Constipation is a condition wherein the body is not able to push the stools out of the colon so it will be harder for the processed food to go out of the body. When we eat, we usually allow our systems to break down the food so that water and nutrients can be fully absorbed.
There are moments when we eat in excess, and it is entirely natural that the digestive system will not be able to break down all the food that we eat. The food that has not been broken down will become stools, and they are supposed to go straight to the colon so that they can be removed from the body.
Those who are suffering from constipation usually have stools that are just so hard to pass because they are very dry. The more constipated the person becomes the more problems that will occur as the colon keeps on filling up with stools that cannot be expelled from the body.
Two Types of Constipation
A lot of people become surprised to know that there are two types of constipation available. These two types are the following:
- Organic Constipation – This is not a common type of constipation. If your constipation suddenly occurs, you need to go to the doctor immediately so that the primary cause can be determined.
- Functional Constipation – This is the type of constipation that occurs because of unhealthy lifestyle choices and your high-stress levels.
Symptoms of Constipation
If you are suffering from constipation, you will know immediately because you are unable to pass stools but if in case you are still not sure about the symptoms that you are experiencing, here are some of the common symptoms that will show constipation:
- You do not do more than three bowel movements every week.
- Some people can only pass stools about once a week.
- The stools are hard and dry.
- Passing stools can be difficult.
- The stools are painful to pass.
- You feel like you still have not fully emptied your bowels even after you have passed stools.
Common Causes of Constipation
A lot of people become constipated mainly because of the food that they eat. If you are consuming too much-processed foods, this can be the ultimate cause why you have trouble passing stools.
Remember that processed food contains a lot of calories which means that they can cause people to gain weight but they do not contain all of the nutrients that the body needs. The additives and preservatives that are added to them can also make it harder for stools to pass through.
If you would continue to eat more processed food, you are going to weaken the walls of your colon which will make it even harder for you to pass stools than before. Aside from this most common cause, here are the other reasons why you are suffering from constipation:
- You are not consuming enough fiber.
- You do not drink a lot of fluids. Water is needed if you want to pass stools more efficiently.
- You usually ignore the urge to defecate until your muscles will weaken and stop working.
- You do not usually have access to go to the toilet. This may happen when you are traveling.
- You have overused laxatives, and your body is now dependent on them.
- Some medications may cause you to feel more constipated.
- You have some anal problems.
Constipation is Harmful
A lot of people experience constipation normally that they do not realize how serious the condition may be. It is harmless if you only experience it from time to time, but if you are already suffering from it on a daily basis, this can lead to serious health complications in the long run.
Just think about it, decaying food is stuck inside your body, and you cannot get them out. This is not normal and can lead to various complications. Some of the complications that you may experience are the following:
There are still other conditions that you might suffer from because of constipation. Do not allow this to happen to you.
Do You Need to Take Laxatives to Get Unconstipated?
For some people, getting constipated is not a cause of concern because they can always use laxatives to make their stools loose but studies show that using laxatives all the time will make people more dependent on them. There might even come a time when they cannot pass stools anymore unless they take laxatives.
As time goes on, some laxatives taken may also increase depending on the dependence of people. If you are planning to take some laxatives, make sure that you consult with your doctor first.
12 Natural Home Remedies to Get Rid of Constipation Fast
Now that you have learned all of the details that will help you understand constipation more, now is the time for you to figure out how to get rid of illness easily. You would like to be able to pass stools whenever you need to, and you do not want to force yourself anymore.
Start drinking more water
How many glasses of water do you take every day? Some people can only live on one glass of water, and this can be one of the main causes of constipation. It is essential that you drink enough water every day so that you can stay hydrated. This will not only be good for your illness, but this can also be good for your skin as you can efficiently get rid of impurities and other toxins.
- If in case drinking water is not doing its magic on you anymore, you can try drinking sparkling water. They can be very useful too.
- Avoid drinking carbonated drinks because they are full of sugar.
- Beware of liquid calories. They may be absorbed faster by the body.
Start exercising more
Some people say that exercising cannot cause bowel movements to improve but it may help your body digest food faster so if your problem is in the digestion of your food, this can still help.
How many minutes do you spend doing physical activities? If you do not exercise regularly, then you have to make some changes now. Doing just a few minutes of exercise every day can already make a lot of difference.
- If you are feeling constipated, you can try walking even for just 5 – 10 minutes. It will make a huge difference.
- It may help reduce the symptoms of constipation, and this can be effective in making you feel comfortable.
Include probiotics in your diet
If you are having issues with chronic constipation, the intake of probiotics can change your bowel movements significantly. Some people are suffering from chronic constipation who can cure their conditions immediately by balancing the number of bacteria found in their gut.
