):e75-e78.
  4. WebMD. Appendicitis.
  5. eMedicineHealth. Hernia.
  6. MayoClinic. Umbilical hernias.
  7. KidneyOrg. Urinary tract infections.
  8. eMedicineHealth. Endoscopy in Crohn’s disease.
  9. MayoClinic. Crohn’s disease.
  10. ShareCare. Where to pain symptoms usually occur in IBS?
  11. UTSMedicine. Why belly button pain during pregnancy is still a mystery.
  12. PatientsGI. Functional abdominal pain in children.
  13. MayoClinic. Abdominal pain.

The post Pain Around, Above, Below or Behind Belly Button appeared first on Healthy and Natural World.

Posted in Health | Comments Off on Pain Around, Above, Below or Behind Belly Button

Pain Around, Above, Below or Behind Belly Button

Having pain around, above, below, or behind your belly button can be a worrisome experience. Some reasons for aches and pains around your belly button can be fairly harmless and resolve themselves quickly. However, sharp, incessant pains below or behind your belly button could be a symptom of a more serious condition. You might also find that pain above or below your belly button radiates to your pelvic area, legs, or chest.

Some common causes of belly button discomfort and pain are due to issues with your digestive system. For example, trapped gas, irritable bowel syndrome, or Crohn’s disease can all cause aching pains around your belly button. However, some reasons for pain behind the belly button can be potentially serious. Appendicitis pain usually starts off near the belly button before radiating to the right side of your abdomen.

Because there are many organs behind the belly button, it can be difficult to know the exact cause of the stomach pain. Therefore, it’s important to know the symptoms of pain that originate around or near the belly button. For example, is the belly button pain constant? Does the pain behind your belly button get worse when you move? Or, is the pain below your navel only worse after eating?

In this article, I will look at the most common causes of belly button pain that you feel below, above, behind, or around your navel. In some cases, you will also find out how to get rid of pain in your lower abdominal area.

What Organs are Behind the Belly Button

Before looking that the reasons for belly button pain that can be mild aches or severe stabbing pains, it’s important to know what organs are behind your belly button.

Your lower abdomen contains many important organs in the body that can be painful if infection or inflammation affects them. Dr. Matthew Hoffamn on WebMD explains that all your digestive organs are in your abdominal area.1

If you look at a picture of the area behind your belly button, you will see that most of your digestive system is there. Right behind your belly button is your small intestine and part of your large intestine. Below your belly button to the right of your abdomen is your appendix. Above your belly button are your pancreas, gallbladder, and stomach. 1

Any one of these organs around the belly button could cause varying degrees of pain if they become inflamed or infected.

Symptoms of Pain Near the Belly Button

Doctors also call belly button pain umbilical pain. Depending on the cause of your belly button pain, you might have other associated symptoms.

The type of pain around your belly button isn’t usually an issue with your navel itself, but is referred pain that occurs in organs near the belly button.

For example, some causes of belly button pain can make your abdominal area feel very tender to touch. Conditions like appendicitis can cause stabbing and burning pains that radiate from behind the belly button to your lower right-hand side. You may also have a fever and nausea if your appendix or intestines are infected or inflamed.

If an abdominal hernia is to blame for your pain above, below, or behind your belly button, you may also notice a bulge. The lump in your abdomen or pelvis may be discolored and cause dull to moderate navel pain.

Causes of Pain Around, Above, Below, or Behind the Belly Button

Let’s look in more detail at the most common reasons that could be causing pain in and around your belly button.

Excess gas can cause pain around the belly button

Excess gas can cause lower abdominal pain after eating that feels like it’s originating around your belly button.

Because your intestines are right behind your belly button, any gas pains will be felt behind or around your navel. Dr. Norton Greenberger from Harvard Medical School says that gas can expand the intestines causing cramping abdominal pains. The aches and pains around your belly button happen as your intestines expand and contract or cause spasms.2

Along with the sharp pain behind your belly button, you might have signs of abdominal bloating.

Usually, gas that causes pain behind your belly button only lasts a short time. Usually, making yourself pass gas gets rid of the abdominal pain fairly quickly. You can also try some of my home remedies for gas and bloating. These are also very effective ways to prevent excess gas causing belly button pain.

Constipation and pain below or behind the belly button

Another digestive-related cause of belly button pain that can cause severe discomfort around your belly button is constipation.

The journal Pediatric Emergency Care reported that around 25% of patients who attend the emergency department for pain in their lower abdomen have constipation. It was reported that constipation can cause moderate to severe pain in the area behind your belly button. Relieving constipation helped to get rid of the pain around the belly button area.3

Constipation is just one reason why your digestion doesn’t work correctly. You can try prunes or figs as a natural laxative for constipation relief. Other natural remedies for constipation include castor oil, eating more fiber, and drinking plenty of water.

Appendicitis can cause pain behind the belly button

Appendicitis is a serious cause of stabbing stomach pain that starts off behind the belly button and spreads to your right lower belly.

The location of your appendix is on the right side of your lower abdomen. However, Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD says that pain caused by appendicitis usually starts behind or above the navel. As the appendix inflammation gets worse, the pain radiates to the lower right abdomen. Appendix pain can feel like dull or sharp stabbing pains that are felt in the lower back or upper abdomen. You might also have cramping sensation in your rectum.4

Other symptoms of appendicitis that cause pain in your lower abdominal area are constipation or diarrhea, abdominal swelling, and inability to pass gas.

It’s important to seek prompt medical attention if you have symptoms of appendicitis like severe right-sided stomach pain. An inflamed appendix requires surgery before it becomes a more serious, and sometimes fatal, medical condition.

Abdominal hernias cause pain around the belly button

If you notice a bulge near your navel and have stomach pain and discomfort, you could have an abdominal hernia.

That majority of hernias occur above, below, or under your belly button. Dr. Jerry Balentine on eMedicineHealth says that hernias in the abdominal area or groin happen when part of an organ or fatty tissue pushes through a weak spot in the abdominal wall. This can cause a noticeable bulge and slight to severe pain around the hernia.5

Umbilical hernias

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic report that umbilical hernias usually occur in babies and causes a bulge at the belly button. Sometimes, the bulge near the navel is only seen when your baby coughs or cries. However, umbilical hernias can also affect adults, and if you notice a bulge at your belly button that causes discomfort, then it could be an umbilical hernia.6

If you have a bulge above or below your belly button or your child’s belly button, you should speak to your doctor for advice.

Urinary tract infections as a reason for belly button pain

Sharp pain near the belly button and a burning sensation when urinating could be a sign of a urinary tract infection.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) affect more women than men and are sometimes a reason for pain under the belly button in females. According to the National Kidney Foundation, pain around the belly button, painful sensation when peeing, and discolored urine that smells bad are all symptoms of a urinary tract infection.7

Some women also complain of intense pain in their lower abdomen when they have a UTI.

You can treat the first signs of a urinary tract infection naturally by drinking baking soda and water. Baking soda remedy helps to neutralize the acid in your urine and reduces the burning sensation when you use the bathroom.

Crohn’s disease and pain below the belly button

Suffering from Crohn’s disease is one reason why you might have right-sided stomach pain above, below, or under your belly button.

Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel condition that causes a lot of discomfort in your digestive system.

According to Dr. Noel Williams on eMedicineHealth, Crohn’s disease usually causes cramping or incessant pains around the right side of your belly button. You may also suffer from chronic diarrhea that contains mucus or have constipation. Other common symptoms of Crohn’s disease are indigestion, bleeding when passing stools, or bloating after eating.8

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that it can be difficult to manage the symptoms of Crohn’s disease. They suggest keeping a food diary to help identify which foods aggravate your symptoms and cause digestive upset.9

Irritable bowel syndrome and painful symptoms around your belly button

Another digestive condition that can cause sharp aching pains behind your belly button is irritable bowel syndrome.

According to gastroenterologist Dr. William Salt II, the painful symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are usually felt below your belly button. Very often IBS causes sharp stomach pains on your left side, however, they can occur anywhere in our abdomen.10

There are many natural ways to manage the painful discomfort of IBS and get rid of a gurgling stomach. For example, enteric-coated capsules containing peppermint oil can help to treat IBS naturally.

Pregnancy and belly button pain

Belly button pain above, below, or around your navel is common during pregnancy. As long as you don’t have severe abdominal cramping in pregnancy, you usually don’t have anything to worry about.

According to doctors at the UT Southwestern Medical Center, pain around your belly button can start in your second trimester. Sometimes, the area around the belly button becomes very tender and sore to touch. One reason for belly button pain could be an umbilical hernia. Or, your belly could become more sensitive as your abdomen stretches.11

If you are pregnant and start to get sharp stomach pains around your belly button and have nausea and vomiting, you should speak with your healthcare provider. This could be a sign of a urinary tract infection and needs to be treated as soon as possible.

Infected belly button piercing and navel pain

You might have a sore belly button if you have had your belly button pierced and it has become infected.

