Poop: a topic that most of us don't have conversations about, especially our own. Constipation is one of the main side effects of many common medications and can become a real pain in the butt (all puns intended). All joking aside, there are several options to help manage your constipation. Staying ahead of constipation is key.
Let's get personal: What is constipation?
According to WebMD constipation is classified as having fewer than three bowel movements per week. However, how often you go number two varies from person to person. Some people “go” several times a day, while others “go” a few times a week. Whatever your bowel pattern is, it is unique and normal from person to person - as long as you do not roam too far away from your pattern. Regardless of your pattern, the longer before you “go” the more difficult and uncomfortable it becomes for stool to pass.
Some side effects of constipation include
- Having painful and difficult-to-pass stools.
- Stools that are dry and hard.
- Stools that are lumpy (like pebbles).
- Feeling bloated.
- Feeling like you have not fully emptied your bowels.
- Abdominal pains.
You are not alone if you have experienced constipation before. People of all ages can suffer from constipation but you are more likely to be constipated if:
- You are taking certain medications.
- You are not eating enough fiber or drinking enough water.
- You are pregnant or just gave birth to a child.
- You are older in age.
It is no secret that constipation can be uncomfortable to talk about and experience, so we have put together a list of strategies to help with clearing your constipation.
Tip 1: Eat more fiber
According to the Mayo Clinic, generally, men should consume 30 - 38 grams of fiber daily. For women, the daily intake of fiber should be around 21-25 grams of fiber.
If you are dealing with constipation, increasing your daily fiber intake can be very sufficient. Fiber aids in moving foods through your stomach and intestines, making stools easier to pass. It also helps with having more frequent and regular bowel movements. There are many ways that you can add fiber to your diet. If you are eating a diet that is low in fiber, make sure that you start slowly, and gradually increase your fiber intake over the course of a few weeks. This will help you feel less gassy and bloated. Lentils and other beans are a great way to add fiber to your diet. Edamame contains 9 grams of fiber per half-cup serving and provides a great source of protein too! Berries get a lot of fame for their antioxidants, but they are full of fiber as well. A cup of blueberries can give you 4 grams of fiber. Blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries are also great sources of fiber. Avocados can pretty much be paired with anything. On toast, in salads, or added to a smoothie, the possibilities are endless! While avocados are recognized for their healthy fats, there are 10 grams of fiber per one-cup serving.
Tip 2: Drink more water
Lack of water and fiber intake are two of the most common causes of constipation. Drinking water not only keeps you hydrated, but it will also help you loosen your stools. Drink an extra 2-4 glasses of water if you are constipated. Because the colon needs water to do its job, dehydration can be a common cause of constipation. If you are tired of drinking plain water, try adding some lemon slices or cucumber slices to your water bottle to change it up a bit.
Tip 3: Exercising
Having a sedentary job or lounging around can put your digestive system to sleep. Regular exercise reduces the amount of time that it takes for food to move through the gastrointestinal tract. The movement will affect digestion by passing the food quicker, relieving gas, and helping stool along the digestive tract. Any form of cardio is beneficial for relieving constipation, but don't worry, you don't need to run a marathon to find some constipation relief. To relieve constipation, try doing some Zumba, jogging, water aerobics, or even just some light walking. The goal is to get the body moving to get the stool moving.
Tip 4: Use a squatty potty
The ideal pooping position is squatting. This posture helps straighten the colon and provides a smoother pathway for poop to exit the body. Squatty potties can be very beneficial for those who suffer from constipation, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or people with hemorrhoids. Many people contract and strain abdominal muscles when going number 2. The idea of the Squatty Potty is to raise your feet, and improve your toilet posture, to change the angle of the pelvic floor, making it easier to go to the restroom.
Tip 5: Listen to your body
Listen to your body when it gives you the urge to use the restroom. The longer that the stool remains in the body, the drier it becomes. Therefore, making it drier and more difficult to pass. How many times have you been struck with the urge to poop at the wrong time? Sometimes timing may be socially inappropriate and you hold in your poop. Although holding in your poop occasionally is fine, doing it on a daily basis can lead to chronic constipation. We recommend relieving yourself if you can, in order to avoid becoming constipated. Remember, that staying ahead of constipation is the key!
Tip 6: Incorporate Time To Go and Belly Reset into your supplement regimen
Time To Go is Sol Nutritions herbal supplement that helps hydrate the intestines and unblock the bowels to promote regular bowel movements. It helps regulate bowel functions and helps relieve pain in your belly by encouraging a natural detox, leading to a healthier digestive system and an easier time during your bathroom visits. Belly Reset is another favorite in supporting a healthy GI tract. Belly Reset encourages the natural production of probiotics for proper digestion and regular bowel movements. This popular formula helps rebalance your gut health, calms cramps, reduces bloating, and relieves gas so you can enjoy your day without being held back by belly issues!
Constipation can happen to anyone. There is no better feeling than finally being able to go to the restroom after being backed up. Now that you have learned how to relieve constipation you can incorporate these natural remedies into your daily lifestyle.