According to some studies, probiotics can be very useful in increasing bowel movements. This can be a good sign for people who can barely pass stools every week.
- Get to know probiotic – filled food such as yogurt and kimchi.
- If in case you are not fond of the food products mentioned above, you may take a probiotic supplement.
- Supplements may not work immediately; it may take about four weeks before you start to see your desired results.
Try the FODMAP diet to get unconstipated fast
Changing your diet may have favorable effects on your health. For helping you get relief from the symptoms of constipation, you can use the FODMAP diet. This is a type of food that is effective in treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome which usually goes hand in hand with constipation or diarrhea.
FODMAP stands for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols. If IBS is causing your constipation, take note of these details:
- You need to get rid of all of the food products that fall under the FODMAP; then you are going to incorporate them slowly back into your diet.
- When you start experiencing constipation based on the food that you have taken, you will know which food products you can tolerate and which ones you cannot.
Consume more prunes
You have already heard people say that if you are suffering from constipation, you can take prune juice or eat more prunes to get rid of constipation. There are different reasons for this. First of all, prunes contain fiber which can make it effective in getting rid of the excess toxins from the body. Another reason is it contains sorbitol. This is a natural laxative that can cause the body to expel stools faster.
- You can eat about seven medium-sized prunes. This can be enough to help fight against your constipation.
- If you have IBS, you may not be recommended to take prunes as this can cause problems.
Consume more fiber
You should increase your fiber intake. This will make it easier to bulk up the stools and make them easier to pass. Some people are suffering from chronic constipation who have noticed that they are not suffering from constipation as much as before.
- Take note that while increasing fiber can be useful for most people who are suffering from chronic constipation, there are some who may experience worsening symptoms because of it.
- It will depend on the type of fiber that you are going to consume.
- Know the difference between soluble and insoluble fibers so that you can choose the one that will work best for you. Soluble fibers can bulk up your stools while insoluble fibers can soften up your stools. You can select the type of fiber you need depending on your current condition.
Drink more coffee
It is time to stop from drinking decaf for now because you need caffeine to make it easier for you to pass stools. Coffee can help the digestive system become stimulated, so it will be able to help easily pass stools. While decaf coffee can still promote bowel movements, caffeinated coffee is still better.
- Coffee can also be useful in improving some soluble fibers inside the body.
- Coffee can also help balance some bacteria found in the gut.
- Take two cups of coffee a day. Make sure that you will not go overboard because drinking too much coffee can cause other health problems.
Are you familiar with what magnesium citrate is? This is a type of natural laxative that can help fight constipation. This can be bought over the counter, and you will be quite satisfied with the results that it can provide.
- Just take the required amount of magnesium citrate.
- Do not to take too much because it may empty out your bowels completely – something that only needs to be done when you are prepping for surgery.
Dairy is sometimes one of the main causes of constipation. If you are lactose intolerant, there are two things that you may experience. First is you may experience diarrhea. In some cases, you may suffer from constipation. Take note if you usually experience constipation after consuming anything that contains dairy. This will help you avoid other food products in the long run.
- If you suspect that dairy is the main problem, you can avoid eating various dairy products.
- You can get calcium from other food products instead of eating dairy, or you may also take supplements that will ensure that you get the right amount of calcium every day.
If in case you are suffering from severe constipation, you need to take herbal laxatives at the soonest possible time. You need to know the different senna laxatives that you can take. Some may be mild, but others are so strong that you would be in the bathroom for a long time trying to get relief from your bowel movement. It is best to choose mild laxatives over strong ones so you can only get the benefits and you will not become dependent on laxatives just to have a bowel movement.
- You will know if your constipation is severe if you are already feeling pain near your lower abdomen.
When you are feeling any discomfort due to constipation, you can help get rid of the symptoms with the use of olive leaves. This works because it contains oleuropein. This can be effective in making your bowel movements more regular than usual. At the same time, olive leaves are also useful in getting rid of the toxins that may be causing your digestive problems.
- You can boil some olive leaves for about 10 minutes.
- Remove the olive leaves from water and allow it to cool down for a while.
- Sip the tea from the olive leaves slowly.
- You will feel the need for a bowel movement soon after.
You have always known that flax seeds are good for the health and now that you are suffering from constipation, this is one of the items that you should use. This can work well for you if you are suffering from mild to moderate constipation.
- You can just add a teaspoon of flax seeds to the food that you normally consume like your cereal, oatmeal and so much more.
- Do not forget to add it to your smoothies and shakes too.
- One thing to remember is to always grind the flax seeds before you use them to get their full effect.
With all of the remedies that you can do to effectively get rid of constipation, you do not to have to undergo any discomfort because of this condition again.