The belly button is prone to infections after piercing, therefore you should take precautions to prevent belly button infections. If you notice redness around your belly button, pus draining from the wound, and have pain below your belly button, you should speak to a doctor.

According to midwife Tekola King, belly button jewelry is safe during pregnancy. However, you should not get a new piercing in your belly button if you are pregnant. You may have even worse belly button pain as your belly stretches and grows.12

Other reasons for pain around, below, above, or behind belly button

Stomach pain around or near your belly button is often the result of gastrointestinal issues. The American College of Gastroenterology reports that acid reflux, heartburn, intestinal infections, and food allergies can also cause pain and discomfort in the middle of your lower abdomen.

When to See a Doctor about Belly Button Pain

If you find that the pain behind your belly button doesn’t go away and becomes more than a dull ache, you may need to see a doctor.

According to doctors from the Mayo Clinic, you should seek medical advice for pain around your belly button area in the following circumstances:13

  • Severe pain that comes on suddenly.
  • Dull aches around your navel or abdominal discomfort that last for more than a few days.
  • Severe tenderness in your abdomen.
  • Unexplained abdominal swelling or weight loss.
  • Nausea and vomiting that doesn’t go away.

Article sources:

  1. WebMD. Picture of the abdomen.
  2. MSDManuals. Acute abdominal pain.
  3. Pediatr Emerg Care.2017 Oct;33(10):e75-e78.
  4. WebMD. Appendicitis.
  5. eMedicineHealth. Hernia.
  6. MayoClinic. Umbilical hernias.
  7. KidneyOrg. Urinary tract infections.
  8. eMedicineHealth. Endoscopy in Crohn’s disease.
  9. MayoClinic. Crohn’s disease.
  10. ShareCare. Where to pain symptoms usually occur in IBS?
  11. UTSMedicine. Why belly button pain during pregnancy is still a mystery.
  12. PatientsGI. Functional abdominal pain in children.
  13. MayoClinic. Abdominal pain.

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14 Warning Signs of Low Magnesium Levels and What to Do About It

The warning signs of low magnesium levels in your body can be difficult to spot. A magnesium deficiency can show signs like muscle cramps, fatigue, nausea, tingling in your hand, and constipation. Many of these signs can also be indicative of other health conditions and are easy to mistake for something else. However, signs of low levels of magnesium should never be ignored.

Because low magnesium levels in people are easy to ignore, this has been called an “invisible deficiency.” Having low levels of magnesium over a long period of time can also lead to various complications. For example, osteoporosis, heart disease, high blood pressure and kidney stones have all been linked to a chronic magnesium deficiency.

So, if a lack of magnesium is so serious, why is it difficult to spot? Low magnesium side effects are often attributed to other causes. Also, lifestyle choices can sometimes affect how much magnesium is absorbed into the body. For example, chronic diarrhea, drinking too much alcohol, or certain medications can lower magnesium levels.

In this article, I will look at the 14 warning signs of low magnesium levels that are easy to ignore. You will also find answers to your questions like: what causes low magnesium in the body? How should you treat low magnesium? And what are the best ways to increase low magnesium levels?

What Does Magnesium Do in Your Body?

Magnesium is an essential mineral in your body that helps to keep your body functioning properly. Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD states that magnesium is important for healthy bones, muscles, nerves, and heart function. Magnesium also plays a role in your body to regulate blood pressure and blood sugar, therefore, helping to give you energy.1

The National Institute of Health says that magnesium is an important mineral because it processes over 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Magnesium is also needed for healthy DNA and also has antioxidant properties that keep you healthy. Around half of your body’s levels of magnesium are in the bones with the rest in soft tissues and a little amount in the blood.2

Low levels of magnesium are called hypomagnesemia. This is when there is too little magnesium in your blood which is a sign of low magnesium levels in your body.2

Magnesium, Vitamin D & Calcium – The Connection

Magnesium is also closely connected with calcium and vitamin D. A lack of magnesium can affect how vitamin D is absorbed in the body and it helps to prevent too much calcium building up in the bones.

According to the National Institutes of Health, magnesium affects the concentration of vitamin D which is essential for healthy bones.2 Doctors from the NHS also say that vitamin D helps the body to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate. These minerals are also necessary for healthy bones, teeth, and muscle function.3

However, magnesium also has a direct influence on the body’s calcium levels. The journal American Family Physician reports that proper levels of magnesium in the body affect calcium and potassium. If your body lacks magnesium, levels of calcium can increase to dangerous levels because magnesium helps the body flush out excess calcium.4

The journal BMJ Open reported that when magnesium and calcium levels are imbalanced, the result in the body is an increase in inflammation and many other common chronic diseases.5

Low Magnesium Levels: 14 Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency

How can you tell if your magnesium levels are low? If you live in a Western country, then chances are that you have a lack of magnesium. Dr. Mary Guerrera from University of Connecticut School of Medicine says that around 75% of Americans show signs of low magnesium levels.4

Here are the 14 common signs of having a magnesium deficiency that are easy to ignore.

1. Muscle cramps and spasms due to low magnesium

A lack of magnesium in your body can cause you to have muscle cramps, spasms, muscle tics and twitches.

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that various types of muscle cramps can be caused by having too little magnesium, calcium, or potassium. Cramping in your legs is a common symptom of a mineral deficiency such as a lack of magnesium.6

Keeping yourself well hydrated and stretching your muscles are some ways to prevent muscle pain and cramping.

2. Numbness and tingling

If you frequently suffer from numbness and tingling in your arms or legs, it could be a sign of not having enough magnesium.

Doctors from the American Academy of Family Physicians report that people with low levels of magnesium often experience tingling and numbness.4

Of course, tingling down one leg could also be a sign that you have a trapped sciatic nerve. Or, tingling in just one arm could also be an indication of poor blood circulation or a trapped spinal nerve.

3. Loss of appetite as a sign of magnesium deficiency

One sign of low magnesium is if you often don’t feel like eating or you don’t have an appetite.

A study published in the journal Nutrients found that a loss of appetite is often an early sign of a magnesium deficiency. Not eating a healthy, well-balanced diet where you don’t get enough vitamins and minerals could then make levels of magnesium drop even lower.7

This can also result in fatigue, which is another common sign of low levels of magnesium.

4. Fatigue & weakness

If you constantly feel tired, have no energy, or feel physically weak, boosting your levels of magnesium could help.

The Clinical Kidney Journal reported that fatigue and chronic tiredness are among the early signs that your magnesium levels are low.8 Other studies have also found that people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) often have a chronic magnesium deficiency.9

Of course, there are other nutritional deficiencies that can make you feel tired all the time. If you have problems with constant tiredness, you could try these 8 secrets to boost your energy or these 10 foods. Also, this supplement can help people who suffer from CFS.

5. Nausea and vomiting

A sign of low levels of magnesium that is easy to ignore is nausea and vomiting.

There are, of course, many reasons for feeling nauseous like having food poisoning, a stomach bug, or being pregnant. However, researchers from the University of Maryland report that a persistent feeling of nausea and vomiting is a common magnesium deficiency symptom.10

If you suffer from bouts of vomiting, you can try consuming ginger as a natural remedy for throwing up. Ginger can help to calm your stomach and also improve your appetite.

6. Arrhythmia (abnormal heart rhythm)

One thing that magnesium does in your body is help regulate your heart rhythm. Low magnesium in your blood could cause arrhythmia.

According to the journal Hippokratia, hypomagnesemia can affect the cardiovascular system. Researchers have found that boosting levels of magnesium in the body helps to reduce incidences of arrhythmias. Addressing low levels of magnesium if you have arrhythmia also improves your chances of surviving a myocardial infarction (heart attack).11

If you have an irregular heartbeat, you should speak to your doctor about getting levels of magnesium tested.

7. Personality changes

Another consequence of having low levels of magnesium in your body is that it can affect your mood and personality.

A study from Japan found that among individuals who had a lack of magnesium, personality changes and depression were the most common signs. Researchers suggested that some people with depression may be suffering from a magnesium deficiency, not a psychiatric condition.12

In many cases, it’s important to get professional advice if you suffer from depression. There are some natural treatments for depression that may help to alleviate your symptoms. Also, you can try these quick and natural ways to boost your mood.

8. Anxiety is a symptom of magnesium deficiency

A magnesium deficiency can have a major impact on your feelings of anxiety and stress in your day-to-day life.

According to a scientific study published in the journal Nutrients, there are some reasons why a lack of magnesium can increase anxiety levels. For example, magnesium affects glutamate which is an important neurotransmitter that regulates responses to fear, panic, and anxiety. Also, magnesium regulates the adrenal glands which affect your stress response.13

You can help to reduce your feelings of anxiety naturally by increasing your magnesium intake. I have also written about some effective essential oils for getting rid of stress and anxiety.

9. Sleeping problems caused by lack of magnesium

Not having enough magnesium in your diet can cause sleep problems and insomnia.

