Having a regular digestive tract is the cornerstone to a healthy life and an important part of our overall wellbeing. I mean, we all know that constipation and diarrhea are incredibly uncomfortable, right? Fortunately, it is not a life long problem and with dietary change it can be cleared up very quickly.
Here are the best foods that relieve constipation and help you poop - no laxatives required!
Foods that keep you regular:
– Water (hot water is even better)
– dried plums
– whole grains
– fermented dairy products
– ripe bananas
– high magnesium foods
– unpeeled potatoes
– Coffee (in moderation)
What causes constipation/irritation?
– Caffeine (too much of it can cause dehydration and lead to constipation)
– cheese (high fat and low fibre)
– milk (lactose can cause gas and stomach upsets for some people)
– red meat (high protein and low fibre)
– white rice (lack of fibre and grain)
– fried foods
– Spicy food
– unripe bananas
– artificial sweeteners
– low magnesium levels
– lack of fibre
– too much fibre
It’s all about getting a balance!
First of all: Don’t forget to drink water. Dehydration is one of the most common causes of chronic constipation. Foods that contain fiber, like whole grains, broccoli, berries and ripe bananas help you pass. Experts recommend 25 grams of fiber per day for women and 38 grams for men, which drops after age 50.
Is Coffee a fix for Constipation?
Caffeine increases peristalsis, which is the wave-like muscle contractions that work to push food along the digestive tract. Coffee, being a diuretic, draws out liquid from the stools and makes them harder. Thus, it worsens the condition of constipation. Caffeinated tea and colas, and alcohol produce the same effects.
Fibre can help
Bananas which are not ripe contain a large concentration of starch which is hard to digest. Red meat and cheese contain high amounts of fat and protein, but are low in fiber, which means they travel through the bowel at a slow pace. White rice is low in fiber as well, and can cause constipation. Fried foods are high in fat but low in fibre and nutrients, therefore they can slow down the digestion process. Too little fibre indicates bowel dependence, too much leads to bowel obstruction.