Home treatment for constipation

Abdominal pain? Many days without going to the bathroom? Maybe you are constipated!

So, if you are constipated, don’t worry you are not alone. Nowadays, many of our patients arrive at the clinic due to abdominal discomfort. But what they complain the most is constipation. You will know that you have constipation when there are fewer than three bowel movements per week. 

For more information about causes, symptoms and treatments (like MLD) read our  previous blog about constipation and how MLD may help you. In addition to MLD, there are some natural ways to help you relieve constipation. You can try them at home and most importantly, they are even backed by science. Let ‘s have a look!

1.Increase water intake

Dehydration is one common cause of constipation. For this reason it is important to increase the amount of water you intake. Studies have shown that sparkling water works even better. But avoid sparkling beverages like sodas.

Water is essential for fiber to do its job (favours intestinal transit). Also, it helps stools be lighter and be eliminated without effort.

2.Exercise

Be careful if you are spending many hours sitting because it favors constipation. Lack of exercise slows down intestinal transit.

Walking or jogging increase blood flow in your abdomen stimulating bowel movements. In addition, it reduces some symptoms of constipation.

3.Increase Fiber intake

It’s important to get fiber from a variety of sources. Just one type of food may not provide the amount and types your bowel needs to its job, however a balanced diet does. There are two types of fibers: 

Insoluble fibers: it´s the fiber you find in wheat bran, vegetables and whole grains. These add bulk to the stool and are believed to help it pass more quickly and easily through the digestive system.

Soluble fibers: you find them in oat bran, barley, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils and peas, as well as some fruits and vegetables. They absorb water and form a gel-like paste, which softens stool and improves consistency.

To avoid constipation, you should consume a mixture of soluble and insoluble fibers. The total recommended fiber intake per day is 25 grams for women and 38 grams for men. However, if you’re already constipated, you should try soluble, non-fermentable fiber (they work better in this case), such as psyllium. 

4.Coffee

As amazing as it sounds, coffee stimulates the muscles in your digestive system. Besides, it can contain small amounts of soluble fibers that help you prevent constipation by improving the balance of your gut bacteria.

5.Reduce saturated fat 

Food such as hard cheese, sausages, precooked foods, pizza among others contain a lot of saturated fat but very little fiber and water. So, it’s important to reduce saturated fat. On the other hand, you should increase foods rich in unsaturated fats. They help to combat constipation. Try olive oil, it has a beneficial lubricating effect for intestinal transit.

6.Create a routine to go to the bathroom

In many cases, occasional constipation is the result of a sudden change in habits (trips, vacations, night parties, jet lag). When you break your schedule and eating habits, you also alter the regularity of the intestinal rhythm, which can lead to this temporary disorder. That is why, it is important to try to go to the bathroom at the same time each day, even if you don’t feel like it (in this case, don’t make excessive efforts). It is a way of “getting used to” the body. 

On the other hand, you should never wait if you need to go to the bathroom. Holding on when you feel like could make your stools get stuck. It could also be painful. Holding on could also be what causes your constipation.

7.Use a laxative

It is usually considered safe for adults to use an over-the-counter laxative for short periods of time, but you should ask your GP if your symptoms do not disappear after a few days. 

8.Prunes

Prunes contain fiber. In addition, they have sorbitol, a natural laxative. This is a polyol that has a laxative effect.

9.Try probiotics 

Probiotics help to treat functional constipation by increasing the frequency (when going to the bathroom) and improving stool consistency. Some foods that contain them are: yogurt, sauerkraut, and kimchi, which contain live, friendly bacteria. Alternatively, you could try a probiotic supplement.

10.Exercises as a home treatment for constipation

1.First, sit on the floor and cross your legs. Then, pass your left leg over the right one. Your foot should be resting on the ground. Next, rest your right elbow on your left knee and bring your torso and left arm back. Take a deep breath and hold the twist for 2 minutes. Finally, repeat on the other side.

2.First, lie on your back, then, raise your legs  in a semi-bent position as if you wanted to touch the ceiling. Next, keep your hands at the sides of your body. Finally, do small pelvic raises.

3.Lie on your back. Then, bend your legs and bring your knees closer to your chest. Grab them with your hands and swing slightly from side to side.

In short

There are different  ways you can improve your bowel movement. Some basic changes in your lifestyle and diet are the best home treatment for constipation. If your constipation led to you having hemorrhoids, there are Hemorrhoid Non Surgical Treatment options you can try. However, if  after trying these tips you continue having constipation issues, please don´t worry, you can try MLD with us. It, a tailored treatment made according to your needs and works pretty well, combined with diet (our nutritionist will advise you) can help  you to improve your bowel movement issues. On the other hand, if symptoms and discomfort continue, you should see your GP as soon as possible for further examination and  tests to find out the cause of the problem and medical treatments available. 

We hope this information is useful for you. If you have any questions about our treatments, please contact us. You can find us 3 mins away from Angel station in Islington. If you like this blog, please share!

We are always happy to help.

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