Many people suffer from sleep problems like not falling asleep quickly, awakening too early, or feeling tired when they wake. A study published in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences found that magnesium supplementation helped to improve individuals’ sleep patterns. Getting more magnesium in the diet allowed people to sleep better and wake up feeling more refreshed.14

If you have disrupted sleep patterns, then it could be a sign of a magnesium deficiency that you shouldn’t ignore. There are many dangers of sleep deprivation and it’s important to take steps to get a better night’s sleep.

10. Constipation and low magnesium

Constipation is a sign that you could be suffering from a lack of magnesium which makes it harder to pass stools.

According to research published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, increasing levels of magnesium can help relieve constipation. The study found that low levels of magnesium have a direct effect on the incidences of constipation. In fact, the research found that magnesium is just as important as fiber to keep your stools soft and your bowel movements regular.15

Other ways to relieve constipation naturally include drinking plenty of water and eating fiber. You can also try the tried and tested method of using castor oil as a natural laxative. These are just some of the ways you can help beat digestive problems without medication.

11. Cravings for chocolate

Having low levels of magnesium could cause you to have chocolate cravings to satisfy your magnesium deficiency.

Interestingly, the Journal of the American Dietetic Association reported that chocolate can help to address a magnesium deficiency. Chocolate also boosts levels of dopamine and serotonin and can affect feelings of well-being.16

The health benefits of chocolate are in dark chocolate, not the milk variety or white chocolate. Eating dark chocolate in moderation can help to improve your heart health, lower cholesterol, and lower high blood pressure naturally.

12. High blood pressure as a warning sign of low magnesium

One of the most well-researched areas about the signs of low levels of magnesium is the connection with high blood pressure. High blood pressure could be a sign that you lack enough magnesium in your diet.

Because magnesium has a relaxing effect on many functions of the body, it helps to relax your blood vessels. The journal Clinical Calcium stated that magnesium levels have a direct effect on a person’s blood pressure. Magnesium also affects potassium and calcium levels which also affect blood pressure.17

Some other ways of lowering blood pressure naturally include enjoying a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and getting enough magnesium, calcium, and potassium.

13. Headaches and migraines

Having low levels of magnesium could mean that you suffer from frequent headaches or have more severe migraines.

According to research published in the journal The Clinical Biochemist Reviews, one of the signs of low magnesium levels are migraines and headaches.18

A lack of magnesium is just one mineral and vitamin deficiency that is connected with headaches. One natural way to relieve headaches without painkillers is to use aromatherapy. Some of the best essential oils for headaches are peppermint, lavender, and chamomile.

14. Connection between PMS and a lack of magnesium

Women need sufficient amounts of magnesium to help reduce the severity of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms.

Not having enough magnesium can affect hormones and cause PMS. A study published in 2007 found that symptoms of PMS improved when women took magnesium supplements.19

For helpful advice on how to deal with PMS symptoms naturally, please read my article on 12 helpful home remedies for PMS.

Common Causes of Magnesium Deficiency

What causes low magnesium in the body? Let’s look at why many of us lack enough magnesium in our bodies.

Modern farming techniques and food processing

One cause of a magnesium deficiency is due to modern farming techniques which deplete the soil of nutrients and the way that many of our foods are processed which reduces their mineral, vitamin, and fiber content.

The Crop Journal reported on studies that have shown that magnesium levels in cereal seeds have markedly declined in recent years. This was sighted as one of the reasons why two-thirds of people lack enough magnesium.20

Water purification

Municipal water-purification facilities have intensified their efforts to remove contaminants like lead, pesticide residues, and nitrates from drinking water. However, these modern water-treatment methods also deplete drinking water of desirable minerals like calcium and magnesium. Exacerbating this problem is that many people have added home water filters that extract any remaining minerals from the water.

According to a report of the World Health Organization, although the concentrations of calcium and magnesium in drinking-water vary significantly from one supply to another, mineral-rich drinking-water may provide important contributions to total intakes of these nutrients in some populations. The report also states that water treatment processes can affect mineral concentrations and, hence, the total intake of calcium and magnesium for some individuals.32

Chronic diarrhea can reduce magnesium levels

Dr. James Lewis reported that chronic diarrhea affects magnesium absorption and can result in a magnesium deficiency.21

Drinking too much alcohol results in low magnesium

Chronic alcoholism is another reason why some people show very low levels of magnesium. The Journal of the American Society of Nephrology reported that alcoholism and chronic diarrhea are often connected and can further impact negatively on magnesium levels.22

Diuretics and magnesium deficiency signs

The Journal of the American Society of Nephrology reported that the long-term use of diuretic therapy can also negatively affect magnesium levels. Diuretics are sometimes used in the management of high blood pressure.22

Excessive exercising causes low levels of magnesium

The journal Clinical Biochemist Reviews said that excessive exercising can affect levels of magnesium and cause them to drop after long workouts.18

Medication for acid reflux inhibits magnesium absorption

The long-term use of medication to manage acid reflux and symptoms of gastroesophageal disease (GERD) can mean low levels of magnesium. The World Journal of Gastroenterology reported that proton pump inhibitors can hinder magnesium absorption. Some people with chronic GERD even need weekly intravenous injections to boost magnesium levels.23

Age affects levels of magnesium

As we grow older, our body’s ability to absorb enough magnesium from food diminishes. However, according to some studies, a magnesium deficiency caused by age only affects the very elderly.18

Diabetes as a cause of low magnesium

One of the complications of diabetes is that it impairs magnesium absorption. The journal Postgraduate Medicine reported that there is also a clear link between diabetes and showing signs of low magnesium levels.24

Diseases Caused by Low Levels of Magnesium

Let’s look briefly at what low levels of magnesium can mean when it comes to serious diseases.

Osteoporosis

Because magnesium is closely connected with vitamin D and calcium, a magnesium deficiency can cause osteoporosis. The journal Nutrients stated that magnesium is essential to maintain bone health and prevent osteoporosis.25

Heart disease

Your body needs magnesium to keep its heart healthy, and heart disease can be caused by a magnesium deficiency. Dr. Tibor Fulop on Medscape reports that abnormal magnesium levels can cause various coronary and artery issues.26

Asthma

A chronic deficiency of magnesium levels could lead to respiratory conditions like asthma. The medical journal the Lancet reported that many people who suffer from asthma also have symptoms of low magnesium levels. Researchers have found that a magnesium deficiency could be connected with the development of asthma and other respiratory diseases.27

Sometimes, magnesium is given to help reduce the symptoms of asthma naturally.

High blood pressure

Not getting enough magnesium from your diet or supplements could cause high blood pressure or hypertension. The International Journal of Hypertension found that levels of magnesium impacts on blood pressure and a magnesium deficiency could lead to high blood pressure.28

Kidney stones

If you have chronic low levels of magnesium, you may be at more risk of developing kidney stones. The journal Clinical Nutrition Research reported that low levels of magnesium in urine allows for the formation of mineral deposits which can form into kidney stones.29

Diabetes

The World Journal of Diabetes reported that low levels of magnesium may affect insulin levels so much that it is a causative factor in type-2 diabetes. Scientists reported that low magnesium intake increases a person’s risk of developing type-2 diabetes.30

How to Treat or Prevent Low Magnesium Levels

The first step to treat or prevent low magnesium levels is to get to the root of the problem. Enjoying a healthy diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables can help to boost levels of magnesium naturally.

It’s also important to avoid drinking excessive amounts of coffee and alcohol and eating processed foods. These poor dietary habits can contribute to a magnesium deficiency.

As many studies on the signs of low magnesium levels have pointed out, gastrointestinal issues and certain types of medication can all make it harder for the body to absorb magnesium. Therefore, you should try and resolve any health issues that could be contributing to a lack of magnesium.

Foods to Prevent Low Magnesium Levels

Some of the best foods that contain high levels of magnesium are green leafy vegetables, nuts and seeds as well as whole grains.

According to the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, the best foods to eat to increase levels of magnesium are the following:31

  • Cereals. Oatmeal, wholemeal bread, and bran flakes.
  • Vegetables. Broccoli, raw carrots, corn, peas, beets, and asparagus.
  • Nuts and seeds. Almonds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, cashews, Brazil nuts, and walnuts.
  • Meat and fish. Lean veal, sirloin steak, chicken, turkey and tuna.
  • Dairy products. Milk.

Supplements to Treat Magnesium Deficiency

Taking magnesium supplements is one way to address a magnesium deficiency and avoid the signs of low magnesium.

You can find magnesium supplements at your local health store or online. Magnesium supplements can be found in powder form, liquid, capsules or tablets. You can find inexpensive products that feature magnesium citrate (like this one), which is among the most readily absorbed forms of magnesium supplements.

As there is a risk of side effects and interactions with other medications and supplements, you should speak to your healthcare provider before taking supplements for low levels of magnesium.

