The role of curative waters in the treatment of digestive complaints and illnesses

The effective application of curative waters for the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases is more than a hundred years old. The so-called sulphate, bitter salty, glaubersalty, and sulfurous waters are included in these.

The sulphate curative waters have positive effects for some gallbladder diseases. The solution of glauber salt has a significant impact in bile secretion. Animal testing on dogs already showed this in 1888, by Rutherford, the author of the Review of Medicines medical journal. It was later tested on humans and it was confirmed that Glaubersalt effects the increase of bile secretion.

The active ingredients of bitter and Glauber salt (Hunyadi Janos water and Mira curative water, Ferenc Jozse bitter water) increase bile secretion in the liver. Besides this effect, it causes gall bladder contraction, and it has a bile emptying effect as well. Curative waters containing bitter and Glauber salt result in the emptying of stagnant bile from the gallbladder after consumption, this causes significant ease and decrease of patients' complaints. The gallbladder fills with fresh bile as a result of increased bile secretion. To achieve the effect, 1-3 dl of Mira water should be consumed 1-2 times a day for four to six weeks. The daily amount of 2-3 dl of the Hunyadi Janos curative water is recommended daily.

The Parad Sulphurous water also has bile emptying features; gallbladder contraction occurs fifteen minutes after eating. A glassful is recommended to eliminate cholestasis.

Both sulphate and the Parad sulfurous curative waters can be used to prevent gallstone formation. In case of regular emptying of the gallbladder with these curative waters, in the bile fluid, the cholesterol concentration does not reach the density needed for stone formation during which cholesterol crystals precipitate between the two gall bladder contractions. Secondly, following the emptying, the capacity of the cholesterol solution in the fresh bile has higher concentration of bile acid and lecithin. It also due to this that the the risk of stone formation is reduced. Frequently consumed small meals have a similarly effect.

In the monograph, 'Hungary's mineral and medical waters", written about half a century ago by Schulhof Ödön, he says:" The effect of bitter waters and the glaubersalty waters is determined by their sulphate content, or rather, by their physiological properties.” The effect is due to the fact that salts only absorb in small amounts, especially bitter salt (magnesium sulphate) which prevents the fluid absorption of the curative waters that contain sulphate. Their increased fluid quantity in the intestine, as well as the concentration of the mineral waters, determines the laxative effect of sulphate waters. The hypertensive curative water holds back water, dilutes it, which turns it almost isotonic. Stool excretion is the result of sulfate salts that are difficultly absorbed, partly due to increased amounts of liquids on the intestinal wall. Hydrogen sulfide from sulphate has a stimulating effect on bowel movement in the intestinal as well.

The effects of concentrated bitter waters appear only hours after its ingestion, since the dilution process is necessary to start stool secretion. The effect of nearly isotonic sulphate curative waters, mixed with tap water, can be observed after 1-2 hours. In practice this means that for a one time laxative, the dense, diet-like, diluted sulphate curative water should be used. The use of hyper tonic or isotonic water depends on the doctor's decision, determined mainly by the patient's condition.

About 3 g of sulphate is required as a laxative. From the sulphate curative waters of Hungary, Hunyadi Janos glaubersalty water has not quite 3 g in 1.5 dl, in 2 dl of the Ferenc Jozsef bitter water, and in 3 dl of Mira glauber salty water.

For a one time laxation, 1.5 dl and 2.0 dl is recommended from the Hunyadi Janos and Ferenc Jozsef bitter waters, the latter diluted with tap water. From the Mira glaubersalty curative water, 3.0 dl is suggested.

The sulphate curative waters are contraindicated for patients with acute gastro-enteritis, gastrointestinal bleeding, duodenal ulcer, chronic inflammatory bowel disease, spastic colon, and for acute inflammation of the gall bladder.

Given the above, before using these curative waters, a physician's opinion should be asked!

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