Gentle Move

Gentle MoveMaintaining optimal elimination is an important key to creating a high level of wellness in the body. Cleansing the colon isn’t accomplished by just using herbal laxatives.  It involves fiber, water, enzymes, exercise and healthy diet. 

Still, many people suffer from sluggish elimination and slow colon transit time. That’s where Gentle Move comes to the rescue.  Gentle Move helps to hydrate the colon and improve bowel tone to promote natural elimination.  Of course, you can take herbal laxatives like LBS II, LB-X, Senna Combination or Cascara Sagrada.  All of these remedies will also stimulate elimination.

The problem is that all of these remedies rely on herbal compounds known as anthraquinone glycosides. When I was first learning about herbs, I was told that one could not become dependant on these herbs for elimination, but I’ve learned better since then, because I’ve seen too many people who can’t go without them. This isn’t healthy.

Herbal laxatives containing anthraquinone glycosides are fine for the ocassional cleanse, but they aren’t a good choice for long term bowel problems.  For one thing, anthraquinone glycosides are natural dyes and stain the colon.  While there’s no harm in this, it does get medical doctors upset.  If getting doctors upset were the only problem I wouldn’t care, but there are other problems with anthraquinone-bearing plants.

They are contraindicated when nursing because they can be passed through the beast milk to the infant and cause diarrhea. Many herbalists also believe they should be used with caution in pregnancy, although I personally haven’t seen a problem with this. These herbs can also cause intestinal cramping or gripping in some people and aren’t the best choices for people with inflammatory bowel disorders either.

That’s why I came up with the idea for Gentle Move. It took me quite a while to convince NSP to make it, but I’m glad they did, because it gives us an alternative to anthraquinione-bearing laxatives.  It’s a formula that   It can be used to wean someone off of stimulant laxatives and restore normal elimination without the need for laxatives at all.  It is great for people suffering from inflammatory bowel disorders and is completely safe for pregnancy and nursing mothers. 

Besides acting as a gentle laxative and bowel tonic, Gentle Move helps reduce inflammation and respiratory congestion. It has a mild blood purifying action as well and can be helpful for skin conditions.  It even aids and protects the liver.    

Here are the ingredients in this naturally cleansing formula.

Magnesium Hydroxide

The key ingredient in Gentle Move is magnesium hydroxide, a salt of magnesium that attracts water to the bowel.  This helps hydrate the stool and make it easier to pass. Magnesium hydroxide is found in milk of magnesia, an over-the-counter laxative.  

Excessive use of straight magnesium hydroxide can cause  loss of potassium and interfere with the absorption of iron and folic acid.  However, in Gentle Move, a smaller amount is used along with a blend of herbs that help to tonify and rebuild the colon.

All laxatives work by helping to hold more water in the colon.  The colon recycles water from the digestive tract and if the body is dehydrated, it absorbs too much water, drying out the stool and making it difficult to pass. This means that any natural laxative ought to be taken with extra water to work properly. 


Gentle Move contains a blend of three fruits used in Ayurvedic medicine in India called Triphala.  Triphala has been used as a gentle laxative, bowel tonic and blood purifier in India for thousands of years. It is a very gentle laxative that also tones and heals the intestinal tract.

The first fruit in this blend is haritaki (Terminalia chebula).  It has a balanced energy containing five flavors (bitter, sour, astringent, salty and sweet).  It is a mild laxative that also tones the intestinal membranes.  It lubricates tissues and relaxes muscle spasms.

The second fruit in this blend is Bibhitaki (Terminalia belerica), an antispasmodic herb that is pungent and warming. It is an expectorant and decongestant and used to treat asthma, bronchial problems and allergies.

The third, and final, fruit in triphala is Amalaki or Indian Gooseberry (Embilica officinalis) which also has a balanced energy containing five flavors (sour, astringent, sweet, pungent and bitter).  It contains a small amount of anthraquiones (the compounds in stimulant laxative herbs), but is also astringent, so it has both a laxative action and a bowel toning action.  This means it corrects both constipation and diarrhea.  It is a cooling remedy and is also used to treat ulcers, intestinal inflammation, burning sensations, skin eruptions and infections.

Besides normalizing colon function, triphala improves liver function, protects the liver against environmental toxins and improves digestion. It is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, so it slows aging and protects the body from degenerative disease.  It enhances circulation, lowers blood pressure and protects the heart.  It helps expel mucus from the respiratory passages and fights infection.  In Ayurvedic medicine, triphala is used for constipation, indigestion, flatulence, poor appetite, digestive headaches, sinus congestion, joint pain and general toxicity.  

Triphala is such a powerful remedy in Ayurvedic medicine that there is a saying about it that goes: “No mother? Do not worry if you have triphala.”  This shows how esteemed this remedy is as an aid to both colon and general health.

Yellow Dock

Yellow dock is an iron-rich blood purifying herb.  It enhances iron assimilation (which contracts one of the side effects of magnesium hydroxide). Like amalaki, it contains a small amount of anthraquinones, but is also astringent, so it corrects both constipation and diarrhea.  It reduces inflammation (or heat) in the digestive tract and is useful for people with geographic tongues.  


Ginger stimulates digestion and improves blood flow in the pelvic region.  It is anti-inflammatory and relieves digestive irritation.  

Slippery Elm and Marshmallow

Slippery elm and marshmallow are soothing mucilaginous herbs that have a mild bulk laxative action. They help to soothe and lubricate the colon, but only when taken with sufficient water to hydrate them.

Suggested Use

A safe long-term dose of Gentle Move (for maintenance of normal bowel function is 2 capsules once or twice daily.  People who have serious constipation problems or have become dependent on stimulant laxatives for normal bowel function will need to start with a higher dose, about 6-9 capsules daily.  This could be 2-3 capsules three times daily or 3-4 capsules twice daily (morning and evening are best).  As bowel function improves, the dose can be reduced.  

Gentle Move is a safe formula for people suffering from inflammatory bowel disorders.  It is also safe for pregnancy and nursing mothers and can be used by both the elderly and the young. Taking Gentle Move with plenty of water (at least one eight-ounce glassful and preferrably two) and some fiber for the colon will greatly enhance its effects. 

Do not substitute soda, coffee, tea or alchohol for water.  All of these substances are diuretics and will increase water output instead of hydrating you.  Fruit juice and milk are foods and should also not be used in place of water. Ideally you should drink at least one-half ounce of water per day per pound of your body weight for proper hydration.

Selected References

Planetary Herbologyby Michael Tierra
Comprehensive Guide to Nature’s Sunshine Products
 by Tree of Light
Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine by Andrew Chevallier
The Wild Rose Scientific Herbal
 by Terry Willard, Ph.D.
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs edited by Sarah Bunney

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