Recommended Intake for Magnesium

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the daily recommendation for magnesium are:

19-30 years: men 400 mg, women 310 mg, pregnant women 350 mg.
31+ years: men 420 mg, women 320 mg, pregnant women 360 mg.

Read my other related articles:

Article Sources:
  1. WebMD. Magnesium test.
  2. NIH. Magnesium.
  3. NHS. Vitamin D.
  4. Am Fam Physician.2009 Jul 15;80(2):157-162.
  5. BMJ Open.2013 Feb 20;3(2).
  6. MayoClinic. Muscle cramp.
  7. Nutrients. 2015 Sep; 7(9): 8199–8226.
  8. Clin Kidney J. 2012 Feb; 5(Suppl 1): i3–i14.
  9. Prim Care Companion J Clin Psychiatry. 2008; 10(2): 120–128.
  10. UMM. Magnesium.
  11. Hippokratia. 2006 Oct-Dec; 10(4): 147–152.
  12. Jpn J Med.1990 Jul-Aug;29(4):368-72.
  13. Nutrients. 2017 May; 9(5): 429.
  14. J Res Med Sci. 2012 Dec; 17(12): 1161–1169.
  15. Eur J Clin Nutr.2007 May;61(5):616-22.
  16. J Am Diet Assoc.1999 Oct;99(10):1249-56.
  17. Clin Calcium.2005 Feb;15(2):255-60.
  18. Clin Biochem Rev. 2003 May; 24(2): 47–66.
  19. Clin Drug Investig.2007;27(1):51-8.
  20. Crop J. 2016 Apr;4(2): 83-91.
  21. MSDManuals. Hypomagnesemia.
  22. JASN. July 1, 1999 10 no. 71616-1622
  23. World J Gastroenterol. 2017 Oct 7; 23(37): 6907–6910.
  24. Postgrad Med.1992 Oct;92(5):217-9, 222-4.
  25. Nutrients. 2013 Aug; 5(8): 3022–3033.
  26. Medscape. Hypomagnesemia.
  27. 1994 Aug 6;344(8919):357-62.
  28. Int J Hypertens. 2012; 754250.
  29. Clin Nutr Res. 2015 Jul; 4(3): 137–152.
  30. World J Diabetes. 2015 Aug 25; 6(10): 1152–1157.
  31. Cedars-Sinai. Magnesium rich foods.
  32. WHO. Calcium and Magnesium in drinking water

The post 14 Warning Signs of Low Magnesium Levels and What to Do About It appeared first on Healthy and Natural World.

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Why Your Testicles Hurt: Surprising Reasons of Testicle Pain

The reasons why your testicles hurt can be more complex than getting kicked or hit between the legs. Of course, blunt trauma to your scrotum can result in excruciating testicle pain that can last a long time. However, there are a number of reasons for testicular pain and tenderness that could affect both testicles or just one of them.

Apart from being hit in your scrotum, what are other reason for having testicles that hurt? Some of the most common reasons why you could have sore testicles are an infection or inflammation. Usually, this will result in testicular pain until the infection has passed. Some more serious conditions that can result in feeling pain in your testicles are testicular torsion, an inguinal hernia, or enlarged veins in the scrotum.

If you find a painful lump in your right or left testicle, you shouldn’t automatically assume that it is testicular cancer. Sometimes, a benign scrotal mass can develop and can cause your testes to hurt. Of course, you should always have a qualified doctor check out a lump in your scrotum whether it is sore or not.

In this article, you will find out the most common reasons why your testicles hurt. In some cases, you will learn about natural remedies to relieve discomfort in your scrotum and resolve underlying conditions that lead to testicular pain.

Other Symptoms When Your Testicles Hurt

When finding out the cause why your testicles hurt, doctors will usually want to know about associated symptoms with testicular pain.

Testicular pain is pain that is felt anywhere in the scrotum or testicles. According to Dr. Steven Doerr on eMedicineHealth, discomfort and swelling in the scrotum could indicate a serious condition like testicular torsion. Usually, an infection will cause your testicles to feel tender and you may notice redness on your scrotum.1

Other conditions like a urinary tract infection or kidney stones can also make your testicles hurt. These medical conditions will often result in a fever, nausea, and an itchy penis and burning sensation when you pee.

Reasons for Testicles that Hurt

Let’s look in more detail now at the common reasons for having testicles that hurt. We will also examine some of the serious causes of painful testicles.

Trauma to your testicles

The most common reason for testicles being very sore and painful is suffering any kind of trauma to your testes.

Dr. William Shiel on MedicineNet says that getting hit between the legs can cause agonizing testicular pain. Along with the pain, you might notice some swelling and even bruising. In case of a severe blow to your testicles, you might have nausea and even vomit.2

According to Dr. Ryan Terlecki on Medscape, the painful trauma to your testicles could also cause a hematocele to form in which there is a collection of blood around the testicle that could rupture. Doctors will usually carry out an exam to determine the extent of the scrotal injury that causes sore testicles with a lump.3

Testicular torsion causes painful testicles

If just your right testicle hurts or only your left testicle is sore, you could have a testicular torsion

A testicular torsion results in sudden intense pain in your scrotum and requires surgery to resolve the pain.

According to the journal American Family Physician, a testicular torsion happens when the spermatic cord in your scrotum twists and cuts off blood supply to the testicle. The most common symptoms of a testicular torsion are severe testicular pain along with nausea and vomiting.4

It is important to get emergency care if you have symptoms of a testicular torsion. If the condition isn’t resolved quickly, permanent damage to your scrotum can occur.

Mumps can make testicles hurt

It may surprise many men, but mumps can be a reason for painful testicles and causes a condition called mumps orchitis.

Mumps is usually associated with children; however, many reports say that mumps in adults is becoming more frequent. The Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine reported that in the United Kingdom 15% of all cases of mumps are in people aged over 15. Mumps orchitis affects men and causes pain in the testicular glands.5

The mumps viral infection that can make your testicles hurt will also cause signs of testicular inflammation. In the majority of cases, mumps just causes pain in one testicle. Complications of mumps orchitis are a low sperm count and increased risk of infertility.

The Journal of Urology reports that doctors usually recommend plenty of bed rest and placing cold packs on the scrotum to relieve the pain.6

Prostatitis

Inflammation of your prostate can cause tenderness in your testicles and usually affects men aged between 30 and 50.

Doctors from the National Health Service say that prostatitis can be the reason for pelvic pain in men. The bacterial infection in your prostate can cause severe pain in your testicles, make your penis sore, and cause lower back pain. Along with the testicle pain, you might have trouble peeing or find that you have to use the bathroom frequently during the night.7

According to the journal Reviews in Urology, prostatitis can be a reason why your testicles hurt after ejaculating.8

Your doctor may take a urine test to check for signs of a bacteria in your urine.

Kidney stones and painful testicles

If just your right testicle hurts or just your left testicle is painful and you also have flank pain, it could be a sign that you have kidney stones.

Kidney stones can cause testicular pain in one testicle if the stone obstructs part of your urinary system. According to the book Clinical Methods in the chapter “Flank Pain,” stones in your kidney will often start off in your flank then move down to the testicle. You may also feel that the skin of your scrotum is very tender to touch. According to the type of obstruction, the pain in your testicle will be mild to severe.9

Drinking apple cider vinegar is a way to treat kidney stones naturally. The acidic nature of apple cider vinegar helps to dissolve kidney stones and help get rid of these mineral buildups in your urinary system. To prevent problems with your kidneys, you should avoid common habits that damage your kidneys.

Inguinal hernia and sore scrotum

An inguinal hernia may be the reason why your testicles are sore, especially if you have a bulge in your pubic area and general discomfort in your groin.

An inguinal hernia occurs when part of your intestines pushes through a weak part in your abdominal muscles. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that sometimes the inguinal hernia causes pain and swelling around the testicles. Other signs of a hernia in your pelvic area are aching around the bulge and weakness in your groin.10

Doctors recommend using an ice pack to relieve the abdominal and scrotal pain. In most cases, surgery is required to completely resolve a hernia.

Scrotal infection

An infection in your scrotum could make your testicles hurt and cause you to have a fever.

Epididymitis is a scrotal infection that makes your testes sore and painful. The journal Reviews in Urology reported that epididymitis is a common reason for testicular pain that can affect one or both testicles. The review found that epididymitis can become a chronic condition resulting in sore testicles and scrotum that lasts for at least 3 months or more.11

According to Dr. Charles Patrick Davis on eMedicineHealth, the most common cause of a scrotal infection is a sexually transmitted disease (STDs). Some STDs that can cause pain in the testicles and scrotum are chlamydia and gonorrhea.12

Inflammation of the testicles

Bacteria and viruses can cause painful inflammation of the testicles that can be accompanied by fever, nausea, and vomiting.

