Constipation: taboo topic no more!
Constipation. It’s a topic you never really talk about with friends or family and no wonder, I can’t say it makes for pleasant dinner conversation. But it’s a subject that does need to be spoken about because there are so many people just like you suffering in silence and it doesn’t have to be that way! There are lots of ways you can soften your bowel movements and many times all your bowel needs is a bit of love and encouragement and you’re on your way… literally.
Okay, let’s get stuck in so you can get unstuck!
Why am I constipated?
Constipation is where a person has difficulty in passing bowel motions and/or infrequent bowel movements. When you do have a bowel movement, you probably experience some of these symptoms:
- a feeling of incomplete evacuation (i.e. not a satisfying movement)
- Hard or lumpy stools
- movements occur three times a week or less
How to “fix” constipation
To fix your constipation, the first thing you need to know is how you got this way. I strongly believe that once you understand the root causes of how something happened, you can make long lasting, positive changes to make sure you don’t get constipated again!
There are a number of reasons why you might find yourself stuck and unable to have a satisfactory bowel movement. Dehydration, medication side effects, not enough dietary fibre, too much sugar in your diet and long term use of laxatives or caffeine can render you helpless when it comes to forming and passing your bowels all on your own. Although it can take some time to undo the damage, you can get a head start with the tips below and then, when you’re ready to take the next step my Leaky Gut Bootcamp can take you from blah to oh yeah!
Other common causes of constipation are leaky gut syndrome, IBS, antibiotics and disrupted gut flora. In each of these situations, the root cause is the imbalance of probiotic bacteria found in the small intestine. You see, in a healthy digestive system the good bugs break down your food and digest it for you, all ready for your to absorb it. Whatever your body can’t use is sent along the intestines, water added (assuming you’re drinking enough… more on that later!) and a soft, well formed poo is created. You get the urge, you go and evacuate your bowels. Your gut bacteria is happy and so are you – job done.
So if this is not happening for you on a regular basis – meaning once a day – then rebalancing your gut bacteria is the perfect place to start in your quest for a satisfying poo. If you need help with the steps to rebalancing your gut bacteria, have a look at my 7 day gut health challenge. I’ve refined and distilled down all the essential steps to rebalancing your gut and getting those bowels moving again. Click here to learn more about it.
Natural laxatives and other dietary changes
To bulk and soften the stool to make its passage easier we need soluble fibre. Stewed apples, pears, prunes are wonderful along with steamed vegetables broccoli, pumpkin, brussell sprouts (yes), green beans, carrots and squash.
Slippery Elm Powder is a supplement that acts just like soluble fibre if you are time poor or need a faster solution.
Avoid lots of raw foods as it is harder to digest. Find more helpful advice about why a raw food diet may not be a good choice for you. Instead, enjoy casseroles, soups and slow-cooked meals. They are easy to digest, very nutritious and help get you hydrated.
A strong cup of coffee helps move a bowel motion but don’t rely on this as in the long term it can be counter-productive.
Eat foods that help with gut flora balance including:
- yoghurt (Jalna and Vaalia are good brands for probiotic yoghurt)
- prebiotics which are food for your good bacteria (bananas, chicory, asparagus)
- fermented foods
Read more useful information on how probiotics help your digestion here.
Relieve constipation with these easy lifestyle changes
Regular exercise will help relieve constipation. Think a daily 10 minute yoga routine, just google yoga for constipation and find a video that resonates with you. Please don’t email me and tell me you don’t have time to do 10 minutes of yoga because you’re probably spending double that trying to go to the toilet every day so save your breath and just start moving your body! You’d be surprised at how many times this tip alone has been the only fast natural remedy for constipation that someone has needed.
Drinking plenty of fresh water will hydrate your body and help to resolve your constipation. Aim for 1-2 litres daily, but anything more than what you’re currently drinking will be an improvement. Opt for herbal teas or fruit infusions if you need to but just get hydrated. When your poo looks dry, hard, pebbly or has lots of cracks in it, you are dehydrated.
Listen to your body for the signs of needing to go to the toilet. On the first urge, go and sit on the toilet for a few minutes. Avoid straining. Lift your heels off the ground and sit up straight, leaning forward slightly with your hands on your knees. No joke, this improved posture will help.
Start with these natural constipation remedies
If you’re not having a bowel movement every day, or it’s hard and dry or you have to strain, don’t put up with it anymore! You can make a significant difference by following my tips and making a couple of simple changes to your diet and lifestyle.
After you’ve seen how much improvement a couple of small changes can make, get ready to make a big change and jump on board with my Leaky Gut Bootcamp, 28 days to transform your gut health. Click the button below to get started today!
Don’t wait another day to start feeling better. You deserve a healthy gut.