If you often feel constipated or have irregular bowel movements for reasons you can’t explain, your lifestyle and eating habits may be to blame. Eating unhealthy and junk foods, not sleeping well, eating late and not exercising are some common causes of constipation.
Treating constipation is fairly easy—you can take over-the-counter laxatives or ask your doctor for a prescription of stronger laxative medication if the former does not seem to work. Aside from taking medication, the following tips can help you treat and manage constipation in a natural and safe way.
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Start your day with a glass of warm water
Drink a full glass or two of warm water the first thing you get up in the morning. Water is the greatest laxative and consuming plenty of water through the day will not only improve your digestive health but also provide relief from constipation. Make it a habit to drink warm water on an empty stomach and then continue this through the day—you will see results in less than a week.
Eat fiber-rich foods and salads every day
Eating processed foods and not having enough plant foods is a common cause of constipation in people today. By increasing your intake of fiber-rich plant foods and other natural foods such as legumes and whole grains, you give your digestive system a much needed break from overworking itself, which facilitates a healthy gut and easier digestion.
So make it a habit to eat loads of salad and greens every day and avoid fast food and packaged food as much as possible.
Eat prunes and drink prune juice
Prunes are known to be an effective natural laxative. They are loaded with fiber and healthy carbs that facilitate slow digestion by retaining water in the intestines. This in turn softens stool and helps relieve constipation. Remember that having prunes in excess can cause loose stools and gas, so start with a daily glass of prune juice and then take it from there.
Make friends with exercise
Moving your body is a great way to rejuvenate your body systems, stimulate blood flow in the organs and improve muscle health. Take time out for a walk or run after meals or right after waking up and you’ll feel a significant difference in your ability to pass stool. Other ways to improve bowel movement include yoga, pelvic exercises, cycling, swimming and Pilates.
Exercise not only improves digestion, it enhances your overall wellbeing, making you more conscious of what and how much you eat. As you feel better and more in control of your lifestyle, you become better at handling minor health issues, including occasional constipation.
Learn to deal with stress calmly
Did you know that your digestive system and your brain are closely connected and your digestion is greatly impacted by your mood? Stress and anxiety, therefore, not only affect how you feel, they also affect your vital body systems, including the very sensitive digestive system. Physical symptoms such as gas, heartburn, bloating and constipation are often attributed to a physical health problem; however, an increasing number of research studies have found a link between indigestion and mental stress.
Therefore, if you experience constipation or other digestion-related problems often, you may want to take a holistic view at your lifestyle and habits, including the way you cope with stress. Sometimes the root may lie in the overeating and junk snacking that often follows a stressful event. By being more mindful of your behavior and responses to life situations, you can improve your overall well-being, including the way your body processes food.
Take timely medical advice
While occasional constipation is nothing to worry about and can be relieved using home remedies or over-the-counter laxatives, ongoing or chronic constipation must be taken seriously as there may be an underlying condition that needs urgent medical attention. For instance, women who have uterine fibroids may experience constipation as a pressure symptom.
Based on the severity of the problem and upon diagnosis of any underlying ailment, your physician may prescribe a short or long-term course of medication. If you are already taking medication for constipation, you can get a discount coupon online, such as Miralax coupon, to get your supplies at discounted prices across pharmacies nationwide.
Lastly, naturopaths believe that constipation is a distress signal given by the body to make an individual reconsider their lifestyle choices and eating and sleeping habits. With mindful living and a relaxed disposition, common health problems such as constipation can be tackled effectively.