According to Dr. David Derrer on WebMD, testicular inflammation that makes testicles hurt is usually the result of an infection. This can be caused by bacteria in the prostate, epididymis, or scrotum itself. This can cause inflammation and pain in just one testicle or both at the same time. Other symptoms include blood in your urine or semen, swelling of your testicles, or pain with intercourse.13

Urinary tract infection and painful testicles

If you have a lot of pain in your penis or testicles along with a burning sensation when you pee, it could be a sign of a urinary tract infection.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) that cause testicular pain are more common in men over 50. According to Dr. John Brusch on Medscape, older males are more prone to infections of their urinary tract. This can cause scrotal tenderness or scrotal masses, prostate pain, and flank pain.14

The Canadian Urological Association Journal reported that urinary tract infections associated with prostatitis cause testicle pain in over 60% of all cases. Other symptoms of a UTI in men are pain when ejaculating and penial pain.15

There are many natural ways to treat the first signs of a urinary tract infection. For example, drinking baking soda water helps to neutralize the acid in your urinary tract. You should also increase your fluid intake in general to help flush out toxins from your bladder.

Another way to reduce your risk of a urinary tract infection is to drink apple cider vinegar regularly. Apple cider vinegar is good for UTIs because of its levels of acetic acid. In fact, the Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine reported that acetic acid can help to get rid of bacteria in the urinary tract. Apple cider vinegar helped to reduce bacteria in people who were fitted with a catheter.16 Medscape says that catheters are a major reason for UTIs in men over 50 years old.14

Enlarged veins in the scrotum

One condition that could be making your left testicle hurt and look swollen is if you have enlarged veins in your scrotum.

Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that enlarged veins in your scrotum creates a varicocele. A varicocele is like having varicose veins in your scrotum and looks like a “bag of worms.” Varicoceles can cause swelling in one of your testicles and it is usually your left testicle that is affected. You may also have dull to sharp aching pains in your scrotum.15

Doctors advise that if you notice swelling in one or both of your testicles along with pain and discomfort, you should seek professional medical advice.

Scrotal mass

A painful lump on a swollen testicle could be an indicator of a scrotal mass in the bag of skin behind the penis.

There can be many reasons for an unusual lump that is painful around your testicles. According to doctors from the Mayo Clinic, scrotal masses could be a buildup of fluids, tissue growth, or hardening of the contents of the scrotum. Some of the symptoms of a scrotal mass are painful swollen testicles, aching pain in the scrotum, redness on the scrotal skin, or pain that radiates to the abdomen.18

Because there is the chance that any unusual lump in your scrotum could be cancerous, you should visit your doctor for a checkup.

Vasectomy can cause testicles to hurt

You may find that your testicles hurt for months for even years after you have had a vasectomy.

Usually, any testicle pain and pain in your pelvic area relating to post-vasectomy complications resolve within 4 weeks. However, the Asian Journal of Andrology reported that intermittent testicular pain can last for 3 months or longer in some cases. Doctors use a variety of methods to stop the testicles hurting after a vasectomy that include painkillers and other pharmaceuticals to manage the pain in the scrotum.19

Not ejaculating can cause testicular pain

Another reason why your testicles may hurt sometimes is if you have had an erection without ejaculating.

The journal Pediatrics reported that sexual arousal without ejaculation can lead to a buildup of semen in the testicles. If the fluid in the testicles is not released, the testicles can become very painful for a few hours or until the semen is ejaculated.20

Testicular cancer

In rare cases, testicular cancer can be a reason why you have pain or discomfort one testicle or scrotum.

Dr. Laura Martin on WebMD explains that you should be aware of any changes to the shape or size of your testicles. The first signs of testicular cancer can be a painless lump in a testicle. Other signs of cancer in the testicles are testicular pain, fluid that fills the scrotum, and/or a scrotal mass.21

You can find more information in my article about testicular cancer – warning signs and symptoms you shouldn’t ignore, where you can find how to do a simple three-minute self-examination once a month which is all you need for early detection of testicular cancer.

When to See a Doctor if Your Testicles Hurt

Usually, if your testicles hurt from time to time and you have no other symptoms, there is nothing to worry about.

Signs that something is wrong are if your testicles suddenly start hurting bad and you have other symptoms. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic say that you should see a doctor if your testicles hurt in the following circumstances:22

  • You experience sudden, severe testicle pain. This can quickly turn into a medical emergency.
  • You also have nausea, fever, or blood in your urine.
  • Mild pain in your testicles that doesn’t go away after a few days.
  • You notice a lump in your testicles that may or may not be painful.

Read my other related articles:

Article Sources

  1. eMedicineHealth. Testicular pain.
  2. MedicineNet. Testicular disorders.
  3. Medscape. Testicular trauma.
  4. Am Fam Physician.2013 Dec 15;88(12):835-40.
  5. J R Soc Med. 2006 Nov; 99(11): 573–575.
  6. J Urol.1997 Dec;158(6):2158-61.
  7. NHS. Prostatitis.
  8. Rev Urol. 2002 Spring; 4(2): 95–96.
  9. NCBI. Clinical Methods – Flank Pain.
  10. MayoClinic. Inguinal
  11. Rev Urol. 2003 Fall; 5(4): 209–215.
  12. eMedicineHealth. Testicle infection (epididymitis).
  13. WebMD. Inflammation of the testicle.
  14. Medscape. Urinary tract infection (UTI) in males.
  15. Can Urol Assoc J. 2012 Oct; 6(5 Suppl 2): S133–S135.
  16. J Spinal Cord Med. 2006; 29(3): 217–226.
  17. MayoClinic. Varicocele.
  18. MayoClinic. Scrotal masses.
  19. Asian J Androl. 2016 May-Jun; 18(3): 332–337.
  20. 2000 Oct;106(4):843.
  21. WebMD. Understanding testicular cancer.
  22. MayoClinic. Testicle pain.

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Ischial Tuberosity Pain (Sit Bone Pain): Causes, Symptoms and Treatments

If you find it difficult to sit comfortably for a long time, it could be that you suffer from ischial tuberosity pain (sit bone pain). Your ischial tuberosity is located at the bottom of your pelvis and is the bone that you sit on. Therefore, the ischial tuberosity carries most of your weight when you sit.

Sit bone pain can result from dysfunction of joints in your pelvic area caused by wear and tear or trauma. Because many muscles and ligaments are connected to the ischial tuberosity, sit bone pain can be caused by hamstring or sciatica problems.

One of the most common symptoms in your sit bone is pain when sitting for a long time. However, you may also have cramping in one or both of your legs, pain running down your leg, or weakness in your feet. This can also cause hamstring pain when sitting.

Knowing how to treat ischial tuberosity pain can be a challenge because the pain in your buttocks can become chronic. It can also be difficult to know if the pain is from your ischium or other pelvic bones. Very often, using ice or heat can help to relieve the pain when sitting. Exercising to strengthen your butt muscles and your core can also help to relieve ischial tuberosity pain syndrome.

In this article, I am going to look at the various reasons why your butt hurts so much when you sit for a long time. You will also find out ways to relieve buttock pain naturally and how to prevent the symptoms of sit bone pain.

What is the Sit Bone?

The sit bone (ischial tuberosity) is sometimes referred to as the sitz bone, sits bone, or sitting bone. The sit bone is a bony protrusion at the base of your pelvic bones.

According to the University of the West of England, the ischium is divided into an upper part and lower part. The thick lower part of the bone is called the ischial tuberosity and you have one on either side of your buttocks. Both have a slightly triangular shape and these are the bones that you sit on.1

The University of Michigan Medical School reports that various ligaments and muscles attach to your ischium bones. For example, ligaments attach to your gluteus maximus which are necessary to keep your upper body stable. Also, your hamstring is connected to your sit bone as well as your sciatic nerve.2

According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, the main function of your sit bone is to bear your body weight when sitting.3

Symptoms of Sit Bone Pain

Pain when sitting down is one of the main symptoms of sit bone pain. However, depending on the extent of damage to your ischial tuberosity and other ligaments, muscles, or nerves involved, you will have associated symptoms.

The Journal of Korean Neurosurgical Society reports that prolonged sitting on hard surfaces will result in pain and numbness in your buttocks. This can also affect muscles and ligaments in your lower legs.4

Another symptom of sit bone pain occurs if your sciatic nerve is involved. A trapped sciatic nerve can cause lower back pain (lumbar pain) with pain and/or tingling sensations that radiate down your leg. This can cause inner thigh pain and also tingling or numbness in your leg.

The Journal of the Hip Preservation Society says that pain in the sit bone can also be a reason for groin pain and pain in the center of your buttocks. If your hamstring is affected then you could have weakness in one or both of your legs and it may affect your gait.5

Causes of Pain Around the Sit Bone

Let’s look at some of the most common causes of butt bone pain when sitting that comes from your ischial tuberosity.

Ischial tuberosity stress fracture from exercising

A stress fracture in your ischial tuberosity from exercising or from wear and tear is a common reason for buttock pain when sitting.

