Are you backed up? Why are you constipated?

Why are you constipated? How can you fix it?


If you’ve had fewer than three bowel movements in a week, or your poo is hard and lumpy, you’re most likely constipated. So, why is this happening and how can you fix it?

The most likely cause for your constipation is that you are eating low-fibre, high fat foods. Dairy products, eggs, rich desserts and sugary foods tend to stop up your bowels. So, if you do consume these foods, make sure you balance them with high-fibre foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

The importance of incorporating high-fibre foods into your diet can’t be stressed enough. Why? Fibre can’t be broken down by your body, so it creates ‘bulk’ that absorbs water and keeps you regular.

Quite often, certain medicines can cause constipation. Drugs for treating muscle spasms, seizures, pain, kidney problems and high-blood pressure can clog you up. The way around this is to increase your high-fibre foods and if that doesn’t work, speak to your GP and ask if there’s an alternative medicine that’s a bit kinder to your bowels.

Other causes for constipation are anxiety, irritable bowel syndrome, diabetes, thyroid problems and ageing. Again, a high-fibre diet is your best course of action for curing constipation, but there are also other methods available to you.

For example, age-related constipation is often more to do with you slowing down, so staying active can help you stay regular. Just 30 minutes of exercise each day – be it a brisk walk, time on a treadmill, light weight work or a bike ride – will benefit your bowels and your body.

Also, it’s best to heed the call of the colon when it comes. Don’t hold on to your poo – get to a loo!

And make sure you drink plenty of water and stay away from sugary drinks. Remember too, that you get water from fruit and vegetables. If you feel as if you’re not getting enough water from your food, try eating soup a few times a week.

If your diet fails to get things moving, you may need to try oral laxatives or suppositories. There are plenty of store-bought laxatives available, or you could try a natural remedy such as psyllium husks.

Enemas are also a last resort, but one that can help reset your bowel. Both laxative and enema treatments should not be considered without first consulting your GP, because reliance on these methods can damage your intestines or make your body ‘forget’ how it’s supposed to work.

If you’re still having trouble moving your bowels after a few days, it’s probably best to speak to your doctor, especially if you have serious stomach pain.

Read more at WebMD



    To make a comment, please register or login
    5th Jun 2017
    2 pecans and a high fruit and vege diet. No constipation!
    Fair go
    6th Jun 2017
    "Heed the call of the colon when it comes" - has the makings of a catchy song to the tune of "She'll be coming round the mountain when she comes".
    Ageing but not getting old
    6th Jun 2017
    Like it..I could just hear the tune with the alternate words in my head. Clever.
    6th Jun 2017
    Pretty sure there's a few around that are so 'full of sh.te' that the wouldn't want it any other way...
    6th Jun 2017
    Metamucil is good, most supermarkets have it, has psyllium that makes things slippery, nice orange flavor.
    Coloxyl from the chemist is a stool softner similar to what they use in hospitals.
    Microlax from the chemist is a mini enema, if things really get drastic
    11th Jul 2017
    There is 2 types of Coloxyl one is softener only(green print on label)
    The one with the red label contains laxative as well as softener.
    Some people find that Metamucil has the opposite effect but they are most likely the minority.
    11th Jul 2017
    It is easy, it is delicious, the perfect winter warmer, and it will fix all your problems. Make some lentil soup: (This appears to be the original Women's Weekly Italian lentil soup recipe.) Still hungry? Nibble on some licorice. If the lentils don't get you, the licorice will.

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