According to the journal Hip & Pelvis, pain in the pelvic area can occur due to small stress fractures in the pelvic bones. Researchers found that ischial tuberosity injuries have similar symptoms to hamstring injuries. Damage to the sit bone can occur when the hip is suddenly flexed. Other reasons for stress fractures on the ischial tuberosity are overuse injuries and too much pressure on the pelvic bone.6

Risk factors that can cause stress fractures in your sit bone are running long distances, trauma that bruises the bones in your buttocks, or intense exercising. These are also some of the reasons for sacroiliac joint pain.

Sitting on hard surfaces causes sit bone pain

Sit bone pain can be caused if you have to sit for a long time on hard surfaces. This can cause pain in just your right buttock or be a reason for soreness in your left buttock.

Sitting on hard surfaces for a long period of time can cause a condition called ischial bursitis. According to researchers from Harvard Medical School, one-sided buttock pain could be caused by inflammation in your lower pelvis. Sitting or standing for long periods on a hard surface can be a reason why the bones in your buttocks hurt and are sore.7

Dr. William Shiel on MedicineNet says that inflammation of your sit bone can also cause stiffness and tenderness in your buttocks. You may also have pain when you walk, and the pain can cause upper thigh pain. Lying down may make the pain in your buttocks worse.8

Dr. Shiel recommends using ice packs to get rid of soreness from inflamed bones in your buttocks. Also, strengthening exercises can help to prevent ischium bone pain.

Hamstring injury causing sit bone pain

A hamstring injury can cause severe pain in your lower buttock that is worse when you bend over or straighten your leg.

Your hamstring is directly connected to your ischium bones, and any tear or damage to your hamstring can result in sit bone pain. The Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy reports that hamstring injuries can cause buttock pain on the side where the injury occurred. This can cause tenderness in the right or left buttock and severe pain down the leg.9

Dr. Tyler Wheeler on WebMD says that you can help prevent hamstring injuries by warming up before exercising. You should also stop exercising if you feel sharp pains in your buttocks or down the back of your thigh.10

Sciatic nerve damage and ischial tuberosity pain

Severe pain in your buttocks when you sit down could be caused by damage to your sciatic nerve.

Your sciatic nerve runs from the base of your spine, through your buttocks to your lower leg. Dr. William Shiel on MedicineNet says that a trapped sciatic nerve can cause lumbar pain and pain behind the knee. However, sciatica can also be a reason for ischial tuberosity pain.11

Dr. Andrew Elkwood on Medscape says that the sciatic nerve is in the area of the sit bone close to the hamstring muscles. If the sciatic nerve becomes trapped or pinched, then you could feel pain that gets worse when sitting or standing for a long period of time.12

How to Treat Pain in the Sit Bone

The best way to treat acute pain in the sit bone is to use a combination of hot and cold packs to relieve the discomfort in your buttocks. If you have chronic pain when sitting, then strengthening your hamstring and glutes can help to get rid of the buttock pain for good.

R.I.C.E. for sit bone pain relief

Pain management for sit bone buttock pain involves resting the sore area and applying ice to minimize pain and swelling.

The Muscles, Ligaments, and Tendons Journal reports that recovery from hamstring injuries involving the ischial tuberosity is accelerated when the RICE protocol is used immediately following the injury. This should be used for the first 2 days.13

The RICE protocol stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation.

How to use the RICE protocol to get rid of ischial tuberosity pain:

To help get rid of buttock pain using the RICE protocol, the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends the following:14

  1. Rest the sore leg from any activity that causes pain, soreness, or tenderness. This may involve using crutches if you have a lot of pain in your buttocks and hamstring.
  2. Ice the affected buttock by applying a cold pack for 20 minutes at a time.
  3. Compress the affected leg and buttock with a compression bandage. This helps to reduce swelling and blood loss.
  4. Elevate your injured leg when resting to help prevent too much swelling.

After 2-3 days, you should start using a heat pack to help relieve pain in your buttocks caused by a damaged ischial tuberosity. To find out how to use heat to relieve joint soreness, please read my article on getting rid of muscle pain naturally. There you will also find out when to use cold or heat therapy for stiff joints.

Exercises to Get Rid of Ischial Tuberosity Pain

Physiotherapists generally recommend specific exercises to strengthen your lower body muscles and hamstring muscles to get rid of sit bone pain.

Hamstring stretches for sit bone pain

The International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy recommends various techniques to strengthen your hamstrings. This can help to relieve chronic gluteal pain and prevent sit bone pain from returning.15

Easy hamstring stretches to relieve sit bone pain

Here is an easy exercise you can do at home to help stretch and work your hamstring to both relieve and prevent sit bone pain.

  1. Sit on the floor with your right leg straight in front of you.
  2. Bend your left leg so that the sole of your left foot is against your right inner thigh.
  3. Place your hands towards the right foot.
  4. Slowly bend forward so that your chest moves towards your right knee.
  5. Hold for 30 seconds to stretch your hamstring.
  6. Repeat with your other leg.
  7. Do the exercise daily to help keep your hamstring flexible and prevent stiffness in your buttocks.

hamstring stretch

Bridge exercises to work your hamstrings and reduce sit bone pain

If you need to relieve sit bone pain at home, this is a very easy exercise that you can do.

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent.
  2. Push your hips upward to work your glutes and hamstrings. (There should be a straight line from your shoulder to your knees).
  3. Hold for 5-10 seconds and lower your buttocks.
  4. Repeat 10 times to help strengthen your butt muscles and your hamstrings.

bridge exercise

This exercise will also help to strengthen your lower back and prevent back pain. You can also try my easy foam roller exercise to get rid of sciatica-related pain in your buttocks.

Strengthen glutes to relieve ischial tuberosity pain

If you want to get rid of pain for good when you have been sitting for a long time, it is important to strengthen your glutes.

The International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy says that glute strengthening can help to prevent recurrences of chronic sit bone pain. Having stronger muscles in your buttocks supports the ligaments and tendons that are connected to your ischial tuberosity bones.15

If you have a sore bone in your buttocks, you can try the following exercises.

Glute strengthening exercise for sit bone pain

To help work your buttock muscles and strengthen your glutes, this is what you should do.

  1. Go on your hands and knees keeping your back straight.
  2. Keep your upper body still and extend your leg as straight as it can go.
  3. Hold for 30 seconds.
  4. Repeat 10 times to help increase flexibility and strength in your glutes.

sit bone

Exercise to strengthen your butt muscles and prevent pain when sitting

According to the Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy, one of the best exercises to strengthen your butt and prevent buttock pain is the clamshell exercise.16 This is how to do it:

  1. Lie on the floor on your right side and bend your knees and hips at a 45-degree angle.
  2. Keep your feet together and raise your left knee as far as you can without moving your pelvis.
  3. Hold for a few seconds and return to the starting position.
  4. Repeat 10 times to help improve the strength of your glutes.
  5. Turn on to your left side and repeat.
  6. Do the glute-strengthen exercise 2-3 times a week to help prevent butt pain when sitting.

sit bone pain

This exercise to strengthen your buttock muscles is also one of my exercises that you can use if you want to get a fuller, rounder butt.

Strengthen core to help treat recurring sit bone pain

If your butt bone often hurts when you sit for a length of time, you should also work at strengthening your core muscles to prevent pain.

The Asian Journal of Sports Medicine reports that core muscle strengthening is a key element to prevent hamstring injuries and speed up their recovery.17

How to strengthen your core to get rid of butt pain from sitting

Plank exercises are one of the best ways of strengthening your core to help get rid of the pain that comes from bones in your buttocks.

  1. Lie face down on the ground resting on your elbows.
  2. Your upper arm should be straight and at a 90-degree angle to the floor.
  3. Tighten your abdominal muscles and your glutes and hold the position for as long as you can.
  4. Repeat 3 or 4 times, resting for about a minute between each repetition.
  5. Do daily to help improve your core strength and prevent pain when sitting.

sit bone

When to See a Doctor for Pain When Sitting

If you find that natural remedies to relieve sit bone pain in your buttocks don’t help, you should visit your doctor or a qualified physiotherapist. This is especially important if you have severe pain in your butt when sitting down and it interferes with your daily activities.

Read my other related articles:

Article Sources

  1. UWE. Pelvic anatomy.
  2. UMICH. Anatomy tables – gluteal region, posterior thigh & hip.
  3. Merriam-Webster. Medical definition of ischial tuberosity.
  4. J Korean Neurosurg Soc. 2015 Feb; 57(2): 123–126.
  5. J Hip Preserv Surg. 2015 Jul; 2(2): 99–107.
  6. Hip Pelvis. 2016 Sep; 28(3): 187–190.
  7. HarvardHealth. What can I do about ischial bursitis?
  8. MedicineNet. Acute and chronic bursitis.
  9. J Man Manip Ther. 2012 Aug; 20(3): 142–146.
  10. WebMD. Hamstring strain.
  11. MedicineNet. Sciatica.
  12. Medscape. Sciatic nerve decompression technique.
  13. Muscles Ligaments Tendons J. 2014 Jul-Sep; 4(3): 386–390.
  14. AAOS. Hamstring muscle injuries.
  15. Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2013 Aug; 8(4): 462–471.
  16. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther.2013 Feb;43(2):54-64.
  17. Asian J Sports Med. 2015 Dec; 6(4): e25411.

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Homemade DIY Body Wraps to Lose Weight, Detox and Reduce Cellulite

Many people use homemade DIY body wraps if they want to lose weight, detox, or get rid of unsightly cellulite. Making body wraps at home to improve your skin and lose a few inches is much cheaper than a session at a spa. In fact, homemade body wraps can be just as effective as ones that are very expensive.

DIY body wrap recipes include natural ingredients that help to nourish your skin, draw out impurities, and make your skin tighter. For example, coconut oil body wraps help to keep your skin moist and nourished as well as having antimicrobial properties. Other ingredients in home body wraps include Epsom salt, ginger, cayenne pepper, and natural oils to help detox your skin and make skin appear tighter.

One of the benefits of using DIY body wraps is that you can target specific areas of your body. For example, stomach body wraps for weight loss can be wrapped around your waist to help lose an extra inch or two. Or, you can use the plastic DIY wrap around your thighs or buttocks if you need the wrap for skin tightening.

Of course, some are skeptical if homemade body wraps really work for what they claim to achieve. You may be asking whether body wraps really work for cellulite or to lose weight. Also, you may be wondering how long the effects of homemade body wraps last.

In this article, you will find answers to your questions on how to use DIY body wraps for weight loss, removing cellulite, and detox. You will also learn about the science behind weight loss body wraps and if scientific studies have proved that body wraps indeed produce results. At the end of the article you will find recipes for weight loss, detox, and getting rid of cellulite.

What Are Body Wraps to Lose Weight, Detox, and Reduce Cellulite?

Body wraps use a variety of natural ingredients to help draw out impurities from the skin, hydrate it, and re-mineralize the skin. A plastic wrap is used to wrap up your body or an area of your body. A warm cover is then placed over your body to keep you warm for between 20 minutes to an hour.

According to Dr. Debra Jaliman on WebMD, body wraps usually leave a person feeling relaxed and good. The combination of natural ingredients, warmth, and relaxing can help improve skin tone.1

Usually, detox or weight-loss body wraps start with skin exfoliation to remove dead skin cells and unclog pores.

Dr. Jaliman says that there are a number of different kinds of body wraps. The most popular body wraps are:

  • Moisturizing body wraps to help keep skin well-hydrated.
  • Body wraps for detox that include ingredients to pull toxins from the skin.
  • Body wraps for weight loss that use tightly wrapped strips of plastic.
  • Cellulite wraps that use herbal ingredients.

However, do body wraps indeed produce results and can help in losing weight, getting rid of toxins from your skin, and reducing the appearance of cellulite?

Let’s look in more detail at what science says about the effectiveness of body wraps.

Can DIY Body Wraps Help Lose Weight?

Weight loss body wraps are one of the most popular reasons why people use DIY body wraps at home. But is there any evidence to support claims of DIY body wraps for weight loss?

According to the journal Integrative Medicine Research, there is some evidence that body wraps can affect weight loss. A study measured abdominal fat in women who used clay body wraps along with aerobic exercise to lose weight. The results were compared with other women who just used aerobic exercise for weight loss. It was found that the group who used body wraps has less subcutaneous fat (the fat that is stored directly under the skin) after a 5-week period.2

Although the weight loss was accompanied by aerobic exercise, skin tightening body wraps seemed to boost weight loss. They also helped to lose more inches from the waist. Even though some of the weight loss may be due to water loss, stomach body wraps helped reduce abdominal fat when used 2 times a week.

However, dermatologist Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi says that usually, the weight-loss effect of body wraps is only temporary. But you will at least look visibly thinner for a few days after a using a body wrap.1

Do Homemade Detox Body Wraps Work?

There is some evidence that DIY body wraps can help as part of a detox program to rid your body of toxins.

Doctors from WebMD say that plastic body wraps have some effect of ridding the body of toxins. The detox effect of clay body wraps is because it makes the skin sweat which leeches impurities from the skin. However, body wraps won’t help to detox your liver or your kidneys.3

If you want to detox your body naturally, you can check out some these 10 simple ways to detox every day.

What About Skin Tightening Body Wraps and Cellulite?

Body wraps will help your skin look plumper and smoother, but they won’t get rid of the fat cells that cause dimpled skin that are the result of cellulite.

According to Dr. Melissa Conrad Stöppler on MedicineNet, there is no evidence that body wraps that target the buttocks or thighs will cure cellulite.4

However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try DIY cellulite wraps. Dr. Conrad Stöppler says that the wraps will help decrease fluid retention and improve the overall appearance of skin affected by cellulite.

Body Wraps to Moisturize the Skin

Some body wraps can be helpful to moisturize your skin if you have inflammatory skin conditions like eczema.

Dermatologists say that moisturizing wraps can be applied at home at the first signs of an eczema flare-up. The emollient effect of rich, moisturizing ingredients is better absorbed into the skin and can prevent itching and further inflammation.5

At the end of this article, you can find a recipe for a DIY homemade plastic wrap using coconut oil for eczema.

How to Make the Best Body Wraps at Home

To get the best results at home using DIY body wraps, it’s important to follow a few principles. Body wraps are a great way to boost your detox program or help lose weight quicker, but you have to do a few things to make body wraps more effective.

Use high-quality ingredients. When preparing your own body wrap recipes at home, it’s important to use good ingredients, preferably organic ones. This is why making your own wraps is better than buying ready-prepared ones as you know exactly what is in them.

Exfoliate your skin before applying the body wrap. It’s important to get rid of dead skin cells before using a body wrap for weight loss or detox. Exfoliation boosts the effectiveness of any body wrap and will leave your skin feeling and looking amazing.

Stay well-hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids will help you avoid the signs of being dehydrated. Dehydration can actually make you put on pounds which will hamper your efforts if you want to lose weight in a few weeks.

Consistency is important for best results with a body wrap for weight loss. Ideally, you should try and use a weight loss body wrap 2 times a week for a month. This will help you see results quickly if you are also on a diet and are exercising to drop extra pounds.

How to Prepare Your Skin for Your DIY Body Wrap

To get the most out of your body wrap, it’s important to prepare your skin well. Exfoliating skin regularly helps to regenerate your skin and renew skin cells. There are a number of excellent natural scrubs you can use to exfoliate. Here is just one that you can use.

Coconut oil and sugar scrub

Here is a recipe to make your own coconut oil and sugar scrub to exfoliate your skin before using a body wrap.

  1. Mix 1 cup organic cane sugar, 1/4 cup melted coconut oil, and 1/4 cup sweet almond oil.
  2. Add 10 drops of lemon, lime, and orange essential oil and mix well.
  3. Put in a glass airtight container.

To use the coconut oil scrub to prepare your skin for a body wrap, this is what you should do:

  1. Dampen the area of skin where you will apply the body wrap with warm water.
  2. Take some of the coconut oil scrub and gently exfoliate your skin using circular motions.
  3. Leave for 5-10 minutes and then rinse off with warm water and pat your skin dry.
  4. Use the exfoliation scrub 1-2 times a week before you apply the body wrap.

Precautions When Using Body Wraps

There are some precautions when using body wraps. If you are pregnant, you shouldn’t use body wraps as they can increase your core temperature.

However, Dr. Louise Chang on WebMD says that some belly wraps can help you regain your figure after pregnancy. These body wraps can help to tighten your abdominal area and give you a thinner appearance quicker.6

How to Use a Homemade DIY Body Wrap for Weight Loss, Detox, and Cellulite

Before looking at specific DIY body wrap recipes to lose weight, cellulite, and detox your body, here are instructions on how to use body wraps.

  1. Exfoliate. The first step when applying a body wrap is to always exfoliate your skin beforehand.
  2. Apply the mixture. Step 2 is to apply a thin layer of the body wrap mixture.
  3. Wrap tightly. To get the best effect from a weight loss body wrap or a detox wrap, it’s important to wrap tightly with plastic wrap.
  4. Use elastic bandages. To help keep the body wrap in place and increase your temperature, you could wrap elastic bandages around the plastic wrap. Just remember not to wrap too tightly.
  5. Sweat it out. Once you have wrapped your problematic areas, you should cover yourself with a warm blanket. Some people also use a heating pad or put on their bathrobe.
  6. Relax. Next, you need to relax for some time. So, grab your favorite book, light some candles, or put on your favorite relaxing music.
  7. Let the body wrap go to work for up to an hour. It should take around an hour for your temperature to rise and start sweating out toxins.
  8. Shower. Before taking a shower to remove the mixture, remove the bandages and plastic wrap. Shower at room temperature.
  9. Moisturize. The last step in using a DIY body wrap at home is to moisturize your body with your favorite natural moisturizer.

Recipes for Homemade Body Wraps to Lose Weight and Detox

Now that you know how to make your own homemade body wrap and use it, here are some great natural recipes. These recipes for your DIY body wrap use natural ingredients that help you lose weight, detox, and make your skin look wonderful.

When using these homemade body wraps, always follow the 9 steps mentioned above.

Weight loss body wrap recipe

To make a body wrap to lose inches around your waist, you can use a mixture of bentonite clay powder and green tea.

Studies into using bentonite clay to lose belly fat have shown that it can have a marked impact when used in conjunction with aerobic exercise.2

The DIY body wrap for weight loss also includes green tea. Research into the protective properties of green tea has found that it helps to reduce inflammation, destroy toxins on the skin, and improve skin elasticity.7

Recipe for weight loss body wrap:

You will need:

  • 1 cup bentonite clay
  • 2 cups green tea
  • 10 drops lemon essential oil

Directions:

  • Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl to make a fine paste.
  • Apply to areas of your body where you need to lose weight and wrap with plastic.
  • Use 1-2 times a week for best results to help reduce your waistline.

How to detox with a DIY body wrap

Use a mixture of bentonite clay, apple cider vinegar, and essential oils to make your own detox body wrap.

According to the journal International Geology Review, bentonite clay has antimicrobial properties. Using clay as a face mask or body wrap recipe helps to draw out toxins from the skin.8 Also, apple cider vinegar can be used as an antiseptic on your skin to remove toxins and improve skin tone.

DIY body wrap detox recipe:

You will need:

  • 1 cup bentonite clay
  • 1 cup raw apple cider vinegar
  • 8 drops of lavender essential oil
  • Enough water to make a paste

Directions:

  • In a wooden or plastic bowl, mix the clay, apple cider vinegar, and essential oil together.
  • Use enough water to create a thick paste.
  • Apply to your skin and wrap your skin in a plastic wrap to detox your skin.

Homemade cellulite body wraps

If you need to improve the look of dimply skin that is affected by cellulite, you can make an anti-cellulite mixture with seaweed powder.

The Journal of Cosmetic Science reported that seaweed powder has anti-aging properties. It was found that seaweed applied topically helped to increase skin elasticity and improve the look of skin.9

Recipe for weight loss body wrap:

You will need:

  • 1 cup seaweed powder
  • 3 tablespoons sweet almond oil
  • 1-2 cups of warm coffee
  • 4-5 drops of grapefruit essential oils

Directions:

  • Mix the natural ingredients together in a wooden or glass bowl to get a thick paste.
  • Apply to your buttocks and upper thighs to improve the appearance of cellulite.
  • Follow the instructions on how to use the plastic wrap.
  • Use 1-2 a week for a month to help tighten your skin and give your skin a fuller look.

DIY Epsom salt detox body wrap recipe

This detox body wrap recipe that you can make at home includes the healing properties of Epsom salt and nourishing natural oils.

Dr. Carol DerSarkissian on WebMD says that many people use Epsom salts to treat various skin ailments. Although there is no scientific evidence that Epsom salts help the skin, many people say that it has helped them treat their complaints.10 You can also read about how to use an Epsom salt bath for weight loss.

Scientific studies have shown that healing chamomile tea contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and can help skin look better.11

How to make a detox body wrap:

You will need:

  • 1 cup Epsom salt
  • 1-2 cups chamomile tea
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 8-10 drops of lavender oil for its antimicrobial effect

Directions:

  • Create a thick paste with the Epsom salt and chamomile tea.
  • Add the olive oil, essential oil, and use some more chamomile tea if necessary.
  • Apply to your skin and wrap tightly for 40 minutes to help detox your skin.
  • Use 1-2 times a week for best results.

Ginger body wrap to boost circulation

Body wraps have more uses than just helping you lose weight and getting rid of toxins. Some body wraps can help to increase circulation.

As well as being a natural antioxidant, ginger has warming properties that can help to reduce joint pain. For example, the Journal of Holistic Nursing reported that topical application of ginger can help to relieve symptoms of osteoarthritis.12

Consuming ginger can also help to lose belly fat because it boosts your metabolism and helps rid your body of toxins.

Recipe for body wrap to improve circulation and reduce joint pain:

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons of grated ginger root or 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 4-5 tablespoons bentonite clay
  • Warm water

Directions:

  • Mix the ginger and clay in a glass or wooden bowl.
  • Add enough warm water to form a thick paste that won’t drip.
  • Apply to the affected area of your body and wrap.
  • Leave for 20-30 minutes to help boost circulation.

Because ginger can irritate sensitive skin, always do a patch test first.

Cayenne pepper body wrap for pain relief

Using cayenne pepper in a body wrap is another great way to relieve pain from sore joints.

For example, the British Journal of Anaesthesia reported that capsaicin (the main component of cayenne pepper) can help as a topical pain relief treatment. Cayenne helps to desensitize nerve endings on the skin and can help to relieve pain.13

To make a DIY body wrap for pain relief:

You will need:

  • 1-2 tablespoons cayenne pepper (depending on your skin sensitivity, you should adjust the amount)
  • 10 tablespoons white clay
  • 3-4 drops lavender essential oil
  • Warm water

Directions:

  • Mix the dry ingredients together and add the essential oil.
  • Form a thick paste by adding enough warm water.
  • Apply a thin layer to painful joints and wrap in plastic.
  • Leave for 10 minutes to help get rid of sore joints.

Coconut oil body wrap for skin hydration

If you have eczema, then this coconut oil body wrap can be helpful to soothe itchiness and hydrate cracked sore patches of inflamed skin.

Some dermatologists have pointed to the fact that wet body wraps can help to reduce the severity of eczema flare-up. However, some studies point to the fact that wrapping skin affected by eczema may not provide any help.14 Therefore, you should see which method works best for your condition.

How to make a moisturizing body wrap:

You will need:

Directions:

  • Mix the ground oatmeal and melted coconut oil together.
  • Add the essential oils and enough warm water so you have a thick mixture.
  • Massage the remedy to your patches of eczema.
  • Wrap the old sheet around the home remedy and wrap in plastic.
  • Leave for 30 minutes to help reduce inflammation on your skin and provide deep moisturizing.

Body wrap recipe for relaxation

You can also pamper yourself and your skin by creating a relaxing body wrap.

This body wrap for relaxation includes chamomile tea, nourishing sweet almond oil, and some relaxing essential oils.

Recipe to a body wrap for relaxation:

You will need:

  • 5 chamomile tea bags
  • Hot water
  • 50 ml sweet almond oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil and 5 drops bergamot essential oil
  • An old sheet cut into strips or bandages

Directions:

  • Fill a large bowl with hot water and place in 5 chamomile tea bags and cover.
  • After 10 minutes remove the cover and tea bags and allow to cool so that the liquid is warm.
  • Mix in the almond oil and essential oils and stir vigorously.
  • Soak the strips of old sheet or bandages into the liquid and wrap around your body.
  • Wrap the sheets in plastic and leave for 40 minutes.
  • After this time, you should feel refreshed and relaxed.

Awesome all-around body wrap recipe with seaweed powder

This homemade body wrap recipe is a great all-around wrap that can help to keep your skin looking great. It combines seaweed, detoxifying clay, and apple cider vinegar.

All-around body wrap recipe:

You will need:

  • 1/2 cup seaweed powder
  • 1/2 cup bentonite clay or white clay
  • 2 cups of organic, raw apple cider vinegar
  • 8-10 drops of lavender or chamomile essential oil (or another essential oil of your choice)

Directions:

  • Mix the dry ingredients in a glass or wooden bowl and add the essential oil.
  • Add just enough apple cider vinegar so that you have a thick, fine paste.
  • Follow the steps in the above section “How to Use DIY Homemade Body Wrap for Weight Loss, Detox, and Cellulite.”

Read my other related articles:

Article Sources

  1. WebMD. Body wraps: what to expect.
  2. Integr Med Res. 2013 Dec; 2(4): 151–156.
  3. WebMD. Body wraps.
  4. MedicineNet. Cellulite.
  5. DermNetNZ. Wet wraps.
  6. WebMD. Belly wraps: post-pregnancy hit or hype?
  7. Dermatol Ther.2013 May-Jun;26(3):267-71
  8. Int Geol Rev. 2010 Jul 1; 52(7/8): 745–770.
  9. J Cosmet Sci.2002 Jan-Feb;53(1):1-9.
  10. WebMD. Why take an Epsom salt bath?
  11. Mol Med Report. 2010 Nov 1; 3(6): 895–901.
  12. J Holist Nurs. 2014 Sep; 32(3): 173–182.
  13. Br J Anaesth. 2011 Oct; 107(4): 490–502.
  14. Arch Dis Child. 2006 Feb; 91(2): 164–168.

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